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titled, “New Experimental Researches from Lieutenant-Col. William Lamb. on come of the leading doctrines of ton, entitled, an“ Abstract of the Re. Caloric, particularly on the relation sults deduced from the Measurement between the elasticity, temperature, of an Arc of the Meridian, extending and latent heat of different vapours, from lat. 8°9'38", 4, to lat. 8° 3'23"6 and on thermometric admeasurement N. being an amplitude of 9o53'55", and capacity;" by Dr Ure. This pa. 2." per contained a variety of important May 28th.—The Astronomer Roy. and apparently accurate investigations al read a paper on the parallax of the upon the above important questions, fixed stars in right ascension. and may be considered as a valuable At the same meeting, a paper was addition to our stock of theoretical read on the oxides and salts of mercuand practical knowledge in a very in- ry. By Mr Denovan. teresting department of science.
June 1th. A description of the teeth May 7th.-A letter was read from of the Delphinus Gangeticus, was preMr Greatorex, containing an account sented to the Society by Sir E. Home, of a geometrical admeasurement of Bart. V.P.R.S. And, at the same Skiddaw, whence it appeared that the meeting, Dr Granville gave an account height of that mountain is 1012 yards of the production of sulphurated a. 31 inches,
zote in the abdomen, resulting from A letter, addressed by B. Bevan, the decomposition of an albuminous Esq. to the President, was also read, dropsical fluid. The doctor considers containing the results of a registering this as a new and definite gaseous comrain-gauge for the year 1817. The pound; and the results of his experi. average time of actual rain was 1 hour ments led him to consider its compo. 47 minutes per day; the average quan- nent parts, as tity per day was 0.62 inches. The ob
89,60 azote, servations were made at Leighton, in
10,40 sulphur, Bedfordshire.
A paper was also read on the struc- A paper was also read by John Wilture of the poisonous fangs of ser. liams, Esq., describing the influence of pents. By Thomas Smith, Esq. F. galvanism upon the germination of R.S.
seeds, which, when powerful enough The author shews that there is a to do any thing, appeared generally longitudinal fissure in the poison teeth injurious. of serpents, the use of which is not June 11th.-Dr Prout communicaquite apparent. In the teeth of harm- ted a paper describing a new acid prinless serpents, no such formation is per- ciple prepared from the lithic, or uric ceptible.
acid. May 21.-A paper on the different Our readers are well aware of the modes of constructing a catalogue of characteristic property of uric acid of fixed stars, by John Pond, Esq. Astro- producing a fine red compound, when nomer Royal, was read.
heated with nitric acid. Mr Pond here proposed a method Dr Prout shews, by some very in. of effecting the above purpose, by teresting experiments, that this is a which, in a single year, the same ac- compound of a new acid principle with curacy is attained as was formerly den ammonia. This acid forms purple or rived from the observations of three red compounds with the metallic oso years.
ides, whence he calls it the purpuric A paper was also communi ated acid.
A communication was also received At the same meeting, a paper by from Sir W. Herschel, consisting of Dr Ferguson, Inspector of Hospitals, astronomical observations and experi- was read on the mud volcanoes of the ments, selected for the purpose of as- Island of Trinidad. certaining the relative distances of clus- In the beginning of the year 1816, ters of stars, and of investigating how this gentleman was employed, along far the power of our telescopes may with the Deputy-Quartermaster-Gebe expected to reach into space, when neral of the Colonies, and an officer of directed to ambiguous celestial ob- rank in the Engineer department, to jects.
make a survey of the military stations The President then adjourned the in the West Indies, during which their Society for the long vacation, which attention was attracted to this extraterminates on the 5th of November. ordinary phænomenon, in a district of
country that had always been consi
dered, according to their information, ROYAL SOCIETY OF EDINBURGH. as strictly alluvial. It appeared to
them to be so highly illustrative of the Nov.17th. The Royal Society ha. minor incipient degrees of volcanic ving resumed their meetings after the agency in the formation of argillacesummer vacation, the first part of a ous hills, that they thought it would paper, by Dr Ure of Glasgow, was be right to mention it in their report, read, containing experiments and ob- and Dr Ferguson was deputed to draw servations on muriatic acid gas. After up the statement. giving a condensed view of the pre- This gentleman found that the erupsent state of Chlorodic controversy, he tions of these semi-volcanoes, two in proceeds to detail a series of experi- number, which are situated in a narrow ments which he had recently execu- tongue of land which points directly ted, for the purpose of deciding this into one of the mouths of the Oronofundamental point of chemical doc- ko, on the main, about twelve or fifa trine. Considering the composition of teen miles off, at the southern extredry sal ammoniac to be definitely fix- mity of Trinidad, and not far from the ed by the concurrence of his experie celebrated Pitch Lake, are at all times mental results, published in the An. quite cold. That the matter ordinanals of Philosophy, last September, rily thrown out consisted of argillacewith those of M. Gay Lussac, at ous earth, mixed with salt water, about 32.24 ammonia + 67.76 muriatic acid as salt as the water in the neighbour. gas, he exposed their laminæ of the ing Gulph of Paria; but though cold pure metals, silver, copper, and iron, at all times, that pyritic fragments ignited in green glass tubes out of were occasionally ejected along with contact of air, to the action of the va. the argillaceous earth. They also obpour of the above dry salt, and found served that several mounts in the viin each case the metal converted into cinity possessed the same character in a muriate, whilst a portion of water, all respects as the semi-volcanoes then nearly equal to one-sixth the weight of in activity, having all the marks, exthe dry sal ammoniac, made its appear- cept the actual eruption, of having ance. To this part of the paper is been raised through a similar process subjoined the description and drawing to their existing altitude, of about 100 of a new, simple, and accurate explo- feet ; and that the trees around them ding, eudiometer, which the Doctor were of the kind that are employed for analyzing the gaseous near lagoons and salt marshes. The products of the above experiments. nature of the duties on which they
were employed, did not permit their dity and alkalinity on the bodies with attempting any analysis of the air, wa- which they combine, and that when ter, or earths furnished by the erup- both combine at once with a body, tions.
the properties which they impress are Nov. 24th. -A general meeting of proportionately increased. Chlorine, the Society having been held for the therefore, is conceived to be a comelection of office-bearers, the follow- pound of an unknown base with oxying gentlemen were chosen :
gen ; muriatic acid a combination of
chlorine with hydrogen, or rather of President-Sir James Hall, Bart. Vice-Presidents-Right Hon. Lord drogen. Sulphureous acid is a linary
the same radical with oxygen and hy. Gray, and Lord Glenlee.
compound of sulphur with oxygen, Secretary-Professor Playfair.
and is analogous to chlorine ; sulphuTreasurer - Mr Bonar. Keeper of the Musèun—Thomas Al- phur, oxygen, and hydrogen, and is
ric acid is a ternary compound of sulPresident of the Physical Class-Sir analogous to muriatic acid.
In alkalies, an analogous series of George M.Kenzie, Bart.
combination are supposed to exist.Secrelary-Dr Hope.
Ammonia is in the same relation to Counsellors of the Physical Class- this class of bodies that sulphurated
Lord Webb Seymour, Mr Leslie, hydrogen is to the acids ; morpbium Colonel Imrie, Mr Jamieson, Dr holds the same rank
them that Brewster, and Mr James Jardine.
prossic acid does among its fellows ; President of the Literary Class-Hen- and the fixed alkalies and alkaline earths ry Mackenzie, Esq.
are considered as ternary compounds Secretary-Thomas Thomson, Esq. Counsellors of the Literary Class, the stronger acids.
of oxygen, hydrogen, and a base like Mr Pillans, Dr Macknight, Mr Dunbar, the Rev. Mr Alison, Lord Dr Brewster, consisting of extracts of
At the same meeting, a paper by Reston, and Rev. Dr. Jamieson.
letters from Mr Boog to his father, Dec. 1st.-A paper by Dr Brews- the Rev. Dr Boog of Paisley, was ter was read on the laws of double re- read, giving an account of the recent fraction and polarisation.
discoveries respecting the Sphinx, and Dec. 15th. -A paper was read which the principal pyramid of Egypt, which had been announced at the first meet- have been made by Captain C. and Mr ing, by Dr Murray, containing expe- Salt. riments on muriatic acid.
By very laborious excavation, it has 1818. Jan. 5th. The continuation been ascertained that the Sphinx is of Dr Murray's paper on muriatic cut out of the solid rock
which acid gas, was read. The conclusion it rests. At the pyramid it was found drawn from the experiments before that the short descending passage from and now detailed, is, that chlorine is the entrance, which afterwards ascends not a simple body, but the idea of its to the two chambers, is continued in a being a compound of muriatic acid straight line through the base of the gas, is not adopted. Dr Murray then pyramid into the rock upon which it offered a theory in explanation not only stands. This new passage, after joinof the nature of muriatic acid, but of ing what was called the well, is contiacids and alkalies in general. Both nued in a horizontal direction, and teroxygen and hydrogen were supposed minates in a well ten feet deep, exact. to have the power of conferring aci. ly beneath the apex of the pyramid; and 100 feet below its base, an apart- found also high up among the alluvial ment has been discovered immediately soil, and down by the sea from the above the King's Chamber. The or. Harmetine countries. More than 20 namental part is very beautiful, but it new species of shells have been found is only four feet in height.
in the strata of the Peninsula of St Jan. 19th.–The second part of Dr Boassure. Ure's paper on muriatic acid gas, was Mr Playfair communicated a paper read. It relates to the water that ade by General Sir Thomas Brisbane, on heres to apparently dry muriate of the determination of time by equal alammonia, and to the experiments in titudes. which, by passing dry muriatic acid Feb. 16th.—MrMacvey Napier read gas over iron ignited, water was ob. a paper, entitled, “ Remarks illustratained. The Doctor infers, that chlo- tive of the Scope and Influence of the rine is oxymuriatic acid, and that mu- Philosophical Writings of Lord Ba. riatic acid gas is dry muriatic acid and con." water.
Mr Napier stated that his object At the same meeting, a paper by was twofold; first, to shew that BaDr. Brewster, was read, on a singular con's philosophical merits were such affection of the eye in a healthy state. as to give him a peculiar and pre-emi. When the eye is steadily directed to- nent character among the early restowards an object, that object will al- rers of genuine science ; and, next, to ways continue visible ; but if the eye trace the effects which his writings be fixed on a second object in the produced in accelerating the progress neighbourhood of the first, the first of scientific discovery. The considerobject will, after a short time, disap- ation of the latter point would form, pear, however situated with respect he said, his principal object, as there to the eye, or whatever its colour or seemed to exist more of doubt, as well appearance. When the object produ- as of misapprehension, in regard to the ces its accidental colour before it va- influence of Bacon's writings, than in nishes, the accidental colour disap- regard to any other point connected pears with the object. In the course with them. of an investigation into effects of this Under the first head, he took occakind, Dr Brewster was induced to sion to comment upon a late depreciform a new theory of accidental co- atory estimate of Bacon's philosophi. lours, which will shortly be made pub. cal writings, published in the “ Quarlic.
terly Review," and then proceeded to Feb. 2d.-Mr W. Allan read a pa- some general remarks illustrative of per on the geology of the country a- their peculiar merits and importance. round Nice ; and from the circumUnder the second head, he entered stances detailed in the paper, that part into a variety of statements, and cited of Italy must be of extreme interest to a variety of early authorities, to prove the inquirer. There are many indica- that Bacon'swritingscontributed, more tions that great changes have taken than any other cause, to forward the place in this country, not only in the progress of science in England, and situation of the rock and strata, but to form that great experimental school even in the height of the land and wa- which produced the discoveries of ters. The cracks and fissures in the Boyle and Newton. In this part of rocks are frequently found to contain the inquiry, he endeavoured to shew shells similar to those which now ex- that the first idea of the Royal Society ist in the Mediterranean ; and they are was suggested by Bacon's writings,
and not, as some have supposed, bythe of the views he entertained of this in. institution of scientific academies a- teresting subject. broad. In the last place, he proceed- In a former paper he described the ed to inquire, whether any similar ef. general nature of these shelves ; he fects to those produced by these wri- has since ascertained, by several obtings in England, had been produced servations, that they are perfectly hoby them in other countries ?' He here rizontal. One very remarkable cir. quoted a number of foreign publica- cumstance attending them is, that in tions, to shew that Bacon's writings one or two instances, they can be trahad early made an impression abroad, ced in a perfect circle, around little greatly favourable to the progress of isolated hills, on a level with the cortruth, and that beneficial effects were responding line on the sides of the largely ascribed to them by many ear- valley, ly writers who witnessed their opera
In his former visit to Glen Roy, he tion.
traced the shelves in the valley only ; March 2d.—Dr Murray read the on the late occasion, however, he disfirst part of a paper “ On the Rela- covered that they are also to be found tion to the Law of Definite Propor- in Glen Shean and Glen Gluoy. This tions in Chemical Combinations, the last valley contains one range at an Constitution of the Acids, Alkalis, elevation of twelve feet higher than and Earths, and their Compounds.' that of any of those in the other glens. Its object was to determine if the com- The two shelves next in altitude are position of these substances, accord- to be found in Glen Roy alone. The ing to the theory which he has lately uppermost runs through both Lower proposed, be conformable to the law and Upper Glen Roy, and loses itself of definite proportions. The part of in the fat mossy ground forming the the paper
read extended to the acids, summit level of the country, near the of which sulphur and carbon are the Loch of Spey.
Besides these two radicals, the vegetable acids being shelves, which are the particular procomprised under the latter. A very perty of Glen Roy, there is another strict coincidence is found in the ac- at a lower level, common to Glen Roy tual proportions, according to the and Glen Shean. Its two extremities theory, with the law, so as to afford are to he traced, one on the mountain proofs even of the truth of the form- of Ben-y-vaan, near High-bridge, and er; and some of the results display the other on the side of Aonachmore, views very different from those which one of the Ben-Nevis groupes, nearhave been hitherto proposed. ly opposite. This shelf may be fol.
At the same meeting, an abstract of lowed almost every where in its pro. a new paper by Mr Lauder Dick, on gress through both glens. It runs up the parallel roads of Lochaber, was the whole extent of Glen Shean, Loch read. Upon considering the paper Laggan, and the river Pattaig, as far which he had prepared on the parallel as the Pass of Muckall, where it sweeps roads of Lochaber, since his second round on what is the summit-level of visit to that district, he was satisfied the country there, and returns back. that it would not be very intelligible, if It is also distinctly traced running into read to the Society, owing to the fre- the valley of Loch Treig. quent references to the map and draw- In the paper formerly read to the ings. He therefore contented himself Society, Mr Lauder Dick stated it with a very few remarks, explanatory as his opinion, that such appearancea