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ABOUT GRAVELS.

A SATURDAY RAMBLE.

In the Swiss glaciers the lowest extremities of these OUNG observers, who have had a ice rivers gradually melt, and the enclosed rock lesson in geology from books or fragments are left in the form of heaps of stones teachers, know pretty well that the called moraines. rocks beneath our feet are not

The ice-sheet which overspread our country in the mingled confusedly together— glacial age moved southwards, wasting the rocks chalk with sandstone, or clay over which it moved, and so bringing " specimens" with quartz, but lie for the most from hill, and mountain, and higher grounds, to part in layers or beds which where it met the sea. Here Neptune and Hrymir

even school children now have wrestled for the mastery, and the old salt” proved learned to call “strata.”

the stronger of the two. Hrymir dropped his lapful It is also tolerably well known that these strata of rocks and stones as he retreated, and Neptune beare arranged in this country in a definite order, so

came ruler of Britannia, whose destiny was one day that a geological map of England exhibits a series of to rule him. In plain prose, the sea, a very cold sea strips running from south-west to north-east, and still, overspread the land, as proved by the shells it representing the upturned edges of a vast set of afterwards left on Welsh mountains, and Britain “rock formations,” the newest or uppermost being become a mere group of ice-clad islands. shown in the south-east, and the most ancient in the north-west of the country.

But, lying here and there on the top of the rocks, Here my narrative must stop; but I wish to tell underneath the surface mould, are found, as most my young readers how I spent a Saturday afternoon folks are aware, deposits of gravel, like those seen on among the remains of the old, old glacier. It was so many parts of the sea-shore. These consist of not far from the great city; a short ride by rail fragments of flint and other sorts of rock, more or brought me to Finchley, in company with a geoless rounded, evidently by the action of moving logical friend and a group of members of his Sunday water, like the flowing and ebbing tides. To ali class. these gravels the old geologists used to give the name

We soon found ourselves in a brickfield adjoining of Diluvium," supposing them to have been left by the station. A heap of stones lying“ promiscuous the receding waters of a universal deluge (diluvium) at the corner of the field speedily attracted both Further evidence rendered this idea quite untenablé, attention and hammers. These stones, embedded in and then the gravels and such like superficial accu "glacial clay," had been turned out of bed in order mulations from water action were dubbed “ Drift.” that the softer deposit of the ancient ice might be And drift was for many years a big puzzle that converted into useful material for building human wouldn't come right.

habitations. We looked at them closely. It was a It was easy enough to understand how flint frag- strange conglomeration. There were hardened ments could be washed out of chalk rock, and make boulders of chalk, shapeless fragments of sandstone, gravel of more or less rounded pebbles. But gravels furrowed by hard grinding in the ice-mill; limestones that consisted of fragments not waterworn, but with shells of marine origin, large nodules of London sharp-angled, and composed of such rocks as could clay (the nearest and least represented formation) with only be found hundreds of miles away, or perhaps on crystals of quartz and remains of large oysters ; lumps the other side of a great hill range-well, they were of greenstone and granite from mountains far away; a tough problem. What could have brought them little quartz pebbles, such as children look for on the together –so far, from so many quarters, and yet not shores of Sussex and Kent, and big quartz pebbles have rolled them into “marbles ?” The answer not yet ground down into small ones. My friend came at last, after long and patient study of facts. picked up a large shell peculiar to the Oxfordshire Who brought them? Why, as Charles Kingsley clays, and presently one of the boys found a frag. wrote, Hrymir, the frost giant-Ice! the ice of ment of rock in which the glacier had actually what is now known as

written its name in hieroglyphic scratches and

grooves. THE GLACIAL PERIOD."

We were at the southern end of what remains of In an age too far away from the present to be the old moraine—now represented by patches of sand accurately conceived by the imagination, yet quite and gravel. Externally was a brickfield with sundry

according to geological reckoning, our clay swamps and disreputable-looking pools, tenanted island lay submerged beneath a thousand feet and more by frogs and newts, and freshwater mollusks. All of icy sea, glaciers occupying the northern parts of around was bright with the verdure of the spring Britain and the whole of Wales; a state of things time, and it seemed hard to believe that once all this such as exists in Greenland and the Antarctic con- district had been lying beneath a frozen sea. Yet, tinent at the present time. Moving ice always with the evidence before us, it would have been wastes the rocks over which it travels, and carries hard to deny the existence of such a chapter in fragments, often of vast size, in the same direction. the past history of England.

BRITISH ORCHIDS.

a beautiful sketch illustrating this singular and In our last month's “ Page," mention was made interesting group, and by the help of which, with a of the Orchid family, one of which, the Ladies' reference to “ Withering,” a beginner will be assisted Tresses, was figured. Our artist has now provided to identify several species.

At the top of the picture (left hand), is the Spider Orchis (Ophrys aranifera); next below it, the Butterfly Orchis (Habenaria bifolia) ; lower still, the Tway-blade (Listera orata). On the right are shown the Lizard Orchis (Orchis hircina), and below it the Fly Orchis (Ophrys muscifera). At the foot of the sketch is one of those breezy uplands where, especially on a chalky soil, the orchids of our southern counties delight to dwell,

“And waste their sweetness on the desert air.”

KINGFISHERS. One of the most interesting of our native birds which stay with us all the year round is the Kingfisher, about which the ancients delighted to make pretty fables, and tell pretty fibs, such, for example, as that the bird had a

floating nest on the surface of the sea, and while she was sitting there was always calm weather: hence the term "haleyon days," from halcyon, a kingfisher. The bird's real nest is far less poetical, being a hole in the bank of some river or stream, and usually smelling most unpleasantly of stale fish. The

younger kingfishers partially migrate, according to Mr. Gould, going

down to river mouths, or the coast, in the fall of the year, but coming inland for the summer. The bird fishes from some overhanging bough, from which it darts

with arrow swiftness OD any unlucky minnow or

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stickleback, piercing the prey with its spear-like bill.

The frontispiece to the present number of our magazine represents an African species of this interesting family of birds, with its nest.

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THE

BUTTER

FRITILLARY

FLIES. A July day of the genuine kind is typical of an English summer, and I know of no more summery” group of butterflies than those which are illustrated in our woodcut.

The Fritillaries belong to Mr. Newman's order of Spine-bearers (Spinigeri), because their larvæ, like those of the Tortoiseshell and Peacock, are more or less covered with spines, until their last moult. The family is divided into two portions, the Silverspotted Fritillaries and the Gregarious Fritillaries, All are characterised by the apper side of the wings being beautifully spotted with black on a rich brown. Six of our native species (Argynnis) are marked with silvery spots on the under side of the wings; while the remaining three form the second division (Melitæa), being without the silver, and having catapillars which

gregarious in their habits.

Fritillaries. Of the former, A. Paphia, the Silver-Washed Fritillary, has the under side of|(M. Cinxia), the Heath (M. Athalia), and the Greasy the hind wings streaked with silver. Three other large (M. Artemis). All are under two inches in expanse. species (above two inches in expanse of wing) are The first has on under side of hind wings several the High Brown (A. Adippe), the Dark Green (A. rows of black spots ; the second, black lines ; the Aglaia), and the Queen of Spain (A. Lathonia). The third, one row of black spots. Cinzia is very local first'has no silver spots under the fore wings; the in its distribution ; Athalia is found only in the second and third have spots near the tip; but in the South of England; but Artemis is much more A. Aglaia the under side of the hind wings is greenish, common, frequenting damp meadows. whereas in Lathonia it is yellowish.

WATER-FLEAS. The Pearl-bordered (A. Euphrosyne) and Small Pearl-bordered (A. Selene) are both smaller—under If you have ever tried to stock an aquarium, on two inches in expanse. In the former, the under- however modest a scale, from a neighbouring pond, side of the hind wings has one large central silvery you could not have failed to notice among the new spot; in the latter, there are more than one. All the inmates certain living atoms, bobbing jerkily about foregoing insects are pretty in form, colour, and in the water, as if impelled by some internal gunname; they also have pretty tastes, the larvæ feeding powder, and becoming most tantalising objects to on different kinds of violets in woods.

inquiring eyes. Some of these would be WaterThe Gregarious Fritillaries are three; the larvæ fileas (Daphnia), though their resemblance to the feed on plantain and scabious, in companies, lively terrestrial creature whose name they bear is hibernating in a fasting condition, under a web of rather ghostly and remote. Naturalists include their own spinning. They are named, the Glanville | them in a division of the great_Crustacean class of

are

6 most

animals. to which they istic way in which they spin through the water, and
have given the title of then suddenly sink motionless to the bottom, when
EntomoS'TRACA, or shelled they can hardly be distinguished from minute
insects"; and this name is mussels.” There are twenty-seven British species
not so bad, for these tiny of Cypris, not including others which are extinct,
aquatics have jointed an- their tiny shells remaining as fossils,
tennæ, sometimes long and

“To tell of that which once hath been."
branched, and facetted
eyes, “ for all the world"
like genuine insects. A

The dabbler pair of shells, or a single

in muddy shell folded, delicate and

brooks and transparent in structure,

and streams encloses the animal's cor

will be alpus, through which the

sure various organs may be

to find the seen in action, under a

Freshwater powerful magnifier, the

FIG. 4.

Shrimp, & heart beating vigorously as brother of the Sandhoppers, whose dances on their

long as the water-flea is native shores can hardly fail to attract attention, Fig. 1.

alive and well. Our figure for their numbers make them sometimes appear like (Fig. 1) shows the male of the common Daphnia ; a cloud of steam" by the sad sea wave." It is the jointed feelers, the long curved stomach, the eye figured as No. 4, with a magnified cut of the head with its lenses, and the egg-shaped heart, are at (b). Those of my young readers who possess, or once recognisable.

have access to a microscope, will find a store of in. Another

terest and amusement in the tribe which we have

very common Entomo

been figuring. Expensive instruments are not stracan is the Cy.

needed for viewing the Entomostraca. clops. Our figure

GATHERING PLANTS. (Fig. 2) shows c. quadricornis, or the A correspondent wishes to know how to preserve “ four-horned” Cy- (land) plants and seaweeds.” As to the former, I clops (female), with must refer him to the hints given on page 410. her curious pair of To this I may now add a word or two about egg-bags hung be- collecting. hind her like John The "regular thing" is to carry a Vasculum, which Gilpin's bottles. is a japanned box, something like a flattened candleEach

of these box, of extra length, and provided with metal loops to " sacs

contains receive a strap for buckling it to the collector's side. from thirty to forty Judging from the very few times that I have seen a eggs, and when vasculum adhering to a living biped, I fear the race hatched, the larvæ of outdoor botanists must be very limited, or else are so unlike their that they prefer to do the irregular thing. Never

· parents, that “their theless, a vasculum or other metal box has the FIG. 2.

own mothers (one advantage of keeping your plants very fresh, till you might suppose) would hardly know them."

A get home. figure of one of these young hopefuls is shown in the friend of mine, however, whose leisure time lower left-hand corner of his mamma's portrait. (like my own) is always scanty, devised some years

Fig. 3 ago an ingenious substitute for the plant box. He gives a side procured a couple of stout boards, about sixteen and top inches long by fourteen inches wide, made sufficiently view of an- thick not to bend or warp. To these he attached å other ge- couple of cross straps with buckles ; and between the nus, Cypris

A
A

boards he enwith its

closed two or double

three quires of shell and

white blotting jointed an

paper. This tenna and

formed his "tralimbs.“No

velling press," thing can

and was carried be more

conveniently by curious,"

a third strap, says a re

slung lengthwise cent writer, Travelling Press.

between the “than the other two, to which it looped on. Each specimen or F. 3.

cha racter collection was neatly spread out between two of the

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Eyes to the Blind.

471

layers of paper, the press re-strapped, and so the collector went on his way. The plants were thus in process of drying and preservation from the time they were gathered, and I can testify to their satis

EYES TO THE BLIND.

season.

T

T

а

PRESERVING SEAWEEDS.

MBOSOMED among the trees high up on the mountain slope overlooking the Lake of Lucerne, stood a charming pension. The

hurried tourist, eager to reach 6

the Rhigi Kulm, would pass it by.

The invalid, the idler, the artist, Vasculum.

longing to catch the wondrous

charm of lake and sky, would factory condition after the drying had been completed,

surely linger here. It was late in the in a larger press and under greater pressure, at home.

The lake-boats were no longer Young collectors should remember that it is

crowded, the landlord's harvest was desirable to choose as perfect a specimen as they can

over, and yet on one still evening in obtain ; of course, choice is not always possible,

late September there were people on

the balcony of both the first and second except Hobson's; and to get

floor. Under the awning of the higber verandah sat an the whole of each,root and all,

elderly man, a white-haired lady, and a beautiful girl. The when the plant is not of too

latter gazed thoughtfully upon the hills that were purple large a size (this rule does

and golden in the fading light, and listened with hushed not apply to oaks or poplars).

attention to the notes of a viol that rose from the balcony Long grasses and ferns may

beneath. be bent, or a part of the stem

“How wonderfully sweet and yet how sad the music of a plant may be cut away

is to-night,” said the gray-haired lady, listening with

half-shut eyes.
and the remaining portions
Digger.

“Yes, poor fellow,” said the father, rising briskly, “I mounted separately on the Spud. am going to bring him up to spend this our last evening same, or, if needful, on two adjacent sheets.

here. He will be lonely enough when we are gone." The two requisites in all plant collecting are neat

“Do you think we shall get off to-morrow, father ? ” arrangement and thorough drying of the specimens.

I hope so; we have loitered here too long already, We figure a botanical “Digger," and also

though our friend below stays every autumn till the “ Spud,” with a wooden handle, which is a cheaper late enough to be here alone and blind.”

October frosts. It's a beautiful spot, but it must be desoarticle.

At the last word a slight shiver swept unnoticed over the young girl's frame, and the silence was broken next

by the cheerful voice of her father on the balcony below. The foregoing remarks apply for the most part to ask Mr. Donald not to leave his viol behind,” and he

“Father," called the mother, softly, over the railing, marine as well as terrestrial plants. Being, however, came back leading with clumsy kindliness a young man seldom seen growing in their native habitats

, sea-weeds whose face wore a smile so bright that it was hard to are more commonly mounted in a fragmentary con- believe that he could not see the smile that greeted him. dition; mere sprigs, of very little use for identifying Then, talking of the happy weeks passed together in this the species, being pressed and booked.

lovely mountain home, or singing softly, the young girl's Mr. Grattann, one of our well-known authorities voice mingling with the strains of the viol, the quiet sunin Algæ (alga, a sea-weed), recommends that the

set passed. weeds should be gathered into an ordinary sponge within the window, and the father dozed comfortably in

Feeling the air grow chilly, the mother withdrew bag of indiarubber, or in hot weather, a tin can, for his arm-chair, while a tremor, not lost to the ear of the the sake of coolness. Wash the plants well in their young musician, crept into the tones of the girl as she native pools, and repeat the process as soon as the spoke of the coming journey. To hide it she asked mounting can be commenced. They may then be abruptly, “Do you know you have an unfulfilled pledge, floated out in a pie-dish or photographer's “ bath," Mr. Donald ? When we first became acquainted, and having first laid a sheet of perforated zinc at the you told me such interesting legends about this region, bottom of the dish, and over this the sheet of drawing be so familiar with it.”

you promised to tell me how, though blind, you came to or other unglazed paper, on which the specimen is “Yes, and I meant to do it,” he answered thoughtfully, to be permanently mounted. Raise the plant by “but the story that endears the spot to me might sadden means of the zinc, allowing the water to drain gently its loveliness to you, and I have no right to do that.” off, and then, placing it in an inclined position, “Oh, no," said the mother, rousing herself, “ we shall “paint” it into position with a camel's-hair brush, be so glad to know anything you will be so kind as to

tell." and absorb the superfluous moisture with a piece of clean sponge.

'Yes, tell us," said the father, half asleep.

Well, since you wish it,” he said, “and since I owe For pressing, a piece of blotting paper is placed to you all the joy of this summer, I think it right that underneath that holding the specimen, and a piece you should know something of me. You found me here, of calico above, then more blotting paper above and where I have been coming for years, drawn to the spot below. A change of blotting paper will be needed as to the grave of a friend. For places I have never seen in a very short time, but the calico must not be I must use my imagination ; for places that I have seen removed till after the drying is completed. A towel that I have sight again,

for I was so familiar with it

my recollection serves, and in this spot I almost feel press or screw press best for sea-weeds; but, of that I can seem to see the lake, the rocks and trees, course, as in land plants, this is not essential.

the valley and the hills. I know every colour of the sky,

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