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phorus was burned, you observe it to be tion been a corrosive powder, it would pervaded with snow-white particles, which, soon have killed us by penetrating into gradually depositing on the sides of the our lungs. jar, cover it with a crust, and which, by “ The results of useful ordinary combusfalling into the water, dissolve and dis- tion could not then have been different to appear.
what they are without disturbing the whole "But the result of combustion is most economy of the world ; so beautifully have strikingly exemplified in the jar, where all these things been calculated and prothe iron-wire was burned. There, instead vided for, so wisely have all consequences of a gas, or a vapour, or a powder in dis- been foreseen by an all-wise Creator. tributed particles, little fused beads are “ Of course, when the result of burning a seen, to the existence of which I have substance is a liquid or gas, there must already directed your attention. They are be more difficulty in collecting this result, 1ot iron, nor, if you come to regard them in catching it, so to speak, storing it up ittentively, do they look like iron. All and examining it, than when the result is he metallic splendour of the original a solid. For this reason it was that tire is gone, and the little beads look chemists in bygone time actually consiery much like the black scales which dered that bodies burned were bodies over an iron - bar when taken from a destroyed. Had they been accustomed to lowing blacksmith's forge. They are, weigh the substances which they experiadeed, the very same.
And now for a mented upon, and likewise to weigh the urious circumstance. These fused beads, results, this opinion could not have been omposed of oxygen and iron, therefore long entertained; but the operation of rmed oxide of iron, if collected and weighing, which we modern chemists eighed, would be found to be heavier think so essential, ancient chemists han the original iron consumed by the neglected altogether; and see what a xact amount of oxygen which has dis- beautiful truth they lost by this same ppeared. Thus you see the result of neglect; the true principle regulating urning a combustible body may be a gas, the combustion of bodies was totally vapour--may be a powder, may be unknown to them.
Generally, and most fortu- “ Well, time admonishes me to be brief ately, as we shall hereafter discover, all with this element, oxygen,--admonishes le ordinary combustibles do not yield me to pass on to the consideration of other olids or powders when they are burned, subjects. Proceeding, therefore, with our ut gases or vapours; and, consider what investigations, it is very natural for us to
fortunate circumstance this is. Sup- try to discover, and I am sure you would jose, for instance, a candle so constituted, like to know, since oxygen is the virtue, is it might have been-consider it so con- the power of atmospheric air, what the tituted, that, instead of the results of its other part of atmospheric air consists of. ombustion consisting of invisible gases I did not introduce oxygen to you for a r vapours, floating away in the passing air, long time by name, but went on describing pidly, insensibly-suppose the results quality after quality; now I shall follow the f its combustion had been a powder, opposite plan with its associate, and term it uch as phosphorus yields - powder nitrogen at once. Some chemists term it hich is intensely sour and almost corrosive azote, meaning the life destroyer ; but there -suppose that, like iron, it had yielded a are many other gases equally capable of blid, -what, then, would have been the destroying life, although none else are onsequence ? Why, it is terrible to capable, when united with oxygen and eflect
the necessary result of potash in a particular way, of forming the uch an alteration. We could not have substance nitre; therefore, surely the term sed candles of this kind. Had the re- nitrogen which expresses this quality, is ult of their combustion been solid, not only more appropriate of the two. How shall we ould their light have been too feeble for generate nitrogen ? Think a little, and I le purposes of useful illumination, but we am sure the principle will occur to you. hould soon have become enveloped in If the air consists of oxygen and nitrogen, shes. Had the result of their combus- and if oxygen alone is burned away by
combustion, is it not evident that nitrogen, mixed with the product of combustion, must remain? On this principle we obtain nitrogen, and the mode of obtaining it as follows:
in itself, is possessed of the most extraordinary powers.
Very few elements, perhaps, can dis play such numerous qualities—can do, as we may term it, so many different things as nitrogen can. In certain proportions it can associate itself with oxygen, and constitute the atmosphere we breathe,whilst, in other proportions, the very same elements generate, by their union, the powerful corrosive liquid, called aquafortis. Is not this extraordinary? We all know how bland, how innocent, how harmless is atmospheric air, how it bathes our skin, and pervades our lungs, although we are scarcely conscious of its presence; consider, then, what the effect would have been had we been surrounded with aquafortis ! If you are engaged much in chemical experiments, you will, as the chances are, soon have evidences of its corrosive action on your fingers and dress. One does not, however, purposely seek for this evidence, for which reason, I find a substitute in a sheet of dry parchment. Upon this I pour a few drops of nitric acid (aquafortis), and you see the result. The parchment becomes yellow and shrivelled, crumpling up, smoking—and eventually it is destroyed."
"An empty bell
glass, as in ordinary language we should call it, that is to say, a bell glass containing atmospheric air, is inverted over a little flame, containing ignited phosphorus, and placed swimming on the surface of some water. The phosphorus burns as usual, and in the operation of burning removes the whole of the oxygen present, combining with it and forming these white, flocculent, particles, which, perhaps, you may remember as being composed of phosphoric acid, and which may easily be removed by agitation with water. This being done, nitrogen remains. Nitrogen is, altogether, a very peculiar body. I can show an experiment illustrative of its power, as I did with oxygen. All I shall show you is an experiment which you will perhaps say, shows nothing at all, although, it is an experiment which really shows a great deal. In the first place, you see it will not allow the combustion of a taper immersed in it to proceed, but immediately puts out the flame. In this it does not differ from the gas developed by burning charcoal in oxygen; therefore, for anything we know at present to the contrary, they may both be the same. We shall soon prove, however, that they are not the same, because, if I throw a portion of lime water, perfectly clear and transparent, into the jar in which the charcoal was burned, and shake the whole together, the lime-water turns white; whereas, if I do the same with nitrogen gas, no white-calculable service to mankind. Fix your ness results. By this simple test, then, may mind closely and intently on what you we distinguish these two invisible gases. undertake; in no other way can you have a reasonable hope of success. An energy that dies in a day is good for nothing; an hour's fixed attention will never avail. The inventions that bless mankind were not the result of a few moments' thought and investigation. If you, then, have a desire to bless your species, or to get to yourself a glorious name, fix your mind upon something, and let it remain fixed.
"If this is the only thing nitrogen can do, you may, perhaps, say with yourselves, If it can only not whiten lime-waterthis nitrogen must be altogether a powerless substance, and its glorious associate, oxygen, is called the virtue of atmospheric air to some purpose. Arrive at no such rash conclusion; it would be very wrong. Nitrogen, although seemingly powerless
And here we must conclude our present sketch, leaving the subject of atmospheric air to be again adverted to hereafter.
FIX YOUR MIND.-Lay it down as a sound maxim:-Nothing can be accom plished without a fixed purpose-a concentration of mind and energy. Whatever you attempt to do, whether it be the writing of an essay, or whittling of a stick, let it be done as you can do it. It was this habit that made Franklin and Newton, and hundreds whose labours have been of in
THE DEATH BED.
WE watch'd her breathing through the night,
So silently we seem'd to speak,
As we had lent her half our powers
Our very hopes belied our fears,
For when the morn came dim and sad,
Would I could send my spirit o'er the deep,'
Come to the hearts that love thee, to the eyes That beam in brightness but to gladden thine; Come where fond thoughts like holiest incense
Where cherish'd memory rears her altar's shrine.
Brother, come home.
Come to the hearth-stone of thy earlier days,
Come to the fireside circle of thy love.
It is not home without thee; the lone seat
In vain we list for what should herald thee.
We've nursed for thee the sunny buds of spring,
Would I could send my spirit o'er the deep,
Hell holds it dear, yet precious 'tis in heaven,
My first is always restless seen,
3. My first includes the human race, Of every age, and time, and place,
Down to this moment from the fall; My second was a Roman camp, And still it wears its ancient stamp,
The gate, the peristyle, and wall.
Are dreaded rather than admired.
With less than half its virtue fired.
I am a small volume, and frequently bound,
My worth, and my praises the females resound,
My leaves are all scarlet, my letters are steel,
To the poor they spell lodging, and fuel, and meal,
To the rich, entertainment and pleasure.
The sempstress explores me by day and by night,
Not a page but she turns o'er and o'er; Though sometimes I injure the milliner's sight, Still I add to her credit and store.
'Tis true I am seldom regarded by men,
Yet what would the males do without me? Let them boast of their head, or boast of their
Still vain is their boast if they flout me! Ans.-A Needle-book.
1. Why is a drunkard hesitating to sign the pledge like a sceptical Hindoo? Ans.-Because he is in doubt whether to give up the worship of Jug or not (Juggernaut).
2. If an awkward fellow upsets your best teaservice, what flower does he remind you of? Ans.-China a-stir (China Aster).
With what young children love to play, A bird that's never seen by day, A serpent, and a beast of might, And he that oft steals in the night,These five initials, well combined, A famous town you then will find. Ans.-Doll, Owl, Viper, Elephant, RobberDover.
A part of the head to a consonant join'd,
ANSWERS TO FAMILY PASTIME. PAGE 359.
PUZZLE-The counters being placed eight in s row, take the fifth from the left hand, and place it on the second; then take the third and place it on the seventh; then place the first on the fourth; and lastly, the sixth on the eighth.
ENIGMAS-1. Shades, Hades. 2, Nail. 3. Tenet. 4. Mole. 5. The five vowels.
QUERIES-1. Because manors (manners) make the man. 2. Because he kept Good Friday. 3. Because a queen's head was not worth a penny during his reign. 4. Because both are employed in an elegant mode of wa(i)sting time.
CHARADES-Fox-glove. 2. Madam. 3. Spin4. Star-ling. 5. Can-did.
THE EDITOR AND HIS FRIENDS.
Editor's Address:-London, 69, Fleet-street. The Editor of "The Family Friend."
IN commencing the Third Volume of our NEW SERIES, let us as usual impress upon our Friends that our Appendix is devoted not merely to Editorial answers to Questions put by Correspondents, but to useful Facts, Hints, and Suggestions, supplied by Correspondents themselves, -as Friends of our great Family. We cannot too highly prize the many useful treasures communicated to our first Series by numerous co-operators, and we earnestly invite not only a continuance but an increase of this friendly feeling, which prompts the possessor of any useful and practical information to publish it through our pages for the benefit of others.
All letters of inquiry should be written as briefly and legibly as possible; and but one Query should be submitted by one Correspondent at a time.
Correspondents should avoid troubling the Editor for information which may be easily obtained by reference to works usually accessible. Thus, the meaning and pronunciation of English words; the dates of well-known events, &c., &c., &c., are not fair matters for Editorial interrogation, since all parties, with less delay and trouble than would be occasioned by addressing the Editor, may obtain the required information for themselves.
Inquiries which are merely of individual interest will seldom be replied to; and queries of a trifling character, unless they are of a nature to afford amusement, and thus relieve the more solid matter of the Appendix from the disadvantages of dulness and monotony, will seldom be regarded. Legal and medical questions, except such as relate to established general principles of jurisprudence and medical science, must necessarily be set aside. We assume that every paragraph inserted in the Appendix should be useful to many persons, which would not be the case if matters of a merely local or private nature were introduced.
1-Acuteness of Hearing in Animals. L.-Your observations are just. Cats and dogs can hear the movements of their prey at incredible distances, and that even in the midst of noise, which we should have thought would have overpowered such effects. Rabbits when alarmed, forcibly strike the earth with their feet, by the vibration of which they communicate their apprehensions to burrows very remote.
next, a coarse towel, but of loose texture, and highly absorbing quality, should be passed more gently and slowly over the skin until perfect dryness is produced.
2- Morocco Leather. J. C. S. Is not so called from its being brought from Morocco, but from the art of dressing it being originally introduced from that country. The true Morocco leather is made of goat-skins tanned and dyed on their outsides; sheep-skins are also similarly treated. The goat-skins are not only more pliant, but their surface is smoother; they are also more durable than those of sheep, but their employ-by domestics. In olden times tradesmen as well ment is restricted on account of their high price.
4-Cold Weather. E. W.- Keep away from the fire as much as possible. Those who generally occupy warm apartments, cannot well imagine how much more brisk and happy the feelings are, and how far more clear and vigorous is the intellect, while one is kept warm by exercise on a cold day, than by sitting in a hot room; nor how lax and listless, in comparison, are we rendered by artificial heat. Abundance of exercise, respiration, and good food, is the great receipt for keeping comfortable in cold weather.
5-Liveries. G. R. W.-We cannot tell you the precise period when liveries were first worn
as servants wore these badges. Anterior to Richard the Second, tradesmen who served a nobleman's family wore his livery, and the placing of royal and noble arms over tradesmen's shops to this day is a relic of such a custom. The livery of London, besides the dress of their companies, often wore on great occasions, from com
3-Towels for Drying the Skin. W. H.-The roughness of the towel must be proportioned to the sensitiveness of the skin. Some will bear a coarser cloth than others. Two towels should be used, the first of sufficient roughness to produce an agreeable glow after the necessary friction;