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that coaft : the experiment fucceeded, and there, which were the first tea plants imported into Europe, arrived safe Oétober 3, 1763, and were sent to Upsal.' DISSERTATION II. On the Increase of the Habitable Earth:

al romanly Linnalle of the

In this philosophical romance, as it may very properly be called, Linnæus presents us with a fanciful theory; the substance of which is, that this globe was originally covered by the fea, except a particular spot, or small island, fituated under the equator, named Paradise ; where Adam and Eve were created, and in which all the fpecies of vegetables were placed, and only one fingle sexual pair of every species of living things' was included, and prevented from escaping, by the surrounding ocean, till they had received their proper names from Adam, who mult doubtless have been greatly puzzled in finding and mustering these first parents of the brute creation, particularly those of a roving dispofition, had the dry land been originally created of the same extent as at prelent:-that, in this completely insulated spot, each vegetable would meet with its appropriate soil, and every animal find its proper climate ; because it was placed under the line, and its beautiful plains were adorned with a lofty mountain, on the top, fides, and basis of which, vegetables might grow, and animals feed, peculiar to the frigid, temperate, and torrid zone:- and lastly, that in consequence of certain causes, not here particularly indicated, the dry land, or island above mentioned i gradually expanded itself, and the sea as gradually retreated; till the whole terraqueous globe, on which we cread, and fail at present, assumed that form which it now exhibits in our maps,

In confirmation of this whimsical hypothesis, and of the supposed increase of land, and diminution of the sea, the Author alleges the well-known observations of the shells of lea filh found in calcareous mountains, now ac a considerable distance from the sea More : and he relates particular instances of certain sea ports and coasts in East and West Bochnia and elsewhere, gradually deserted by the sea, at the rate of 4 inches 5 lines every ten years.

To shew the tendency to diminution, in the watery parts of this globe, with respect to surface, the Author descends to rivers, - The Simois and Xanthus, which watered the meadows of Troy, so celebrated by the poets, are raid by Bellonius now to be so diminished as not to be able to nourish the smallest fithes; they are quite dry in summer, and in winter " have scarce water enough to swim'a goose.”

The 'Translator, though sufficiently aware of the strong objections thai may be urged againit this hypothesis, has been so far struck with this philosophical jeu d'esprit, as to think it worth his while, in one of his notes fubjoined to this dissertation, to avail himself of the supposed convertibility of water into earth, by means of trituration and distillation, or evaporation; and has accordingly been at the pains, on some data furnished by Boyle and some more modern philosophers, to calculate how much ihe height of the sea is diminished every year, or every century, by the transmutation of its water into earth, by evaporation only; without taking into the account the quantity supposed to be tranfmuted, by means of trituration, which he confiders as not attainable. If he had recollected Fontenelle's instructive tale of the Silesian child with the golden tooth, he probably would not have expended so much algebra upon the subject *.'

To obviate one difficulty attending this hypothesis, particuJarly that of conceiving how the vegetables originally contained in the Paradifaical island above mentioned could be so dissemiDated, as afterwards to cover the whole face of the carth; Linnæus produces several curious instances, to shew the various and wonderful methods which the Author of Nature has provided for their dispersion and propagation : particularly by means of the winds, rains, rivers, the sea, heat, birds and other animals, and the structure of their own feeds and feed vessels. The following paragraph contains fome curious examples relative to the last head.

Seeds themselves sometimes endeavour to allift their projection to a distance. The Crupina is a fpecies of centaury, its seeds are covered over with erect briftles, by whose allistance it creeps and moves about in such a manner, as it is by no art to be kept in the hand. If you confine one of them between the stocking and the foot, it creeps out either at the Neeve or neckband, travelling over the whole body.-If the bearded oat, after harvest be left with other grain in the barn, it extricates itself from the glume'-{the hulk, or chaff] nor does it stop its progrefs till it gets to the walls of the building. Hence the Darlecarlian, after he has cut and carried it into his barn, in a few days finds all the glumes empty, and the oats separate from them : for every oat has a spiral arista, or beard, annexed to it, which is contracted in wer, extended in dry weather. When the spiral is contracted, it drags the oat along with it; the arista being bearded with minute hairs pointing downward, the grain necessarily follows it: but when it expands again, the oat does not go back to its former place; the roughness of the beard the contrary way preventing its return.- If you take the seeds of Equisetum, or fern, these being laid upon paper, and viewed in a microscope, will be seen to leap over any minute obstacle, as

• See M. Review, Vol. xxxvii. September 1767, pag. 173.

if they had feet; by which they are separated and dispersed ona from another : so that a person, ignorant of this property, would pronounce these seeds to be so many mites, or small infeéts.' DISSERTATION III. On the Police of Nature: By Christ.

Daniel Wilcke. This paper contains some well chosen instances of the appear. ance of police, or subordination, observable in the several kinds of planis ; so that the number of the species is preserved, and their relatiie proportion to each other is kept within proper bounds. Marks of the same provident oeconomy are likewile pointed out among the animal cribes; where, as the Translator observes, the apparent scene of carnage carried on in nature by animals of prey, is not only subservient, but of absolute neceflity to the preserving of the order of things in that perfection in which it was created ; and which fubiifts alone by maintaining the number of species, and the relative proportion of the individuals of each, unaltered.'-As a specimen, we shall transcribe a paragraph or two relating to che operations of those numerous minisiers of nature,' the insects.

og 14. The Phalana Strobilella has the fir cone assigned to it to deposit its ergs upon; the young caterpillars, coming out of the thell, consume the cone and superfluous seed; but left the destruction should be too general, the Ichneumon Strobilelice lays its eggs in the caterpiilar, inserting its long tail in the openings of the cone, till it touches the included infect, for its body is too large to enter: thus it fixes its minute egg upon the caterpillar, which, being hatched, destroys it. But left is shouid muliiply to the total extermination of the former species, the Ichneumon Moderator, a very Imall infect, enters into the cone, and lays its eggs upon the caterpillar of the I hneumor Strobilella, which, being hatched, devour it. We owe this dircovery to D). Rolander.'

$15. The caterpillars' of the Phalance, which subfist upon trees and berbs, have also other insects fet over them. The Carabi [species of beetle] get by night upon the branches of the trees, and devour what caterpillars they find, as Reaumur in. forms us. Those who raise fruit-trocs cannot practise a better expedicnt to free themselves from caterpillars, than to collect those insects, and place their egits at the foot of the tree; which being batched, will execute their office in the police of nature, and devour chem.'

' $ 16. Wherever any putrid matter is collected, certain infects are gathered togeiher by it, whose brood devour it, and presently purify the place. Gnats drop their ezes over impure and putrid water, the Musia putris [berkenhout, 176, 17.) in mire, the 11:sca domestica (houte-fly] in dunghilli, and others in

dead

dead carcases : but left these fould multiply beyond proper limits, fome vigilant overseers arc appointed over them ; the spider weaves innumerable webs upon every buth; the Afili (hornetAy] suck their blood; and the dragon-fly catches then whereever he flics,'

of 18. Fill in the waters partly fubfilt upon plants, partly by prey; those devour aquatic vegetables, there the worms and insects they find there ; but left they should be entirely extirpated by them, there are fish of prey who thin the inhabitants of the waters, and harass their numerous shoals. The smaller fish would be able to avoid them by turning frequently, and the excellence of their fins, if their number did not hindir their escape. Those which do not multiply in that abundance, are armed with spines to keep off their enemies. The bodies of dead film, in the bottom of the water, are perforated by eels, and devoured by the Myxine, beside crabs and some insects : so that here likewise we see the greatest attention employed to preserve purity, as well as proportional number.' DISSERTATION IV. On the Rhendeer: By Cha. Fred. Hoff

berg, of Stockholm. This dissertation contains a description of this animal; together with some curious particulars of the manner of living and habits of the Laplanders. DISSERTATION V. On the Migration of Birds : By Cha. Dan.

Ekmarck Among the various causes of the migration of birds, the Au. thor reckons the numberless swarms of gnats generated in the Northern lakes, on the melting of the snow; and which furnish plenty of food to the birds which return into the Northern countrics at the beginning of spring and summer. The long days and bright nights, which we enjoy in summer, furnish them with an opportunity of feeding themselves and their voracious young. Our obscure and immense woods protect them from the bustle and fear of men, and offer them a convenient refuge and habitation. The heats of the South of Europe compel many who have a thick piumage, mixed with down, and partia cularly the Anferes (Order 3. Water-fowl], to seek a cooler climate in summer. ---Custom and the place of their nativity has

have) also much force in it: they return to the places in which they had lived before, which abounded with provisions for them and their young, and with other advantages, to enjoy the same commodiousness again. We frequen:ly ice the storky year after year, hatching in the same nest which he had once occupied. I have observed the same lame starling, eight years together, make her nest in one hollow alder; though the was absent and the winter. It is at least six years since I have noted

the

the fame Kestril always returning to lay in one hole in an old tower; and two Moticillæ albe (white water-wagtail] have built in a laurel tree in the Phyfic gardens at Upral, for these lalt fix years. They are now become as tame as barn-door fowls, nor flying from man; which fufficiently distinguishes them from all others, as they are generally very timid,'

We are rather surprised to find the Author, in the following paragraph, denying the migration of the swallow and martin; and at the same time speaking so decisively of their fupposed retreat under water, in the winter. Here is the whole of what be says on a question which, we apprehend, is still controverted among the naturalists. The process of their immersion is rather whimsical; though we think we have met with it before.

• The Hirundo rustica (swallow) and Urbica (martin] pass the winter under water. In the latter part of September, they resort in great Aights to the lakes and rivers. A single bird first lights upon a reed or bulrush, then a second, and a third, until it be bent down with their weight, and finks into the water with them. They emerge again about the ninth of May, at the commencement of the pleasanteft part of the year.'

We formerly took occasion to offer an ingenious hint on this subject proposed by a friend; and which seems to furnish a strong objection to the hypothesis that the swailow retires under water during the winter ; unless indeed it should be alleged that this species of birds does not moult. (See M. Review, Vol. L. April 1774, pag. 285; and Mr. Cornish's remarks on our observation, in our 55th volume, August 1776, p. 117.] DISSERTATION VI. On the Bite of Serpents: By John Gusta

vus Acrell. The well-informed Reader will not meet with much novelty in this dissertation ; unless we except what the Author says under the head of Charming Serpents' (the charming of serpents). - Pliny, Ovid, and many of the ancients,' says the Author, «inform us, that the Ophisgenes of Asia, the Psylli of Libia, and the Marfi of Italy, were celebrated for charming serpents, and curing their bite. These people handled the most venomous serpents, without receiving any hurt; and healed their bites by sucking out the poison. Hasselquist relates, as an eye-witness, that such a class of people still subsist, and exercise their art to this day in Egypt. Its secrets are preserved with the greatest fidelity, nor has any bribe been able to prevail upon them to dire : close them.'

Jacquin, who is upon his return from India, has informed the President, by Jetter, that he has purchased the secret of charming serpents. We are yet ignorant whether this is effected by chewing the plant which he has named the Ariftolochia Anguicida [Mexican Aristolochia), or by fome other

means :

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