Imagens das páginas
[ocr errors]

plete little structure, and is thus described by

The present capital of the island is Killronan. Petrie:—"This little church-which would be in

Here there was formerly a church dedicated to perfect preservation if its stone roof remained —

St. Ronan; now, however, there is only the abarla measures on the inside but 16 ft. 6 in. in length and previously described. Near this village is Ballcearna, 12 ft. 6 in. in breadth; and its walls, which are

or St. Clama's House. Here existed her church, 3 ft. in thickness, are built in a style guite cyclo

liagān, and well. The latter is the largest spring in pean, the stones being throughout of great size,

the island, and its waters are said to be incapable of and one of them not less than 18 ft. in length, being boiled, or of boiling anything. which is the entire external breadth of the church, Monasterkeiran lies more than a mile north-northand 3 ft. in thickness.”

east of Killronan, and is the best preserved church in On this island may be mentioned, the kitchen the islands. The present structure was built in the middens in various places, usually at the old eccle

fifteenth century, on the site of a more ancient siastical settlements; also a cave, said to have been church. In its vicinity are the ruins of various inhabited till recently, the last occupants being some of the Patriots, who, after their defeat, fled to Aran to escape the butchery that was going on in Ireland, at the dawn of the present century.

On Aranmore, the village now called Killeany, was the first Christian settlement, St. Eude, the apostle of the island, having resided here

and founded Teampullmore and a monastery. These are now gone, having been carried away by the Cromwellians to build the fortress of Arkin. Here it may be mentioned, that St. Eude is supposed to have come across from the opposite coast of Connemara on a large flat granite block. This stone is shown at a small bay on the south-east coast, and called Cloghnacurrach, or the stone boat. At Killeany there is the

butt of a round tower; fifty Fig. 171. Terminal Cross or Tearmon. years ago this is said to have

been 40 ft. high. From the style of the building, the tower would appear to have been much more modern than many of the churches on the islands, which is very probable, as Fig. 172. Typical Irish Cross at Clommacnoise. many, if not all, the round towers in Mayo and Galway were built about the tenth or eleventh buildings, while its tearmons, with the terminal century, that of Annaghdown, on Lough Corrib— crosses, have been previously described. There is the site of which only remains on the strand near also a bullān and a holy well, the latter in a cyclo. the church according to Petrie, having been erected A.D. 1238. Besides the round tower, there Teampull Soorney, or St. Serenus's church, is are two blessed wells, various ruins, and the pedestal situated about a quarter of a mile north-west of of a very large cross, of which now only one broken Monasterkieran. Here are the remains of a church fragment remains. To the south of Killeany, at the that seems to be the oldest on the islands ; Toberchurch called Teaglacheinne, St. Eude and one soorney, a bullān cut in the solid rock, into which hundred and twenty other saints, are said to be the water is conducted by a minute channel; and buried. This church, probably, was not erected till close to the latter a circular inclosure that seems to the thirteenth or fourteenth century, judging from be an abarla, in which a rude pillar cross stands. the style of the building. It is now nearly buried To the north of this inclosure is the foundation of a in sand, and the saint's tomb ca not be seen unless structure in the corner of which is a handsome yon excavate. On it is an inscription in very ancient bullān cut in a large block of granite. Kilbride letters.

supposed this to be the ruins of the church called

[ocr errors]

pean cell.


in Colgan's list Kilnamanach, or the Church of the Monks, dedicated to St. Caradoc Garbh (the rough). Farther westward, in the neighbourhood of the village called Cowrugh, are various ruins, about which very little is known. One church has the remarkable and poetical name of Teampull nag ceatharaluinn, or the "Church of the Four Beautiful Ones ”; near it is their grave, and a well dedicated to them. We may also call attention to two bullāns, two liagān, several cloghāns, a cashel, a laura ; also the village of Ballynasean, previously described, as it is supposed to be in part preChristian.

Kilmurvy, farther west, signifies “ the church on the sand.” Such a church does not now exist, if it is not buried. At or near the village are Teampullmacduagh; Teampullnaneeve or Teampullbeag, as it is known by both names; and a third, the name of which is forgotten; a holy well, a tall stone cross, and the site of a fifteenth-century monastery, once famous as a seat of learning. The first of these churches lies inside a cyclopean fort or cashel.

Farther north-west, near the north shore of the island, is the village of Onaght, but known to and called by the Aranites, as Bally-na-seacht-teampull, or the village of the seven churches. Here there are now only two churches, Teampullanphoill, or the church of the liole, and Teampullbrecan; but there are the sites of numerous buildings, some of which may be the remains of the churches after which the place is called. Teampullbrecan was called after the founder of the settlement, and his grove is shown, marked by a cross cut in a flag. There are also two elaborately carved stone crosses that have been broken up; the pieces, however, some years ago were collected by Sir W. Wilde and S. Ferguson, M.R.I.A., and it is to be hoped by this time they are restored as far as practicable. Near the church is a holy well; also a labba, the latter said to cure sterility in the human race.

As a conclusion to this brief sketch of the antiquities of Aran, attention may be drawn to the rich field of ancient lore which lies here unworked. There is the limestone cave on the middle island, which probably contains relics of the pre-historic man; the buried habitations and other structures; the dirt-heaps or kitchen middens at the Pagan and ancient Christian babitations; also the artificial mounds, about which nothing is known, wbich may be either cnocāns or tuiams.


USEFUL SLIDES.-Like, I dare say, many of the younger readers of SCIENCE-GOSSIP, and students of microscopy, I have to exercise considerable economy, and mount my own objects ; naturally I am desirous of stocking my cabinet with really useful and in. structive slides, and, as the winter season approaches, and students have more leisure at their disposal, I venture to take up a little of your room, and make an appeal to your readers for assistance, trusting that out of their experience they may be able to advise and instruct not only myself, but others who likewise are young students in this absorbing pursuit, My first difficulty is with whole insects, which are so necessary to study. With some specimens from the Coleoptera, the Diptera, and Hymenoptera, I think I may say I have been fairly successful; but with many specimens from the last-named two orders I have failed, the delicacy of the wings, and the extreme hardness of the chitine of the head and thorax, being the stumbling-blocks in my progress : thus, long before the thorax is sufficiently soft to admit of flattening out, the wings have been acted upon so strongly by the liquor potassæ, that the two membranes separate, and tear under the most delicate manipulation which I can bring to bear upon them. Doubtless many of your readers have encountered and triumphed over this difficulty; and I trust that they will favour me with full particulars of their method. Perhaps because I am a very young student I sympathize strongly with those microscopists who go in for pretty objects, even though, as in the case of many seeds and diatoms, no real knowledge can be obtained from such objects. We see so many things in the moral world made ugly and distorted by crime and folly; we see so much of misuse in the natural world, resulting in that which is offensive to the eye and painful to the mind, that we may surely be allowed the luxury of observing that which is pleasing in art and nature. Though we concede so much, it is undeniable that objects must be beautiful to the mind as well as to the eye, and to be this their structure and also their adaptability to the place in nature which they fill, must be clearly manifested, and therefore the cabinet of every microscopist should contain numerous slides of sections and delicate dissections of entomologicalobjects. I have long desired to possess slides of antenna which would clearly show the nerves, and have tried (once only) the bleaching preparation recommended by Dr. Hicks (see the article in the February number of SCIENCE-GOSSIP for 1874), but without the least result as regarded the manifestation of the nerves. Have any of the readers of SCIENCE-GOSSIP made the experiment, and with what result? Many learned writers have spoken of these nerves as objects easily observable in well prepared antennæ,

[merged small][ocr errors]

but it is rather remarkable that although my friend, I apply a coating of gold-size or shell-lac varnish, Mr. J. S. Harrison, of this port, has placed his large not to extend more than possible beyond the juncand valuable collection of slides (containing speci- tion of the cell and cover. When quite dry, wash mens by all the best mounters of the day) at my off any glycerine by a gentle stream of water, and disposal, I never have been able to make out those tien varnish with plain gold-size, and finally with nerves; and I consider it more remarkable still some mixed with crocus of iron.-J. R. T. that I have never met a microscopist who has seen them. My own private impression is that writers

INTERFERENCE OF LIGHT.-I expect J. G. R. or observers sometimes draw upon their imagina

Powell will find the obscuration he complains of tion, and describe what they would like to see, on

caused by reflection from the inside of the tube of the same principle that engravers depict objects in

his microscope. I have often been bothered myself a state of perfection which cannot be attained to in

in the same way when using a deep eyepiece. I mounting. I believe I have somewhere in SCIENCE

don't see how to avoid it whenever a short eyepiece GOSSIP seen passing reference made to preparations

is substituted for a longer one, so long as eyepieces of the nervous systems of insects. If such prepara

are of the present construction. tions are practicable, then no microscopist can rest

The MICROSCOPICAL STRUCTURE OF LYCOPODIUM satisfied until he possesses them, and I shall esteem

SPORULES IN RELATION TO THEIR PHARMACEUTIC some information on this point most valuable; as

AND THERAPEUTIC VALUE. This was the title of a also on the preparation of small entomological speci

paper recently read before the Homeopathic Pharmens in, such a manner as to reveal the internal

maceutical Association. The author said the apstructure. As an example of what I mean I may

pearance of the fine dusty sporules of Lycopodium say that I read an article on the brain of Pediculus

in mass is well known to all pharmacists, being capitis, written after the close observation of a

extensively used as a harmless covering for pills, whole specimen stained and mounted in balsam by

also as a puff powder on account of its extreme Topping, and I at once began to strongly desire such lineness; and on the Continent not unfrequently as an addition to my collection. Lastly, if we would a producer of artificial fire, from the quality it attain to a truly practical knowledge of micro

possesses of faring up when ignited. “It has often entomology we must have carefully-prepared sec struck me as a very anomalous and unexplained tions of the heads, eyes, antennæ, and other parts of fact that the remedial virtues of the Lycopodium insects, and I have been satisfied by ocular demon- sporules should be ignored by the dominant school stration that such preparations have been most suc. of medicine, while by the smaller body of Homeocessfully made, chromic acid being, I believe, the pathic practitioners, Lycopodium has from the hardening agent. I am entirely ignorant of this

commencement proved one of their most cherished process, but am most desirous to have it fully

remedies. It was with a wish to solve if possible explained to me, and have good reason to hope that

tbis incongruity that have recently made a series many of your readers will give me the benefit of

of experiments with the aid of the microscope. A their experience, should they possess sufficient

crude examination of Lycopodium in the microscope, patience to wade through the long narration of my with a one-inch objective, shows it to be composed requirements. I have, of course, in my remarks, of an infinitesimal number of minute hard straw. been addressing myself to micro-entomologists only. coloured particles, each about sooth of an inch in -E. Lamplough, Hull.

diameter. Upon applying a quarter or one-fifth VARNISH FOR MICROSCOPICAL Cells.-Could objective, these little particles will be seen to possess any of your correspondents give me a receipt for

a definite regular form, each particle being a hard white varnish for ringing cells ? Also, I should be

nut, rounded on one side, converging in triangular glad to know of any coloured varnishes suitable,

lines, with flattened sides, to an apex on the other rose or lake. I have tried sealing-wax varnish., side, and the whole surface covered with rounded W.G. C.

knobs. After pounding a small portion for a con

siderable time in a Wedgewood mortar, examinaGLYCERINE MOUNTING.-In his statement as to tion showed the nuts not to be perceptibly altered a mixture of gold-size with white lead, &c., being or fractured; but on repeating the process with a a good cement for confining glycerine, “F. K.” has very minute quantity of the sporules in an agate ignored Dr. Carpenter's advice that varnishes for mortar and pestle, many of the nuts were found to such purposes should never contain any solid par be completely fractured and their contents dispersed. ticles, as sooner or later they become porous (see his Conjecturing that the contents of the nut, whatever work on the Microscope, 5th edition, p. 236). I its nature, contained the vital medicinal element of have found amber dissolved in chloroform to be a the Lycopodium, the broken sporules, with the very good varnish for just keeping the glycerine addition of a drop of water, were put under the within bounds, as it dries almost instantly. Then microscope, when a large number of unmistakable

oil-globules were at once visible. A similar experi- | sporules lying about amongst the sugar-of-milk ment to the last was next made, but with the addi crystals. The first centesimal trituration did not tion of ether to the ground sporules in place of yield very much more satisfactory results; for, upon water, the result being, as anticipated, that no oil. examining a little of it in a drop of water with the globules were visible, being absorbed by the ether. one-fifth objective as before, the separate sporules These experiments seem to prove conclusively that were still seen in many cases clustered together in as in the case of many seeds, the hard-cased sporules small masses, a large number not being at all injured. of the Lycopodium are filled with a peculiar oil. If, In examining the second and third centesimal trituthen, as surmised, it is to the action of this nil upon rations, however, it was found that the triturating the system that the medicinal virtues of Lycopo. process had thoroughly succeeded, for all the spodium are to be ascribed, the apparent inconsistency rules appeared to be completely broken, and numbers respecting it between the two systems of medicine of oil-globules were floating about in the water. is at once explained--the nutty sporules as ad- | These experiments upon the triturations of Lycoministered in their unaltered form by the adherents podium were entirely confirmed by examining of the old school, probably passing through the samples of the same triturations procured from system without any assimilation having taken place; other Homeopathic chemists, all yielding precisely while, on the other hand, the Homeopaths have by similar results. Subsequently, I have been at some trituration and subsequent attenuation extracted pains to practically ascertain if it be possible to the oil, and administered it in form easily assimi. prepare a proper 1x trituration of Lycopodium. It lable with the tissues of the body. Having investi is not to be attained by making it according to the gated thus far the true physical nature of the allotted time in the Pharmacopæia; but I find that remedy, there remains to be determined the best if a small quantity (not more tban 500 grains) be means of most thoroughly extracting this oily very well triturated for two hours, the I x trituration matter, and the most suitable menstruum and form so prepared will, on microscopic examination with for its preparation and administration. To this end the one-fifth objective, show all the sporules to be six months ago I prepared a series of mixtures thoroughly crushed. The first centesimal and (which are on the table before you) of the following higher triturations made up from this will be found fluids with a given quantity of the Lycopodium to be intimately mixed, and minute subdivision sporules, viz., alcohol (absolute, rectified, 20 O.P., completely accomplished. It thus becomes evident and proof), distilled water, glycerine, and ether, that a very considerable amount of trituration is and heated each (the glycerine solution excepted) essential in order to thoroughly break the outer to boiling-point for a few minutes. Upon then ex cuticle of the Lycopodium sporules, and so to free amining them under the microscope, no alteration in the inside contents; the trituration form, therefore, the form of the sporules was perceptible in any of certainly appears to be the best method of preparing the solutions, and now, after six months, I think you and administering the drug in its lower attenuations. will see, that with the single exception of the If made at all as a strong tincture, the previous ethereal preparation, in which a large proportion of experiments conclusively show that ether, and not the sporules are swelled out and broken, none of alcohol, should be the vehicle used. In this series the solutions appear to have produced any visible of experiments I have merely endeavoured to make change in the appearance of the sporules." Mr. good a theory that will reconcile opposite stateThompson here exhibited the different solutions, ments respecting the therapeutic value of a partishowing a drop of each under the microscope (one cular substance. In so doing I would not be so fifth objective), confirming the above statement. presumptuous as to say that in no case will the “As all of you are aware, the ‘British Homeopathic Lycopodium sporules, if taken in their ordinary Pharmacopæia' recommends that Lycopodium form, affect the system either curatively or othershould be prepared in trituration; and, no doubt, wise. This lies within the province of the medical the good results accruing from Lycopodium (so fre practitioner to determine, and exactly opposite quently administered in the higher attenuations) statements on the point have been made." are owing to the long.continued triturating process of the bard sugar crystals upon the shells of the sporules, fracturing many of tbem, the milk sugar

ZOOLOGY. absorbing the contents. But I was not a little surprised to find, on microscopically examining the SPAWN OF FROGS AND Toads. In the last num. lower triturations, bow few comparatively of the ber of SCIENCE-Gossip, a correspondent, “G.S." sporules were broken, the greater number of them in his paper on the “Spawn of Frogs aud Toads," having escaped fracture altogether, lying about asks—“Whether the eggs of the water lizard, of among the sugar crystals quite uninjured. The newt, are laid at different times”, to which I 1x trituration was then exhibited in a drop of answer, “They are so laid.” Having bad the water under the microscope, showing the entire smooth newt in a small aquarium the last three

R. H. F.,

years, I have had the eggs just laid, and the young manipulation makes it exceedingly valuable to from previously-laid eggs more than a month old at extemporaneous speakers. Adjuncts such as these the same time, with others of all intermediate ages. are undoubtedly useful in advancing the dissemi. I beg to refer “G. S.” to a paper on the subject in nation of scientific knowledge. SCIENCE-GOSSIP, vol. for 1874, p. 104, wbere the

ConvolvuLUS HAWK-MOTH.- In the November manner of laying the egg is described. I think

number of SCIENCE-GOSSIP allusion is made to the “G.S.” is quite right about the tails of tadpoles being plentiful occurrence this season of Sphinx condolabsorbed, and not thrown off. I have had both culi. I know of as many as ten having been got ; toads and frogs under observation, and have always

six were caught by collectors, and the other four seen the tails gradually diminish until quite gone,

were picked up in the streets by different persons. + but never saw one thrown off. I have witnessed

Aberdeen, the development of both frog and newt from the egg, of which I have sketches by me taken at the

WHITE BEES. –The instinct of the hive bee time. The frog tadpole was free from the egg in

teaches it not to permit the population of the hive about five days; the tadpole of the newt was free

to increase to an inheritance of starvation; and from the egg in about twenty-four days after it was

thus, when continuous bad weather forbids honeylaid. The development of the frog is very rapid. - gathering, the workers destroy and throw out of J. Fullagar, Canterbury.

the hive the helpless, immature young, which in

both larvæ and pupa state are white. These are The Pope or Ruffe (Perca cernua).-In answer

sometimes expelled by thousands, even although the to the question by Mr. Thomas C. Oborn, in the last

stores of the colony are far from exhausted. The number of SCIENCE-Gossip, the pope is a fish of the steady in-come of honey stimulates breeding, and this Perch family, and therefore a predacious species.

is taken advantage of by the scientific apiarian in It is fond of worms and other animal food; and

the early spring, who, by gently and continuously unless well supplied therewith is not likely to be, feeding his bees before nature affords a supply, has while alive, a very quiet tenant of an aquarium. The

the satisfaction of finding the population of his hives pope may be kept very well, if properly fed, in an rapidly increasing, and ready to take the utmost aquarium, the food being appropriate, but by no

advantage of the bountiful yield from the fruit blosmeans too abundant. Probably Mr. Oborn's popes

soins which an all-wise Providence provides. But died from want of any proper food.

woe betide the negligent or forgetful beekeeper ; for ENGLISH BUMBLE-BEES IN NEW ZEALAND. — if this artificial supply be intermitted for a few days, Two nests of English humble-bees have just been and nothing comes in from the woods and fields, the sent to New Zealand, by Mr. Frank Buckland, for bees permit no bouches inutiles," and the massacre the Canterbury Acclimatization Society. These commences. This state of things has been particuinsects are specially desired in New Zealand for larly apparent during the last summer and autumn, the purpose of fertilizing the common clover; the and before the May flowers make their appearance proboscis of the common bee is not sufficiently long again nine-tenths of the stocks of bees throughout to reach down to the pollen of the clover flower, the length and breadth of England will be found to while the humble bee is enabled to do so. In this have perished. Although a labouring man will seed way the insect is expected to do great service to his pigs, ie rarely feeds his bees, and, when he does, the agriculturist by largely extending the growth of he gives an ounce where he should a pound.—John the clover. Such a practical application of “ Dar. Hunter, Eaton Rise, Ealing. winism” never occurred before! The bees were

CONVOLVULUS HawK-MOTH (p. 259).-At the packed in their own nests in two boxes, and will be

October meeting lof the Watford Natural History under the charge of a membe the New Zealand

Society, Mr. Arthur Cottam read a “Note on the Council, who is provided with every necessary for

Appearance of Sphinx concolouli,in which be their welfare during the voyage. They are expected

mentioned that several specimens of this moth had to arrive about the middle of January-midsummer recently been taken in the neighbourhood of Watat the antipodes.

ford. Two were taken by a postman, who, when CAMBERWELL Beauty.-A fine specimen of this delivering the letters in the morning, found them on rare butterfly was caught at Aldborough, in Suffolk, door-knockers.--J. H. during the last week in October.

À GIGANTIC HYDROZOAN. – Professor Allman POPULAR SCIENCE LECTURES.-We are glad to has forwarded to Nature an account he has redraw attention to a very ingenious Dissolving View ceived from Professor Wyville Thomson, of a large lantern which has been recently invented by Mr. gymnoplastic hydroid recently obtained by the W. C. Hughes, optician, of 151, Hoxton-street, N., Challenger in the North Pacific, lat. 34° 37' N., and which will be found highly useful in illus long. 140° 32 E., at a depth of 1,875 fathoms, trating popular science lectures, whilst its easy or more than two miles. This zoophyte is of such

« AnteriorContinuar »