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waterhigs must not be frequent nor plenti. his “ New Theory of Friction," in which he ful, and during winter, very sparing. The happily cleared up an important object in pots must constantly remain plunged in the mechanics. He had a particular genius for tan-bed; for if they are taken ont and making experiments : his notions were just placed on shelves in the stove, their fibres and delicate: he knew how to preveni the often shrink, and thus their roots decay. inconveniences of his new inventions, and By this management these plants have had a wonderful skill in execating them. greatly multiplied, and the common ginger He died of an inflammation in his bowels, hras produced roots, weighing five or six the 11th of October 1705, being only 42 ounces; but the others have been nearly a years of age. His pieces are contained in pound weight. In the West Indies the gin- . the different volumes of the memoirs of the ger thrives best in a rich cool soil; in a more Academy of Sciences; these are numerous, clayey soil the root shrinks less in scalding and upon various subjects, as the air, action The land laid out for the cul'ure of it is first of fire, barometers, thermometers, hygrowell cleared and hoed, and then slightly meters, friction, inachines, heat, cold, raretrenched, and planted in March or April ; it factions, pumps, &c. They may be scen in flowers about September; and when the the volumes for the years 1696, 1699, 1702, stalks are wholly withered, the roots are tit 1703, 1704, and 1705. The character of to be taken up, which is generally done in Amontons for integrity, modesty, and can January and February.
door, was no less distinguished than his ta. AMONTONS (William), in biography, lents and genius in philosophical pursuits an ingenious French experimental philoso- Upon his death in 1705, M. Fontenelle de pher, was born in Normandy the Stst of livered an elegant and impressive eulogium August 1663. While at the grammar school, on his merits. See MEMOIRS of the Aca. he by sickness contracted a deafness that demy for that year. almost excluded him from the conversation AMORPHA, in botany, bastard indigo, of mankind. In this situation he applied a genus of plants, belonging to the Diadelhimself to the study of geometry and me- phia Decandria class of Linnæus ; the flower clianics; with which he was so delighted, of which consists of one petal vertically that it is said he refused to try any remedy ovated, hollow, and erect; and the fruit is a for his disorder, either becanse he deemed lunulater pod, of a compressed form, and it incurable, or becanse it increased his at covered with tubercles, in which are contention to his studies. Among other objects tained two seeds, of an oblong kidney-like of his study, were the arts of drawing, of shape. There are two species. land-surveying, and of building; and shortly This shrub grows naturally in Carolina, after he acqnired some knowledge of those where formerly the inhabitants made a more sublime laws, by wliich the universe coarse sort of indigo, which occasioned its is regulated. He studied with great care name of the bastard indigo. It rises with the patue of barometers and thermometers; many irregular stems to the height of twelve and wrote his treatise of “ Observations or fourteen feet, with very long-winged and Experiments concerning a new Hour- leaves. It was observed by Thunberg in glass, and concerning Barometers, Thermo- the island of Niphon, belonging to Japan, meters, and Hygroscopes ;" as also some but is now become very common in the garpieces in the Journal des Savans. In 1687, dens and nurseries near London, where it is he presented a new hygroscope to the Aca- propagated as a flowering shrub. It is prodemy of Sciences, which was much ap. pagated by seeds sent from America. proved. He found out a method of con AMPELIS, in natural bistory, the chatveving intelligence to a great distance in a terer, a genus of birds of the order Passeres: short space of time: this was by making bill straight, convex, subincurved, each signals from one person to another, placed mandible notched: nostrils covered with at as great distances from each otlier, as bristles: tongue sharp, cartilagenous, bifid : they could see the signals by means of teles- middle toe connected at the base to the outcopes: this was unqnestionably done upon side. There are, according to Gmelin, four-" the principal of modern telegraphs, which teen species : we shall notice the following: were brought into general use in 1794, al- A. garrulus, or waxen chatterer ; a beantimost a century after the death of Amontons. ful bird about cight inches long. Its bill is Amontons was chosen a member of the black, and has a small notch at the end ; its Royal Academy in 1699, as an eleve under eyes are placed in a band of black, which the third astronomer; and he read there passes from the base of the bill to the hinder
part of the head. Its throat is black; its class of animals by Linnæus, may perhaps feather on the head are long, forming a be considered as not absolutely unexcepcrest; all the upper parts of the body are tionable ; the power of living with equal faof a reddish ash colour ; the breast and belly cility both in land and water being not inclining to purple; the tail feathers are granted to all the animals which compose black, tipped with pale yellow; the quills it; yet, since it is certain that the major are black, the third and fourth tipped on part are found to possess that faculty in a their outer erlges with white; the five fol- considerable degree, the title may be allowlowing with straw colour, but in some, ed to continue. The Amphibia, from the bright yellow; the secondaries are tipped peculiar structure of their organs, and the with white, each being pointed with a flat power which they possess of suspending rehorny substance of a bright vermilion co-. spiration at pleasure, can not only support lour. These appendages vary in different a change of element uninjured, but can also subjects. This rare bird visits our island occasionally endure an abstinence which only at uncertain intervals. Their summer would infallibly prove fatal to the higher residence is supposed to be in the northern order of animals. It has been a general parts of Europe, within the arctic circle, doctrine among anatomists, that the hearts whence they spread themselves into other of the Amphibia were, in the technical countries, where they remain during the phrase, unilocular, or furnished with only winter, and return in the spring to their one ventricle or cavity; a doctrine mainusual haunts. The food of this bird is ber- tained by many eminent anatomists, and, ries of various kinds ; in some countries it is in general, assented to by the greatest physaid to be extremely fond of grapes. Only siologists, as Boerhaave, Haller, &c. &c. this species of the chatterer is found in Euand only occasionally called in question on rope, the others are natives of America. viewing in some animals of this tribe a seemSee Plate I. Aves, fig. 5. A. caruncula, ingly different structure. Thus the French has a black bill, with a pendulous, expan- academicians of the seventeenth century sile, moveable caruncle at the base, inhabits pronounce the heart of an Indian land torCayenne and Brazil, and is about twelve in toise, which they examined, to have in reality ches long. The bill is an inch and half three ventricles instead of one. Linnæus, long, and black : at the base is a fleshy car- in his Systema Naturæ, acquiesces in the bunele, 'hanging over it, like that of a tur- general doctrine, and accordingly, makes it key cock. The female is furnished with one a character of this class of animals. Among as well as the male. These birds are said later physiologists, however, there are not to have a very loud voice, to be heard half wanting some who think it more correct to a league off, which is composed of merely say, that the hearts of the Amphibia are in two syllables, in, an, uttered in a drawling reality double, or furnished with two ventritone; but some have compared it to the cles, with a free or immediate communicasound of a bell.
tion between them. The lungs of the AmAMPELITES, cannel-coal, a hard, opaque, phibia differ widely in their appearance fossil, inflammable substance, of a black co- from those of other animals; consisting, in lour. The ampelites examined by a micro general, of a pair of large bladders or memscope appears composed of innumerable
branaceous receptacles, parted, in the difvery small thin plates, laid closely and firmly ferent species, into more or fewer cancelli, upon one another, and full of very small or subdivisions, among which are beautifully specks of a blacker and more shining matter distributed the pulmonary blood vessels, than the rest. There is a large quarry of it which bear but a small proportion to the in Alençon, in France. It is dug also in vesicular part through which they ramify; many parts of England; but the most beau- whereas, in the langs of the Mammalia, so tiful is found in Lancashire and Cheshire: it great is the proportion of the blood-vessels, lies usually at considerable depth. It is ca and so very small are the vesicles, or air pable of a very fine polish, and is made into cells, that the lungs have a fleshy rather than trinkets, and will pass for jet. Husband. a membranaceous appearance. In the Am-, men dress their vines with it, as it kills the phibia, therefore, tine vesicular system may vermin which infests them: it is likewise be said greatly to prevail over the vascular; used for dyeing the hair black,
and in the Mammalia, or warm-blooded ani.. AMPHIBIA, in natural history, a class mals, the vascular system to prevail over the of animals that live either on land or in wa vesicular. Many of the Amphibia are poster. The title Amphibia, applied to this sessed of a high degree of reproductive,
power, and will be furnished with new feet, resembling parchment; and in many, they tails, &c. when those parts have by any ac are perfectly gelatinous, without any kind cident been destroyed. Many are higlily of external covering, as in the spawn of the beautiful in their colours, as well as elegant common frog. Some few are viviparous; in their forms; while others, on the contrary, the egss first hatching internally, and the are, in the common acceptation of the young being afterwards excluded in their worris, extremely deformed, and of un perfect form, as in the viper, &c. &c. In pleasing colours. Their bodies are some cold and temperate climates, most of the times defended by a hard, borny shield, or Amphibia pass the winter in a torpid state; covering; sometimes rather by a coriaceous and that sometimes in a degree of cold integument; sometines by scales, and some which would seem but ill calculated for the times have no particular defence or coat preservation of animal iife. The common ing; the skin being merely marked by soft, large water-newt, in particular, is said to pustular warts or protuberances, more or have been occasionally found completely less visible in the different species. The imbedded in large masses of ice, in which it bones of the Amphibia, except in a very few must have remained inclosed for a very coninstances, are of a more cartilaginous nature siderable period; and yet, on the dissolu. than in either the Mammalia or Birds: tion of the ice, las been restored to life. many species are destitute of ribs, while The Amphibia may be divided into four others have those parts very numerous : distributions, viz. Testudines, Ranæ, Lasome are furnished with formidable teeth; certæ, and Serpentes; or Tortoises, Frogs, others are toothless: some are tierce and Lizards, and Serpents. The animals belongs predacious; others inoffensive. Few, ex ing to the three former of these divisions cept among the serpent-tribe, are of a poi constitute the order entitled Reptilia, consonous nature; the general prejudice against taining the Amphibia Pedata, or Footed them having arisen rather on account of their Amphibia. The last division, or that of form than from any real poisonous quality; Serpents, constitutes the order Serpentes; but among the serpents, we meet with some containing the Amphibia Apoda, or Footspecies possessed of the most dreadful poi. less Amphibia. son, as well as with the power of applying AMPHITRITE, a genus of worms, of it with fatal force to the animals which they the order Mollusca: body projecting from a attack. The number of poisonous serpents tube, and annulate: penduncles or feet small, is, however, pot so great as was formerly numerous; feelers two, approximate, featherimagined; perhaps not more than a sixth ed; no eyes. There are seven species: of part of the whole number of kuown species which the A. reniformis, with a rounded being of that character. Among no animals body and simple feelers, is three inches do we meet with beings of a more singular long, and inhabits the seas about Iceland. form than in the Amphibia ; some of which The body is of a most beautiful red: head present appearances so nmisual, so grotesque, defended by two semicircular arches: plumes and so formidable, that even the imagina- fourteen, and alternately red and white: tion of the poet or painter can hardly be annulations of the body from 80 to 90, with supposed to exceed the realities of nature. each a minute tubercle on each side: tail The Amphibia in general are extremely te. pointed, and not jointed: tube red, tough, nacious of life, and will continue to move, coriaceous, simple, and four inches long. and exert many of their animal functions, AMPHISBÆNA, in natural history, a even when deprived of the head itself. 'The
genus of Serpents, of which the generic chaexperiments which have been occasionally racter is, body cylindric, equal; annular made on these subjects, can hardly be re divisions on body and tail. According to cited without horror. The natural life of Gmelin there are five species; but Dr. Shaw some of the Amphibia, more particularly of mentions two only, viz. the Alba and the the tortoise tribe, is extremely long; and Fuliginosa. The whole genus is allied to even to the sinaller tribes of frogs and li that of the Anguis, and in some degree to zards, a considerable space seems allotted. the Lacerta; it is, however, readily distinThe same is also highly probable with re. guished by the manner in which the exterior spect to the serpent-tribe. By far the ma surface of its skin is marked in well-defined jor part of the Amphibia are oviparous, numerous circles or rings, completely sursome excluding eggs covered with a hard or
rounding the body, and divided in a longicalcareous shell, like those of birds ; others, tudinal direction by still more numerous such as are covered only with a tough skin, straight lines; thus forming so many square VOL, L
or parallelogramic scales. The alba is about AMPLITUDE, magnetical, the different 18 or 20 inches long, and of a proportional rising or setting of the sun, from the east or thickness. The head, which is covered west points of the compass. It is found by with large scales, being but little larger in observing the sun, at his rising and setting, diameter than the body: the tail is short, by an amplitude compass. The difference terminating in a rounded extremity. The between the magnetical amplitude and the colour is, as the name imports, white, though true amplitude is the variation of the comin some instances it is tinged with a pale pass. If the magnetical amplitude be found rose colour. The usual number of circles to be
61° 55' at the time it is in this snake is about 223 on the body, and computed as above 16 on the tail. It is a native of South to be............. 399 47' America, where it is found in woods, prey. ing on insects and worms. It is a harmless then the difference 22° 8' is the variation animal; but on being handled, it excites a westward. slight itching on the skin, accompanied by AMPLITUDE of the range of a projectile, small pustules, owing to an acrimonious the horizontal line subtending the path in moisture exuding from the animal. A. fu- which the projectile moved. See PROliginosa is at all times readily distinguished JECTILE. by its colours. There are about 230 rings AMPUTATION, in surgery, the cutting on its body and tail. It is white, variegated off a limb, or other part of the body, with with black or deep brown spots. The head an instrument. is without spots. It is found in many parts AMULET, a charm, or preservative of South America, resembling the alba in its against mischief, witchcraft, or diseases. manners, and being equally innoxious. The Amulets were made of stone, metal, simples, skin of the amphisbæna is remarkably strong animals, and, in a word, of every thing which and tenacious, and of a smooth or glossy fancy or caprice suggested; and sometimes surface: it is supposed to be able to perfo- they consisted of words, characters, and rate the ground with great facility, in the sentences, ranged in a particular order, and manner of earth worms, to obtain its food, engraved upon wood, &c. and worn about The other species are found in America. the neck, or some other part of the body. See plate Serpentes, fig. 2.
At other times they were neither written AMPLITUDE, in astronomy, an arch of nor engraved, but prepared with many suthe horizon intercepted between the east or perstitious ceremonies, great regard being west point thereof, and the centre of the usually paid to the influence of the stars. suin, star, or planet, at its rising and setting, The Arabians have given to this species of and so is either north or south.
amulet the name of talisman. If the amplitude be taken from the rising All nations have been fond of amulets; sun, or star, it is called its rising or ortive
the Jews were extremely superstitious in amplitude; if when it sets, its setting or oc the use of them, to drive away diseases : and casive amplitude. The sun's amplitude, the Misna forbids them, unless received either rising or setting, is found by the from an approved man, who had cured at globes, by bringing the sun's place to the least three persons before, by the same horizon, either on the east or west side, and the degrees from the east point, either north Even amongst the Christians of the early or south, are the amplitude required. To times, amulets were made of the wood of find the amplitude trigonometrically, say, as the cross, or ribbands with a text of scripthe cosine of the latitude : radius :: sine of ture written in them, as preservatives against the present declination : sine of the ampli- diseases; and therefore the council of Laotude. This problein is useful in navigation, dicea forbids ecclesiastics to make such to find the variation of the compass. Thus, amulets, and orders all such as wore them in latitude 51° 31', when the sun's declina to be cast out of the church. tion is 23° 28', then we say,
· AMYGDALOID. See TRAPS TRANAs 60. S. 51° 31': 10. &c. :: S. 23° 28' : S. Amp. or, as 9.793990: 10. &c. :: 9.600118 AMYGDALUS, in botany, a genus of : 9.806127 = sine of 39° 47' = the ampli- the Polyandria Monogynia class aud order; tude sought: that is, the sun then rises or sets its characters are, that the calyx is a perian39° 47' from the east or west point, to the thium, one-leafed, tubulous, inferior, quinnorth or south, as the declination is either quefid, deciduous, divisions spreading and north or south.
obthse; the corolla of five petals, oblong
ovate, obtuse, concave, inserted into the them, and they bear little or no fruit; but calyx; the stamina have tilaments about 30, when they flower in March, they seldom filiform, erect, shorter by half than the co fail to bear plenty of fruit, very sweet, and rolla, inserted into the calyx; anthers sim- fit for the table when green; but they will ple; the pistillum has a roundish, villose pot keep long. The amygdalus, or almondgerm, simple style, of the length of the sta- tree, is cultivated both for the advantage of mens, and headed stigma ; the pericarpium the fruit, and as being highly ornamental in is a roundish, villose, large drupe, with a shrubberies, plantations, and other descriplongitudinal furrow; the seed is a nut, ovate, tions of pleasure ground, from its coming compressed, acute, with prominent sutures into bloom early in the spring. It is, howon each side, reticulated with furrows, and ever, less important in the former than the dotted with small holes. The nut of the latter point of view, as the fruit is often almond is covered with a dry skin; that of liable to miscarry in this climate. All the the peach with a small pulp. There are species and varieties of this tree are deciduseven species, of which we shall notice, 1. ons, and of a hardy nature, thriving well in A. persica, with all the serratures of the most common garden soiis. Those of the leaves acute, and the flowers sessile and tree kind frequently rise to fifteen or twenty solitary. There are two varieties, viz. the feet in height, dividing into many spreading peach-tree, with downy fruit, and the nec branches, which ultimately form beautiíul tarine, with smooth fruit. 2. A. communis, heads, that are generally well adorned in the almond-tree, with the lower serratures the beginning of March with inuumerable of the leaves glandulous, and the flowers flowers, which continue in full bloom for a sessile and in couplets. The common almond fortnight or three weeks, and are followed has leaves which resemble those of the by the leaves, which are long and narrow, peach, but the lower serratures are glandu and the fruit takes its growth. This is downy, lar; they proceed from buds both above rather large, and of an oval form ; consisting and below the flowers, and not, as in the of a thick, tough, leathery substance, that peach, from the ends of the shoots above embraces an oblong nut or stone, in which and not below the flowers. The form of the the kernel or almond is inclosed, which is fowers is not very different; but they usu the only part of the fruit that is capable of ally come out in pairs, and vary more in being made use of. The dwarf, shrubby their colour from the fine blush of the apple- sorts of this tree do not, however, in general, blossom to a snowy whiteness. The chief exceed three or four feet in height, having obvious distinction is in the fruit, which is slender stems, which send forth a great fatter, with a coriaceous covering, instead number of small branches near to the of the rich pulp of the peach and nectarine, ground; and in the single-flowered kind opening spontaneously when the kernel is various suckers are frequently sent up from ripe. The shell is not so hard as in the the root. And in both the double and first species, and is sometimes tender and single-flowered almond-tree, all the young very brittle; it is flatter, smoother, and the branches are thickly beset with flowers in furrows or holes are more superficial. This the spring, which, from their having a fine tree is a great object in some parts of Italy, pale red colour, and continuing some time and in the south of France; and there are in blow, are highly ornamental. The single large plantations of it in Provence and Dau sort have their flowers coming out about the phine. It is common in China, and most of end of March, and the double kind in the ibe eastern countries ; and also in Barbary, beginning of April, each remaining about a where it is a native. In the time of Cato fortnight in blow. The sorts chiefly cultiit seems not to have been cultivated in vated for use in this country are, according Italy; for be calls the fruit nuces Græcæ, or to Mr. Forsyth, the tender-shelled almond, Greek mts. With us it is valuable as an the sweet almond, the common, or bitter ornamental tree in clumps, shrubberies, &c. almond, the sweet Jordan almond, and the within view of the mansion; for it displays hard-shelled almond. Those propagated its delicate red-purple bloom in the month only for ornament are the dwarf and the of March, when few other trees have either double-fowering almonds.--Amygdalus leaves or flowers. An almond-tree, covered Persica, or peach-tree. Its native counwith its beautiful blossoms, is one of the try is not known. It came to the Romans most elegant objects in nature. In a for- , from Persia, as its Latin name, malus Per. ward spring they often appear in February; sica, indicates; and it has been cultivated but in this case the frost generally destroys froin time immemorial in most parts of Asia ;