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researches, first carried out to a distinct classi- | planetary system are analagous to the volcanic
If then the astronomer has, to a vast extent, ex- by bringing to us, as it were, upon the spot, the pounded the mechanism of the heavens—if lately, living specimens of submarine creatures, whichthrough the great telescope of our associate the through the praiseworthy enthusiasm of Mr. Earl of Rosse, he has assigned a fixity and order to McAndrew, one of our members, who fitted out a bodies which were previously viewed as mere large yacht, for natural history researches—have nebulæ floating in space, and has also inferred that been dredged up this summer, by these naturalists, surface-cavities in our nearest neighbor of the from the southern coast, between the Land's End and Southampton. As a favorite yachting port the isolation in each of them of those terrestrial like Southampton may, it is hoped, afford imitators, races which had been propagated to it. This latI point out with pleasure the liberal example of ter inference was also, indeed, thoroughly susMr. McAndrew-who, not professing to describe tained by the researches of Professor Owen, comthe specimens he collects, has on this, as on former municated to this association ; first, in the generalioccasions, placed them in the hands of the mem- zation by which his report on the Extinct Mambers best qualified to do them justice, and is thus a mals of Australia is terminated, and still more in substantial promoter of science.
detailed reference to our islands in his recently The memoir of Edward Forbes, in the govern- published work, “On the Extinct Fossil British ment geological survey, to which, however, I Mammalia”—a work which he has stated in his would allude, is, in truth, an extension of his views dedication originated at the call of the British respecting the causes of the present distribution of Association. Professor Owen adds, indeed, greatly plants and animals in the British isles, first made to the strength of our present meeting, by acting known at the last meeting of the British Associa- as the president of one of our sections, which tion. As this author has not only shown the appli- having in its origin been exclusively occupied in cation of these ideas to the researches of the Brit- the study of medicine, is now more peculiarly deish geological survey, but also to the distribution voted to the cultivation of physiology. Under of animals and plants over the whole earth, it is such a leader I have a right to anticipate that this evident that these views, in great part original, remodelled section will exhibit evidences of fresh will introduce a new class of inquiries into natural vigor, and will clearly define the vast progress that history, which will link it on more closely than has been made in general and comparative anatomy ever to geology and geography. In short, this since the days of Hunter and of Cuvier-for so paper may be viewed as the first attempt to explain large a part of which we are indebted to our emithe causes of the zoological and botanical features nent associate. of any region anciently in connection. Among the Assembled in a county which has the good fornew points which it contains, I will now only men-tune to have been illustrated by the attractive and tion that it very ingeniously (and I think most pleasing history of the Naturalist of Selborne, I am satisfactorily) explains the origin of the peculiar confident that our fourth section, to whose labors I features of the botany of Britain—the theory of the would now specially advert, will yield a rich harorigin of Alpine Floras distributed far apart-the vest, the more so as it is presided over by that peculiarity of the zoology of Ireland as compared great zoologist who has enriched the adjacent with that of England—the presence of the same museum of the naval hospital at Haslar with so species of marine animals on the coasts of America many animals from various parts of the world, and and Europe—the specialties of the marine zoology has so arranged them as to render them objects well of the British seas called for by this association- worthy of your notice. The report of Sir John the past and present distribution of the great Medi- Richardson in the last volume, on the Fishes of terranean Flora ;-and lastly, it applies to the China, Japan and New Zealand, when coupled knowledge we possess of the distribution of plants with his account in former volumes of the Fauna to the elucidation of the history of the super- of North America, may be regarded as having comficial detritus, termed by geologists, the “ Northern pletely remodelled our knowledge of the geographiDrift."
cal distribution of fishes; first, by affording the Amid the numerous subjects for reflection which data, and next by explaining the causes through the perusal of this memoir occasions, I must now which a community of ichthyological characters is restrict myself to two brief comments :—First, to in some regions widely spread, and in others reexpress my belief that even Humboldt himself, who stricted to limited areas. We know now, that just has written so much and so admirably on Alpine as the lofty mountain is the barrier which separates Floras, will admit thatour associate's explanation different animals and plants, as well as peculiar of the origin of identity removes a great stumbling- varieties of man, so the deepest seas are limits block from the path of botanical geographers. which peremptorily check the wide diffusion of Secondly, having myself for some years endeavored certain genera and species of fishes ; whilst the to show, that the Alpine glacialists had erroneously interspersion of numerous islands, and still more applied their views as founded on terrestrial phe- the continuance of lands throughout an ocean, innomena to large regions of Northern Europe, which sures the distribution of similar forms over many must have been under the sea during the distribu- degrees of latitude and longitude. tion of erratic blocks, gravel, and boulders, I can- The general study, indeed, both of zoology and not but consider it a strong confirmation of that botany has been singularly advanced by the labors opinion, when I find so sound a naturalist as of the section of natural history. I cannot have Edward Forbes sustaining the same view by per- acted for many years as your general secretary fectly independent inferences concerning the mi- without observing, that by the spirit in which this gration of plants to isolated centres, and by a stu- section has of late years been conducted, British dious examination and comparison of all the sea- naturalists have annually become more philosophishells associated with these transported materials. cal, and have given to their inquiries a more physiAnd, if I mistake not, my friend Mr. Lyell will ological character, and have more and more studied find in both the above points strong evidences in the higher questions of structure, laws and distrisupport of his ingenious climatal theories. bution. This cheering result has mainly arisen
Recent as the blocks and boulders to which I from the personal intimacy brought about among have alluded may seem to be, they were, however, various individuals, who, living at great distances accumulated under a glacial sea, whose bottom was from each other, were previously never congrefirst raised to produce that connection between the gated, and from the mutual encouragement imcontinent and Britain, by which the land animals parted by their interchange of views and their migrated from their parent east to our western comparisons of specimens. Many active British climes; a connection that was afterwards broken naturalists have, in fact, risen up since these meetthrough by the separation of our islands, and by ings commenced, and many (in addition to the examples already alluded to) have pursued their sci- sake of learning and registering comparative clience directly under the encouragement we have mate as an element of scientific agriculture. Speakgiven them. The combination of the enthusiastic ing to you in a county which is so mainly dependand philosophic spirit thus engendered among the ent on the produce of the soil, I cannot have a naturalists has given popularity to their department more favorable opportunity for incalcating the of science ; and this section, assuming an import- value of the suggestions of this British geograance to which during our earliest meetings it could pher. The complete establishment of all the data show comparatively slender claims, has vigorously of physical geography throughout the British revived the study of natural history, and among islands ; i. e. the registration of the mean and exother proofs of it, has given rise to that excellent tremes of the temperature of the air and of the publishing body, the Ray Society, which holds its earth; the amount of conduction, radiation, moisanniversary during our sittings. Any analysis of ture and magnetism ; the succession of various the numerous original and valuable reports and phases of vegetation, &c., (with their several local memoirs on botanical and zoological subjects which corrections for elevation and aspect,) must cerhave enriched our volumes is forbidden by the tainly prove conducive to the interests of science, limits of this address, but I cannot omit to advert and are likely to promote some material interests to the extensive success of Mr. H. Strickland's of our country. Report on Zoological Nomenclature, which has A minute knowledge of all the circumstances of been adopted and circulated by the naturalists of climate cannot but be of importance to those whose France, Germany and America, and also by those industry only succeeds through the coöperation of of Italy, headed by the Prince of Canino. In each nature, and it may therefore be inferred that such of these countries the code drawn up by the asso- a report as that with which I trust Mr. Cooley will ciation has been warmly welcomed, and through it favor us, if followed up by full and complete tables, we may look forward to the great advantage being will prove to be a most useful public document. gained of the ultimate adoption of an uniform Imbibing the ardor of that author, I might almost zoological nomenclature all over the globe. hope that such researches in physical geography
Whilst investigations into the geographical dis- may enable us to define, in the language of the tribution of animals and plants have occupied a poetlarge share of the attention of our Browns and our Darwins, it is pleasing to see that some of our Et quid quæque ferat regio, et quid quæque recuset. members, chiefly connected with physical researches, are now bringing these data of natural At all events, such a report will tend to raise
to bear upon climatology and physical physical geography in Britain towards the level geography. A committee of our naturalists, to it has attained in Prussia under the ægis of Humwhom the subject was referred, has published in boldt and Ritter, and by the beautiful maps of our last volume an excellent series of instructions Berghaus. for the observation of the periodical phenomena of Though our countryman, Mr. Keith Johnston, is animals and plants, prepared by our foreign_asso- reproducing, in attractive forms, the comparative ciate, M. Quetelet, the astronomer-royal of Belgi-maps of the last-mentioned Prussian author, much
Naturalists have long been collecting obser- indeed still remains to be done in Britain, to place vations on the effects produced by the annual the study of physical geography on a basis worthy return of the seasons, but their various natural his- of this great exploring and colonizing nation ;tory calendars being local, required comparison and and as one of the highly useful elementary aids to concentration, as originally suggested by Linnæus. the training of the youthful mind to acquire a right This has now for the first time been executed by perception of the science, I commend the spirited the Belgian Astronomer, who, following out a project of a French geographer, M. Guerin, to plan suggested by himself at our Plymouth meet- establish in London a georama of vast size, which ing, has brought together the contributions and shall teach by strong external relief, the objects suggestions of the naturalists of his own country. and details of which he will, in the course of this When M. Quetelet remarks, “ that the phases of week, explain to the geographers present. the smallest insect are bound up with the phases Reverting to economical views and the improveof the plant that nourishes it ; that plant itself ment of lands, I would remind our agricultural being in its gradual development the product, in members that, as their great practical society was some sort, of all anterior modifications of the soil founded on the model of the British Association, and atmosphere," he compels the admission, that we hope they will always come to our sections for the study which should embrace all periodical phe- the solution of any questions relating to their purnomena, both diurnal and annual, would of itself suits to which can be given a purely scientific form a science as extended as instructive.
If they ask for the explanation of the deReferring you to M. Quetelet's report for an ex- pendence of vegetation upon subsoil or soil, our planation of the dependence of the vegetable and geologists and botanists are ready to reply to them. animal kingdoms on the meteorology and physics Is it a query on the comparison of the relative of the globe, and hoping that the simultaneous value of instruments destined to economize labor, observations he inculcates will be followed up in the mechanicians now present are capable of Britain, I am glad to be able to announce, that the answering it. And if, above all
, they ask us to outline of a memoir on physical geography was solve their doubts respecting the qualities of soils some months ago put into my hands by Mr. Cooley, and the results of their mixtures, or the essects of which, in a great degree coinciding with the sys- various manures upon them, our chemists are at tem of M. Quetelet, has ultimately a very different hand. One department of our institution is, in object. M. uetelet chiefly aims at investigating fact, styled the Section of Chemistry and Minerthe dependence of organized bodies on inorganized alogy, with their applications to agriculture and the matter, by observing the periodical phenomena of arts, and is officered in part by the very men, Johnthe former. Mr. Cooley seeks to obtain an ston, Daubeny, and Playfair, to whom the agriculacquaintance with the same phenoinena for the turists have in nearly all cases appealed. The
first mentioned of these was one of our earliest | bold and successful engineering, I must say a few friends and founders ; the second had the merit of words on our naval architecture—the more so, as standing by the British Association at its first we have here a very strong mechanical section, premeeting, and there inviting us to repair to that sided over by that eminent mechanician Professor great university where he is so much respected, Willis, assisted by that great dynamical mathemaand where he is now steadily determining, by tician Dr. Robinson, and that sound engineer elaborate experiments, the dependence of many George Rennie. Duly impressed with the vast species of plants on soil, air, and stimulus ; whilst national importance of this subject, and at the same the third has already been alluded to as one of our time of its necessary dependence on mathematical best contributors.
principles, the British Association endeavored in If, in reviewing our previous labors, I have en- its earliest days to rouse attention to the state of deavored to gain your attention by some incidental ship-building in England, and to the history of its allusions to our present proceedings, I have yet to progress in France and other countries, through a assure you, that the memoirs communicated to our memoir by the late Mr. G. Harvey. It was then secretaries are sufficiently numerous to occupy our contended, that notwithstanding the extreme persections during the ensuing week with all the vigor fection to which the internal mechanism of vessels which has marked our opening day. Among the had been brought, their external forms or lines, on topics to which our assembling at Southampton which their sailing so much depends, were degives peculiar interest, I may still say that if ficient as to adjustment by mathematical theory. foreign and English geologists should find much to Our associate Mr. Scott Russell has, as you know, interest them in the Isle of Wight, the same island ably developed this view. Experimenting upon contains a field for a very curious joint discussion the resistance of water, and ascertaining with prebetween the mathematicians and the geologists, cision the forms of vessels which would pass with which I became acquainted in a previous visit through it with the least resistance, and conseto this place. It is a discovery by Col. Colby, the quently with the greatest velocity, he has condirector of the Trigonometrical survey, of the ex- tributed a most valuable series of memoirs, accomistence of a considerable attraction of the plumb- panied by a great number of diagrams, to illustrate line to the south, at the trigonometrical station his opinions and to show the dependence of naval called Dunnose, on Shanklin Down. The details architecture on certain mathematical lines.' Emof this singular phenomenon, which has been veri- ployed in the mean time by merchants, on their fied by numerous observations with the best zenith own account, to plan the construction of sailing sectors, will be laid before the sections. In the ships and steamers, Mr. Scott Russell has been so mean time, we may well wonder that this low successful in combining theory with practice, that chalk
range in the Isle of Wight should attract, in we must feel satisfied in having at different meetone parallel at least, with more than half the in- ings helped him towards by several money grants ; tensity of the high and crystalline mountain of -our only regret being, that our means should not Schehallion in the Highlands of Scotland. Can have permitted us to publish the whole number of those of our associates, who, like Mr. Hopkins, diagrams of the lines prepared by this ingenious have entered the rich field of geological dynamics, author. explain this remarkable fact, either by the peculiar But however desirous to promote knowledge on structure and distribution of the ridge of upheaved this point, the men of science are far from wishing strata which runs as a backbone from east to west not to pay every deference to the skilful artificers through the island, or by referring it to dense plu- of our wooden bulwarks, on account of their extonic masses of rock ranging beneath the surface perience and practical acquaintance with subjects along the line of displacement of the deposits ? they have so long and so succe
ccessfully handled. Another local subject—one indeed of positive We are indeed fully aware, that the naval archipractical interest—that stands before us for dis- tects of the government, who construct vessels cussion is, whether, by persevering in deepening carrying a great weight of metal, and requiring the large shaft which they have sunk so deep into much solidity and capacious stowage, have to solve the chalk near this town, the inhabitants of South- many problems with which the owners of trading ampton may expect to be eventually repaid, like vessels or packets have little concern. All that those of Paris, by a full supply of subterranean we can wish for is, that our naval arsenals should water, which shall rise to the surface of the low contain schools or public boards of ship-building, plateau on which the work has been undertaken? in which there might be collected all the “conOn no occasion, I must observe, could this town he stants of the art," in reference to capacity, disfurnished with a greater number of willing coun- placement, stowage, velocity, pitching and rolling, sellors of divers nations, whose opinions will, it is masting, the effect of sails and the resistance of hoped, be adequately valued by the city authorities. fluids. Having ourselves expended contributions The question whether this work ought to be pro- to an extent which testifies, at all events, our zeal ceeded with or not, will, however, I apprehend, be in this matter, we are, I think, entitled to express most effectively answered by those geologists who a hope that the data derived from practice by our are best acquainted with the sections in the interior eminent navigators may be effectively combined of this county, and with the levels at which the with the indications of sound theory prepared by upper greensand and subcretaceous strata there approved cultivators of mathematical and mechanicrop out and receive the waters, which thence flow cal science. southwards beneath the whole body of chalk of the I cannot thus touch upon such useful subjects hills in the south of Hampshire.
without saying that our statistical section has been Considering that we are now assembled in the so well conducted by its former presidents, that its neighborhood of our great naval arsenal—that some subjects, liable at all times to be diverted into of its functionaries, including the admiral on the moral considerations and thence into politics, have station, have honored us with their support, and been invariably restricted to the branch of the that, further, I am now speaking in a town whose science which deals in facts and numbers ; and as magnificent new docks may compete with any for no one individual has contributed more to the store
house of such valuable knowledge than Mr. George which flowed from a concentration of profound maPorter, (as evidenced even by his report in our last thematicians and magneticians, drawn together volume,) so may we believe that in this town, with from different European kingdoms ;—if, then, also, which he is intimately connected, he will contribute the man* of solid learning, who then represented to raise still higher the claims of the section over the United States of America, and who is now which he is so well qualified to preside.
worthily presiding over the Cambridge University If in this discourse I have referred more largely of his native soil, spoke to us with chastened eloto those branches of science which pertain to the quence of the benefits our institution was confergeneral division of natural history, in which alone ring on mankind ;—let us rejoice that this meeting I can venture to judge of the progress which others is honored by the presence of foreign philosophers are making, let me, however, say, that no member as distinguished as those of any former year. of this body can appreciate, more highly than I do, Let us rejoice that we have now among us men the claims of the mathematical and experimental of science from Denmark, Sweden, Russia, Prusparts of philosophy, in which my friend Prof. sia, Switzerland, Belgium, Italy and France. The Baden Powell, of Oxford, who supports me on king of Denmark, himself personally distinguished this occasion as a vice-president, has taken so for his acquaintance with several branches of Natdistinguished a part. No one has witnessed with ural History, and a warm patron of science, has greater satisfaction the attendance at our former honored us by sending hither, not only the great meetings of men from all parts of Europe the discoverer, Oersted, who, evincing fresh vigor in most eminent in these high pursuits. No one can his mature age, brings with him new communicamore glory in having been an officer of this asso- tions on physical science, but also my valued friend, ciation when it was honored with the presence of the able geologist and chemist, Forchhammer, who its illustrious correspondent Bessel, than whom the has produced the first geological map of Denmark, world has never produced a more profound astron- and who has presented to us a lucid memoir on the omer. If, among his numerous splendid discover- influence exercised by marine plants on the formaies, he furnished astronomers with what they had tion of ancient crystalline rocks, on the present so long and so ardently desired—a fixed and ascer- sea, and on agriculture. tained point in the immensity of space, beyond the As these eminent men of the North received me limits of our own sidereal system, it is to Bessel, as the general secretary of the British association as I am assured by a contemporary worthy of him, with their wonted cordiality at the last Scandinavian that Englishmen owe a debt of gratitude for his Assembly, I trust we may convince them that the
I elaborate discussion of the observations of their sentiment is reciprocal, and that Englishmen are immortal Bradley, which, in his hands, became nearly akin to them in the virtues of friendship and the base of modern Astronomy.
hospitality which so distinguish the dwellers within Passing from this recollection, so proud, yet so the circle of Odin. mournful, to us all as friends and admirers of the Still adverting to Scandinavia, we see here a deceased Prussian astronomer, can any one see deputy from the country of Linnæus, in the person with more delight than myself the brilliant concur- of Professor Svanberg, a successful young experirence at our present meeting of naturalists, geolo- menter in physics, who represents his great masgists, physiologists, ethnologists and statists, with ter, Berzelius—that profound chemist and leader of mathematicians, astronomers, mechanicians, and the science of the north of Europe, who establishexperimental philosophers in physics and in chem-ed on a firm basis the laws of atomic weights and istry? Surely, then, I may be allowed to signalize definite proportions, and who has personally assura particular ground of gratification among so many, ed me, that if our meeting had not been fixed in in the presence at this meeting of two individuals the month of September, when the agriculturalists in our experimental sections, to one of whom, our of Sweden assemble at Stockholm, he would aseminent foreign associate, Oersted, we owe the first suredly have repaired to us. And if the same great link between electric and magnetic phenom- cause has prevented Nilsson from coming hither, ena, by showing the magnetic properties of the and has abstracted Retzius from us, (who was till galvanic current; whilst the other, our own Fara- within these few days in England,) I cannot menday, among other new and great truths which have tion these distinguished men, who earnestly deraised the character of English science throughout sired to be present, without expressing the hope, the world, obtained the converse proof by evoking that the memoirs they communicate to us may give electricity out of magnets. And if it be not given such additional support to our British ethnologists to the geologist whom you have honored with this as will enable this new branch of science, which chair, to explain how such arcana have been re-investigates the origin of races and languages, to vealed, still, as a worshipper in the outer portico take the prominent place in our assemblies to which of the temple of physical science, he may be per- it is justly entitled. mitted to picture to himself the delight which the The Royal Academy of Berlin, whose deputies Danish philosopher must have felt when, on return- on former occasions have been an Ehrenberg, a ing to our shores, after an absence of a quarter of Buch, and an Erman, has honored us by sending a century, he found that the grand train of discov- hither M. Heinrich Rosè, whose work on chemical ery of which he is the progenitor had just received analysis is a text-book even for the most learned its crowning accession in England from his former chemists in every country; and whilst his researchdisciple, who, through a long and brilliant series es on the constitution of minerals, like those of his of investigations, peculiarly his own, has shown eminent brother Gustave on their form, have obthat magnetic or dia-magnetic forces are distributed tained for him so high a reputation, he now brings throughout all nature.
to us the description of a new metal which he has And thus shall we continue to be a true British discovered in the Tantalite of Bavaria. association, with cosmopolite connexions, so long Switzerland has again given to us that great masas we have among us eminent men to attract such ter in paleontology, Agassiz, who has put arms foreign contemporaries to our shores. If, then, at the last assembly we experienced the good effects
* Mr. Everett.