Page images

157. A man bought a piece of land for $3,000, agreeing to pay seven per cent. interest, and to pay principal and interest in five equal annual installments. How much was the annual payment?-C. C. MCINTYRE, El Paso.

158. What causes the inclination of the axis of the earth from the plane of its orbit, and what power acting upon the earth causes its daily motion on its axis :-W. H., Eagle Point.


CONTRIBUTED BY PEN. Statistics of Idiocy.—Every five years the French government has a census taken of the idiots and lunatics of France, and it has been found that the four years from 1865 to 1869 show an increase of 30.389 idiots, which is out of all proportion, as compared with the increase of population. Physicians say that this sad phenomenon is owing to the looseness of morals, the disregard of the marriage tie and consequently decrease of family life, absynthe, and late hours among Frenchwomen, especially since the beginning of the second empire.

A Dangerous Fashion.-While the number of deaths from tight lacing have decreased about 38 per cent., the mortality among women from diseases of the brain has increased 70 per cent. Let no man imagine that woman is being killed by brain-work, or the effects of the woman's right's movement! One reason is her increasing appetite for alcholic drinks, and another is the present mode of loading her head with masses of false hair. This produces an unnatural temperature of the head, and prevents the proper ventilation of the skin, while perspiration is either suppressed or stimulated beyond the requirements of health.

Statistics of the Human Race.Of the 1280 millions of human beings now inhabiting the world, 91,554 die every day, each pulsation of the heart signalling the death of a human being. The mean duration of life is only 33 years. About one quarter of the world's population die before the age of seven, one-half before the age of seventeen. Only one out of 10,000 reaches the ripe old age of 100: one out of 500, that of 90; one out of 100, that of 60 years. Out of 1000 indi. viduals that reach the age of 70, 43 are priests and orators ; 33 are laborers; 32 are soldiers; 30 are farmers; 29 are lawyers and engineers; 27 are professors of colleges, and only 24 are doctors. The human race speaks 3,642 languages (and idioms ?), and has 1000 religious systems!

Anatomical Curiosities.—The Anatomical Museum at Marburg, in Germany, contains the skeleton of a man which measures 74 feet, and one of eight feet is to be seen in a London museum. Recently, Prof. HYRTL, in Vienna, exhibited to the students a thigh-bone 33 inches in length, which according to the recognized laws of proportion, would make the size of its former owner nine feet. This anatomical curiosity was found in one of the catacombs of Vienna.

The Illuminators of the Deep.-It is now well known that the phosphorescence of the ocean is caused by the innumerable infusoria of the species noctiluca miliaris, which have the appearance of a minute globules. If put into a bottle and shaken, the phoshorescence of these tiny illuminators increases. The addi. tion of a little alcohol will cause them to emit a very brilliant light, and the application of electricity has a similar effect; hence it is supposed that this pecul. iarity is produced by excitements of any kind.

3—[Vol. III.—No. 3.].

De Gustibus, Etc.-Frogs are being exported from Belgium to France at the rate of 260,000 per month, during the the proper seasons. Most of them are sent to Paris, Rheims and Nancy. The heads are cut off and sold to the cuisinières of hospitals, who make soup out of them, while the body is purchase at the res. taruants where they furnish the chief ingredients for mock-turtle soup.

CONTRIBUTED BY D. M. The Backsheesh.—You will only need to get among the Arabs, in order to ascertain the meaning of this omnipresent word, which ever rings in the ear of the traveler, from his first landing in Egypt till his final departure of Syria. It means a gift or gratuity, something more than one's just deserts. When one has performed a service for you, if he has done it faithfully and well, he not only expects the compensation agreed upon, but also a backsheesh, or a small gratuity, by way of present. Servants and laborers all look for it; loafers and hangers-on are constantly watching for an opportunity to lift a finger for you, that they may claim it; beggars swarm around you continually, imploring for it; children run after you and clamor for it. All travelers of all tribes hear it and learn it, and it will become incorporated into every living language. These facts concerning the backsheesh have been given to the public by an eminent divine, and can be regarded as correct.

Painting on-Glass.-A Brussels paper mentions the discovery of a manuscript, dated 1527, which explained the ancient method of extracting colors from metals, minerals, herbs and flowers, for the purpose of painting on glass. It shows the manner in which the colors are to be applied; and describes the way in which the glass, destined to receive the colors, is to be prepared. The discovery of this process is of some interest; for after all the modern discoveries in chem. istry, there are colors to be found in ancient stained glass which we are now un. able to imitate.

Living Writers.—The number of living writers was calculated by Malte Brun, about twenty years ago, to be 12,000. Such a body, he observes, were they not divided among themselves, might govern the world; but that the republic of authors was paralyzed, by three contending principles—attachment to particular sects in Germany, party spirit in England, and self interest in France. Is it not reasonable to suppose, that the number of living writers far exceeds the above to-day?

Another Use for Grapes.-Prohibitionists will be gratified to know that some of the largest vineyard proprietors in California have discovered another use for grapes besides that of making them into wine. They believe that raisins, equal to those of Malaga, can be made from them, and they have already entered upon the experiment quite extensively. The Muscat and Tokay grapes are those most employed, and there is every reason to believe that America, in the course of a few years, will not be obliged to go abroad for her raisins.

Dress in the Fourteenth Century.- What would present a more fantastic appearance than an English fop, in, the fourteenth century. He wore long pointed shoes, fastened to his knees by gold or silver chains; hose of one color on one leg, and of another color on the other; short breeches which did not reach to the middle of his thighs, a coat, one half black and the other half white or blue; a long beard; a silk hood buttoned under his chin, embroidered with grotesque figures of animals, dancing men, weapons of war, etc., and sometimes ornamented with gold, silver and precious stones. This mode of dress was common in the reign of Edward III. The dress of the gay and fashionable ladies, who frequented the public diversions of these times, was not less singular and unbecoming. They wore pretty colored tunics, each half being a different color. Their tippets were very short; their caps remarkably little and wrapt about their heads with cords. Their girdle and pouches were ornamented with gold and silver, and they carried short swords by their sides. The head-dress of the ladies underwent many changes during this period. They were often enor. mously high, rising almost three feet above their head, in the shape of sugarloaves, with streamers of silk flowing from the top of them to the ground.

Cure for Rheumatism.—Boil a kettle of potatoes, and bathe the parts affected with the water in which the potatoes were boiled, as hot as can be applied, im. mediately before retiring. The pains will be removed or at least greatly allevi. ated by the next morning. The most obstinate rheumatic pains are known to have been cured by one application of this novel and simple remedy. I do not intend to obtrude opinions, which the medical profession have the best right to give, nor ever to turn quacks, but the above is so harmless that it is deserving of a trial by all thus affected.

Subjugated Animals.-Animals that have been tamed by man, with a few exceptions, have pendulous ears and tails. Wild animals on the contrary, possess a perfect muscular control over these appendages.

Editorial Miscellang.

TO OUR SUBSCRIBERS. It will be a great convenience to us, if as many of our subscribers as can do so without inconvenience to themselves, will remit subscriptions due for the current volume. We tender thanks to those who have remembered us already. To wait until subscriptions run out, or longer, before we get them, obliges us to use private funds or borrow money, to keep paper-maker and printer on good terms.

STATE TEACHERS' ASSOCIATION. We are informed by Prof. D. MCGREGOR, who, as vice president, becomes the presiding officer, since the lamented death of president J. K. PURDY, that the next annual meeting will be held in Sparta, July 8, 9 and 10. The Opera House and High School Building are tendered for the use of the Association, free of charge. Ladies, who are members of the Association, will be entertained free, by the citizens, and the hotels will offer accommodations to gentlemen at reduced rates. The leading railroads have already signified their willingness to pass members at one and one-fifth fares for the round trip. Superintendent HARRIS, of St. Louis, and Dr. FOWLER, of the N. W. University, at Evanston, are among the promised speakers from abroad. The programme will be given, probably next month, in full.

EXAMINATION FOR STATE CERTIFICATES. The following persons have been appointed examiners for state certificates for the current year: Prof. ALEXANDER KERR, Madison; Miss MARTHA C. HAZARD, Oshkosh; I. N. STEWART, Manitowoc.

The examination will be held at Sparta, the week preceding the meeting of the State Teachers' Association, beginning at 7% o'clock, Tuesday evening, July 1st, 1873.

The following studies are required: 1. For a state certificate for five years, a successful examination in the studies now required for a 1st grade county certificate with the addition of English literature and the rudiments of mental philosophy. The applicant must present satisfactory evidence of success in teach. ing for at least three terms.

(2). For a state certificate for life, of the second grade, a successful examination in orthoepy and orthography, arithmetic, penmanship, English grammar, reading, geography, U. S. history, elementary algebra, plane geometry, (6 books,) natural philosophy, physiology, English literature, constitutions of United States and of state of Wisconsin, theory and practice of teaching and the rudiments of botany and mental philosophy.

(3). For a state certificate for life, first grade, a successful examination in the studies required for a second grade state certificate, and in the rudiments of zoology, chemistry, geology and political economy.

Applicants for either grade of life certificates, must present satisfactory evidence of successful teaching for at least nine terms. All stationery needed, will be furnished by the examiners.

Applicants who fail in any of the studies required for either of the above certificates, limited or unlimited, may present themselves for examination in such studies within one year from July 1, 1873. A re-examination in the studies in which they were successful will not be demanded.

Why should we not have inter-State certificates ! The question was mooted at the Convention of County Superintendents and Teachers in December last, and a resolution presented by Prof. B. M. REYNOLDS, was adopted favoring the plan,

Teachers who have passed an examination in one State and obtained its highest certificate ought to be admitted to teach in another State on the same grade of certificate. Prof. W. A. DE LA MATYR, in behalf of friends of the movement, is calling the attention of the Superintendents of Public Instruction in the different states to the subject, and requesting them to bring it before the State legislatures at the proper time.

SCHOOOL APPARATUS. By reading a law printed on page 136, it will be seen that district boards can purchase school apparatus, annually, to an amount not exceeding $75. This power needs to be exercised with much discretion and caution. It is a waste of money, to put any thing in the school-room that will not be used, but only tumbled about and destroyed. The things most needed are some reading charts, a numerical frame, a map of Wisconsin, of the United States, and of the world; a globe, a clock and a thermometer. If more is obtained, it may be writing charts, additional maps, a microscópe, drawing charts, a color chart, cube root block, geometrical forms, and charts illustrating physiology and natural history. It is best to begin with a small expenditure, and the board should not go much in advance of the district or teacher.

Agents will be in the field, recommending this, that and the other thing. It is best, as a rule, to beware of them. Lists of articles will be made up, by responsible dealers, and upon the approval of the state or county superintendent, pur chases can be made according to the wants and ability of districts. The state superintendent will issue some official suggestions and recommendations, as soon as requisite arrangements can be made. In the meantime, let no board allow itself to be imposed upon by unscrupulous agents.

Whenever any apparatus is obtained, let suitable arrangements be m ide at once for its preservation, when not in use. A case for globe, etc., is needed. If a district library is procured, one case may be made for both books and apparatus. A small closet, with lock and key, is useful. Supt. TERRY makes an excellent suggestion, in this number, in regard to Webster's Dictionary--that it have a stand of its own, from which it shall not be removed. This may be made like a lectern or desk, in a church, for the Bible, and if the dictionary is confined in its place, so much the better. See the article, on a former page.

NEW MAP OF WISCONSIN. We are pleased to learn that Silas CHAPMAN Esq., of Milwaukee, is about to issue a new map of the State. The specimen exhibited to us is a very handsome map indeed, and well executed. It shows all the railroads, stations and post offices, as well as towns and counties, and em. braces the Northern Peninsula of Michigan. Arrangments will be made, we understand, by and by, to furnish it very low, in quantities, for public schools. A map of the State is one of the first things to which school-boards should di. rect their attention, under the new law above mentioned.

GEOLOGICAL SURVEY.—The Legislature has provided for a new Geological Survey of the State. No former survey we believe has been anything like complete. The next we trust will be made so, and fruitful in good results. This depends, however, upon the competency of the men entrusted with the work. A chief Geologist is to be appointed by the Governor, and not to exceed four assistants, one of whom must be a skillful analytical chemist and assayer. The survey is to commence by the first of June next, or as soon thereafter as practic cable, beginning with the counties of Ashland and Douglas, and the entire sur. vey is to be completed within four years from its commencement.

THE THIRD INSTITUTE CONDUCTOR.–The appropriate committee of the Board of Normal Regents have appointed Mr. A. SALISBURY, late Principal at Brodhead, as a Professor in the Whitewater Normal School, and devolved upon him the Institute work of that district. He has entered vigorously upon his duties, and has attended Institutes in La Crosse and Sauk counties. This week, April 7–12, he is in St. Croix county, at Hudson.

OUR NEIGHBOR “ The National Normal” does not believe that school journals should walk on stilts, put on airs or die of dignity. Neither do we. May we

« PreviousContinue »