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expressed surprise that the extension of the coal strata under the magnesian limestone was ever doubted.

In the Mechanical Section Mr. Hall communicated a paper on the kindred subject of economising fuel.

The author insisted on the necessity of having the backs of the fireplaces vertical, and the apertures of the chimneys as contracted as possible ; and he described the results of his experiments. One principle to be universally attended to in close fireplaces is, that the burning fuel be surrounded by a substance retentive of beat, and capable of radiating it back upon the fire itself. This is attained by covering the fire itself with a species of fire-brick, and only allowing a very small aperture for the escape of the beat thus forced off at the highest degree attainable, then to be economised by close confinement and regulation. The economy of heat, when attained, consists in conducting the hot air through long and horizontal flues, so as to counteract as much as possible its tendency to ascend, which tendency is exactly proportional to the temperature. The author illustrated the preceding paper by details of the arrangements which he had adopted, and alluded especially to the re. searches of Rumford on this subject.

Mr. Sopwith gives a " Description of an improved method of constructing large Secretaires and Writing Tables.

The great loss of time to persons engaged in extensive official business in consequence of the difficulty of arranging numerous sets of papers, and of obtaining access to them when so arranged, induced the author to take this opportunity of describing a table invented by himself, and which had been extremely serviceable to him. The principle is, that by opening a single lock, the whole of the drawers, closets, and partitions are opened. These are so disposed, also, as to admit of everything being reached without the person stirring from his seat. They are all entirely closed again by a single spring lock. It would be impossible to convey a proper idea of this ingenious invention without sectional plans and elevations; but the president, and many present, expressed their admiration of the arrangements, and of the convenience which such a table must be to every person engaged in an extensive correspondence, or having many sets of papers on various subjects. One contrivance is peculiarly worth mentioning. Within this case Mr. Sopwith bangs up bis various keys. "On any key being removed, a small counterbalance weight, or bolt, drops down, and remains down until the key is replaced. This bolt effectually prevents the closing of the case. If, then, the person should forget to replace the key which has been removed, he is immediately reminded of it, by being unable to close the case. The principle and contrivances are applicable to many various arrangements of drawers and partitions.

At the general meeting Professor Whewell delivered an admirable address, which we regret we have not space to insert.

At the next sitting the first paper read was a continuation of Mr. Buddle's account of the Newcastle coalfield. He stated, that the great length of the paper, and the limited time of the Section, would oblige him to give an extremely short abstract, He then adverted to the foreign substances interstratified with the coal: these are shale, galena, fire clay, calcareous spar, iron pyrites, quartz, sand, and ironstone. The earthy strata among the coal are called bands. Numerous bands occur; but the most remarkable seems to be the Eworth band, which at first is a mere parting, but at last, in its range N.E., swells out into a thickness of eighteen fathoms. The most common foreign substance is perhaps pyrites, which occurs in disseminated cubes, and also in thin veins. Calcareous spar is found on the facings of the seams, between the constituent laminæ. Balks, nips, and hitches, the various kinds of roof, accidental circumstances affecting the quality of the coal, were then noticed, and some singular groups of trees in an upright and inclined position described. The author then pointed out, by means of numerous sections, the various coal seams ;-of these there are five, the High Main seam, the Two Yard coal, the Belcham coal, the High Quarter coal, and the Hutton seam on the Wear. The High Main seam is by far the most important. In Sheriff's Hill the seams are aggregately richer than in any other place, though there are several places where they are richer individually. The area occupied by the most perfectly developed part of the High Main seam is about eight or nine square miles. The four other seams were briefly noticed, and the changes which take place upon them, in their course, by the intermixture of foreign

substances, whereby they are so far deteriorated and reduced in thickness, as to be no longer worth working. The next subject treated of was the Whin Dikes of the district; of these there are not many, and only three or four of them are large. The first is the Coaly Hill dike, which has been long known, and quarried in various places. Its course is irregular and serpentine ; and it appears to have been injected among the strata in a liquid state after the coal was formed, and to have followed in its course the line of least resistance. Some of the dikes have been observed at a great depth cutting through the coal seams, and others range below all the coal strata. Their effects on the contiguous strata are to convert the coal into cinder; and one instance was mentioned, where the coal on one side of a dike was carbonised, while on the other no such change had been produced; from which it was inferred that the coal on the one side was formed before the dike, while that on the other was of later origin.-The faults or slips were next described. By far the most remarkable of them is the great Ninety Fathom dike, which appears upon the sea-shore at Cullercoats, and ranges at first west, then south-west, and again to the west. At Whitby, this fault depresses the coal to the depth of 510 feet; farther west the depression is still greater, the strata being 1,200 feet lower upon the northern than upon the southern side. The smallest vertical shaft seems to be 450 feet. A great many minor faults open into this great axis or line of fracture; and so numerous and vast are the dislocations and fractures which it has everywhere produced, that a great quantity of valuable coal has been rendered quite unfit for work. ing. From various phenomena which are observed along the line of this fault, Mr. Buddle is of opinion, that it was formed while the strata were in a soft and yielding state, and before they had acquired that solid and rigid form, which would rather cause them to snap asunder by a great pressure downwards, than yield in the manner they have done.

Mr. Buddle's paper was illustrated in every part by a profusion of accurate and highly-finished drawings, plans, and sections.

Dr. Buckland adverted to the great value of Mr. Buddle's paper. This coal-field was unquestionably the most important in the country, since the metropolis itself, and near balf the country, might be said to depend almost entirely on it. He thought that we could not over-estimate the importance to succeeding ages, of having a complete and accurate record thus made of all the bed of coal and the various workings---in fact, of a perfect plan of this great subterranean region, such as Mr. Buddle had given ; since it would serve as a guide in after generations for every mining enterprise, and might be the means of saving, not only much property, but even the lives of multitudes, who, without such knowledge, might venture amid all the uncertainty and danger of concealed lakes and labyrinths. He hoped soon to see this important paper published in the valuable Transactions of the Natural History Society of Newcastle.-Professor Sedgwick fully concurred in what had fallen from Dr. Buckland.

The following letter from Lord Tankerville, describing a peculiar kind of wild cattle, preserved in his lordship’s park at Chillingham, was introduced in a report on the subject by Mr. Hindmarsh, of Alnwick. Sir,

“ Grosvenor Square, 8th June, 1838. Some time since I promised to put down upon paper whatever I knew as to the origin, or thought most deserving of notice in respect to the habits and peculiarities, of the wild cattle at Chilling ham. I now proceed to redeem my promise, begging pardon for the delay. In the first place, I must premise that our information as to their origin is very scanty ; all that we know and believe in respect to it rests in great measure on conjecture, supported, however, by certain facts and reasonings, which lead us to believe in their ancient origin, not so much from any direct evidence, as from the improbability of any hypothesis ascribing to them a more recent date. I remember an old gardener of the name of Moscrop, who died about thirty years ago, at the age of perhaps eighty, who used to tell of what his father had told him as happening to him, when a boy, relative to these wild cattle ; which were then spoken of as wild cattle, and with the same sort of curiosity as exists with regard to them at the present day. In my father and grandfather's time we know that the same obscurity as to their origin prevailed ; and if we suppose (as was no doubt the case) that there were old persons in their time capable of carrying back their recollections to the conversation still antecedent to them, this enables us at once to look back to a very considerable period, during which no greater knowledge existed as to their origin than at the present period. It is fair, however, to say, that I know of no

Oct, 1838.VOL. XXIII.--No. cx.

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document in which they are mentioned at any past period. Any reasoning, however, that might be built on their not being so noticed, would equally apply to the want of evidence of that which would be more easily remembered or recollected- the fact of their recent introduction. The probability is, that they were the ancient breed of the island, inclosed long since within the boundary of the park. Sir Walter Scott rather particularly supposes that they are the descendants of those which inhabited the Great Caledonian Forest, extending from the Tweed to Glasgow, at the two extremities of which, namely, Chillingham and Hamilton, they are found. His lines in the ballad • Cadyow Castle' describe them pretty accurately at the present day

Mightiest of all the beasts of cbace
That roam o'er woody Caledon,
Crushing the forest in bis race,
The mountain bull comes thundering on:
Fierce on the hunter's quivered band
He rolls his eye of swarthy glow,
Spurns with black boof and horns the sand,

And tosses high his mane of snow.' “I must observe, however, that those of Hamilton, if ever they were of the same breed, have much degenerated.

The park of Chillingham is a very ancient one. By a copy of the endowment of the vicarage, extracted from the records at Durham, and referring to a period certainly as early as the reign of King John, about which time, viz. 1220, the church of Chillingham was built, the vicar of Chillingham was, by an agreement with Ro. bert de Muschamp, to be allowed as much timber as he wanted for repairs, of the best oak out of the Great Wood of Chillingham, the remains of which were extant in the time of my grandfather. The more ancient part of the castle also appears to have been built in the next reign, that of Henry III., since which it has been beld, without interruption, by the family of Grey. At what period, or by what process, the park became inclused, it is impossible to say ; but it was closely bounded by the domains of the Percies on the one side, and by the Hibburnes on the other, the latter of whom had been seated there since the time of King Jobn; and as the chief branch of the Greys always made Chillingham their principal residence, until it passed into the hands of Lord Ossulston, by his marriage with the daughter and heiress of Ford Lord Grey, it is reasonable to suppose that, in order to secure their cattle, wild and tame, they had recourse to an inclosure probably at an early period. It is said there are some other places in which a similar breed is found : Lyme Park, in Cheshire ; Hamilton, as I before mentioned; and Chartley Park (Lord Ferrers). The first I have not seen, but they are described as of a different colour, and different in every respect. Those at Hamilton, or rather Chatelherault, I have seen, and they in no degree resemble those at Chillingham. They have no beauty, no marks of high breeding, no wild habits, being kept, when I saw them, in a sort of paddock; and I could hear no bistory or tradition about them, which entitled them to be called wild cattle. Those at Chartley Park, on the contrary, closely resemble ours in every particular; in their colour, except some small difference in the colour of their ears--their sizegeneral appearance : and, as well as I could collect, in their habits. This was a very ancient park, belonging formerly to Devereux, Earl of Essex, who

built the bridge on the Trent, to communicate with his chace at Channock, and Beaudesert, then belonging to him; and the belief is, tbat these cattle had been there from time im. memorial. With respect to their habits, it is probable that you will learn more from Cole, who has now been park-keeper at Chillingham for many years, than from any information I can give. I can mention, however, some particulars. They have, in the first place, pre-eminently, all the characteristics of wild animals, with some pecu. liarities that are sometimes very curious and amusing. They hide their young, feed in the night, basking or sleeping during the day; they are fierce when pressed, but, generally speaking, very timorous, moving off on the appearance of any one, even at a great distance. Yet this varies very much in different seasons of the year, according to the manner in which they are approached. In summer, I bave been for several weeks at a time without getting a sight of them, they, on the slightest appearance of any one, retiring into a wood, which serves them as a sanctuary. On the other band, in winter, when coming down for food into the inner park, and being in contact with the people, they will let you almost come among them, particularly if on

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horseback. But then they have also a thousand peculiarities. They will be feeding sometimes quietly, when if any one appear saddenly near them-particularly coming down the wind, they will be struck with a sudden panic, and gallop off, running one after another, and never stopping till they get into their sanctuary. It is observable of them as of red deer, that they have a peculiar faculty of taking advantage of the irregularities of the ground, so that, on being disturbed, they may traverse the whole park, and yet you hardly get a sight of them. Their usual mode of retreat is to get up slowly, set off in a walk, then a trot, and seldom begin to gallop till they have put the ground between you and them in the manner that I have described. In form, they are beautifully shaped, short legs, straight back, horns of a very fine texture, thin skin, so that some of the bulls appear of a cream colour ; and they bave a peculiar cry, more like that of a wild beast than that of ordinary cattle. With all the marks of high breeding, they have also some of its defects. They are bad breeders, and are much subject to the rush, a complaint common to animals bred in and in, which is unquestionably the case with these as long as we have any account of them. When they come down into the lower part of the park, which they do at stated hours, they move like a regiment of cavalry, in single files, the bulls leading the van, as in retreat it is the bulls that bring up the

Lord Ossulston was witness to a curious way in which they took possession, as it were, of some new pasture recently laid open to them. It was in the evening about sunset. They began by lining the front of a small wood, wbich seemed quite alive with them, when all of a sudden they made a dash forward altogether in a line, and charging close by him across the plain, they then spread out, and after a little time began feeding. Of their tenacity of life the following is an instance. An old bull being to be killed, one of the keepers had proceeded to separate him from the rest of the berd, which were feeding in the outer park. This the bull resenting, and having been frustrated in several attempts to join them by the keeper's interposing, (the latter doing it incautiously,) the bull made a rush at him and got bim down; he ther tossed him three several times, and afterwards knelt down upon him, and broke several of bis ribs. There being no other person present but a boy, the only assistance that could be given him was, by letting loose a deer-bound belonging to Lord Ossulston, who immediately attacked the bull, and by biting his heels drew him off the man, and eventually saved his life. The bull, however, never left the keeper, but kept continually watching and returning to him, giving bim a toss from time to time. In this state of things, and wbile the dog with singular sagacity and$courage was holding the bull at bay, a messenger came up to the castle, when all the gentlemen came out with their rifles, and commenced a fire upon the bull, principally by a steady good marksman from behind a fence at the distance of twenty-five yards; but it was not till six or seven balls had actually entered the head of the animal, (one of them passing in at the eye,) that he at last fell. During the whole time he never flinched nor changed his ground, merely shaking his head as he received the several shots. Many more stories might be told of hair-breadth escapes, accidents of sundry kinds, and an endless variety of peculiar habits observable in these animals, as more or less in all animals existing in a wild state: but I think I have recapitulated nearly all that my memory suggests to me as most deserving of notice ; and will only add, that if you continue in the intention of preparing a paper to be read before the approaching Scientific Association at Newcastle, on this subject, you are welcome to append this letter to it, as containing all the information I am able to give,

I have the pleasure, &c.,

TANKERVILLE.” “To L. Hindmarsh, Esq.”

In addition to this letter, Mr. Hindmarsh communicated some information, collected from Mr. Cole, the keeper, and from his own observation. There are about eigbty in the herd, comprising twenty-five bulls, forty cows, and fifteen steers, of various ages. The eyes, eyelashes, and tips of the horns alone are black, the muzzle is brown, and the inside of the ears red or brown, and all the rest of the animal white. Even the bulls have no manes, but a little coarse hair on their neck. They 'fight for supremacy, until a few of the most powerful subdue the others, and the mastery is no longer disputed. When two bulls are separated by accident, they fight when they meet, although friendly before, and do so till they become friends again. The cows commence breeding at three years old; the calves suckle nine months ; they conceal their calves for a week or ten days after they are born, suckling them two or three times a day. The late Mr. Bailey, of Chillingham, found a calf, two or three days old, very poor and weak. On stroking it, it retired a few paces, and then bolted at him with all its force; he stepped out of its way, and it fell down, when the whole flock came to its rescue, and forced him to retreat, being a strong fact in support of the opinion of their natural wildness. They do not often die from disease, but they are seldom allowed to live more than eight or nine years, at which period “they begin to go back.” When slaughtered, they weigh from thirty-eight to forty-two stones. One was caught and kept, and became as tame as the domestic ox, and thrived as well as any short-horned steer could do, and in its prime was computed to weigh sixty-five stones. They are shy in summer, but tame in winter, and will eat hay from a fold, although they will not taste turnips. When one of the herd becomes weak or feeble, the rest set upon it, and gore it to death. At the end of the last century, similar cattle existed at Burton Constable, Yorkshire, and at Dunleary in Dumfries-shire, but these are now extinct. From the absence of all recent notice of these animals, there appears to be little doubt but they are genuine descendants of the wild cattle of the ancient Caledonian forests. The author then quoted a passage from Boetius, wbich, allowing for a little colouring, described these animals very well, except in the non-existence of a mane. The cattle at Dun. leary bad black ears, but in all other points resemble those of Chillingham; and this may be accounted for by a statement of Bewick, that about forty years ago some of the animals bad black ears at Chillingbam, and were shot by the keeper. On the whole, the author was inclined to think these animals the survivors of the Caledonian cattle which undoubtedly extended through the northern provinces of England; and that, under the protection of the owners of Chillingham, they had escaped the general destruction dependent on the advancement of civilisation, &c. in the country.

In the Geographical Section, Sir George Back, having taken the chair, said, that most of the papers on geographical subjects which had been read, had chiefly referred to voyages in the northern regions; and though all bad not been there accomplished that might be wished, yet enough had been done to attract the admiration and stimulate the attention of other nations to similar enterprises. He regretted, how: ever, to say, that the same remark would not apply towards the South Pole ; an immense space there remains unexplored, which he now briefly mentioned in order to introduce the following account:

On the Recent Expeditions to the. Antarctic Seas,” by Captain Washington, R.N.

This paper was illustrated by a South Circumpolar Chart on a large scale, showing the tracks of all former navigators to these seas, from Dirk Gherritz in 1599, to M. D'Urville, in 1838, including those of Tasman, in 1642 ; Cook, in 1773; Bellin. shausen, in 1820; Weddell, in 1822 ; Biscoe, in 1831 : and exbibiting a vast basin, nearly equal in extent to the Atlantic Ocean, unexplored by any ship, British or Foreign. The writer pointed out that the ice in these regions was far from stationary; that Bellingshausen had sailed through a large space within the parallel of sixty degrees, where Biscoe found ice that he could not penetrate. That where D'Urville had lately found barriers of field-ice, Weddell, in 1823, bad advanced without difficulty to the latitude of seventy-four and a quarter degrees, or within sixteen degrees of the pole ; and that it was evident from the accounts of all former navigators, that there was no physical obstacle to reaching a high south latitude, or, at any rate, of ascertaining those spots which theory pointed out as the positions where, with any degree of probability, the southern magnetic poles will be found. The

paper also mentioned the expedition to the South Seas which has just left this country, fitted out by several merchants, but chiefly under the direction of that spirited individual, Mr. Enderby, wbose orders were to proceed in search of southern land, and to endeavour to attain as high a south latitude as practicable; and concluded with an earnest appeal to the British Association, that the glorious work of discovery, begun by our distinguished countryman Cook, might not be left incomplete ; that all Europe looked to this country to solve the problem of Terrestrial Magnetism in the southern hemisphere ; and that all civilised nations would unanimously point to that individual wbo has already planted the “red cross of England” on one of the northern magnetic poles, as the officer best fitted to be the leader of an expedition sent out for such a purpose. “ Under a deep and abiding conviction," said the author, " that our country's future glory is identified with the encouragement of British enterprise, and that she would lose her high national character by ceding to another this opportunity of completing the work first traced out by Cook, I could

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