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that none of these dwellings, with their numerous associated relics, go further back than the shell-mounds of Denmark. In a few cases objects of more recent historic date have been found, as coins and medals of bronze and silver, struck by Greek artists at Massilia, in the pre-Roman state of Gaul.

So large and interesting a series of objects, found under different circumstances, encourages a hope of determining the ages of successive deposits with more precision than elsewhere :—

'The attempts of the Swiss geologists and archaeologists to estimate definitely in years tho antiquity of the bronze and stone periods, although as yet confessedly imperfect, deserve notice, and appear to mo to be full of promise. The most elaborate calculation is that modo by M. Morlot, respecting the delta of the Tiniere, a torrent which flows into tho Lake of Geneva near Villeneuve. This small delta, to which tho stream is annually making additions, is composed of gravel and sand. Its shapo is that of a flattened cone, and its internal structure has of late been laid open to view in a railway cutting 1000 feet long and 32 feet deep. The regularity of its structure throughout implies that it has been formed very gradually, and by tho uniform action of the same causes. Thrco layers of vegctablo soil, each of which must at one time have formed the surface of the cone, have been cut through at different depths. The first of these was traced over a surface of 15,000 square feet, having an average thickness of five inches, and being about four feet below tho present surface of the cono. This upper layer belonged to the Boman period, and contained Boman tiles and a coin. The second layer, followed over a surface of 25,000 square feet, was six inches thick, and lay at a depth of ten feet. In it were found fragments of unvarnished pottery and a pair of tweezers in bronze, indicating tho bronze epoch. The third layer, followed for 35,000 square feet, was six or seven inches thick, and nineteen feet deep. In it were fragments of rudo pottery, pieces of charcoal, broken bones, and a human skeleton having a small, round, and very thick skull. M. Morlot, assuming the Boman period to represent an antiquity of from sixteen to eighteen centuries, assigns to the bronze age a date of between 3000 and 4000 years, and to the oldest layer, that of tho stone period, an age of from 5000 to 7000 years.

'Another calculation has been made by M. Troyon to obtain tho approximate date of the remains of an ancient settlement built on piles and preserved in a peat-bog at Chamblon, near Yverdun, on the Lake of Neufchatel. The site of the ancient Boman town of Eburodunum (Yverdun), once on the borders of the lake, and between which and the shore there now intervenes a zone of newly-gained dry land, 2500 feet in breadth, shows the rate at which the bed of tho lake has been filled up with river sediment in fifteen centuries. Assuming tho lake to havo retreated at the samo rate before tho Boman period, the pile-works of Chamblon, which aro of tho bronzo period, must be at the least 3300 years old.


'For tho third calculation, communicated to mc by M. Morlot, wo arc indebted to M. Victor Gillieron, of Neuvevillo, on the Lake of Bicnnu. It relates to the ago of a pile-dwelling, the mammalian bones of which are considered by M. liiitiiaeyur to indicate the carlicaa portion of tho stono period of Switzerland, and to correspond in age with the settlement of Moossecdorf.

'Tho piles iu question occur at tho Pont do Thiele, between the Lakes of Bienno and Neufchatel. The old courcnt of St. Jean, founded 760 years ago, and built originally on the margin of the Lake of Bicnnc, is now at a considerable distanco from tho shore, and affords a measure of tho rate of tho gain of land in seven centuries and a half. Assuming that a similar rato of tho conversion of water into marshy land prevailed antecedently, we 'should require an addition of sixty 0011110*108 for tho growth of tho morass intervening between tho convent and tho aquatic dwelling of Pont do Thiele, in all 6700 years. M. Morlot, after examining the ground, thinks it highly probablo that tho shape of the bottom on which the morass rests is uniform; but tliis important point has not been tested by boring. The result, if confirmed, would agree exceedingly well with the chronological computation before mentioned of the age of the stone period of Tiniere. As I have not myself visited Switserland since these chronological speculations were first hazarded, I am unable to enter critically into a discussion of the objections which have been raised to tho two first of them, or to decide on tho merits of the explanations offered in reply.'

Though these computations may be liable to objection in regard to the rate of accumulation assumed, which for obvious reasons, in each case, may have been greater in the earlier than in the later ages, and so the earlier periods may require to be shortened, they obviously claim to be regarded as approximate estimates, and not as vague conjectures. It is to be regretted tliat in regard to the first, the date of the coin and the legionary mark of the tile are not given. In delect of such information the assumption of sixteen to eighteen centuries for their age is hazardous.

Lake-dwellings, called 'crannogc,' corresponding in some degree to those of Switzerland, occur in Ireland; and probably they fall within the same limits of time, but this can only be conjectured. They are not founded on piles. In one case, covered by fourteen feet of peat, the house was twelve feet square, and nine feet high, divided into two stories. It was founded on fine sand, below which the peat was at least fifteen feet thick. Lake-dwellings with stone implements ale also recognised iu Scotland, near Nairn.*

In considering the general character of this whole discussion

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of the antiquity of human remains in connexion with the waterhuts, kitchen-heaps, and peat-beds, we find the want of a scale of successive events common to them all, such as that which has guided geologists in all the earlier periods of the history of the earth. If we endeavour to supply this want by separate scales for each case, which may eventually be compared, these are found to be by their very nature vague and indecisive. We find the only common terms are the instruments of stone, bronze, and iron, which were employed through periods of unknown duration and of undefined limits. And to extricate ourselves from this difficulty we have for our guides only a few separate estimates of time, more or less carefully constructed, but not a single satisfactory determination, properly so called. We may say human remains occur in peat, some of which is at least 2000 years old, and other parts may be twice as old. We may say that on the coasts of the Baltic and in the valleys of Switzerland iron tools were preceded by instruments of bronze, and these by weapons of stone; but we experience surprise and disappointment when their relative antiquity is made to depend on another equally unmeasured succession of pine-forests, oaks, and beeches. Nor, if we accept the conclusions reached by so uncommon a process, do we feel any confidence in transferring them from Scandinavia, where iron was of early discovery, to countries farther south and farther west, which were nearer to Cyprus and its copper, and to Gallicia and Cornwall with their tin—these being the constituents of the most ancient brass which we call bronze. In very early times this valued alloy of the south was exchanged by navigators for the iron of the north.* Perhaps in neither of these countries was there really a series of inventions beginning with stone and advancing to iron. No general law of progression has ever been traced in human society so as to determine periods of years by the shape, or substance, or uses of a tool; no law of the change of figure or magnitude in the crania of men, in conformity with advancing knowledge and milder manners, will give us the relative dates of brachycephalous and dolichocephalous, thick-skulled or thinskulled, orthognathous or prognathous men.

If, indeed, we were to admit and confide in any such computations, how could we refuse to credit the deduction from another law, which has at least a more plausible foundation, the law of augmenting population? For by an easy computation it is possible to show that from a single pair the population of the globe, increasing by only -j^tt or even -rJv every year, which has been taken as a fair average, would reach its actual amount of more than 1000 millions in less than 6000 years.

* 'El Ttniariv /itTh xa\Kbv trya i' cABuva altitpov.—OA., A', 184.


Other facts of interest arc collected by Sir C. Lyell from the deposits of rivers, lakes, and the sea, containing human remains, and on them some additional computations are founded respecting the antiquity of man. We should have been glad to see more examples of this kind chosen from British and European rivers; for the conclusions, even if they were as strict as they really are vague, founded on the sediments of the Nile or the Mississippi, would bring but small weight to a cumulative argument which mainly applies to the races of men who dwelt in the north of Europe. We have, however, some good examples from Scotland, well selected and carefully arranged.

One of the cases is that of the sediments which the Nile has left in the long narrow valley of Egypt—sediments which Herodotus estimated to proceed at such a rate that in 10,000 or 20,000 years they would fill up a space equal to the Red Sea. Deep in these loamy deposits, experiments set on foot by Mr. Horner disclosed fragments of brick, pottery, land-shells, bones of ox, hog, dog, dromedary, and ass, but no bones of extinct mammalia. The excavations in the upper part were large, and therein entire jars, vases, pots, a burnt clay figure, and a copper knife were found; in the lower part they were contracted to a smaller bore, and only fragments could be collected. Ninety-five bore-holes were made, and most of them yielded reliquia? even at depths of 60 feet and 72 feet. The accretion in the plain of Egypt has been vaguely estimated at five or six inches in a hundred years, which would give 12,000 years for the distant date when some of the earliest bricks were burnt in the valley of the Nile; but for several reasons no dependence is placed on the estimate, and Sir C. Lyell allows that Egyptologists regard the experiments as inconclusive, and the period consumed in the deposition of a given thickness of Nilotic sediment as still undetermined.

Another instance of ancient monuments is brought from the basin of the Mississippi, and especially from the valley of the Ohio and its tributaries. Here numerous temples, defensive mounds, and burial heaps, often on a gigantic scale, which belonged to an unknown people, of the Mexican or Toltccan race, and contain polished weapons of stone, pottery, sculpture, and articles in silver and copper, occupy the fertile alluvial plains. Since some of these were constructed, the river has shifted its channel fully a mile, and over their ruins forests have succeeded to forests, trees of 800 years and more in age having been cut down within the memory of man.

The vast delta of the Mississippi, extending over 30,000 square miles, and reaching in some parts to a depth of several hundred feet, has yielded in its upper part—the 'modern delta' near New

Orleans— Orleans—amidst vegetable matter, a human skeleton and some charcoal at a depth of 16 feet. The cranium is said to belong to the Red Indian type, and the modest estimate of 50,000 years is quoted, but, we rejoice to say, without special approbation, by Sir C. Lyell. In another case, however, where a human bone was found associated with Mastodon and Megalonyx, in the alluvial sediment of the Mississippi, at Natchez, Sir C. Lyell now leans to the admission of the contemporaneity of the man and the quadrupeds, which in 1846 he refused, after personal examination. The discussion is too intricate to be condensed, and the conclusion, for 100,000 years of antiquity, too arbitrary to be trusted. It is not insisted on by our author. Nor does he require us to admit, with Agassiz, that 10,000 years have elapsed since the death of the man whose jaws, teeth, and foot-bones have been found in the newer part of the coral reef of Florida: on the contrary, he repeats the assurances contained in his great work, already referred to, of the comparatively modern date of the uplifting of the sea-bed with the gathered spoils of Roman days on the shores of the Bay of Baiae—of the lacustrine sediments of Cashmere which covered pottery and recent shells, and even concealed a.splendid Hindoo temple. Other proofs of great upward movement are presented to us in connexion with the volcanic region on the western shores of South America, within the human period, and of nearly equal effects on the coasts of Scotland, even since the Roman occupation of Britain. By such instances 'the geologist is now convinced that at no given aera of the past have the boundaries of land and sea, or the height of the one and the depth of the other, or the geographical range of the species inhabiting them, whether of animals or plants, become fixed and invariable' (p. 47).

These important conclusions are very well justified by a carefully digested account of many observations in the estuaries of the Clyde, Forth, and other parts of the coast of Scotland, which prove the occurrence of whales and shell-beds, canoes, boats, and an iron anchor, in marine sediments upheaved about 25 feet above the present sea level. Some of the canoes seem to have been excavated by blunt tools, with the aid of fire; others exhibit smooth cuts; one contained a polished celt of greenstone, and another a plug of cork, indicating a connexion by voyage with some southern country. Other and greater elevations took place in earlier time, but still, in the opinion of the author, within the human period. Thus in Ayrshire a rude ornament, made of Cannel coal, was found under gravel containing marine shells, 50 feet above the sea. If we adopt for the commencement of the 25 feet elevation an antiquity of seventeen centuries, the ornament

Vol. 114.—No. 228. 2 c in

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