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The section on necrology gives a distinct account of the mortality of the city of Montpellier during the above stated period, and of the deaths in the large hospital of St. Eloi. Of the inhabitants of Montpellier, 23,366 (11,703 males, 11,663 females) died in the course of twenty-one years; and if this number be compared with that of the births (25,064) it will be seen that the population of this city has increased 1698 in twenty-one years. Certain years are specified as having been marked by a singular mortality, occasioned by the prevalence of the small pox; the ravages of which, the author laments, are very partially resisted in France by the practice of Inoculation.

Considering deaths, as he had before viewed the births, in relation to the seasons of the year, M. MOURGUE found that, from the autumnal to the vernal equinox, or from Oct. Ist to March 31st, the burials were 11,780 (5852 males, 5928 females;) and that from the vernal to the autumnal, or from April Ist to Sep. 30th, there were 11,586 (5851 males, 5735 females). Scarcely any difference here appears in the number of deaths among the males in one half year and in the other : but in that of the females a considerable variation subsisted, since 193 more died in the interval between the autumnal and the vernal equinox.

By a comparison of the mortality of the several months of the year with each other, M. Mourgue found that the month of August presented the greatest number of burials, and the month of May the least, nearly in the proportion of 31 to 2; that the month of August is most fatal to men, and the month of September to women.

Particular notice is here taken, similar to remarks that have been made in other places, of the great proportion of children who die under 5 years old, and especially in the first year. Of the 23,366 deaths above stated, 11,497 were children who had not attained their fifth year, constituting nearly one half of the total mortality; and of this moiety, one half died in the first year. It was discovered also by the registers, that this state of childhood was more fatal to boys than girls. M. Mourgue attributes the great mortality of children to a want of care in the mothers, who are employed in manufactures, &c. especially in rearing silk-worms; and he quotes a provering which says, 'the season of raising silk-worms is that in which most people are sent to paradise.'

It is stated also that the period from 10 to 20 gives the least mortality; that from 40 to 50, the number of deaths is double that between 10 and 20 ; that the proportional number of pere sons who exceed 70 years of age at Montpellier is rarely sur


passed in any other country, amounting to an eighth of the deaths; that from 70 to 80, more women die than men ; and that from 80 to 90, double, and from go to 100, treble the number of women compared with men :-taking the whole population, 1 in 29į dies annually.

We must pass over the tables and calculations relative to the hospital of St. Eloi,

In attempting to account for the circumstance of more persons dying at some seasons of the year than at others, the author has recourse to the discoveries of Ingenhousz, Priestley, and Sennebier; and he considers the oxygen gas elaborated by plants, and diffused through the atmosphere during the spring and summer months, as the cause of their superior salubrity,

This paper concludes with observations on the probabilities of life among the inhabitants of Montpellier ; and with tables by which, according to the plans of Dr. Price and others, the chances of living at any given age may be calculated.

Memoir on the different Boats and Barks employed in the Herring Fishery by Europeans. By M. S. B. J. NOEL. It is the design of this memoir to exhibit and compare with each other the different methods employed by different nations, in catching Herrings : but we have not space for extending so wide a net.

Observations on the Arachis Hypogea, or Earth-nut. By M. POITEAU.--This naturalist was appointed by the French Government in the year 4, (1795) to proceed on a botanical expedition to St. Domingo, where he encountered difficulties and disease, and experienced the kindness of Mr. Stevens, the American Consul-General, whose name he mentions with gratitude. Among the plants which he particularly noticed in this island, was the Arachis, or the Earth Pistucin, an econo. mical plant of the leguminous tribe. He opposes the common opinion of botanists, that the Arachis produces male flowers, together with those which are female and hermaphrodite; and he asserts that it yields fruit equal to the number of its flowers. A plate is annexed, exhibiting the growth and fructification of this useful vegetable.

Memoir on two kinds of Litchi cultivated in the Moluccas. By J. J. LABILLARDIERE.-Oithe trees which are the subject of this memoir, and which were introduced into the Molucca islands on account of the pleasantness of their fruit, the first is the ramb-cutan of the Malays, and the nephelium lappaceum of Linné; and the second is named by the Malays, rumb-outan, aké, but is unknown to European botanists. M. LABILLARDIERE recommends to his government the transplantation of this second kind into the French colonies, as a tree from which singular advantages may be derived. Two engravings are subo joined.

Observations on Terrestrial Refraction. By M. DANGOs, Associate of the Institute.-The phænomenon here described was observed at Malta, March 20, 1784, about one o'clock. An island seemed to rise out of the sea in the canal of Malta; a peculiar appearance, which M. Dangos observed more than once, and which was caused by the reflection of the snowy top of Mount Eina: but this image, it is contended, could not have been effected by one simple reflection on the surface of tbe sea. It is remarked that a thick fog preceded this phænomenon.

Memoir on the Pepper cantieged in 1788 from the Isle of France to Cayenne, by M. MARTIN, by order of the Minister La Luzerne, and on the Advantages of its Culture in that Colony. By J. B. LEBLOND.-Of all the spices, pepper is in the most general use, and its cultivation is of the most importance. On this subject, the author of the present memoir quotes the observations of M. Velloso, a Portuguese writer, and of M. Hufsenet, an ex. perienced agriculturist in French Guiana.

An Attempt to form a new Natural Classification of Reptiles. BJ ALEX. BRONGNIART, Professor of Natural History, &c.—The substance of this ingenious essay is contained in two sections, the first of which relates to the rules that should be followed in this classification, and the formation of orders; and the second, to the formation and disposition of the genera. After having adverted to the dilliculties which attend the undertaking, and to the objections with which the former methods of arrangement are embarrassed, M. BRONGNIART proceeds to develope his new classification; which contains four orders of reptiles, nicely characterized by their organization and exter. nal parts. Order I. consists of the Chéloniens, or reptiles anaJogous to the tortoise, whose distinctive external characters are, that they have no set-in-teeth, and that the body is covered with a sheil. Oder II. of the Sauriens, or reptiles resembling the lizard; the external characters of which are, that they have claws, teeth set-in, and the body covered with scales. Order III. of the Ophidiens, or reptiles resembling the serpent; the external characters of which are, that they have no claws nor feet, and have long cylindric bodies. Order IV. of the Batra. ciens, or reptiles analogous to the frog, having feet and a naked skin. The several genera which occur under each of these die visions are specified in the second section : but it will not be 6


expected of us to enter into this detail. The curious naturalist will, in course, peruse the whole of the essay.

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We have now taken a brief view of the contents of this large volume; which, it will be seen, are of a miscellaneous nature, and afford various degrees of merit. Our attention is next called to a continuation of our report of the regular volumes of this learned body, according to the last livraison which has Teached us.

Art. II. Mémoires de l'Institut, &c.; i.e. Memoirs of the National
Institute. Vol. VI. Mathematical and Physical Sciences.

[Article concluded from our last Appendix.]
TEMOIR on the Bones of the Female Pelvis. By M. TENON.

In this paper, which appears to us rather tedious and uninteresting, the author discusses at considerable length the question respecting the opening of the symphisis pubis during de-' livery; after which he gives us the result of his examination into the structure of the part, and the nature of the connection which exists between the two bones. Respecting the first object of inquiry, he adduces many powerful authorities in support of each of the opinions: but we do not perceive that any new light is thrown on the question, or that the controversy is brought more nearly to a conclusion. M. Tenon seems to have examined with much minuteness the manner in which the bones are connected together; and the result of his inquiry is, that they are sometimes united by a common cartilage, while in other cases each of the bones is furnished with its separate cartilage, which are joined together by a common li. gament.

Memoir on the Determination of three Natural Epochas for the Production of Volcanoes, and of the use which may be made of these Epochas in the study of Volcanoes. By M. DESMAREST.-To the effects produced by volcanic eruptions, geologists have always had recourse, in the speculations and hypotheses which form so large a portion of their labours. As M. DESMAREST is known to have devoted himself particularly to this object, we are happy to meet with any thing from his pen, which will tend to generalize the scattered observations that occur in the writings of so many travellers and naturalists. He thinks that yo lcanoes may be arranged under three divisions, correspond. App. Rev. VOL. LII. нь


ing to the length of time that has elapsed since their forma. tion; and to each of these species he assigns determinate characters. First, those of the most recent formation possess open *craters, and are surrounded with scoria, and different bodies which exhibit the immediate effects of fusion. In the second kind, the craters and scoria are no longer to be found, but the currents of lava may be traced, covering the horizontal strata of the earth, and intersected by streams and vallies. In the last and most antient species of volcanoes, the lava is discovered below the horizontal strata, and not unfrequently even beneath the waters of the ocean. How far this hypothesis will be found to accord with the phænomena of nature must be determined by those who have more opportunities than we possess, of diving into the depths of geological science: but it wears a plausible appearance, and, if established, would ob. viously lead to some important conclusions, and tend to correct many erroneous speculations. We are concerned to ob. serve an author of acknowleged merit, like M. DESMAREST, speak in an arrogant and supercilious manner of certain Scotch and Genevese philosophers,' who happen to differ from him respecting the formation of basalt.

Memoir on the Comparative Nature of the Gaseous Oxid of Azott, of the Nitrous Oxid of Mr. Davy, and of Nitrous Gas. by MM. FOURCROY, VAUQUELIN, and THENARD.-After some observations on the history of the nitrous oxid, in which is justly ascribed to Dr. Priestley the discovery of most of its properties, except its action on the animal occonomy, the authors give an account of the experiments which they instituted for the purpose of analyzing the two gases. They performed the decomposition by transmitting them over iron filings, in hot earthen tubes. We have then a relation of the effects produced on M. VAUQUELIN, by the respiration of the nitrous oxid; which seems to have partaken more of the nature of asphyxia, thau of that increased action which was experienced by Mr. Davy and his friends. On the whole, we do not think that this paper is worthy of the talents of the three chemist's whose names appear in the title.

Nerv Experiments on Cor's Milk, by MM. FOURCROT and VAUQUELIN.-We are here presented with some important additions to the knowlege which we previously possessed, respecting the composition of this fluid." It has been already announced that the acid which is developed during the coagulation of milk, and which was supposed by Scheele to be endued with specific properties, is merely the acetic acid, united to a portion of animal matter ; and in the paper before us, the authors

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