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mnitude the ho and a at Lobola abp after
the 1st magnitude is ß Denebola, which is found in the bushy part of the Lion's tail. Regulus has a declination of 12° 56' 6" and a right ascension of 149° 25' 29". This star rises at London on the E.N. E. point of the compass, and Denebola about 4° further north, and nearly an hour and a half after Regulus. The meridian altitude of Regulus at London is 51° 25' 26", and bis rising and culmination for the 1st of each month, in 1820, were as below, viz. Rising. Culminating. 8
Rising. Culminating. January - 10 15 aft. 3 10 mor. July --,. 8 12 mor. 3 19 aft. February 6 0.. 1 0.. August -.. 6 0 -- 1 14 - March - - 4 10 - - 10 9 aft. September -4 0.. 11 15 mor. April .. 2 15 -. 9 16 - - October -. 2 15 -- 9 27 .. May... 0 20 .. 7 25 -. November - 0 22 .. 7 30 .. June - - 10 8 mor. 5 23 - - | December - 10 22 aft. 5 27 - ..
The sign of Leo is chiefly on the north side of the ecliptic, his fore legs projecting below that circle, and his hind feet resting upon the equator. In the revolution of the heavens, he therefore passes vertically over all the northern parts of the torrid zone. This position may be easily found in the heavens; for a line drawn from the pole, through y in the Great Bear, will pass through Denebola. This star forms a triangle with two others, the one upon the rump, and the other in the upper part of the thigh, as in the following figure:
These last constitute a species of trapezium with Regulus and a star marked y in the Lion's mane; while with y and nearer the head they constitute al- most a rectangle. If, also, we join Regulus, Dene
and isnts a fixed poorth-west of thich are s
bola, and a Dubhe in Ursa Major, we shall form a large equilateral triangle, the base of which is in the Lion and its vertex in the Bear. If , , d, and y, be joined, they form a large quadrilateral embracing the greater part of the body of the Lion, and containing the star , in the thick part of the thigh, within it. Another small quadrilateral is also formed of four stars of the 4th magnitude, which are situated in the Lion's head north-west of this figure.--Regulus presents a fixed point for determining the ecliptic, and is 3° west of the beginning of the sign Virgo.
VIRGO (18), the Virgin. The Virgin is the last of the summer signs, and the sixth in the order of the zodiac, into which the Sun enters on the 23d of August. This is considered as the harvest sign, and the usual symbol by which it is represented is a damsel, whom the popular mythology of the Greeks represented as Ceres, with a bunch of corn in her hand. The same ingenious people also feigned the emblem of this sign to be Astræa, the Goddess of Justice; and some of their poets affirmed her to be Erigone, the daughter of Icarius. There seems, however, reason to suppose that the original of this symbol was the Egyptian Isis. In the Zodiac of Dendera,' says Mr. Jamieson, Virgo is represented with a branch of a palm tree in her hand; and trees, branches of trees, or groves, were symbolical of the heavenly hosts. In the Egyptian Zodiac, Isis, whose place was supplied by Virgo, was also represented with three ears of corn in her hand. The Chinese call the Zodiac the Yellow Road, as resembling a path over which the ripened ears of corn are scattered; and, according to the Egyptian mythology, Isis was said to have dropped a sheaf of corn as she fled from Typhon, who scattered it over the heavens as he continued to pursue her. Very antiently, indeed, it is said, the signs of the zodiac were compared with corn bound in
also feigned in her hand, represented as the popular
Hand: zoal of th ose place three 2odiac
sheaves. The same writer enters into a disquisition of some length relative to the origin and import of this sign, and the inferences that are to be drawn from them in reference to the antiquity of astronomy. He has also endeavoured to embalm the memory of the Princess Charlotte in the symbol of the sixth sign of the heavens.
The sign of Virgo is bounded on the east and west by those of Libra and Leo, and on the north and south by some of inferior order. It contains 110 stars; one of which is of the 1st magnitude, six of the 3d, and ten of the 4th. The most brilliant of these is Spica Viriginis, which is situated in the bunch of corn which Virgo holds in her hand, and is near the ecliptic; having 198° 45' of right ascension, and 10° 13' 42" of south declination. It is also one of the nine stars from which the distance of the Moon is calculated for every 3 hours, and given in the Nautical Almanack, for the use of navigators. Spica rises at London on the E.S.E. Į E. point of the horizon, and passes the meridian with an altitude of 28° 15' 18".
The times of its rising and culminating are given in the following list. Rising. Culminating. ?
Rising. Culminating. January -' i 50 mor. 6 16 mor. July --- 1 35 aft. 6 35 aft. February 11 15 aft. 4 14 -- August - - 11 30 mor. 4 31 March - . 9 30 .. 2 25 - - September 9 30 .. 2 35.. April .. 7 35 .. 0 32 - - October - 7 32 .. 047 ., May- - - 5 46 -- 10 41 aft. November 5 40 - - 10 47 mor. June -- 3 35 - - 8 39 - - | December 3 30 - - 8 43 ..
Virgo is most readily distinguished in the heavens by Spica, which forms a large equilateral triangle with Denebola in Leo, and Arcturus in Bootes, which is situated north of Virgo. By joining n in the left shoulder (and which is situated on the equator very near the equinoxial point) with Vindemiatrix, or e, on the front of the right arm, and both these with 3, a little above the right knee, we shall form nearly an equilateral triangle, having 8 (in the
front of the Virgin) in its centre, as shown in the following figure.
Spica Again, Spica, Denebola, and Regulus in Leo form the three angles of a very obtuse triangle; of which Spica forms the eastern and Regulus the western angle. The longest side, or that which joins Spica and Regulus, faces the south-west, and is at least double the distance between Regulus and Denebola.
The Naturalist's Diary
For DECEMBER 1823.
Her waning skies and fields of sallow hue;
Ye shall revive when vernal skies are blue.
Frosts are severe, and snow-flakes not a few;
Forlorn appear the melancholy trees. At this season of darkness and desolation, however, the Sun daily gives forth a cheering influence, and we are enabled to procure and participate many social and domestic comforts. But if we direct our view to less favoured climes, we cannot easily conceive in what sense comfort or convenience can be attainable, where the ordinary succession of day and night, of light and darkness, are denied. To those, again, who are situated in a different extreme, who live under perpetual sunshine,
and amidst the undecaying spring of a southern climate-to whom 'ice, and snow, and hoar frost,' are unknown; who, amidst undying vegetation and verdure, imagine to themselves our winter scenery -our naked and leafless forests—our variable and inclement atmosphere -'our ice in morsels, our snow as wool;'—to persons under these circumstances, our cold and ungenial latitudes must, on the other hand, appear comfortless and revolting :-and yet, certain it is, that no known climate under heaven is totally destitute of the means of supporting, and supplying comfort to man. It is only in the apprehension of ignorance and inexperience, that his condition, however remotely or approximately situated with regard to the Sun, appears wholly miserable; for, while the inferior animals degenerate or perish under a protracted or distant removal from their native climate and soil, man alone is found, and is, by an arrangement of Divine Wisdom, fitted and framed, not only to live, but to enjoy life, every where;- whether he be placed among the fervent plains of India, the sandy deserts of Arabia, or the snow-clad regions of North GEORGIA'. .
The winter of 1821, in England, was extremely mild. The summer and autumn of this year were remarkably wet and unsettled; every little rill became a stream, and the low grounds, marshes: there was no frost even at so late a period as Christmas day. All our fields (observes our intelligent correspondent from Gloucestershire) present at this time the verdure of a fine autumn: in a situation by no means particularly sheltered or favourably placed, we have the green-house plants in our borders, in full vigour and flower, though- battered and broken
" See our last volume, pp. 27, 52, 82, for an interesting account of the Phenomena and Natural History of the Arctic Regions. It affords us much pleasure to be able to state that Capt. Franklin, Dr. Richardson, and the gentlemen composing the land expedition, for the purpose of discovering the North-west Passage, arrived safely in England in October last (1822), after having endured the severest privations.