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[N. S. Vol. XII. No. 296. 

The programs of our meetings always 
•announce some papers which have a scien- 
tific bearing on agriculture, forestry or some 
kindred line of business. As our members 
are specialists, it is fitting that we have 
each year a number of addresses of a gen- 
eral nature, such as summaries of prog- 
ress, methods of experimenting, methods of 
teaching certain subjects, short syllabi of 
courses of study, and new points of general 
interest. These will be understood and 
will interest all, and will . be likely to pro- 
voke a general discussion by the members. 

The work of this Society during the past 
twenty years has apparently had a marked 
influence on the selection of subjects for 
discussion in some of the societies of this 
country. As an instance of the practical 
tendency of these subjects, if I may so ex- 
press it, I cite you the admirable address of 
Vice-President Gage a year ago before Sec- 
tion F, of the A. A. A. S. at the Columbus 
meeting on ' The Importance and Promise 
in the Study of Domestic Animals.' Here 
are two sentences: " It is most earnestly be- 
lieved, however, that in the whole range of 
zoology, no forms offer a greater reward for 
the study of the problems of life, especially 
in the higher groups, than the domestic ani- 
mals. The importance of the study cannot 
be over-estimated from a purely scientific 
standpoint, and certainly if the prosperity, 
happiness and advancement of the human 
race are put in the count the subject is of 
transcendent importance." 

Reference of a like nature might be made 
to numerous programs of scientific societies, 
to courses of study in colleges and univer- 
ties, to contributions to the best scientific 
journals of the day, but no argument on the 
subject is needed at this time, for the rea- 
son that no observing person can be found 
in this audience who does not already rec- 
ognize the truth of the statement that I 
have last made. 

I thank you for the high honor of choos- 

ing me president for a third time, and con- 
gratulate you on the excellent prospects for 
a successful meeting on this, its twentieth 
year, and predict that a long and useful 
career yet remains for the Society for the 
Promotion of Agricultural Science. 

W. J. Beal. 
Agricultural College, Mich. 

Foe the second time, after a lapse of 27 
years, the British Association will meet in 
Bradford in the beginning of September. 
Not a few of those who attended the first 
meeting are still alive, some of them be- 
ing among the most distinguished of our 
living men of science. There is no doubt 
that a certain number of those who at- 
tended the previous meeting will again be 
present in Bradford next month. They will 
notice a very great change in the town ; it 
has grown enormously ; it has been to a 
large extent rebuilt ; and it has been raised 
to the dignity of a city, while its popula- 
tion has probably doubled. Bradford will 
have much to show to those who are in- 
terested in the many practical applications 
of science. There will be abundant hos- 
pitality, receptions, dinners, a smoking 
concert, excursions to places of interest in 
the neighborhood, and other forms of en- 
tertainment for those — and they are many 
— who regard the annual British Associa- 
tion meeting as a gigantic picnic. 

The meeting of 1873 was presided over 
by Professor A. W. Williamson, the distin- 
guished chemist, whose presidential address 
consisted mainly of a review of the progress 
of chemistry up to that date. The advance 
in this, as in other directions, since then 
has been enormous. The president selected 
at the previous meeting had been the late 
distinguished physicist, Dr. Joule, but owing 
to the state of his health he had to forego 
the honor of presiding at the first Bradford 
* A forecast from the London Times. 

August 31, 1900.] 



meeting and his place was taken by Profes- 
sor Williamson. Among some of the well- 
know representatives of science who were 
present at the Bradford in 1873, and who 
are now no more, we may mention the 
names of Cayley, Clifford, H. J. S. Smith, 
W. Spottiswoode, Clerk-Maxwell, Balfour 
Stewart, "W". B. Carpenter, John Phillips, 
Gwyn Jeffreys, Butherford Alcock and Dr. 
Beke. The economic section was presided 
over by W. E. Forster, and it is of some 
interest to note that the present popular 
assistant general secretary, Mr. George 
Griffith, occupied the same position in 1873 
that he does now, although for several 
years in the interval he ceased to be an of- 
ficer of the Association. The first Brad- 
ford meeting had an attendance of close on 
two thousand, and the grants made for 
scientific research reached the considerable 
sum of £1685. 

The second Bradford meeting will be pre- 
sided over by Professor Sir "William Turner, 
who for so long has filled with such distinc- 
tion the anatomical chair of Edinburgh 
University. His address will consist of a 
general review of the progress of Biology, 
with special reference to our knowledge of 
the structure and function of cells. The 
program of work in the different sections 
leads one to expect that the proceedings will 
be of considerable scientific interest. 

The president of Section A (Mathematical 
and Physical Science) will be Dr. Joseph 
Larmor, F.B.S. In opening the business 
of the section Dr. Larmor will review the 
change of ideas which has recently become 
current regarding the scope and method of 
physical explanation. The acceptance on 
the Continent, in consequence of the bril- 
liant work of Hertz, of the views originated 
in England regarding the nature of electric 
actions and their dependence on the ether 
has been largely accompanied by an elimi- 
nation of the dynamical explanations which 
formed a main feature of Clerk-Maxwell's 

theory. This makes it a matter of funda- 
mental importance to determine, if possible, 
how far purely descriptive methods can 
avail without appeal to a dynamical founda- 
tion ; it involves consideration of the mode 
of representation of the physical activities 
of the material atoms; and it raises the 
question whether denial of direct action at 
a distance necessarily implies transmission 
by simple stress such as occurs in a material 
elastic frame. As chairman for the depart- 
ment of Astronomy, Dr. A. A. Common will 
give an address on Friday morning. Mon- 
day will be devoted to Meteorology and 
Pure Mathematics, while a discussion on 
ions will be introduced by Professor Fitz- 
gerald on Tuesday. 

Section B (Chemistry) will be presided 
over by the distinguished chemist Professor 
H. W. Perkin. The subject of his address 
will be ' The Modern System of Teaching 
Practical Inorganic Chemistry, and its De- 
velopment '; and, after discussing the prog- 
ress which has been made in the teaching 
of practical chemistry in schools, he will 
point out that during the last thirty years 
very little similar progress has been made 
in teaching inorganic chemistry in univer- 
sities and colleges. Having shown that the 
system adopted at the present day is prac- 
tically the same as that taught thirty years 
ago, Professor Perkin will next proceed to 
give a historical sketch of the development 
of this system, and will conclude his ad- 
dress with a discussion of the question 
whether the present system is the best and 
most suitable for teaching practical inor- 
ganic chemistry, or whether it might not 
with advantage be considerably modified. 
The greater part of the time of the Section 
will be devoted to discussions on (1) the 
chemistry of camphor, to be opened by Dr. 
Lap worth ; (2) the questions raised by re- 
cent work on metals and alloys, to be 
opened by Mr. W. H. Neville, F.E.S., of 
Cambridge, in the course of which it is 



[N. S. Vol. XII. No. 296. 

to be hoped that the important question 
"What is a metal?" maybe settled; (3) 
the recent developments in connection with 
asymmetric structure in carbon and other 
compounds, to be opened by Mr. W. J. 
Pope, of the Central Technical College ; 
and (4) the recent improvements in the 
textile industries (including artificial silk, 
etc.), to be opened by Dr. Liebmann. 
Among other papers promised are : ' Some 
Eecent Work on the Diffusion of Gases 
and Liquids,' by Mr. Horace T. Brown; 
' Determination of the Spectra of Gases 
at 400° C.,' by Professor Dixon ; and 'On 
the Relationship between the Heating 
and Lighting Power of Coal Gas,' by Mr. 
T. Fairley. A paper of great local in- 
terest will be one on the treatment of wool- 
combers' effluents, by Mr. W. Teach ; while 
the relations of phosphorus, iron, and car- 
bon when present in iron and steel will be 
discussed by Mr. J. E. Stead, of Middles- 
brough. Papers have also been promised by 
Professor Smithells, Dr. Laurence, Dr. J. B. 
Cohen , and Mr . P . W. Eichardson . Professor 
Ewing and Mr. Rosenhaim will show slides 
illustrating the effects of strain and anneal- 
ing on the crystalline structure of metals. 
The Geological Section/ (C) will have as 
its president one of the most unconven- 
tional and brilliant of the younger geolo- 
gists — Professor W. J. Sollas. The subject 
of his address will be 'Evolutional Geol- 
ogy.' The transformation of the science 
during the latter part of the 19th century, 
by which its scattered teachings have been 
organized into a compact body of doctrine 
and the whole science placed on a more 
philosophic basis, will be briefly alluded to. 
An account will be given of the develop- 
ment of the earth, including its early evolu- 
tional stages, which were once considered 
alien to geology. Its distribution in time 
will be particularly considered, and the 
dates of various critical periods in its his- 
tory will be discussed. 

As befits the locale of the meeting, the 
Section will devote especial attention to the 
carboniferous rocks, and particularly to the 
coal measures. One of the important events 
of the meeting will be a joint discussion 
with the Botanical Section (K) on the con- 
ditions which existed during the growth of 
the forest which supplied the material for 
coal. This is set down for Monday, Sep- 
tember 10th, and the discussion will be 
opened on behalf of the geologists by Mr. 
A. Strahan, of her Majesty's Geological 
Survey (who for some time past has been 
engaged in supervising the mapping of the 
coal fields of South Wales), and Mr. J. E. 
Marr, F.R.S., a past-president of the sec- 
tion. It is expected that several other 
prominent geologists who have devoted 
attention to the coal measures will take 
part in this discussion. The same rocks 
will form the subject of a paper by Mr. 
Walcot Gibson, of her Majesty's Geo- 
logical Survey, who will deal with their 
rapid changes in thickness and charac- 
ter in the North Staffordshire coal field ; 
and Mr. W. Cash, of Halifax, will also 
contribute a paper on the Lower Coal 
Measures of the West Riding. The fos- 
sil fishes of the local carboniferous rocks 
will be discussed in two papers by Dr. 
E. D. Wellburn, and the report of the 
committee for investigating life-zones in our 
carboniferous rocks will be presented by the 
secretary, Dr. Wheelton Hind. Another 
topic of general as well as of local interest 
which will receive the attention of the 
section is the underground water system in 
the carboniferous limestone districts of the 
West Riding. The Association last year 
made a grant of £40 to assist in the inves- 
tigation of the underground course taken 
by streams which disappear into crevices 
of the limestone in the neighborhood of 
Ingleborough. By the free use of chem- 
icals the committee appointed to carry out 
this investigation has traced the under- 

August 31, 1900.] 



ground course of some of these waters to 
their issue in springs at lower levels, with 
unexpected results, which throw much 
light on the general question of the per- 
colation of waters through rock-fissures. 
The committee will present its report dur- 
ing the meeting, and excursions are being 
planned to visit the site of the experiments. 
As usual, glacial subjects will receive due 
attention, among the papers already prom- 
ised being one on the glaciation of the Aire 
Valley by Messrs. H. Muff and A. Jowett, 
while others are expected on the glacial 
phenomena of Snowdon and on a similar 
subject in parts of the East Eiding of 
Yorkshire. Three of the reports of com- 
mittees of research will also afford scope 
for the discussion of glacial matters, viz: 
That on the erratic blocks of the British 
Isles, that on the conditions of occurrence 
of Irish elk-remains in the Isle of Man, and 
that on the Pleistocene deposits of Canada. 
The last mentioned, which is the final re- 
port of a committee appointed at the To- 
ronto meeting of the Association, is likely 
to receive particular attention, as it em- 
bodies strong evidence in favor of the 
much-disputed occurrence of an inter-gla- 
cial period. It is expected that Professor 
A. P. Coleman, of Toronto University, who 
has been most active in the last mentioned 
committee, will attend in person to read 
the report. The same gentleman will also 
read a paper on the recent discovery of a 
ferriferous horizon in the Huronian rocks 
in Ontario, north of Lake Superior— a dis- 
covery which may eventually prove of great 
economic consequence. Cave-exploration 
in Ireland and at Uphill, near Weston- 
super-Mare, will be reported on by two 
committees of the Association. A further 
contribution to our knowledge of the geol- 
ogy of Anglesey will be made by Mr. E. 
Greenley, and Mr. Vaughan Cornish will 
bring forward the new results of his study 
of ripple-marks. In short, all the indica- 

tions point to a profitable and enjoyable 
week for the geologists who visit Bradford. 

Dr. R. H. Traquair will be president of 
Section D (Zoology), with which, on this 
occasion, Physiology will be combined. Dr. 
Traquair in his address, will deal with the 
' Bearing of Fossil Ichthyology on the Doc- 
trine of Descent.' Major Ronald Ross will 
contribute a paper on ' Malaria and Mos- 
quitoes '; Messrs Gamble and Keeble on 
' The Color Physiology of certain Marine 
Crustacea '; Professor L. C. Miall on ' The 
Respiration of Aquatic Insects.' In addi- 
tion there will be, as usual, a number of 
communications of a more special character 
in all branches of natural history, together 
with the reports of various committees on 
the results of exploration and research. 

Section E (Geography) will be presided 
over by Sir George Robertson, whose ad- 
dress will deal mainly with certain geo- 
graphical aspects of the British Empire. 
He is likely to have much to say on the im- 
portant element of distance and its diminu- 
tion by means of improved communications. 
This Section is likely to be as attractive as 
usual. Sir Thomas Holdich will deal with 
the important subject of railway connection 
between Europe and Asia. Captain Deasy, 
Captain E. Si Grogan, and Mr. Borchgre- 
vinck will repeat the story of their various 
expeditions in Asia, Africa and the Antarc- 
tic. Mr. E. G. Ravenstein and Mr. B. V. 
Darbishire are both to deal with the subject 
of colonial and foreign surveys. Mr. G. 
G. Chisholm has undertaken to deal with 
the important subject of the probable eco- 
nomic relations of Siberia and China. 
There will be one or two papers on the po- 
sition of geographical teaching in Bradford 
and the neighborhood. Dr. H. R. Mill 
will deal with the geography of South- West 
Sussex, and Mr. E. Heawood with the com- 
mercial resources of Africa. 

Section F (Economic Science and Sta- 
tistics) will have as its president Major P. 



[N. S. Vol. XII. No. 296. 

G. Craigie, of the Department of Agricul- 
ture. In his address he will probably dwell 
on the care necessary for the properly scien- 
tific use of statistics and, above all, on the 
caution required in making international 
comparisons, illustrating his text, probably, 
with some of the better-proved figures which 
enable us to measure the development or 
retrogression of agriculture in different and 
typical countries. Doubtless owing to the 
fact of Major Craigie's being president, Sec- 
tion P this year will receive an unusual 
number of contributions relating to the 
economics of agriculture. Professor James 
W. Robertson, Dairy Commissioner of the 
Agricultural Department of the Dominion 
of Canada, and Professor William Saunders, 
LL.D., director of the Dominion experi- 
mental farms, will read papers, and Mr. A. 
D. Hall, of the Agricultural College of Wye, 
will deal with the economic possibilities of 
the growth of sugar beet in England, while 
a committee of the Section will at length 
present their report on the effect on prices 
of options and dealings in futures. There 
will be, as usual, a day devoted to what are 
roughly described as municipal subjects, 
and here Mr. Auberon Herbert is expected 
to condemn root and branch all attempts of 
local authorities to provide houses. Sev- 
eral interesting papers will be forthcoming 
on miscellaneous subjects. Mr. L. L. Price 
will deal with some economic consequences 
of the South African war, and the Hon. W. 
P. Reeves, Agent-General for New Zealand, 
will contribute a paper on the somewhat 
novel subject of 'The Colonies as Money- 
lenders.' Dr. Marcus Rubin, chief of the 
Royal Statistical Bureau of Denmark, will 
discuss some recent movements of popula- 
tion. There will also be several papers on 
questions of labor and wages. The his- 
torical school will be represented by Dr. W. 
Cunningham, who contributes a paper on 
North American paper currencies during 
the colonial period. 

Sir Alexander Binnie will preside over 
Section G (Mechanical Science), and his 
address will take the form of an inquiry 
into the steps by which we have arrived at 
our modern conception of nature, when re- 
viewed from a scientific standpoint. He 
will point out the reasons why the philoso- 
phers of Greece missed the true interpreta- 
tion of nature, and, passing on to the Roman 
period and the dark ages, will show how 
there has gradually grown up the concep- 
tion with which we are all so well ac- 
quainted and with which before us, when 
studying natural phenomena, the mind is 
freed from all preconceived notions derived 
from other realms of study. The address 
will be illustrated by a chronological chart 
likely to prove useful to all scientific men. 
It extends from 1550 to the present time, 
and includes, collated with the births and 
deaths of the many distinguished men to 
whom we are indebted, the principal his- 
torical, scientific, and other data which mark 
the various periods, as well as the dates of 
discoveries and of publications bearing upon 
the subject. There is, as usual, a large 
number of papers down for reading in this 
Section. We can only refer to the more im- 
portant. The very fine waterworks belong- 
ing to Bradford will be described, on Thurs- 
day, by Mr. Watson, a local engineer. On 
Friday the papers will be mainly devoted 
to civil engineering. Professor Hele Shaw 
proposes to collect together, in his paper 
on ' Resistance on Roads,' all the known 
data on frictional resistance on common 
roads, and will, it is believed, strongly 
advocate the appointment of a committee 
of the Association to carry on some fur- 
ther experiments on rolling friction on 
common roads. The immediate value of 
the paper by Mr. J. H. Glass, on ' Pro- 
posed Railway Construction in China,' is 
likely to be lessened by the terrible events 
which have happened there since his paper 
was promised. His plan is to describe the 

August 31, 1900.] 



great trunk line which it was intended to 
construct in Southern and Central China, 
and to give some account of the immense 
mineral wealth which lies there almost un- 
developed. The paper will be illustrated 
by many beautiful lantern slides reproduced 
from photographs. For Saturday there are 
down two papers, dealing with the great 
staple industry of Bradford and Yorkshire 
— textile manufacture. They will describe 
the more modern methods of mechanical 
and photo-mechanical designing for textile 
fabrics, and will be read by Professor 
Beaumont and Mr. Barker, who are both 
engaged locally in the technical teaching 
of textile work. Monday, as usual, will 
be given up to the electrical engineers. 
First on the program for the day comes 
the reading of the final report of the 
Small Screw Gauge Committee, which has 
now practically decided which form of 
thread it will advocate. Mr. A. Mallock 
will then deliver a paper paper on ' Resis- 
tance and Acceleration of Trains — Meas- 
urement of the Tractive Force,' in which 
he proposes to give an account of the recent 
experiments made by him on electric and 
other railways to determine the accelera- 
tion, the tractive force, and the running 
resistance to which trains are subjected. 
This will be followed by some interesting 
particulars about the ' Liverpool and Man- 
chester Electric High Speed Railway,' 
contributed by Sir "William Preece. Mr. 
Gibbings will deal with ' The Design and 
Location of Electric Generating Stations ' 
on a large scale for supplying electric power 
and lighting to large districts, and Mr. 
Barker will describe ' A Maximum Demand 
Meter,' the joint invention of himself and 
Professor Ewing. Tuesday, the last day 
on which the section meets, will begin with 
a paper by Mr. J. G. W. Aldridge, entitled 
' The Automobile for Electric Street Trac- 
tion.' It is hoped that the cinematograph 
will be used — for the first time, it is be- 

lieved, at a British Association meeting — 
to illustrate this paper, which will deal 
with an actual service in operation in 
Paris, and will show how, under certain 
conditions, a tramway service may be or- 
ganized without the usual tramway lines. 
Professor Goodman will describe ' A New 
Form of Corimeter for measuring the Wet- 
ness of Steam,' which he has himself in- 
vented. Two other papers are of consider- 
able importance. In the first, Professor 
Arnold of Sheffield, will deal with what he 
terms 'the internal architecture of steel,' 
and will develop his theories on the ulti- 
mate molecular structure of steel and the 
micrographic analysis of steel in physical 
researches. The second, by Mr. E. K. 
Clark, of the firm of Messrs. Kitson & 
Co., will deal, under the title of 'Shop 
Buildings,' with modern engineering, work- 
shop buildings, and methods of laying them 
out and organizing the work in them. 

Professor John Rhys, who will preside 
over Section H (Anthropology), will prob- 
ably deal in his address with the early 
ethnology of the British Isles, approaching 
the subject from the sides of language and 
folklore. It is hoped that other contribu- 
tions to this subject, which are anticipated, 
may give opportunities of discussing some 
of the vexed questions which it includes. 
A discussion is also proposed on the subject 
of ' Animal- cults : their Relation to Totem- 
ism,' which has been variously interpreted of 
late years ; and on the present state of our 
knowledge of the origin of writing in the 
Mediterranean. Mr. Arthur Evans will 
describe the pictographic system of writing 
of which he has disinterred numerous 
specimens at Knossos in Crete ; and Mr. F. 
Griffith offers a paper on the development 
of Egyptian hieroglyphics. Dr. Haddon 
will describe the results of the recent Cam- 
bridge expedition to Sarawak ; and Mr. 
David Boyle, of Toronto, has a paper on 
recent revivals of native religious beliefs 



[N. S. Vol. XII. No. 296. 

among the aboriginal tribes of Canada. 
Professor Cunningham, Dr. Beddoe and 
Professor A. F. Dixon send papers dealing 
with questions of anthropometry, 

Professor Sydney H. Vines will preside 
over the Botanical Section (J). His ad- 
dress will deal with Botany in the 19th 
century, and will be a review of the more 
important advances made in the different 
departments of the science. As has already 
been stated, this Section will have a joint 
discussion with the Geological Section on 
the Coal Period Vegetation. A museum is 
being arranged to illustrate the Yorkshire 
Coal Measure Flora, etc., in connection with 
the discussion. Mr. Percy Groom, of Coop- 
ers Hill Engineering College, is to deliver a 
semi-popular lecture before the Section en- 
titled ' Plant-form in Relation to Nutrition.' 
There will also be papers on Fossil Plants, 
Plant Anatomy, Plant Physiology, etc. 

The Friday evening discourse will be de- 
livered by Professor Gotch, the subject be- 
ing Animal Electricity, while that on Mon- 
day evening will be by Professor W. Stroud, 
whose subject will be 'Kange Finders.' 
Professor Sylvanus P. Thompson will give 
the lecture to the operative classes on Sat- 
urday, and will take as his subject ' Elec- 
tricity in the Industries.' 

The announcement of Bateson in his 
' Materials for the Study of Variation ' that 
medusae best illustrated the principle which 
he designated as ' Discontinuity of Meristic 
Variation ' led me, in connection with re- 
searches which have been under way for sev- 
eral years, to note more specially any indica- 
tions which might either confirm or discredit 
this statement. Accordingly I have from 
time to time made such collections of the 
Hydromedusse as might afford a means of 
testing the matter. While as yet these 

* Abstract of a paper presented before the Section 
of Zoology of the American Association. 

have not been extensive, except in a few 
genera, they seem to be sufficient to war- 
rant a brief summary of facts bearing upon 
the general problem of variation. The 
collections have been chiefly of the follow- 
ing genera : Eucope, Obelia, Margelis, Pen- 
naria and Gonionemm. 

The facts exhibited by Eueope have re- 
cently been published by Agassiz and Wood- 
worth, and while I have made observations 
upon those which I had collected in larger 
numbers than any other, they are yet so 
similar to those made by these observers that 
I shall make no particular reference to them 
at this time. Of the species of Obelia and 
Margelis I have as yet had no opportunity 
for extended study. Facts presented here 
will have reference only to the species of 
Pennaria and Oonionemus. 

Of Pennaria the medusae are very small 
and of a shape which renders rather diffi- 
cult an examination of the radial canals, a 
feature which, in my observations, has beer* 
among the most variable of structural char- 
acters. From the examination of only 
about a hundred specimens I have found 
no marked variation of this feature except 
in the direction of atrophy. The medusa 
of Pennaria seems to be in a somewhat 
degenerate condition. In many specimens 
the marginal canal is wholly atrophied and 
in some cases also the radials, to a greater 
or less extent. I have elsewhere* pointed 
out that in many cases the medusae of this 
species never become free, but discharge the 
generative products while remaining con- 
nected with the polyp. Another feature 
which may prove to be a variation is the 
appearance of small wart-like or vesicu- 
lar protuberances at various points of the 
exumbrella. Agassiz, in the North American 
Acalephce, refers to a similar feature but ex- 
plains it as probably due to the distortion 
caused by ova in the subumbrellar cavity. 
This, however, I am strongly convinced is 

*Am. Nat., May, 1900.