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elegant entertainment, given by his Worship the Mayor, at the Town Hall.
The Council congratulate the members on the determination of the British Association to hold its next meeting in this town, and they feel assured that nothing will be wanting on the part of the members of the Society and its officers to contribute to the comfort of the distinguished visitors that may be expected in Liverpool on that occasion ; and that every endeavour will be made to carry out such arrangement as shall make the meeting worthy of this town.
During the recess, the publication of the Proceedings has advanced, but the Council regret that, owing to unforeseen circumstances, respecting the printing, over which they had no control, they are unable to present the entire volume in type this evening. The volume, however, will be in the hands of the members in the course of a few weeks.
The Council cannot allow this opportunity to pass without expressing to the members the gratification they feel in being able to state that, inasmuch as every former volume has excelled its immediate predecessor, so will the present one excel the last, both in value of matter and in illustrations.
The Council being anxious that the Suciety should still exercise its functions with unimpaired efficiency, appointed a sub-committee from its own body, to consider the state of the finances, and to report to the council upon the following points ; namely, the propriety of raising the subscriptions; the formation of different classes of subscribers ; on life subscriptions; on compositions ; upon the continuance of the practice of giving tea, coffee, &c., and sending out circulars ; on the payment for the transactions, for the tea and coffee ; and such other points as they may consider to bear upon the subject ; and the Council beg to lay before the Society their Report, which is as follows:
“ The Sub-Committee are of opinion that it is desirable the Society · should make the following alterations with reference to the above subjects, namely :
" That the subscriptions payable by ordinary members be increased to 41 ls., with an entrance fee of 10s. 6d. as at present ; and that life members be admitted at £10 10s., without entrance fee. That the present members of the Society, and all proposed as members prior to the adoption of any alteration in the subscription, be allowed to compound for their future annual subscriptions by the payment of £5 58., provided the same be done during the Session 1853-54.
"The Sub-Committee are also of opinion that tea and coffee, and
circulars, should be continued ; and, also, that the transactions should be published as heretofore.”
It was moved by the Rev. Dr. HUME, and seconded by Mr. JOSEPH BOULT
“That the Report be adopted, with the exception of that part containing a recommendation to increase the amount of annual subscription."
Amendment moved by Dr. DUNCAN, and seconded by Mr. J. B. YATES,
“ That the Report of the Council be received; and that the consideration of the increase of subscription be considered at a future meeting, to be called as soon as the laws will admit.”—Amendment carried
The TREASURER'S Accounts were then read and passed.-(Vide Appendix.)
The Society then proceeded to ballot for the new members of Council, three Vice-Presidents, a Treasurer, and a Secretary. At the conclusion, the Officers of the Society were announced as follows:
- Other Members of Council. FRANCIS ARCHER, ESQ.
WILLIAM LASSELL, F.R.S., F.R.A.S. ISAAC BYERLEY, ESQ.
J. P. G. SMITH, ESQ. JOHN HARTNUP, F.R.A.S.
DAVID PURDIE THOMSON, M.D. REV. J. S. HOWSON, M.A.
JOHN THOMAS TOWSON, ESQ. WILLIAM IHNE, PH.D.
The Rev. Dr. Hume moved a vote of thanks to the l'etiring Council and Officers, which was carried unanimously,
Mr. ALEXANDER Baldey, Mr. John AUGUSTUS SOMMERS, and Mr. JAMES Miller SHain were elected Ordinary Members.
The Rev. James Booth, LL.D., F.R.S., &c., was elected a Corres. ponding Member.
The SECRETARY read the following recommendation from the Council, viz. :-“ That the form of Application for admission be altered, by leaving out the words—"and to furnish, when called for, the title of a paper to be read in the Society." It having been put from the chair, was carried unanimously.
The SECRETARY read a letter from Mr. Abraham, Honorary Secretary of the Chemists' Association, inviting the members of the societies which meet at the Royal Institution, and also those of the Historic Society and the Liverpool Academy, to attend a lecture on the new Crystal Palace at Sydenham, to be delivered by Mr. T. C. Archer, at the Royal Institution, on Friday evening next.
Resolved unanimously—“ That the thanks of the Society be presented to the Chemists' Association."
The SECRETARY read a letter from Mr. Boult, dated the 14th of October, 1853, inclosing copies of the undermentioned resolutions, passed at a meeting of gentlemen, members of two or more of the local learned societies, publishing transactions, convened by circular, and held in the Library of Mr. Mayer's Egyptian Museum, on Thursday evening, the 13th instant, Edward Heath, Esq., iu the chair, viz. :
1st. “ That it appears to this meeting that an union of the following societies, viz., the Literary and Philosophical, the Polytechnic, the Architectural and Archäological, and the Historic Society of Lancashire and Cheshire, is in many respects highly desirable."
2nd. “ That, to obtain a full and deliberate consideration of the whole subject, we respectfully request each of the four societies to appoint representatives, not exceeding five, to deliberate together, and to prepare a Report, to be submitted to the societies respectively."
3rd. “That, Mr. Thomas Brakell having offered to print 1,000 copies of the Report, when ready, for presentation to the members of all the Societies, the best thanks of this meeting be presented to Mr. Brakell, and his liberal offer be accepted.”
Mr. Forshaw gave notice that he would move the consideration of the subject at the next meeting.
The Chairman having alluded to the intended visit of the British Association to Liverpool next year, it was moved by Mr. J. B. YATES, seconded by Dr. Hume, and carried unanimously
“ That this Society pledges itself to co-operate most cordially in securing the success of the meeting of the British Association."
Mr. Isaac BYERLEY exhibited a fine specimen of the Torpedo nobiliana, which was caught by some fishermen in Carnarvon Bay, on Saturday last. The fish is rarely met with, and (when in a living state) is capable of giving very severe electrical shocks.
ROYAL INSTITUTION, October 31, 1853.
JOSEPH DICKINSON, M.D., F.L.S., &c., PRESIDENT, in the chair.
At an EXTRAORDINARY MEETING, held this evening, the recommendation contained in the last Annual Report of the Council, “ That the subscription payable by Ordinary Members be increased to £1 Is., with an entrance fee of 10s. 6d., as at present, and that Life Members be admitted at £10 10s., without entrance fee :—That the present members of the Society, and all proposed as members prior to the adoption of any alteration in the subscription, be allowed to compound for their future annual subscriptions by the payment of £5 5s., provided the same be done during the Session 1853-54;"—was taken into consideration: when it was moved by Mr. J. FORSHAW, and seconded by Mr. A. J. MOTT— “ That the subscription payable by Ordinary Members be increased to £l ls. for the present Session."Carried.
Dr. J. B. EDWARDS exhibited Photographs of the Torpedo nobiliana, taken from a specimen lately caught in Carnarvon Bay. Mr. J. B. Yates exhibited the Victoria Nuggett, from Australia.
The following recommendation from the Council was read and adopted by the Society, viz. :
“That the Society be recommended, in an address to the Town Council, to suggest the propriety of associating with the Library Committee some members from the Councils of the Learned Societies.”
The following paper was read by ROBERT McANDREW, Esq., F.R.S., F.L.S., &c.
ON THE GEOGRAPHICAL DISTRIBUTION OF TESTA
CEOUS MOLLUSCA IN THE NORTH-EAST ATLANTIC AND NEIGHBOURING SEAS.
The distribution of marine mollusca is a subject, not only interesting to the student of zoology and physical geography, but particularly so to the geologist, as by reference to it he is enabled to form an opinion of the climatal and other conditions that must have prevailed at the time when those strata were deposited, which contain fossils allied to existing forms.
Although shells, as objects of beauty and rarity, have long excited the cupidity of collectors, it is comparatively only of late years that qualified individuals have been found to investigate and record local faunas, and that the commanders and officers of exploring and surveying expeditions have been stimulated to take advantage of the opportunities within their reach of illustrating the natural history of remote regions, whereby the philosophic naturalist has been enabled to form a much more correct idea of the range and distribution of this class of animals, and how far the same is affected by temperature and other circumstances, than he could have derived from the grossly erroneous data supplied by many of the older writers on conchology.
Very much, however, still remains to be accomplished in this direction. The great sea, in which are “ things creeping innumerable," is still the region of mystery; and people term it the "waste of waters," little reflecting how those waters teem with myriads of living beings ; and that, even after its vast extent is taken into account, the ocean is pre-eminently the domain of animal, as the land is of vegetable, organization.
That there should be found those who still believe in the existence of sea serpents, mermaids, and other monsters, whose terrestrial brethren, the griffins and unicorns, have long since been banished to the realms of romance and of heraldry, proves the ignorance which exists concerning the things of the sea; while we need but to compare the extent of our knowledge of marine and of land animals, in order to perceive at once what a field is here presented to the lover of nature for research of the most pleasing and interesting kind, and for adding to our knowledge of the manifold works of the Creator.
These and similar considerations have induced me to direct my