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• The first, in the order of publication, is the general and pare ticular history of the reptiles. In an introduction of 300 pages, the author, M. Daudin, gives a general description of reptiles, and afterwards treats of them in a philosophical view, describing their more important organs and their principal functions. This part of the work is peculiarly interesting, as the relations of this class of animals to the rest of the animal kingdom are clearly pointed out. The first volume contains the methodical arrangement of these animals by Klein, Laurenti, Scopoli, and Linnæus, with the corrections of Gmelin, La Cé'pède, Brogniart, and Latreille. In the second volume we find a description of the tortoises, the crocodiles, the caymans, and the dragons.
The two first volumes of the moluscæ, or animals without 'vertebræ, and whose circulating fluid ,is white, have also appeared. M. Montfort begins with general observations, and is led by them to a short theory of the earth—but too incomplete to admit of any analysis or criticism : he has promised to puba lish it at greater length. He then proceeds to the coriaceous 'moluscæ, to the cuttle-fish (sepia), the ink-fish (loligo), and the polypi. Under the latter head, he speaks of the monstrous poTypi mentioned by Pliny; and we have noticed in our journal-if we mistake not, from the observations of Spallanzanisome account of polypi so large, as to lead to a suspicion that swimmers may be sometimes drowned by being entangled in their spreading antennæ. This, however, is a pygmy to that 'mentioned by Pliny, who tells us that in the Great Ocean (the Atlantic) there are fishes whose antennæ are so widely spread, that they cannot pass the Straits of Gibraltar, and that they sometimes attack ships with a design to sink them. M. Montfort, who should have been superior to these idle tales, speaks, from the report of a captain from St. Malo, of 'a ship being attacked by one of these monsters, which however failed in sinking it. The kraken of Pontoppidan is again revived; but this old story evidently arose from some submarine elevation, which forined a shallow of little comparative extent—as will be evident from perusing the good prelate's narrative, who was himself misled.
Two volumes of the natural history of crustacea aud insects have also been published. These are the works of Latreille; - for, as in the volumes on reptiles and moluscæ, M. Sonnini is
the editor only. These volumes are introductory, and contain ; some curious details on their instincts and manner of living.
The latter affords, to those who have patience to observe it, some curious and striking facts. .: The author next describes the means of taking and preserving
insects, and adds some very just remarks on the nomenclature of colours, as relating to entomology.
: In the second volume he treats of the external and internal organisation of insects, as well as their mode of reproduction. The volume concludes with an explanation of the different entomological systems, particularly those of Geoffroy, Schoeffer, Fabricius, Olivier, Cuvier, Lamarck, and Dumeril ; as well as his own. We shall of course return to these volumes, when more complete. We may however add, that there is lately published at Paris a descriptive account of Réaumur's Memoirs on Insects, by which the reader can easily refer to any particular subject in his collection.
ART. IX.-Annales de Chymie." Tomes XXXVIII et XXXIX.
Paris. . Annals of Chemistry. (Continued from Vol. XXXIV. p. 510.) . THE contents of these volumes furnish no subject of introductory remark; so that we shall pursue the different articles in their order, omitting, as usual, the accounts of English works, or English discoveries, that have been published in our own language. We may however observe, to avoid interruption, that the continuation of the Inquiries on the Laws of Affinity, and the conclusion of the examination of the Dutch memoir on the Change of Aqueous Vapour into Air, occur in the 38th volume. . - The report of MM. Guyton and Vauquelin respecting M. Thenard's 's Memoir on the Combination of the Tartareous Acid with Salifiable Bases, as well as the Properties of the Salts resulting from this Combination,' demands our attention. It relates to the triple combinations of which this acid is susceptible in many well known substances, as the sel de seignette, martial tartar, and emetic tartar. Though M. Thenard has greatly added to our knowledge in this respect, the minute detail of a report is incapable of abridgement. It appears, however, that many of the tartrites are susceptible of further combination, and that these triple salts have peculiar properties. Some have for their basis two alkalis ; others an alkali and an earth, an alkali and a metal, or an earth and a metal. Many of these bases, which are separated by alkalis from their simple combinations with tartareous acid, no longer admit of separation, when united in the triple salt. A variety of important and accurate analyses of substances used in the arts and in medicine are added; of which it is of consequence to know the proportion of the component parts.
The abstract of a memoir, by M. Lehof, on Galvanism, has, from the period of its communication, lost somewhat of its non
resulting the triple cenown substan
sition of he cases, their siven, it is
velty, though it is in many respects valuable. The existence of a fluid current has not been demonstrated, and its direction is still more uncertain. The object of this memoir, therefore, is to prove not only the existence of a very subtile fluid in the Galvanic chain, but, in the application of different chains to animal arches, very unequivocal marks of its direction : it is to demonstrate, that, by the assistance of some general rules, we can determine, a priori, in a great number of different chains, the direction of the current; and, reciprocally, that, the direction and nature of the parts of the chain being given, it is possible to determine, at least in certain cases, their respective positions; and by the interposition of new bodies in the chain, or some change in the disposition of the parts which compose it, to direct the Galvanic fluid at pleasure, or reduce it to a state of rest. The knowledge of these phænomena depends on a singular fact--that the Galvanic fluid, in its passage, is accu. mulated at the parts where the armature is applied, and from the same fact we can ascertain, at small distances, the nature of the metals, by what may be styled their Galvanic affinity,- We are sorry that we cannot give a fuller account of this memoir, which is expanded into a variety of physiological and philosophical points. We may just remark, however, that the passage of this fluid through the nerves is seemingly not equally easy; and that it moves more freely from their extremities to their roots than in the opposite direction. This, nevertheless, may be partly owing to the defence of their coats ; for, in the extremi. ties, these involucra are lost. Another circumstance, which we ought to notice, is the order in which the Galvanic fluid is coni. tained, or capable of being accumulated in different substances. It is in the least quantity in zinc, and successively increases in lead, tin, mercury, bismuth, copper, silver, and plumbago. Each succeeding metal consequently loses a portion of the Gale vanic fluid when in contact with that which precedes it.
M. Dabit communicates some Reflexions on the Difference of the Acetous and Acetic Acids. Our readers may recollect that this subject has occasioned some discussion. M. Adet concluded, from his experiments, that there is no difference, except in the quantity of water, the acetic acid being most concentrated: yet to this our author offers some striking objections, particularly the pungent smell and taste of the acetic acid, which are not destroyed by dilution; and its immediate action on copper, which the acetous acid only dissolves, when oxydated. M. Chaptal supposes that the difference consists in the acetic acid possessing a smaller proportion of carbone. Our author, from several experiments, appears to have proved that the acetic acid has a larger proportion of oxygen, and that with pot-ash it is really in the state of acetous acid; but that
'It' obtains its additional oxygen from the sulphuric acid, by means of which it is separated.
An abstract of a work of Lampadius follows. It is entitled, • Essays, in the small and the great Way, on the Means of extracting Sugar from the White Beet, with theoretical and practical Considerations on this Subject. This work is in German, but has been translated into French, though the translation is, we believe, not yet published. The abstract is taken from the translation, but is too full of detail, and not sufficiently interesting to detain us.
M. Pissis' • Experiments on the Ashes of some Woods' were suggested by observing that those of the poplar-tree formed a frit-an imperfect vitrification. He finds the ashes of the white poplar more abundant in salts than those of the oak, contrary to the generally received opinion, that the hardest woods contain the largest proportion of pot-ash. The other species of poplar greatly differ in the proportion of saline matter they furnish, which, in our author's opinion, seems to make an objection to the common dogma, that plants of the same species agree in their medical virtue. The latter however is very remotely connected with the chemical analysis. The rotten wood affords more ashes than the sound. The hydrogen seems to be dissipated, and the carbone to be separated in combustion. This only holds, however, when the rotten wood has not been percolated by water. In re-fusing the ashes, a part of the weight is lost; but this arises from the loss of carbonic acid; for the ashes gain in value as they are more rich in salt; and when they form a frit, this must be pounded, previous to the lixiviation; since water will not otherwise extract the saline matter.
M. Guyton's Report of the Mechanical Lamp of MM. Carcel and Carreau.' This is an improvement of Argand's lamp. The light of the lamp is more than equal to that of eleven candles; but we cannot appreciate its value, as the description is not illustrated by a plate. The report is wholly in its faa vour; and the oil appears to be raised by a piston, set in motion by a spring.
M. *Proust's · Experiments on Platina' will not admit of abridgement; and we less regret our inability in this respect, as the experiments have appeared in our language-we believe, in the Philosophical Magazine.
"Account of an Oil extracted from the Cornus Sanguinea of Linnæus, by M. Margueron. This oil is desiccative-prepared from the berries by expression--and belongs to the second class, as distinguished by Fourcroy. It is a real oil, and burns with freedom; and has no unpleasing odor or taste, when used as food. M. Dubui has communicated some observations on Opium
and its composition, followed by different processes to obtain it from the white poppy (the papaver somniferum). It is singular, that, in this inquiry, which is apparently extensive, he should have been unacquainted with the Amenitates Exoticæ of Kæmpfer, who gives, very ample information on the subject. From his experiments, it appears that the opium usually imported is not the genuine extract of the staiks, leaves, or the green heads of the white poppy; for it is contaminated with many impurities; and would not, if pure, exhale the nauseous smell so distinguishable in it while moist. For the same reasons, it is not the inspissated juice of a decoction of poppy, heads. Those from Egypt are not apparently different from the poppy-heads of France. He concludes, from his experiments, that the opium of the East is the dry extract of every species of white poppy, taken from the earliest period of their flowering to that of their maturity, then mixed, and reduced to a proper consistence with the stinking mass arising from the stalks, leaves, and green capsules of the same poppies, bruised and fermented to the point necessary to develop the nauseous smell. There is however a kind of opium, in tears or globules, which exudes from the heads of those poppies which are nearer to the globular than the conoid form. This last kind is almost wholly soluble in water, more pure, less bitter and acrid to the taste, and less náuseous to the smell.
A Description of the different Manufactures, either of Amalgamation or Foundery, used in the Manufactory of Halsbruck, near Freyburg, by J. P. Fragoso,'. This little manual iş intended for the use of visitors and students: the abstract is. communicated by M. Bouillon la Grange, but is incapable of abridgement, and would also be unintelligible without the plates.
An abstract of Dumas's Principles of Physiology follows-a work we have long had in our hands, but do not find suffi, ciently interesting to form an article in our journal.
A very satisfactory memoir, on the Acid Waters which result from the Manufacture of Starch,' by M. Vauquelin, next occurs. The acid is in so large a quantity, that it seemed to merit notice ; and it appears to be the effect of some degree of fermentation. This fluid contains the acetous acid, ammonia, phosphat of lime, an animal substance, and alcohol. The fermentation of the farináceous matter produces the alcohol and the acid.' The ammonia is derived from the decomposition of the gluten or animal matter of the farina ; and the phosphat of lime existed originally in the flour. It is apparently suspended in a minute division, or dissolved by means of the acid. The loss of starch in the preparation is considerable; but it is indispensable į for, without the formation of the acid, the