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fall to the ground, and, in like manner, makes the earth itself move round the sun. •
2. The earth is prevented from falling into the sun by a force originally given to it, which tends to drive it off in a straight line; but the two forces acting together compel it to^ move in a circular direction round the sun.
3. This is the Newtonian system, which is now universally received. It was thought so remarkable that such discoveries, respecting bodies so far removed from us as the sun and stars, and apparently so much beyond our comprehension, should be made by a mortal man, that those who lived in Newton's time were almost disposed to believe that there was something miraculous in it.
4. This is expressed in the lines inscribed on Newton'a
"Nature and Nature's laws lay hid in night;
He died in 1727, aged eighty-four years.
5. There are several interesting anecdotes of Newton. The first relates to his great discovery of gravitation. Being in the country, and sitting at his door one day, overlooking his garden, he saw an apple fall to the ground.
G. The thought occurred to him, " Why does the apple fall?" It is no answer to say, "Its weight makes it fall"; for then the question would only take a different form, and be, "Why do heavy bodies fall?" He could find no answer satisfactory to his own mind but this, — " The earth attracts them."
7. But why suppose the earth only to have this attractive power? This led to the conclusion, that all bodies have it in proportion to their bulk; and, if all bodies on this earth have it, then why not also the heavenly bodies, — the sun, moon, and stars? This idea, reflected upon, and submitted to mathematical investigation, resulted in the theory of gravitation.
8. Another anecdote illustrates his self-command. He had been laboring for many years on very abstruse calculations, relating to a particular branch of inquiry; and one day, returning to his study, he found that his favorite dog, Diamond, had overturned a lighted candle, which had set fire to his papers, and completely destroyed them. He only said, " O Diamond, Diamond! little do you know the mischief you have , done me!"
9. Another anecdote illustrates his modesty. ,A short time before his death he remarked, "I know not what I may appear to the world, but to myself I seem to have been only like a boy playing on the sea-shore, and diverting myself in now and then finding a smoother pebble or a prettier shell than ordinary, whilst the great ocean of truth lay all undiscovered before me."
Questions. — 1. When was Newton born? 1. What principle did he discover? 2. How is the earth prevented from falling into the sun? 3. What was thought of these remarkable discoveries? 4. Repeat the couplet. 4. When did Newton die? 5, 6. Relate the anecdote of the apple. 7. To what conclusion did this lead him? 8. Relate the anecdote showing his self-command. How does this show it? 9. Relate the one illustrating his modesty. — What is the character of the composition of this piece? How should it be read?
1. As-tron'o-mer, one -who has a knowl- 3. Ob-serv-a'tions, astronomical views.
edge of the laws of the heavenly bodies. 4. O-rig'in-a-tor, one who commences.
1. Tel'e-scope, an optical instrument for 4. Pat'ron-age, special favor or aid,
viewing distant objects. 6. In-cau'tious, careless, heedless.
1. Di-men'sions, size, measure. 6. Dem-on-stra'tions, exhibitions.
Errors. — Ress for rests; dis-cov'ries for dis-covVr-ies; faw'ty for for'ty; in-dusrtrous for in-dus'tri-ous; in-di-vid'oo-als for in-di-vid'w-als; con-sid'ra-ble for consid'er-a-ble.
HERSCHEL AND FULTON. — Rulfinch.
1. Sir William Herschel's fame as an astronomer rests on bis discoveries in the heavens, — the principal of which is that of the planet sometimes called by his name, but more properly Uranus. This discovery he made by means of a telescope of his own construction, of greater dimensions than had ever before been made.
2. It was forty feet long and six feet in diameter, so that a man might walk through it without stooping. It required a framework of timber, like the scaffolding of a house, to support it, and allow of its being moved and directed to such part of the heavens as the observer might desire.
3. Sir William Herschel was so industrious and successful in his observations, that it has been said of him by a competent judge, that "no other individual ever added so much to the facts on which our knowledge of the solar system is founded." He was born in Hanover, a city, of Northern Germany,* in 1738; and he died in 1822, aged eighty-four years.
4. Kobert Fulton, the originator of steam-navigation, was born in Pennsylvania in 1765. His first experiments on steam-boats were made in France,f under the patronage of Mr. Livingston,} the American Minister.
5. In 1806, Fulton returned to New York, and, with money supplied by Mr. Livingston, commenced the construction of a steam-boat of considerable size, which began to navigate the Hudson River in 1807. He afterwards built others of large dimensions, one of them a frigate, which bore his name.
6. His reputation became established; and his fortune was rapidly increasing, when a severe cold, which he caught by incautious exposure, in giving directions to his' workmen, brought his life to a-premature termination, on the 24th of February, 1815, in the forty-ninth year of his age. His death occasioned extraordinary demonstrations of mourning throughout the United States.
Questions. — 1. What was Herschel? 1 -3. Relate what is said of him. What is said of Germany? 4. Of what was Robert Fulton the originator? 4-6. Relate what is said of him. What, and where, is France? Who was Mr. Livingston?
* Ger'ma-ny, the name given to a portion of Central Europe, not forming a single sovereignty, but composed of a number of independent states, and parts of states, united together by a common league, called the Germanic Confederation.
t France, one of the most populous and influential empires in the world, is situated in the western part of Europe.
t Liv'ing-ston, (Robert R.,) an eminent politician, was born in the city of New Fork, in 1746. .Ho was Minister to France from 1801 to 1805. lie died in 1813.
1. Il-ics'tri-ohs, distinguished, eminent, i. Tbans-pob-ta'tion, the act of carrying
1. Dis-cov'er-ies, things found out . from one place to another.
2. In-cal'cu-la-ble, beyond calculation. , 5. Dif-fus'ing, spreading, extending.
2. Ce-ment'ing, uniting closely. j 6. Pat'ent-ed, secured by patent.
3. Coll'iee-t, a place where coal is dug. i 7. Pre-ven'tion, the act of stopping.
Articulate the italicized combinations in the following words: — seems, lis/, subjects, bond11 adopted, instrument, patented, hundred, comfort.
OTHER IMPORTANT DISCOVERIES.
1. It seems too great an honor for any man living to add his name to that list of modern philosophers, which contains names so illustrious as those which form the subjects of the three .preceding lessons. And it so happens that, in relation to each of the great discoveries or inventions mentioned in this lesson, the honor is in dispute.
2. The first of these is the Eailroad. This is of incalculable importance to a country of wide extent like ours, bringing distant regions, as it were, into neighborhood with one another, and cementing the bonds of union among the States.
3. The first railroad was constructed near Newcastle, upon the River Tyne, in England, in 1676, for the purpose of conveying coal from the mines to the river. It was made of raHs of timber. One hundred years afterward, or in 1776, an iron railroad was constructed at the Sheffield Colliery, — that is, a road made of iron rails supported by wooden sleepers.
4. But this kind of road was first successfully adopted on a public thoroughfare for the transportation of merchandise and passengers, in 1825. It was first introduced into this country for that purpose, in 1830 or 1831.
5. The second discovery or invention is the Electro-Magnetic Telegraph. This does a similar service in diffusing intelligence. Parents can not feel that their children are far distant from them, though thousands of miles intervene, when they can know any day what took place the day previous. .
6. The first electric telegraph,.in the true sense of the term, appears to have been invented in 1774. Various, other in'struments of this kind have, from time to time, been proposed, but none of any practical value until the year 1837. In that year, Professor Morse, of this country, proposed and patented the best and simplest one of all, which he claims to have invented in 1832, and which is now in general use.
7. The third important discovery is "the application of Chloroform* for the prevention of pain." This, though not so brilliant a disc6very as the others, is perhaps the most valuable of all; for we could dispense with the others with less loss of personal happiness and comfort than with this.
8. True, it applies only to the sick and suffering; but as all mankind must some time or other come under that description, it is plain that we all have a personal interestyn it.
Questions. — 1. What are those men called whose names form the subjects or the three preceding lessons? 1. What is said of the great discoveries mentioned in this lesson? 2. What are the advantages of a railroad? 3. When and where was the first railroad constructed? 4. When were railroads first introduced into this country?
5, 6. What is said of the importance and origin of the electro-magnetic telegraph?
7, 8. What is said of chloroform? What is chloroform ? — Point out the substitutes in the first paragraph, and give the elements for which they stand, &c, &c.
Errors. — My s'tries for mys'te-ries; fawmltss for formless ; cha'us for cha'os; blo« for blue; staioms for storms; fra'grurtfsfor fra'grance.
THE MYSTERIES OF NATURE.— Rosalie Bell.
* Chlo'ro-form, a volatile liquid, obtained by distilling alcohol with chloride of 11m*. It is used to produce insensibility.