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The Zoological Section of the American Association for the Advancement of Science at its meeting in Springfield, Mass. in August, 1895, adopted a series of resolutions which are printed in the volume of the Proceedings recently issued (p. 159) and which are here reproduced. They were adopted with but one pertinent objection from a distinguished member of the section. This objection was that the method of determining priority of publication recommended in the resolutions was applicable to questions of nomenclature only, which was regarded as an object of a value secondary to the determination of date of discovery of matters of fact. While the fixing of date of the latter was admitted to be of great importance, it was contended by the friends of the resolutions, that the manner proposed by them was applicable to all possible cases, and that in fact the resolutions prescribed the best method of determination of priority. The mode proposed was stated to be in accord with that customary among authors and publishers generally, and that special groups of authors could not in practice sustain rules different from them. The resolutions are as follows.
Whereas: The date of publication is a question of fact to be determined by examination, and not by an arbitrary ruling: and
Whereas: In the world at large the date of publication of books is the date at which they are printed; and
Whereas: The adoption of any other date of publication would have no practical effect for this reason, and for the following additional reasons; viz. :
First; the majority of publications are not distributed, but are sold; Second; the distribution when it occurs may be rendered ineffective by accidents such as loss of mails, fires, etc.;
Third; distribution by individuals may be delayed or prevented by absence from home, sickness or death;
Fourth; distribution by governments of their publications is often delayed for routine reasons;
Fifth; the actual date of mailing will be often impossible to ascertain with precision, owing to lack of record and irregularity in the period of transmission; and
Whereas The determination of the date of printing will generally depend on the records of the printing office and the testimony of several persons, while the time of mailing will be known generally to but one person;
RESOLVED: First.-The section of Zoology of the American Association for the Advancement of Science recommends that the date of the completion of printing of a single issue be regarded as the date of publication;
Second. That the Section recommends that such date be printed on the last signature of all publications, whether books periodicals or separates."
RESOLVED: (1) That the Section of Zoology of the A. A. As. S. is impressed with the desirability of introducing the custom of placing all publications on record at some central agency together with the date of publication. (2) That a committee be appointed to obtain the approval of these resolutions by publishing societies at home and abroad. (3) That a copy of these resolutions be transmitted to the British Assoc. Adv. Science; the Zoological Society of London; Australasian Assoc. Adv. Science; Association Francaise; Société Zoologique de France; Versamml. der Deutscher Naturforscher, n. Aertzte; Zoologisches Gesselschaft; and the International Congress of Zoology held at Leyden.
To act as the committee above referred to, the President of the Section appointed: S. A. Forbes, Champaign, Ill.; E. A. Birge, Madison, Wis.; W. A. Lacy, Lake Forest, Ill.; George Dimmock, Canobie Lake, N. H.
The above resolutions were adopted by very large majority vote. A proposition to regard as the date of publication, the date of receipt at the central agency of record was introduced. This was not approved, as it was evident that no private arrangement made by naturalists could supersede the customs long since current in the world of authorship.
The American Association for the Advancement of Science has a peculiar custom which it seems to us might be improved. This is the use of the term vice-president to designate the presidents or chairmen of the respective sections. This expression gives use to confusion, as these officers are not the vice-presidents of the sections, but the presidIf the expression vice-president of section so and so is used, a president is supposed, who does not exist. To avoid conflict with the title of the president of the Association, the term chairmen might perhaps be used for the so-called vice-presidents, but actual presidents of the sections.
The decimal system of record, called the Dewey system in library catalogues, appears to the management of the Naturalist to be the best method which has yet been devised. It, therefore, follows Natural Science and La Revue Scientifique in adopting it.
The Structure of Solpugids.-That indefatigable student of the Arachnida Mr. Henry M. Bernard has presented us with a valuable account' of the general structure of these little known forms. And yet while we can praise the statement of facts, as a whole, we would point out that the paper contains a number of theoretical points, which have, in our estimation, no sufficient basis.
The Galeodide, of which over 50 species have been described, are confined to the warm portions of both hemispheres, and though abundant in certain regions, they are comparatively rare in collections; pos sibly from the fact that they are, by popular consent, accorded most poisonous qualities. They, alone of all the Archnida, show a distinct "head" while they also have a " thorax" divided into three segments, and these points have led many authors to look upon them as forming a transition between the Archnida and the Hexapods. They also possess stigmata in the thoracic region, a condition only paralleled in the Arachnida in certain of the mites.
In his paper Bernard takes up first the external anatomy and the interesting features here are: the interpretation of the cephalic lobes as the lateral regions of the first segment which have been changed in position with the transfer of the chelicere; and he further tries to find them in the cephalic lobes of embryos of other Arachnids, a view with very little in morphology to support it. The beak is interpreted as fused labium labrum, neither of these, as the name of the first might imply, being appendicular in nature. The ocular tubercle is regarded as the only remnant of the original dorsal surface of the head, the rest having been displaced by the upward and backward movement of the cephalic lobes; and, from this, the median eyes are regarded as the more primitive, the lateral as secondarily acquired. The descriptions of the limbs, as well as of the apodematous skeleton affords little to abstract, except that the author suggests that since specialized poison organs are absent the poison may come from setal-pores on the chelicers; and that, at any rate, the idea of their poisonous nature should not be set aside without further experiment. As little need be said of the account of the hypodermis or of the muscular systems.
The account ef the nervous system is disappointing. tions were cut (cf., p. 345) no use of them appears to have been made 1 Trans. Linn. Socy. London, Zool. Vol. vi, pt. 4, 1896.
in the study of the topography of the system and we are left absolutely in the dark as to the presence of ganglia in front of those of the chelicera; a point of no little importance. The eyes receive hardly more satisfactory treatment, owing to the unsatisfactory condition of the specimens. No vitreous body was found in the median eyes while the retinal cells showed no rods, and no grouping of these into a rhabdem was seen. The lateral eyes vary in size, shape, and arrangement and are described in some cases as having fused on either side of the head, although no evidence is presented of such fusion. The pedipalpal organs, reversible sacs on the tips of these appendages are described in detail and are clearly sensory as are the "racquet organs" on the last pair of thoracic appendages.
The alimentary canal opens by the mouth at the end of the beak, the opening being fringed with a strainer of bristles, while the œsophagus, in front of the œsophageal collar, is modified into a “sucking stomach." The midgut is provided with gland, like diverticula and although they are grouped into those of the cephalothorax and abdomen, all clearly belong to one series, but those of the abdomen are remarkable not only from the number but from the fact that they empty into a collecting duct on either side and these ducts, in turn, empty into the intestines near the base of the abdomen. The Malpighian tubules are well developed and are described as emptying into the midgut, and Bernard accepts the views of Loman that these organs in the Arachnids cannot be homologous with the similarly named structures in the Hexapods. The heart has retained 8 pairs of ostia, while there are indications of another segmental chamber in front. From in front an aorta carries the blood forward and "appears to discharge the blood directly on to the central nervous system. There are no indications of the circumneural vessels like those of the Scorpions and of which Mr. Bernard holds, in some respects, peculiar views.
The respiratory system affords more that is interesting. The observations of previous students that there are three pairs of stigmata (and sometimes a fourth unpaired) is confirmed. Of these the first pair open behind the coxæ of the second pair of legs while the others compare with the anterior pulmonary openings of the Scorpions. Arguing from the conditions of the blood-vessels (and more from his preconceptions of the phylogeny of the respiratory organs Bernard concludes that there were originally two other tracheal openings in the thorax. There then follow some interesting but inconclusive remarks upon the primary number of stigmata in different Arachnids. While dealing with these respiratory structures the author deals with the question of
the origin of trachea from lung books (p. 375) and accepts the view that the former were the more primitive, the latter secondary, and reinforces it with the remark that this view "arrived at by comparative morphology, has recently been confirmed by embryology. Janorowski has discovered that the tracheal invaginations of Spiders first from branched tracheal tubes and that the lung books are a secondary specialization." And this without the slightest reference to the results of Simmons (since amply confirmed by Purcell and Brauer) which are directly the reverse. It is to be said in passing that the thoracic stigmata of the Solpugidæ, like those of the Acarina, are the greatest difficulty presented to those who believe in the Limulus-Arachnid theory, but the author dismisses the results of Wagner in this connection with the remark "that all conclusions based upon transitional phenomena of single specialized types will have ultimately to be tested by a profounder and more extended comparative study of existing forms."
The coxal glands, naturally have much attention. The external opening occurs between legs 3 and 4, the duct is long and convoluted while the gland itself is described as a great mass of tubules. organs he is still inclined to think the derivatives of setiparous sacs, a view which "has hitherto met with no favor." Regarding the fact that they may be cœlomic in character he merely refers to Lauries observations on the scorpion and says that until this be confirmed the bulk of evidence seems to point to the coxal glands as a blind ending tube. And again (p. 381). "I freely admit that these arguments would have but little weight as against direct embryological evidence, if that evidence were really satisfactory." Certainly the results of Grobben, Kishenonyi, Lebinsky, Kingsley and especially those of Brauer are confirmative of those of Laurie, all showing the coxal glands are derived from the cœlomic wall and are the purest of mesoderm (if there be such a layer) and that their external opening is a subsequent formation. For the opposite view, held by Bernard, there seems not the slightest evidence.
After a few remarks upon the genital organs the author presents an attempt to elucidate the phylogeny of the Arachnida, and it is here that we are most at variance with him. It is impossible to go into his argument in detail. It all rests upon the attempt to derive every existing Arthropod structure from structures already present in the annelid ancestor, setiparous sacs apparently playing the most important point. These coxal glands, tracheæ, poison glands, stink glands, spinning glands cement glands, maxillary glands, salivary glands, etc., are all referred