Gambar halaman
PDF

with which sun-light seems also to have accordances in their flight to the earth.

This fact indicates, if it were not a palpable fact without it, that all the relatious, including light, which can subsist between systems or any orbs are columnar and not directed to any place Where is no reciprocant whatever.

Does not the centripital tendency of gravity, in the earth's vicinity, aid in swerving the transmiting media of light out of the line before deseribed ? I think it does aid in forming wild rays and aberations as they called.

If this suppositton be true then the earth may be, as it were, but a feather in respect to gravitating connection with stars and as a sequeoce the luminous effluence from a star directed upon our globe, may stand as a star-image upon a cone of relations, stopping fur from us, and thus we see only this image which serves to direct tellescopic vision to the real column and the star at its base.

But if the star be in motion such vibratory motion would be attained by the column that the annual parallar could not be attained even though the star were only five billions of miles off.

Could Herschell's or Lord Ross's Telescope be placed in our atmosphere, with the earth as large as the sun, the parallax of some stars could probably be attained even upon the angle supplied by rotation on the home axis.

It seems to mo a conjecture founded on exceedingly strong presumptions that the sun with its one or two compeers advancíng in eccentric spiral paths must have these spirals to encircle many stars progressing in curves exlinear to the aris around which our solar bodies are ascending or descending as it may be termed.

I do not doubt their paths may cross each other and their pyramids of relations in crossing each other, give forth kaliad. escopic colors some of which are visible to us as variable stars.

In the via Lactea it seems absurd to acknowledge all the abiding specs of light as proper solar systoms-it may be a kind of Heliacal matrix or foundry where cometary scavengers are numerously generated and for long periods may be preparing to travel off in many instances far short of the countless billions of miles so easily described.

I will venture to guess, that several, if not all the planetarian bodies referred to by Herschell aro Phoetonic suns hybernating by marital compact and only shorn of their brilliance for limited periods; nor is it outside of settled convictions attaching to Pythagorean Astronomy that at no distant day, a compeer of our son approaching it, will borrow our light after terrible destructions among some of the inferior plapets.

After that, Herschel aud Le Verrier and Saturn will approximate nearer during a long night and at last an Adamic raco be planted upon them.

Cannot Le Verrier find Laxel's comet as one of the moons of his yet unfinished planet by going back on the paths of that

*

* comet and that planet?

maximad, his Phone or the

intelicalivery

Rapid as is the transinission of laminous impulses from the sun to the earth, if an irou wire extended between then luminous and other developements would pass along it (aster than in that waving column of relations subsisting between thein as at present

So great is the affinity between the gas called oxygen and iron, that oxygen might be suspectod to have a metalic terugenous base as its combustion supporting principle.

The metalic base found in chloric acid gas certainly invites to expect iron in oxygenous compounds and perhaps nickel in nitroge. nous gases under peculiar círcumstances.

I have observed that large beds of magnetic ore are more subject to be stricken by lightning than other Chalybiate ores, and any iron ore often struck by the electric charges becomes magnetized.

Magnetic beds of load stone have thousands of polarizing points belonging to different lumps and when ground into fine dust, become obedient to antagonist polarites forming under electric im. pulses curious configurations.

In the Boreal lights the titful flickerings indicate a dubious conflict between these antithetic forces and in the polarizing flirtations of luminosity when subdued by telescopic implements the same warfare between opponent principles may be observed,

Now if light and gravitation be not substantive atoms, why should electric or magnetic attributes be other than properties?

But if the opposing and great primary two laws can give motion to atoms in order to adjust differences of force, why may not mere properties of matter which have obtained embodiment, to some ex. tent free from their restraining atoms, be also subjected to motion even for the production of musical intonations as laid down by Pythagoras!

I feel perfectly convinced that by partitions in the application of the varieties of electromagnetic forces extended on the Piano plan, under rational direction, that musical sounds inay be expressed.

Whoever wishes can hear the Vucanean sounds of volcanoes and the subdued mutterings of earthquakes like reinote mountains sliding on their bases, or may hear in some places the strange Eolian sounds of electro-magoetic currents passing under ground in sandstone mountains.

Indeed without the excitations of electro-magnetism, wbat bells or what strings of any instrument ever ultered a single sound of musical notes

The human voice has a mechanical living organization made in exact compliance with the laws and the media through which the music andibe words of moral riglat obtain expression and adınission lo rational panoramas

The living man contains an epitome of the universe of existing principle within himself and, his Physiological functions imitate in action the soundlest maxims of reason intellectually exercised, while both intellectually and pbysiologically many demonstrations are made conceding the indueuce of Physical law over them.

The pulsating beart obeys a living impress of electro-galvanic force with all the tendencies for concentration and dispersion, for conservation and destruction which the same laws differently modified present to us among inanimate atoms.

From the capillary venous system passes to the heart, fluids dis. charged from local duty, bearing along chyliferous nutriment all which after liberation from the lungs excites the counter part of the heart and is thence impelled to the brain and to the capillarystructure wbence enfeebled or vitality it recommences its motion to the heart.

The brain formed of a double construction of organs, has these structures severally and jointly despatching and receiving orders that simultaneously extend along the nervous tissures for pathegnomonic services of body and intellection.

A splendid simplicity reigns through all the complexities of nature, by the great prevalence of two laws under the wings of which are conveyed bundles of other lesser rules FOR BEING, and the study of philosophy aims at knowing these things as nature exhibits them to mankind.

If worlds are drawn together by agreeing relations so are per. sons by certain congruities and in like manner bostile relations may separate both.

There are congruities for generation and for the opposite, both in the physical and the living organism, and among intellectual morals agreements may become perpetual ir liberated from the opponent principles.

But without comparing living capacities with physical laws it may be safely assumed that the place wbero equipoise of relations occurs between the moon and earth is always within the latters body and the point of like character between the sun and earth is ever within the sun's disc.

Outside of cones in space embracing the masses of any two bodies no relations of whatsoever kind extend between them and light, gravity and repellant attributes appear to decreuse directly by squares of distance and inversely by cubes of respective mass.

That eminations from a Drummond light or transfers of electromagnetic forcer along wires within our atmosphere must be affected by all surrounding influences which erist not along the transits from Globe to Globe in void space, must be considered, in all our experiments of the laboratory.

Two substances each composed of two diverse atoms placed in suitable menstrua will disintegrate and form an erchange differing greatly from the first and the severing and attracting motions yielded in making the transfer, exactly represents the difference between their forces tending to disjunction and recoin position.

That magnetic attraction concurs with weight of substance appears from the fact that while a magnetized block of iron litts upward another piece of iron both weigh as they did previously.

It is curious that when four persons with their fingers raise a finh, the weight of the latter, during inhalation of all the parties seems transferred into the former by soine galvanic association, so that the effort skillfully made, seems no more than lifting one's weight, wben walking up stairs.

Something like this happens when a swarın of bees cluster round their companions that with slender claws hold the twig ou which they hang; and after the same manner clumps of hybernating bats in caverns, hang upon each other, suspended by the wing claws of the few attached to the side stone wall

During the inarsupial exfoetation the young cling to the marinac without an effort as if part and parcel of the maternal integuments.

According to the received theory of gravitation matter at the earth's center would represent no weight centripitally and the small difference of 26 miles in favor of the equatoral or greatest rotary diameter forins a set off for the lack of centrifugal tendency at the poles.

From the spherical structure of the stratified crust of the earth it seems probable there is no great increase of density after descending below the fields, when full play is allowed to electro-magnetic or chemical exchanges.

Water running under the surface of the ground is supposed to abstract part of the common electro-magnetic forces from the surface, so that a person walking from a repleuve point, can detect the negative place, by means of twiggs or metallic rods held in his hands; or vica versa, can find the line along any ore banks by the same means.

It is certain living twigge lean most toward water and trees lean toward the bill-side on which they grow.

Tho Helianthus by night bends its flower caste day pursuas the course of the sun westw ! tender vines and creepers ,

Deo. 21, 1846. E. MERIAM, Esq.

Dear Sir-Fow discoveries in modern times has excited • more lively attention from the public than Morse's Telegraph.

It seems marvellous that the Telegraph manager oan transmit his orders thousands of miles in a row seconds by signals of motion.

Is the impulse imparted along the wires a result of centripetal or of eentrifugal energy! or does it express tho difference of force existing botween the collecting and the dispersing laws of matter!

The forco of gravity under magnotic attraction socks aftor absoluto repletion while the law of segregations claims instant. Jy to reach the state of negation, neither of which conditions can be more than approximated amidst our elementary atmosphere.

If olectric energy for a moment obeys contoptratire tendoncios it seems only fettered that it may the bottor manisest its own ex. panding powers among atoms that oppose it.

The tree that is riven by olectricity into fragments suffers a sadden expansion of its own gaseous olements and in steam boilers the steam decomposed and iguited electrically drives the splintered boiler or shoots them liko rockets high into the air.

I knew the gauge cocks of a boiler to exhibit suction of air and instantly frothy steam was extruded, the engineer shut off the water supply to prevent explosion, the wheels ceased moving, the fire doors were thrown open, the boat made fast, all took refuge among the trees on shore and yet no explosion occurred.

On examination the lead connection of the steam pipes was dissolved, the water in the boilers was below the proper line along the fire-fue and little steam was found in the boilers.

The engineer stated the Grampus-tow-Boat, under like circu instances, in consequence of not shutting of the cold water cast her boilers in fragments to great distances, and yet he too was soon after killed by the steam of his boiler that leaped from its bed.

This engineer Sturdivant, informed me that an irregular force obstructing the ingress of the pump supply sometimes disturbed boilers and the steam being decomposed and ignited, generally caused explosions of much more serious character than explosions from high pressure of stcam among defective containers.

In such cases, olectricity and elasticity, magnetism and gravity, aloricity and light and other properties of matter are evidently concorned with a most striking disregard of centralizing control.

Professor Hare's Calorimoter and deflagrator generates and governs these dangerous powers, checking and pointing out means whereby they may be applied for artesian borings and tho dissolutions of rocky and other mineral masses as fonnd in mining.

An engine of four horse power applied with proper machinery for collecting electric energies, or magoetic or both together, could yield means for the defence or attacks or war ships. of fortresses and probably for the rocket propulsions of gun cotton among troops on march or in battle.

Through magnetic implements for increasing the intensity of magnetic developements on a multiplied system, a surprising force of electro dispersive action could be extended along iron wires for any distance.

If a cup of water in the ground has a motion given to the water from right to left, facing the south, the circulation continues longer than if the same force had been applied in the opposite way.

Birds exposed to cold winds and rain lose that levity which belongs to the gaseous contents of their quill-feathers and cannot so well fly, nor can animals run as well after chilling their galvanic forces by drinking too much cold water.

The Gymnotus or electric eel stins a fish it touches il living, but a dead fish flies off when touched by it and possibly the lightning bug has a like action ppon the animalcula on which it feeds.

The moon and sun light I think imparts to sea waters and fish an electro-galvanic power for emitting luminous appearances at night.

Indians say sleeping in moon light impairs vision and all the nicer animal sensibilities and assert deer and cattle will not of choice sleep in it.

If a finger touch the tree on which Cicadian insects are hold. ing their concerts they at once stop and give attention and it is strange at how great distances a thunder-storm may be distinguished by placing the ear against a solid rock in the wall of a cave.

An epidemic constitution of the air is felt by animals and I could always distinguish by sensations from the atmosphere, wherein cholera-cases would immediately appear.

The same I can assert as to material places and rooms impreg. nnted by the small pox, typhus or billious, or yellow fever, as well as some other affections having various sensible and distin guishing traits.

I cannot doubt instruments may be invented for testing the vitiated qualities of the air imparted by combinations between peculiar chemical properties of some districts, with solar or lunar eminations.

The postures of the moon and earth affect disease and health periodically and at certain sasons the death of trees is easily brought on them and various seeds require special times in every climate to be sown or planted.

By the reciprocating influences of the places of the sun and earth the seasons are made and in conjunction with the inoon, tides and ocean currents, water-spouts and storms, and the movement of springs and clouds, with the various changes in vegetable life are all preserved and exhibited.

Even comets passing through the solar system, must impart more or less electro-magnetic influences and I think it will some day be admitted that the quantity of electric action on the earth may vary daily according to exchanges made with the JUD.

In 1818 the sun had spots and in 1831 I saw many spots in August the sun's face appearing of a very blue color and in 1838 February 141h I think was a large spot and the sun's disc was very blue

It was most probably caused by non lucent clouds of gas rising through the luminous strata, as its exterior band resembled the brighter ring around dark clouds in sun-shine.

in 1843 during January from the 12th to the middle of February the sun's face was excessively white and its rays scorching which was succeeded by the clouds and cold of March, during the cornet's appearance of that year.

It was my opinion the vegetation of the ensuing season was more luxuriant especially in the size and quantity of leaves than ever I had witnessed, whilst insects of all sorts died.

There was more electricity in the clouds than for years be. fore aud from a resonablo estimate, I concluded not fewer than 3000 trees upon about 6000 square miles of highlands in Temuessen were striklenby lightning that season.

The daily passage of the sun affects polarity of the needle and it is possible tbe lircoi no variation represent equations between water and land sorfaces and iso-thermal influence betweep tropical and pol chemical action as well as night and day and monthly positions of the moon and the places of the sus as it traversos its yearly orbit.

Magnetic polarily would have its importance heightened were it provea that'eolar axis always encircles a fixed part of the northern sky 47 degrees in diameter, once in 25,000 years, for, that would indicate a spiral movement of our sun around a mean Jin in that course.

The distance Cieslar being known, the sun's motion by annual departur i t, would afford an appreciable basis by which to extinsolar motion.

If a magnetic tel. . wire extended from the Cape of South America to cirlikes crossing the equator and tho line of no magnetic varias it is probable some curious experi. ments could be te : its daily workingu.

By parallaxes .! and transmitted simultaneously from these remote p

a surements of the earth's diameter heretofore tal

be tested and the causes of variations in the action of 1* Plum be put upon a basis for better understanding

rent. I think it

in author of the Illiad and Odyssy was apprised of the

of the needle and its use in navigation but the nautical the age did not permit its use.

If this conjecitir: irect Homer was an Egyptian Helenist and died 1106, B, C,

It is said the Ci' for 2,500 years past kuew the fact of magnetic polarity.

I have offered th i nning remarks and suggestions, not to give but to receive insation. You perceivel

electro-magnetic phenomena to bo products of the co!! and dispersing laws of the universe in this case contr" Arlain conclave properties of atoms and whilst motion i ced among these mere proporties a greater or les

I notion is also imparted to atoms which fall with

liate range of such excitations. It is upon t!

les that the records that you are so carefully mali

lected dependencies in atmospheric temperature !

semical changes in the air and earths crust will in !

be of great scientific value. The old !

"ctions and even Espy's rain making prodigies en

** harmless, while your enquiries, of the last year.

have aroused the sleeping powers of ancient Bora

Paris and the occident Hesperus aod before tranh

in restored you must invoke and call to your aid : "Pollox the old guardians of the mariner's helin.

Yours,

Drummond libes of respective directly by

Dec. 20th, 1846. and roosting places by pidgeons covers the ground 27th some remarks respecting one cause for equili. E. Meriam, Esq.:

and by occupying the same sections periodically, a brations of temperature depending upon equations of Dear Sir,-You make enquiries about the wild pid rich mould and luxurient vegetation is the neces heat in the earths crust and in the air. Sometimes a geon migrations of the West. Their color is of a sary consequence, as may be observed along many very fluctuating temperature of atmosphere loses that uniform dove, variable among the feathers of the ridges otherwise quite sterile.

character when the surface of the ground and the head and neck according to the shades of light: the In 1807, the spring season was very mild and in air approximate an equation no matter which is the ringlets and brighter shades about the neck distin the Kentucky ridges not remote, millions of pidgeons gainer of caloricity. The same remark applies to the tinguish the male—the size is between that of the had their young which overspread the country but differences of temperature between extensive water dove and the domestic pidgeon with bright orange their number was trifling compared with the multi surfaces and superambient air. In low latitudes the colored reddish legs and their whole construction tudes that arrived from the north-west in November earth and water give caloric to the air rushing down manifests extraordinary endurance and muscular en. covering the fields of corn and proving very destruc from the superior parts of the atmosphere as every ergy. In deep snows and when without food for tive. They soon dispersed by large divisions among one has remarked, but it is not so well known, that weeks they become emaciated and feeble, but are the then undisturbed forests of oak and becch.

the heated earth of the tropies sends off much heat, as very rarely found dead and I am satisfied their life I have seen at one time six or eight streaming if by electro magnetic impulse, through the rocks and continues longer than forty years.

flights at elevations of six to ten thousand feet and all the crust of the ground, in a northern course on one Their number now in the conntry drained by the when descending near to the earth their shadow like side of the equator. The motion of the gulph stream Mississippi River is not above ten per cent of the that of thin clouds would cover a space varying from represent this impellent power in the ocean deeps, but multitude which forty years ago inhabited the same a quarter to three quarters of a mile for every stream. at times, a no less potent influence makes its impresregion. In 1805 east of the Blue Ridge-base North Their flights often continned for three days from ten sion, rapidly extending caloric through the dry land Carolina, many millions had their young among small o'clock till near evening and when highest, their from south to north in general. I have obșerved oak timber extending some five miles in length by passage was at the rate of forty to sixty miles per however that this current of heat always is deflected three-quarters of a mile iu breadth.

hour but when near the earth their flight varied north-eastward on coming into contact with the fracTheir offspring at the lowest estimate of two for from fifteen to thirty miles per hour. They are very tured stratifications reaching in parrallism with our every couple must have exceeded five millions, after careful to avoid stormy districts and deep snows and mountain chains this side of the Mississippi river. all allowances made for the destruction by birds do not like the warm sun of the south. When flying This it is which, as stated in a former letter to you, beasts and man, as well as the casualties from tree in dense crowds pidgeons that are shot will be con utters strong and plaintive sounds within the horizonbranches falling by accidental overburdens. It is veyed forward a quarter of a mile or more before tal sand stone strata of the cumberland mountain table difficult to describe the confused noise of these multi falling.

plains. tudes when going to root or retiring in search of The immediate causes of their migrations seem to Włen in these cases the cloud making vapours and food at early dawn. They disperse by flocks, be for food and saitable provisions for their expected air extract from the earth these electro magnetic ranging daily, for months, one hundred miles around young.

forces, they thunder in the skies and at once a negain every farm and prying among the leaves and There are a few analogies between their gregarious tive or cold making current rushes from the north east herbage in all forests, and eat most voraciously. If habits and those of the crane and gende tribes The along the line which had been occupied by the travelthey find the weather will be very cold they either latter are more tractible and less voracious looking ling heat until repelled by new calorescent forces from retreat southward or fill their craw with bitter much more to the republican good of the whole than the south west. With tendencies of like kind the air berry seeds which will not soon digest and this do the wild and truly savage pidgeons.

is also affected and sometimes the earths crust has they always do when preparing for very long flight. In flying so rapidly at great heights they seem to very little correspondence with it, but finally an equi. The Cornus Florida or dogwood-berry is preferred have the power of Galvanic levigation without di poise must happen between them. Hurricanes are with its bitter coating buť in defauit of finding it, minishing their muscular energy.

certainly put in motion by the agencies referred to but they take the locust-seed, the wax-nut, or the seed of Is it possible that rice-birds, psora, swallows and all their great energies are insignificant when compared several pea-looking pods which is found upon shrub martins, possess similar instincts that enables them, with the force of oceanic currents or with the same bery of the mountains. They select Indian-corn be above the denser air to exert a muscular energy west Dynamies yielding earthquakes. Sea water in confore any other food, but consume rice and all the wardly, so as to permit the rotation of the earth to sequence of holding iron and cloride of sodium possesother cerial products and chestnuis, chinquipins, leave them? The manner in which they appear and ses great aptitudes for these potent agencies and I am acorns, berries and even worms when their young disappear periodically, at wide distances round the convinced the same will be abstracted at a future day, is in need of food. I never kuew them to use poi earth, indicate that such a suggestion has at least as and applied to the propulsion of vessels over its sur. sonous berries; but if they should eat laurel-berries much probability in its favor as attaches to many sci face. You perceive the close connection of the equilitheir flesh would be very poisonous to persons cating entific theorems of our ballooning times.

brations between what is called positive and negative it.

Indeed I am not sure if Franklin and Gay Lusac polarizations and caloricity and cold, with those equaI have seen them and wild-turkeys eating elder were among us now, that, they would not catch so libriums, at which for two years you have been delberries which have the effect of stupifying and ma much of the auroral illuminescence and other terrene ving with I think much practical success. I should king them very gentle.

levigating tendencies, as to enable the latter, in a be glad you could behold a summer storm, after dry The pidgeon when much pressed by hunger will mammoth balloon, to ride westward by night, all weather in the Sequatchee valley of Tennessee. Á pick the buds from the elin-tree and the white ten round the globe being only careful to carry along valley 150 miles long, averaging eight miles wide and dril sprouts of grass or other plants just emerging enough of oxygen to preserve life in a state of hyber bounded on both sides by the mural precipices of from the ground and they are especially fond of the nation.

horizontal sandstone 800 feet thick, overlaying four newly-sprouted grains of corn or wheat. Their flesh Before closing I must mention a remarkable state

to six hundred feet of lime stone composing the cumis very dark and has a very wild flavor, always imof the thermometer since the strong south-west wind

berland mountain, whose table plains on the south bued more or less with the galls of nuts and acorns from 6 to 12 o'clock last night after which the de

east are 12 miles broad and on the north west 30 so as to be sensible to the tasting and smelling or gree of 54 continued as I was told from then until 8

miles in width. The walls of the two sides appear gans even after being well cooked. o'clock this morning. This uniformity depends in

as if they would form a jointed seam if brought togeIn the early seitlements of the West the immense this instance upon currents of caloricity within the

ther. The valley is gently rolling with a lime stone beach forests supplied pidgeons with food and resting earth's crust travelling from the south-west during

base, over which a rich soil, with sand stone boulders retreats, while that nut had also an intoxicating effect the last three days until now the terrene heat has

and water worn pieces are intermingled. The Tenupon them. Indians say to subsist on the beech-nut reached its acme. When first begining the thaw

nessee river in passing into this valley 14 miles across without other diet causes human beings to acquire commenced fin the snow next the ground and contin

the eastern mountain plain, narrows its bed froin strange hallucinations of intellect and I am satisfied ued all night, although the air was below the freezing

near half a mile, to 100 and 200 yards, and is overof the correctness of the remark from observing its point ten or twelve degrees. Before that an increas

looked by the mountain acclivities on either side happifying influence upon bear and hogs that gloat ing cold for ten days was observable in the crust and

whilst its whirling waters carry's through boats at the on its nutritious qualities. rocks and in such cases sooner or later the air is

rate of ten or twelve miles per hour. It is in this valBut the manna-feast or great jubilee for pidgeons brought into equilibriation with the temperature of

ley the reverberations of thunder echoing three or was the fourteenth year periodic-seeding of canelields, the ground surface and this usually happens over

four times with enlargeing force and volume cause the occupying considerable districts, and yielding thirty tracts one hundred or more miles in breadth by five

earth to shake revulsively, at every repetition of the to sixty bushels, of a very perishable grain, to the hundred or eight hundred miles in south-western

echo, as if it were some vast leviathan breathing forth acre, as I conjecture, length as I have observed for thirty years past. This

its voice. Under these cliffy ancient sheets of sand. This arundenacious growth springs from the seed position favors your opinions, and as I know can be

stone great amounts of nitre have entered the crumb. and from the joints of the roots increasing in size for thoroughly proven. During the earthquakes of 1811,

ling stone, here also abounds the bituminous coal and fourteen years, to the height of six feet to thirty feet '12, '13, I ofteu observed cold and hot currents of

feruginous sands forming the grand magazine of thunand standing too thick-set for a bird to fly through it, chemical changes belonging to the earth before being

ders. I was always surprised that these great coal except where animals beat down paths. manifested in the air.

deposits exposed at the surface in some places, have The head of the plant droops as soon as the cane

not been ignited by lightning. Perhaps defended as Yours,

coal generally is against the lightning I might, with begins to die, (which is universal to the seeding-time,)

like propriety, express surprise that a leyden jar or the whole fields presenting the yellow appearance of

30th December, 1846. a franklin rod is not disolved by lightning. Although ripened oats, millet-looking brownish seed talling to E. MERIAM, Esq.

this coal has remains of pine bark and imprints of to the ground, sends forth a little worm leaving a hole

rosin on the upper surfaces of its lamina, yet I think in the seed, like that in English peas. Although the Dear Sir ;-The weather continues very mild, the it was no more composed out of wood than the adgrain is so very perishable multitudes of pidgeons | snow having all disappeared. Mr. M. will report the jacent sand-stone was composed out of reeds of which and other animated things subsist on it during the state of the thermometer and rain guage for the month. specimens very large and short pointed, may be found period of its becoming ripe.

At two o'clock to-day the therinometer was 72. In imbedded or cast in it. Depend upon it geologists The inmeuse quantity of manure left at brooding !my letter of the 20th I added for its close, on the # have much yet to learn astronomically before they can expound all that belongs to these formations. vapporized, and with absolute certainty will again be | and there is another plant of the equisatia kind. In the Geologists talk of watery sediments as if those substan subjected to like vicissitudes. The Bible expressly adjoining limestone, Corrals, trilobites, and teretraces had found ocean heds as level as the sea surface states that while the present rain bow seasons prevail tula with other shells appear all of which plates toon which to make stratifications. Some parts of the no more floods will drown the earth, but has not set gether are about 100 feet in thickness. globe in northern Europe, Asia, South America and forth the state of things after the rain-bow pledge is

Second Group of Rocks 900 Feet, the secondary lime stone regions drained by the removed by exterior and interior heats, such as all Mississippi were level and yet remain so, but who can may see have occurred in time past. If understood,

A massive redist. limestone having its fissures filled believe that the granitic base whether fiuidized or the scriptures never require wrong interpretation to

with seams of iron and white carbonate of lime, very solid could remain every where level at its surface

close grained and composed of comminuted corrals defend their veracity. Yours, * when first sediments of so great a depth were made.

and minute particles of shells, the stratification is very The mountain limestone and many classes of rocks

imperfect aud sometimes twenty or thirty feet thick,

January 1st, 1847. appear to have been fashioned like snow and glazier E. MERIAM, Esq.

the whole coinposing a wall 350 feet in thickness, masses collecting and sliding down hills and sometimes Dear Sir. — I will present you a sketch of the rocky

with another somewhat similar layer 550 feet in forced up hills existing from the date of lime rocks. formations at Saltville, Virginia, beginning at the river

thickness. These two masses as it by grinding on Directly by the eastern ascarpment of this great bed level and thence by the Salt Works ascending to the

each other, have comminuted parcels of Llue debris of horizontal sand stone, water worn sand-stone

of limestone between them alongside of which a summit of Walker's mountain two miles distant boulders are levelled over the under lying ridges and in a South-East direction without respect to minor

layer of calcarous malier, like fish eggs, 8 or 12 inmore ancient surface, but are always carried down the dislocations and short irregular synclinal and anticli.

ches thick may be seen. Above this range is scattered valley south-westward or across it and never up. It nal dislodgments the rocks for the entire distance

much mangenese and iron ore which, like the ochrus forms the coves out of which they were disrupted. have a mean inclination of about 35 to 40 degrees

yellow unctuous stone, has probably been thrown The Alinty structure east and parralel with the their upper face bearing South Eastward on the

there by the rush of water currents from neighbormountain lime and sand-stone appear to have been North West side of all the ridges and mountains of

ing places. Along the Eastern side, this great bed of 60 heated as to attain honey comb forms, by trans this region. The Stratafied rocks present broken

rock presents an ashy color and is curly and very disfusing their purer melted parts into cold water, for edges thereby exposing all kinds to the influence of

torted withbeautiful lime crystals attaching to its reti. these pebbles of various colours are all smooth and cold and rain and hence that exposure has been made

culated structures and next to it is a black heary iron rounded and also shivered as if by hasty cooling. In very fertile while the Southern exposure is com

flint rock jutting out and often passing into the black the subjacent every old limestone of the inountain paratively barren by reason of the superior stratum

shale and gypsum locks. kind are numerous flint nodules well cemented, and if being sand or other free stone. The seams of black

Third Group 400 Feet, Buch a thing is possible, the carbonic acid being lost slate yellow and gray indurated shales with layers

I now enter the saliferous structure about Saltville, a lithic acid seems to have entered and transmuted of calcareous clays sand and debris compose the S. the black shale referred to is hard and brittle, fracturlimestone into a coarse flint, but I must say that I am Eastern bank of the river whilst the sand stonos

ing like inferior stone coal into angular figures, with a neither a chemist or geologist, as you may perceive. I composing the upper crust of Clynch Mountain form

strong bituminous smeli. The lime rocks in thin strata can know when a corn field wants rain and by like the North Western bank. Opposite Saltville on the

ll and the shale of yellow cast stretching along its process of inspecting soine geological treatises of de face of Clynch Mountain a grand debacle has forced eastern side is a composition of unbroken shells all cidedly high merits, I cannot avoid thinking that a its way out forming a large cove or pot three miles standing nearly perpendicularly with some yellow revisal is much needed to invigorate and bring geology in circumference the rocks of great size being forced and redish indurated slate clays. The whole not exon to perfection. Unquestionably in this vicinity many || through a narrow opening to the river, which has ceeding 200 feet in thickness, but the thin slaty clays stratified rocks have synclinal and anticlinal positions conveyed them down the stream with a great force

of various colors black, red, green, ash-colored, blue, by original formation over rough primary rocks, hills in ancient days. This cove is walled in by high cliffs and variegated with white, are all interstratified with and mountains ; and on steep parts have slided down of white and brown sandstones and the red sandstone ;

the saliferous and gypseous deposits in tortuous wavhill over and under each other with all the confusion the first abraded and the whole average thickness is ing lines and lamina. The saliferous deposit at this and turning over which may be witnessed among near 800 feet. The white sand may be crumbled from place extends a mile in length and half a mile in sheets of ice taking passage on the turbed whirling the rock by the finger, but the yellowish and dingy

greatest breadth the surface presenting a peaty, bogwaters of the Mississippi.

brown sandstone is hard, clinky. and easily separated | gy black soil which in dry weather will burn. This There must have been times past when more water into oblong squares having two acute angled corners. i Hat is surrounded on the East side by cliffy lime and existed than now and also periods when very little of At some points the red sandstone is cliffy and above pure Burr millstone walls curling round at either end any water remained in contact with the earths surface, 300 feet in thickness containing spirifers and toward the above perpendicular black shale formathe causes of which facts belong to astronomical minute shells shaped like a half bean and others still tion thus giving it the appearance of a crater. In science. less, resembling split peas. Below the red sandstone

this flat artisian borings 800 10 900 feet passed through The moon gives indications of having no water on lies a thin stratum of lime stone, laminated and white,

solid gypsum and the variegated clays before mentionit at present and yet telescopic vision may hereafter with all the shelly remains common to the similar

ed, without other solid rocks, except iron stone nofind evidence that water once belonged to that orb. very thin plates, overlaying the great horizontal se dules and erritic pieces of Burr stone from the EastIf all the water from the earth were removed it is pos condary limestone of Tenuessee, Alabama, and Ken.

ern hill, wiiere it is embedded in massive limestone, sible its solid rotundity would be too deficient for tucky. Various deeper limestone stratas are exposed in thickness varying from 20 to 100 feet. The upper diurnal rotation and as a sequence its most projecting in the cove, the cliff-edges of which, is more than part of the red salt rock is above 200 feet under the surface would remain all the year facing the sun three miles in circuit and is twenty-seven hundred surface and has been excavated 70 feet and bored and it is geologically probable the centre of such feet at the most elevated points above the river at || into 30 or 40 feet deeper where it lies against the projection would belong to a present high latitude Saltville, two miles distant from this Mountain sum rock walls on the Western side, it has particles of in northern Asia or Europe. "I feel well assured mit. I would remark that Clynch, and Walker's blue and green marl sand sparsely commingled in it that time will afford proof that a similar state of Mountain, extend prubable two hundred miles in with layers of white and crystaline gypsum passing things may arise at a calculable date hereafter. After | length, and apparently they stand upon a trough of through it and masses of gypsum rock lying around such an event the next tenantry of the globe would liinestone shales, and slate of immense thickness

it on the West and on the East. The water passing find many relics to examine more curious than saurian which crop out near the mountains on both sides !

through it is saturated or is uniformly 24-25ths of the skeletons. The theory that thirty miles from the boldly forcing up the superstratal rocks, thus forming salometer. The salt by fire evaporations contains farface the whole interior world is in a state of the western and eastern appending ridges with the two per cent of foreign substance mostly sulphate of fusion, seems as absurd as to believe that no sections narrow valleys extending along these ranges of ele lime with a trace of oxyde of iron, but no trace of of it can be in a heated or fused condition, Artesian vation. If the remark be well founded it indicates

muriate of lime and magnesia. This salt rock is on borings seventeen hundred feet in depth on the that an opposing force from the South-East met all the late William King's estate, situated about 37° N., Kanbawa exhibit no evidence of increasing heat be greater disrupting force from the North West during and the Meridian line leaves Abingdon 10 miles yond the slight chemical results arising from the ad the upheavings of these rocks which happened sub- || West and about ten miles thence to the Tennessee mission of air and water into contact with substances sequently to the sand deposits chiefly composing the line at the iron mountains, not far from the North Calong excluded from freedom of space, in which such mountain crusts. As it is reasonably certain that the rolina Western boundary. In the flat where this affinities might have some play. The opening of granitic body of the earth never had a level water-like ll salt rock lies, are contained numerons mammoth mines at many places induces increased heat and ad surface it may be inferred that sand formation in skeletons in the soft white gypsum near the surface mission of air or salt waters into craters, no doubt oceans are not spread alike everywhere, but as ocean the bones seem to be a gypseous mass, but in a slate excites volcanic action. It is however very clear that beds of mountain granite would influence and direct sea formation 15 feet under the surface a large tusk seemthe tenure by which attraction holds ascendancy over currents these would deposite sands along and upon ed but little changed and the enamel of the molar the opposite dispersive attributes of terene matter is such elevations. But being no Geologist I will de-| teeth is bright, smooth and sound as when first buried too frail and slight to admit of a general chemical in scribe as above promised the character of the rocks in the soil. The line of gypsum continues 16 miles condesence throughout the interior earth. Under such from the Holston River level, on a line by Saltville to up the River valley with the variegated earths as a state of Audity the earths crust would wave like a the summit of Walker's Mountain elevated eight or found at Saltville and the solid plaster has been peneballoon filling with gas. At the periods of spring nine hundred feet above Saltville.

trated 675 feet at its upper boundary. The red forand neap-tides while volcanic vents might pour out

First Group of Rocks, 100 Feet,

mation called sandstone extends far East and West, oceans of lava as greater freedom for action was ob Along the Saltville side of the river bank, black and also the line of Burr stone but salt has not elsetained. But the whole theory is replete with obsolete slates, yellow and olive indurated shales and grey where been found, there is a doubt whether this ism unsuited to the advancing condition of geology calcarious slaty clays in which A picorinities with red sandstone in the once deep crevice between and astronomy, yet from exterior influences similar to leaves and barrel-shaped joints are very abundant Walker's and Clynch Mountains now containing the those which disentegrate comets on approaching the standing somewhat inclined in their original place of saliserous deposit, has any connection with that red Sun there is no doubt, but that much of the earths growth, also stems of the Sigellaria flattened, one sandstone deposit, to be seen near the tops of those mass has been at various times not only fused but to three inches wide, having leaf-eyelit impressions | mountains. The saliferous deposit may belong to a lower deposit geologically speaking by several thou. || the English Oolite deposite, but far lower down. “ At 12 o'clock, perhaps two minutes after it, a sand feet and yet the valley depression may be at the These are true remarks as time will develope. low rumble, resembling distant thunder, but one place to which the sinking of the Clynch forination But on the Atlantic and Gulf coasts the analogues of which a practised ear could at once detect to be the - would rightfully place it. The copper ridge beyond the above mentioned European deposites are all re herald of an earthquake, was heard. For five or six Clynch Mountain seems not to be the same contini gularly met with. I think the gniess and mica schist seconds it approached nearer and nearer and waxed nous red stratum which here is called the red sand. system are uot far below the series of rocks described louder and louder ; then came a heavy underground stone formation. But I will proceed to describe the at Saltville, and I think that the saliferous deposite knock or two, then a sensible upheaving and down. rocks ascending from Saltville to the top of Walker's was obtained out of the detritus of the red sand-stone || falling, accompanied by a violent shaking of every. Mountain and here I may mention that besides the of the Walker and Clynch Mountains at the time of thing on the surfaee, and the thunder-like noise. sub ridges at the base of Clynch and Walker's Moun. their elevation. I am convinced then a hot water continuing, for six or eight seconds, died away in the tain there are between them five rows of conic hills lake held in solution the muriate of soda and was distance. This may not have been the heaviest shock from 100 to 300 feet high, extending along the valley evaporated in a short and troublous time" during of earthquake that has occurred in Crieff for the last in parallel lines, presenting at a distance the appear. which time free sulphuric acid was abundantly pour fifty years, but it certainly was a very smart one, and ance of large mounds or pyramids.

ed fourth among the lime rocks, expelling the car- caused many a timid heart to quako. The air before Fourth Group 1500 Feet.

bouic acid and compelling the formation of the gyps. and at the time of the shock was calm and still, but

esous rock commingling with the muriate of soda. a short time thereafter a fresh breeze sprang up.Next after the saliferous deposit the vast mas

The slates and thes gnies and the scists below wore Pertshire Courier. sive lime rocks badly or but little stratified occur

not then so affected as to expel their mineral oils and holding in front the Burr millstone flinty rock, out of form stone-coal at this place. I repeat, future inqui

OBSERVATIONS. which in times past hot waters flowed making tra

ries will sustain the outlines of the imperfect views I From Brooklyn Evening Star, of Nov. 24, 1846. vestine alabaster deposits and even yet giving out

am able to give you regarding these old mineral cool springs which produco gortre, and give to the

“The highest temperature yesterday was 520, from rocks. I have not time to copy. In haste, with res- | ice formed from the waters a cerulian green color.

11 to 12. The temperature at 6 P. M. was 48°-at The thickness of this limestone is not uniform, but pect, Yours abundantly, &c.,

which it continued till 6 this inorning"- [Tuesday may be set down as 800 feet to the magnesian water

morning, Nov. 24.] cement limestone and this last with its cherty lime

EARTHQUAKE IN SCOTLAND.

From the Star, Friday, Nov. 27. stones may be rated at 700 feet.

A smart shock of earthquake has been experienced

“The highest temperature Tuesday, was 55 at 2 Fifth Group 1800 Feet. over a pretty extensive district in the centre of Scot

P. M. At 6 in the evening, 50; at 8 and 9, 490 ; and land. About midnight on Tuesday, November 24th. The next commencos with the Burr millstone.

at 10 and 11, 50°; and Wednesday morning, at 6,7, Crieff, Perth, Dundee, Cupar Fife and Dollar, had all as did the last, but it is of inferior quality and differ

and 8, 49—with a storm following the equilibrium of felt the shock, which appears to have occurred alently situated from the last having above it a blueish

Tuesday morning." most simultaneously throughout the extensive tract massive system of limestone containing ammonites or of country which comprehends these towns.--

From the Star of Saturday, Nov. 28. thocerelites and other shells with a contigious irreScotsman.

"THE WEATHER.--The temperature recorded by gular vein or plate of barytic earth and dark thin

DOLLAR.--Shortly after twelvo o'clock this morn me, and noted in the Star, is that indicated by meteplated masses of slate, over which is scattered quartz |

ing (Wednesday) we experienced a smart shock of oric wires of a peculiar construction. In warın crystals in great profusion stretching up and down

earthquako, the first that has been felt in this neigh weather these wires accord with the ordinary therthe valley. Above this, lie thick beds of imperfect

bourhood since the 23rd of October, 1839. It woke mometer, but in cold weather they differ from ten to slate and what is called alluminous earth, the whole

many sleepers from their slumbers, and seemed as twenty degrees, and probably may vary moro than group at least 1800 feet in thickness reaching the

far as we could judge, to vibrate from west to east. this during intense cold ; but notwithstanding this middle part of Walker's Mountain and the lower

By persons recumbent in upper appartments the disagreement, they mark all convulsions with unerside of the red earth and shale and sand called red

motion of the houses was distinctly and somewhat ring accuracy. Long continued and carefully recordsandstone. There is also coarse grey and redish

alarmingly felt. The night was damp; dark and ed observations may enable me to understand tie marble stretching 50 to 100 feet in thickness along

cloudy. with scarce a breeze stirring, and of very disagreement and explain it, but at present it is a the mountain's base.

mild temperature-exactly such as the night of the mystery. The wires support an appendage of a large Sixth Group 800 Fect,

23rd of October, 1839. The barometer had risen loadstone from the Magnetic Cove in Arkansas. They The red marl and sand may then be rated at 400 feet

during the day to about 29,44, but this morning it has extend high into the atinosphere, one pointing to the and above it are strata of slaty clays earths and another

again sunk a little. Altogether the character of the north-east, and the other to the south-west ; are olive green stratum composed and almost entirely

weather this autumn has resembled very much that pointed with tin lined with copper wire which conof a kind of shell casts some of which yet retain

of 1839; a great quantity of rain (about twenty nects with tho iron rods descending into the water, a purple coloring matter. If part of a hickory nut

seven inches since July)-the sky for the last month resting in and beneath the surface of the ground. on one of its oblate sides were cut off leaving a

charged with close, dense dark clouds—the atmos “The highest temperature indicated by these me curling over projecting at one end, the figure would

phere soft, mild, hazy and dripping, with an irregular teoric wires on Wednesday, was, from 11 to 12, 52; represent these casts, which appear in the same soft

barometer, taking sudden and extreine movements. on Thursday, 46, at both ends of the day; on Friday, deposit upon Clynch Mountain. Above these the

It is to be remarked that these earthquakes happen 494 from 12 M. to 5 P. M.; on Wednesday erening brown hard sounding sand rock some white sand

generally in October and November, during the night, at 7, 47---at 8, 44-and at 9, 46; on Friday morning stone and much silicified sand stone appears capping

when there is little or no wind, with soft rain falling, at 6, 46; on Friday evening at 8, 49--at 9, 50; on the mountain and all these may together amount

the earth's surface being charged heavily with mois Saturday morning at 6, 50-et 7, 52-at 8, 51. to 800 more feet. The total estimate without ac. ture.-Scotsman.

“Tho ordinary thermometer indicated as follows: curate admeasurement I make 5,500 feet of super

VIOLENT Shock or EARTHQUAKE.-On the night Wednesday morning at 9, 39—3 P. M., 39–9, 29; incuinbent rock. What kind of rock is below the

of the 24th Nov., a few minutes before 12 o'clock, a Thursday morning at 6, 26-at 9, 28-at 12 M. and 3 boring in the vicinity I have no means of know

shock of Earthquake was felt here of greater inten. P. M., 32-at 4, 291-from 5 to 6, 28-at 7,27—from Yours, &c.

sity and longer duration than any remembered. The 8 to 9, 26%; on Friday morning at 6, 241-at 1 P. M.

state of the atmosphere at the time was calm and 32-at 2, 31-at 3, 30-from 4 to 8, 314-at 9, 32;

JANUARY 20, 1847. beautifully clear. Early on the previous morning a Saturday morning at 6, 36-at 7 and at 8, 37. E. MERIAM, Esq.

very heavy rain had fallen, which had cleared the “Snow fell at half-past six on Wednesday evening. Dear Sir-I inclose my eleventh letter to you to air and softened the temperature, and the following Snow clouds were in the west on Friday morning gratify yonr request of last winter to let you know day was unseasonably fine and mild, the thermometer before sunrise, and overhead at 2 in the afternoon. something of the geological features around Saltville standing about 52 degrees. At nine o'clock, evening " Another disturbance in the atmosphere is indicaAt Kanhawa, 1,500 or 1,600 feet below the surface, it had fallen to 42 degrees, the barometer indicating ted by equilibriums and rise of temperature in the they pass saliferous coal bearing deposit and soon no 29-50 inches, the greatest cold during the night was night time. more salt will there be inade by reason of exhaustion. 36 degrees, and the barometer inclined to rise, stand

E. M. Here we are on the edge of a thin coal bearing stra ing next morning at 29-51 inches. The feeling of in “ Saturday morning.” tum that runs 4,000 feet uuder the lowest artesian dividuals, during the shock, depended greatly on boring. (rely on this) at Kanhawa, connected with their situation. It is most generally described as It will be seen by comparing the above recorded which there or here is no saliferous bed at all. This I being rather tremulous than undulating, and in high observations, published here on the above dates say on the knowledge I have of the western car tenements heavy articles of furniture were very vio with the accounts from the Scotch papers, that the boniferous system, saving however the possibility lently shaken, bells were rung, and crockery ware earthquake, at 3000 miles distant, was accurately inthat from the first a granite elevation obtained under overturued. Every family was alarmed, and many dicated by the wires, here. It will be seen by the the superior coal system at Kanhawa, which of rushed out to the streets uuder the impression that record published on Saturday, of the state of the course might prevent the full development of the se their houses were falling

wires on Wednesday evening the 25th, that they condary limestone formation. On the blue ridge Such as were walking at the time describe the were at 46 from 9 P. M. Wednesday to Thursday near us only silicious and wind or wave deposited ground as sbaken under their feet, much like the tre. morning. On referring to my detailed record, I find sand-stone crowns the plutonic and volcanic granites mulous motion in steamboats. The duration of the that 46° continued till 12 at noon of Thursday, and forming the summit range of that mountain. Here shock, by all accounts, must have been from fifteen 7 P. M. of Thursday was at 46°, and continued at at Saltville, no appearances called the tertiary Eocene, to twenty seconds, although the fears of many na that until 9 A. M. on Friday. Here the two entire myocene and plaocene formations exist, the chalk! turally led them to think it longer. It extended as equilibriums are a perfect accord. system too is absent, and only very slight traces of far north as our accounts yesterday reached, and The Steamer Atlantic was wrecked on the night of the lowest Oslite system is met with of a kind deep along the line of the Grampians it seems to have beon the 25th, and destroyed on the morning of the 26th, in the secondary formation and not the same with particularly severe. Our correspondent at Crieff on Long Island Sound. writes last night thus :

E. MERIAM.

ing.

OF

FROM PROFESSOR OLMSTED

of course more or less disturb his motion. Bouvard about a common centre of gravity, which they do in himself, however, was struck with the fact that his li exact obedience to the law of universal gravitation.

tables were incompetent to represent the actual Secondly, the resistance of a supposed ether, or YALE COLLEGE.

places of the planet, as it had been seen by the older subtle elastic medium, diffused through space, has We have received from the learned Professor whose

astronomers, and he even suggested the possibility of been assigned as the cause of the pbenomenon in

an unknown planet, whose hidden action upon Úra- question. But, were this the cause, we might exname heads this notice a printed copy of the work of nus occasioned the disagreement in question.

pect to see it manifested in the motions of the other his pen entitled

For the benefit of our readers as have not given planets, and the more as their motions are more rapid Thoughts on the Discovery of Le Verrier's Planet,

their attention to subjects of this kind, it may be pre- || than those of Uranus. The existence of such a me

mised, that, in accordance with the law of universal dium has indeed been inferred, in consequence of cerwhich we take the liberty to re-print on account of

gravitation, every body in the solar system is attracted tain effects manifested in the movements of Encke's its excellence and the high esteem we entertain for by and attracts every other; that such large bodies comet; but it may be easily conceived, that an exthe gifted author.

as Saturn and Jupiter exert a powerful influence in ceedingly light body would indicate such a resistance,

disturbing other members of the system, their effect while a dense body like the planets would not. A From the New Englander, for Jan. 1847.

being sensibly felt upon the earth, although, when particle of down may experience resistance, when THOUGHTS ON THE DISCOVERY OF LE nearest, the former is distant from us about eight moving swiftly through a medium, whero a musket VERRIER'S PLANET.

hundred and the latter about four hundred millions of ball would not be rensibly affected.

miles ; that this disturbing force exercised by one Thirdly, the hidden influence in question has been BY PROFESSOR OLMS TID.

body of the system over the others, is proportioned ascribed to a great satellite of Uranus, hitherto un. At a sitting of the French Academy in June last, a to its quantity of matter, or inass, and is therefore so discovered. But tho perturbations occasioned by paper was presented written by M. Le Verrier, a much greater in the sun than in one of the planets, such a satellite would be of short period, completing young astronomer of Paris, the object of which was only because the sun contains so much more matter a cycle during the revolution of the satellite about its to prove that there exists, in the solar system, a plan than the planet ; that, in the same body, the power primary, which would occupy but a short time, et hitherto unknown, situated at double the distance of attraction diminishes rapidly as the distance is in whereas the changes in the perturbations occasioned of Uranus from the sun, which on the first of Janua creased, being four times less when the distance is by the cause under considerarion are exceedingly ry, 1847, would be at or near a point in the ecliptic trebled; or, as astronomers express it, the attraction slow. Moreorer, in order to produce effects on Urawhose longitude is 325 degrees. This extraordinary diminishes in proportion as the square of the distance nus so great as those to be accounted for, a very large hypothesis has resently been verified by the actual is increasod. In order, therefore, to form tnbles satellite, would be required, of such a magnitude, inobservation, with the telescope, of the body in ques which shall truly represent the motions of a planet deed, that it would not fail to be seen with the teletion. It was first seen by Dr. Galle, a distinguished revolving aronnd the sun in an elliptical orbit, it is | scope. astronomer of Berlin, on the 23d of September, and necessary not only to estimate the different velocities Fourthly, the disturbing influence of a comet, has it has since been seen at London, and more recently which the body would have on account of its diffor. also been proposed to account for the irregularities of at various observatories in our own country.

ent distances from the sun, arising from the eccen Uranus. But comets have never been known to exAlthough in apparent brightness this stranger is tricity of its orbit, but to allow also for the united ef ert any appreciable influence upon the motions of the equal only to a star of the eighth magnitude, and con fects of all the disturbing influences (perturbations) planets. The comet of 1770 passed among the satsequently must remain forever invisible to the naked which result from tho actions of the other bodies of ellites of Jupiter, without sensibly disturbing their eye, yet the telescope invests it with all the charac the system, some of which tend to accelerate it, movements, -a proof that the quantity of matter in ters of a planet, readily distinguishing it from fixed others to retard it, and others still to turn it out of its these bodies is inconceivably small. Nor, from the stars by its perceptible disk, and by its inotion around path. Thus the exact place of a ship, even when eccentricity of the orbits of comets, could we suppose the sun, which, though comparatively slow, is still carried forward by a uniform breeze, can not be de a comet to linger in the immediate vicinity of Uranus vastly greater than belongs to any of the stars. It re termined from the reckoning, and only after due al so long, as the perturbations which it is assumed to acquires more than two hundred years to complete its lowance is made for all the curronts that have either count for are known to have existed. circuit; and although its exact magnitude is not yet conspired with or opposed its progress. Before such Finally, the suspicion of the existence of a planet, determined, yet enough is known to assure us that it allowances can be made and applied, the exact lying beyond the orbit of Uranus, did not originate is one of the largest of the planets, and more than a weight of each of the bodies in the system must be with Le Verrier, but had been entertained by several hundred times as large as the earth.

known; and it is one of the sublime results at which eminent astronomers, for twenty-five years before the This discovery, by theory alono, of a body hidden modern astronomy has arrived, that the planets have subject engaged his attention. But merely to conjec80 deep in the abyss of space, and until now invisi. in fact been weighed as in a balance, and their re ture the existence of such a body, or even to assert ble from the creation of ihe world, determining not spective quantitios of matter ascertained with as its existence without proof, implies very little ; bnt to only its existence but its exact place among the stars, much precision, as that of an ordinary article of mer. establish its existence by satisfactory evidence, and proclaims most audibly the perfection at which phy. chandise.

still more, to tell where it lies among the myriads of sical astronomy has arrived ; and it invests truth it. Now the only planets in the solar system heretofore stars, to weigh it, to assign its distance from the sun, self with a solemn grandeur, when we think how far known to disturb the motions of Uranus, are Saturn and the period of its revolution-these are the points into the recesses of nature it will conduct the mind, and Jupiter, the other planets being so far off and 80 of difficulty, and it is the successful solution of the that diligently follows its leadings, even in the secret small, that their attraction is insensible. In construct problem under all these various aspects, that constiretirement of the closet.

ing tables, therefore, to represent the motions of Ura | tutes the glory of this youthful astronomer. The method of investigation, although laborious nus, or by means of which its exact place in its orbit Lo Verrier did not undertake the formidable task and intricate, is not difficnlt to be understood, but can at any time be calculated, it was only deemed of determining these points, until he had fully proved, may be described in very simple terms. The planet necessary to allow for the disturbing influences of that the disagreement between theory and observaUranus (Herschel) has been long known to be sub these two great planets. But after making the al. tion in the motions of Uranus, was no fault of the taject to certain irregularities in its revolution around lowances required, still, after a few years, Uranus bles themselves ; that they were true at least as far the sun, not accounted for by all the known causes of was found by observation to deviate very materially as they went. For this purpose he submitted to a perturbation. The tables constructed with the great from the calculated place. Some other cause, there new and laborious discussion the observatiens, both est care for any particular epocb, from observations fore, must disturb its motions besides the attractions || old and new, which had ever been upon this body, on the planet, guided and corrected by the theory of of Jupiter and Saturn. Several hypotheses have from the time when its place was first noted, on the universal gravitation, do not accurately give its place been at different times proposed to account for the supposition that it was a fixed star, down to the preat periods of a few years either before or after that disagreement in question.

sent time. He re-calculated the formula which aftime. In some cases the deviation from the true First, it has been urged that at so remote a distance forded the basis of tables of Bouvard, and scrutinized place, as determined by observation, has been two from the sun as eighteen undred millions of miles. (the every possible source of error in these tables. Some minutes of a degree-a quantity indeed which seems distance of Uranus,) the law of gravitation itself loses errors were indeed detected; but after making full small, but which is still far greater than occurs in the somewhat of its constancy or uniformity ; consequent allowance for these, the actual place of the planet, as case of the other planets, Jupiter and Saturn for ex, ly tables founded on this law, as those of Uranus are, determined by observation, was still widely at variample, and far too great to satisfy the extreme accu- \ would uot give resnlts exactly conformable to obser: ance with that resulting from calculation. For examracy required by modern astronomy. From 1781, vation. This hypothesis is not only unsupported by ple, in 1838, after calculating the maximum error when Herschel discovered this planet, to 1821, ob any evideace, but is at variance with all known facts which could exist in the tables,-an amount probably servations had been accumulated on its motions for in astronomy. Halley's comet, for example, during much greater than actually does exist,- he showed forty years, a period abundantly sufficient to afford its late revolution, departed to a distance from the that it could not exceed 30 seconds of space, wherethe necessary data for determining the illiptic ele sun equal to twice that of Uranus, (about 3,600,000, as the disagreement between the calculated and obments of its orbit. Indeed, there were older obser 000 of miles) yet on its return in 1835, after an ab served places of the planet, was 125 seconds; and, in vations than these, scattered along a whole century; sence of more than seventy-five years, it was true to 1831, this difference amounted to 188 seconds, of for before this body was determined to be a planet, it the time appointed, having come to its perihelion which 140 could not be explained, without admitting had been recognized and its places assigned as a star within a day of the time assigned to it by calculations some other disturbing influence than that arising from of the sixth magnitude. In the year 1821, Bouvard. founded on the law of universal gravitation. More the sun, Jupiter and Saturn. a French mathematician of eminence, compiled tables over, we have independent proof of the unerring uni Assuming, then, the existence of an undiscovered of this planet, availing himself of the most recent, formity of this law, when extended to distances far planet, the first inquiry was, where is it situated-at and what he deemed the most perfect observations, greater than that ofUranus from the sun, or than that what distancc from the sun--and in what point of the and allowing for the perturbations occasioned by the of Halley's comet in the aphelion, since it is found starry heavens ? attractions of the other planets, chiefly those of Sat. to prevail even among the stars, regulating the revo First, it could not be below Saturn, that is, beurn and Jupiter, which on acconnt of their great | lution of sun around sun, as is now proved concerning tween Saturn and the sun, because then it would dis masses, as well as their proximity to Uranus, would the binary stars of which the two members revolvo || turb Saturn more than it did Uranus, whereas the

« SebelumnyaLanjutkan »