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hands) might be retained and cultivated, thus a profoundly different type of man would be produced. Similar changes in the action of environment are constantly in progress in nature since there is no doubt that the changes of environment and the new habits which it so brings about far outstrip all changes in constitution. This fact which has not been sufficiently emphasized before, offers an explanation of the evidence advanced by Cope and other writers that change in the forms of the skeletons of the vertebrates first appears in ontogeny and subsequently in phylogeny. During the enormously long period of time in which habits induced ontogenic variations it is possible for natural selection to work very slowly and gradually upon predispositions to useful correlated variations, and thus what are primarily ontogenic variations become slowly apparent as phylogenic variations or congential characters of the race.-C. L. BRISTOL, Secretary.
The Academy of Science of St. Louis.-March 16th.-Mr. Trelease presented some of the results of a recent study of the poplars of North America, made by him for the Systematic Botany of North America, and exhibited specimens of the several species and recognized varieties. Specimens were also exhibited of an apparently undescribed poplar from the mountains of northern Mexico, which he proposed to characterize shortly, and, for comparison, specimens of the two other species of poplar known to occur in Mexico, and of the European allies of the supposed new species, were laid before the Academy. The paper was discussed by Drs. Green, Glatfelter, and Kinner, Mr. Winslow, and Professor Kinealy.
The Academy, in co-operation with the joint committee of the scientific societies of Washington, adopted resolutions favoring the appointment of a permanent chief for the scientific work of the United States Department of Agriculture.
April 6th.-Prof. C. R. Sanger spoke on the commercial synthesis of acetylene, illustrating the flame procurable from this gas when burned with a proper proportion of air.
Prof. Sanger also presented the results of a preliminary biological and chemical examination into the ice supply of St. Louis, and exhibited a device for melting the ice in such examinations without danger of contamination from atmospheric ammonia, etc.
The Secretary presented for publication, by title, a paper by Mr. Charles Robertson, entitled "Flowers and Insects."
Mr. William H. Roever presented a paper on the geometry of the lines of force from an electrified body, in which it was shown that:
(a.) the curve representing a line of force proceeding from a system consisting of two parallel electrified lines, is the locus of the intersection of two straight lines, rotating in the same plane about these two parallel lines as axes with uniform but different angular velocities. (b.) the curve representing a line of force proceeding from a system consisting of two electrified points, is the locus of the intersection of two straight lines, rotating, in the same plane about parallel axes passing through those points, in such a manner that the versines of their angles of inclination to the plane of the axes change at uniform but different rates.
April 20th.-Dr. C. M. Woodward presented the results of a study of certain statistics of school attendance, from which it appeared that the average age of withdrawal from the public schools in three cities compared was as follows: Boston, 15.8; Chicago, 14.6; St. Louis, 13.7.
Professor J. H. Kinealy exhibited and gave a mathematical discussion of the Stang planimeter, an interesting and simple instrument of Danish invention, but improved in the United States.
WILLIAM TRELEASE, Recording Secretary.
U. S. National Academy of Sciences.-April 21, 1896.—The following papers were read: The Geological Efficacy of Alkali Carbonate Solutions, E. W. Hilgard; On the Color Relations of Atoms, Ions and Molecules, M. Carey Lea; On the Characters of the Otocœlidæ, E. D. Cope; Exhibition of a Linkage whose motion shows the Laws of Refraction of Light, A. M. Mayer; Location in Paris of the Dwelling of Malus, in which he made the discovery of the Polarization of Light by Reflection, A. M. Mayer; (1) On Experiments showing that the X-Rays cannot be Polarized by passing through Herapathite; (2) The Density of Herapathite; (3) Formula of Transmission of the X-Rays through Glass, Tourmaline and Herapathite, A. M. Mayer; On the X-Rays from a Statical Current produced by a Rapidly Revolving Leather Belt, W. A. Rogers and Frederick Brown; Biographical Memoir of James Edward Oliver, G. W. Hill; Biographical Memoir of Charles Henry Davis, C. H. Davis; Biographical Memoir of George Engelmann, C. A. White; Legislation Relating to Standards, T. C. Mendenhall; On the Determination of the Coefficient of Expansion of Jessop's Steel, between the limits of O° and 64° C., by the Interferential Method, E. W. Morley and W. A. Rogers; On the Separate Measurement, by the Interferential Method, of the Heating Effect of Pure Radiations and of an Envelope of Heated Air, W. A. Rogers; On the Logic of Quantity, C. S. Peirce; Judgement in Sensation and Perception, J. W. Powell; The Variability in Fermenting Power of the Colon
Bacillus under Different Conditions, A. W. Peckham (Presented by J. S. Billings); Experiments on the Reflection of the Röntgen Rays, O. N. Rood; Notes on Röntgen Rays, H. A. Rowland; Some Studies in Chemical Equilibrium, Ira Remsen; The Decomposition of Diazocompounds by Alcohol, Ira Remsen; On Double Halides containing Organic Bases, Ira Remsen; Results of Researches of Forty Binary Stars, T. J. J. See; On a Remarkable New Family of Deep-sea Cephalopoda and its bearing on Molluscan Morphology, A. E. Verrill; The Question of the Molluscan Archetype, an Archi-mollusk, A. E. Verrill; On some Points in the Morphology and Phylogeny of the Gastropoda, A. E. Verrill; Source of X-Rays, A. A. Michelson and S. W. Stratton; The Relative Permeability of Magnesium and Aluminum to the Röntgen Rays, A. W. Wright; The State of Carbondioxide at the Critical Temperature, C. Barus; The Motion of a Submerged Thread of Mercury, C. Barus; On a Method of Obtaining Variable Capillary Apertures of Specified Diameter, C. Barus; On a New Type of Telescope Free from Secondary Color, C. S. Hastings; The Olindiadæ and other Medusa, W. K. Brooks; Budding in Perophora, W. K. Brooks and George Lefevre; Anatomy of Yoldia, W. K. Brooks and Gilman Drew; On the Pithecanthropus erectus from the Tertiary of Java, O. C. Marsh.
C. D. Walcott and R. S. Woodward were elected members.
Prof. Charles L. Edwards of the University of Cincinnati is to open a biological station this summer at Biscayne Bay, Florida. The place is well situated for the study of the tropical and sub-tropical flora and fauna, while its situation upon the continent makes it more readily accessible than the West India Islands. There will be opportunity for investigation while less mature students will have lectures and laboratory instructions. The session begins June 22d, and continues six weeks. A laboratory fee of $25,00 covers tuition, use of apparatus, reagents, etc., and Prof. Edwards estimates the total necessary expenses of each student, including board, railroad fares, etc., at from $100 to $125. It is also proposed to open a department of laboratory supply and to furnish all available material properly prepared at reasonable rates. For further information address Prof. Edwards at the University of Cincinnati.
Among the recent appointments to honorary membership in Learned Societies we notice, Sir W. H. Flower, by the Swedish Academy of Science; Prof. E. Ray Lankester, by the Russian Academy of Science; A. N. Beketow, Prof. Jas. Hall, Charles D. Walcott and Dr. G. Retzius by the St. Petersburg Academy of Science.
Dr. G. Lawson, botanist, of Halifax, N. S., died December 10th, 1895. It was owing to a confusion in names that the report of the death of the Canadian geologist, G. Dawson, arose.
The French Association for the Advancement of Science held its meeting this year at Tunis, from April 1 to 11. The Botanical Society of France, met at the same time and place.
Dr. George Baur, of the University of Chicago, will spend the summer in Munich, his former home, where he will study the rich paleontological collections of the University.
An expedition started, the middle of March to explore the interior of New Guinea. Dr. Lauterbach the leader takes charge of the botany, Dr. Kersting of the zoology.
The report of the death of the botanist K. Wilhelm, of Vienna is an error, caused by a confusion of names, his brother G. Wilhelm having died Nov. 30th, 1895.
Dr. H. M. Ward, of Cooper's Hill, England, accepts the Professorship of Botany in the University of Cambridge as successor to the late Professor Babbington.
Prof. K. G. Huefner, of Tübingen, has been called to the University of Strasburg where he succeeded the late Prof. Hoppe Seyler in the chair of Physiological Chemistry.
Prof. F. von Sandberger, who recently celebrated his fifty year Doctor-jubilee, has retired from the Professorship of Mineralogy in the University of Würzburg.
Prof. W. A. Locy, for several years Professor of Biology in Lake Forest University goes to Northwestern University, Evanston, Ill., as Professor of Zoology.
H. A. Miers, assistant keeper in the British Museum, goes to the University of Oxford as Professor of Mineralogy, succeeding the late Professor Maskelyne.
Dr. H. Schauinsland, of Bremen, has gone to the Island of Laysan for a ten month's exploring expedition, intending to study both the flora and fauna.
Dr. Looss, for several years docent in the University of Leipzig, has been advanced to the position of Extraordinary Professor.
Dr. E. Sickenberger, Professor of Botany and Chemistry in the medical school of Cairo, Egypt, died December 10th, 1895.
Dr. L. Edinger, of Frankfort, A. M. well known for his researches on the brain, has been honored with the title of Professor.
Dr. F. Saccardo, has been appointed Professor of Plant Pathology in the school of Oenology and Viticulture at Avellino.
Dr. P. Tauber, of Berlin, has sailed for South America intending to study the plants of Brazil, Venezuela and Guinea.
Dr. G. Wagener, Professor of Anatomy in the University of Marburg, died February 10th, 1896, at the age of 70.
Dr. F. Hochstetter, formerly of Vienna, goes to the University of Innsbruck, as ordinary Professor of Anatomy.
Dr. Katzer, has been elected Director of the Mineralogical-Geological section of the Museum of Para, Brazil.
Dr. L. Neumann has been appointed Ordinary Professor of Geography at the University of Freiberg.
Dr. E. Topsent, of Rheims, has been called to the chair of zoology in the Medical School at Rennes, France.
Dr. Seidentopf, of Bremen, has been appointed Assistant in Minerology in the University of Göttingen.
Dr. G. Horvath of Budapesth has been appointed Director of the Royal Hungarian Museum, zoological section.
Lieut H. E. Barnes, well known through his studies of Asiatic ornithology, died recently at the age of 48.
Dr. A. Schadmberg, an investigator of the flora and ethnology of the Philippines, died recently in Manila.
Count J. von Bergenstamn, the well known student of the Diptera, died January 31, 1896 in Vienna.
Dr. A. Zimmermann, becomes Private docent in Vegetable Physiology in the University of Berlin.
Dr. L. Buscalone, of Turin, goes to the University of Göttingen as Assistant in Plant Physiology.
G. C. Druce has been elected Custodian of the Fielding herbarium of the University of Oxford.