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The subjoined account of this valuable earth, is extracted from
the Domestic Encyclopedia, published in England, where its properties are known, and its benefits experienced.
THE quantity necessary to be used, varies according to the nature of the soil, but the utmost caution is requisite. On sandy, gravelly, or light soils, it will be advisable to spread as much as will form a thick coat, in order to bind and stiffen the ground.
But, of whatever nature the land may be, the most judicious cultivators recommend such a portion to be laid on it, as will form a thin coat over the whole surface.
The proper season for marling, is the summer; as this kind of manure is then perfectly dry, and not only lighter, but also more easily reduced to powder. Marle, however, may be advantageously spread during the winter-frosts; as in the latter season, there are few opportunities of performing other labours of the field.
Previously to marling, the land ought to be diligently cleared from all weeds, and rendered level, both with the brake and the common harrow, so that the marle may be equally spread on the surface; where it should be suffered to lie during the winter. In the month of February, and in dry weather, it will be proper to draw a bush-harrow, well weighted, over the land, that the marle may be uniformly distributed; but, as this manure is very ponderous, and sinks to the bottom of the furrow, if injudiciously ploughed in, it has been suggested to turn it into an ebb-furrow for the first crop: during the growth of the latter, the marle will incorporate with, and become a part of the soil, from which it does not readily separate. So permanent, indeed, are its fertilizing properties, that if land be properly marled, it will continue arable for the space of twelve or fourteen years; and, for pasture, during a much longer period.
As marle affords so valuable a manure, it will be useful to point out a few characteristics, by which it may be distinguished from different substances that resemble it. For this purpose, a small mass or lump should be exposed to air: if genuine, it will, in a short time, by the action of the dews, nitre, &c. crumble into small pieces; and there will likewise appear a hoary or whitish congelation on the side accessible to the rays of the sun. Another method consists in reducing the marle, when dry, to small particles, which are to be thrown into a coal-fire ; where, if it be native or pure, it will crackle in a manner similar to salt. But the most certain criterion is, to break a small piece of dry marle into a glass of pure water; in which, if the substance be of the genuine kind, it will speedily dissolve ; forming a soft, almost impalpable paste, and throwing up many bubbles or sparkles to the surface of the water. The experiment may be repeated with vinegar, in which fluid the effervescence will be considerably stronger : in both cases, however, it will be necessary to keep the glass steady; as otherwise, if it be agitated, the intestine motion cannot be distinctly observed.
A good artificial marle may be prepared, by mixing equal quantities of pure clay and lime, in alternate layers, so as to form a heap, which should be exposed to the winter frost: this compound is well calculated for light lands; but, if the soil be strong and heavy, it will be necessary to substitute loam and sand for the clay. Such compositions may be usefully employed, where marle is not easily procured; as they will amply repay the labour bestowed on mixing them, being little inferior to the genuine calcareous earth.
THE scarcity of gold and silver has led to the invention, at Berlin, of a metallic composition, denominated as calderium, because it is said to be an imitation of the metal so called by the Romans. Utensils of this metal, exactly resemble gold at 14 to 18 carats, is neither tarnished by use, nor pernicious to health, and is sold at the rate of eight groschen (one shilling) per ounce. The manufactory of Patzig and Gode, of Berlin, makes great quantities of plate, vases, and utensils of this kind.
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NEWTON was fully persuaded of the existence of a God; and by that term understood, not only an infinite, almighty, eternal, creative Being, but a master, who had established a relation between himself and his creatures; as, without this relation, the knowledge of a God is only a barren idea, which would seem to invite every reasoner of a perverse nature to the practice of vice by the hopes of impunity,
Accordingly that great philosopher, at the end of his Princi. pia, makes a singular remark, namely, That we do not say, My eternal, my infinite, because these attributes do not at all relate to our nature; but we say, My God.: and are thereby to understand the master and preserver of our life, the object of our thoughts. Newton's philosophy leads to the knowledge of a Supreme Being, who freely created and arranged all things. For if the world be finite; if there be a vacuum, the existence of matter is not neces. sary ; and therefore has received existence from a free cause. If matter gravitates, it does not appear to gravitate from its nature, as it is extended by its nature ; it has therefore received its gravitation from God. If the planets, in a space void of resistance, revolve one way rather than another, the hand of their Creator must have directed their course that way with an absolute freedom.
It may, perhaps, appear strange to many, that among all the proofs of the existence of a God, the strongest in Newton's opinion is that of final cause's. The design, or rather the designs, various ad infinitum, displayed in the most enormous and most minute parts of the universe, form a demonstration, which, from its being so manifestly sensible, is little regarded by some philosophers; but Newton thought that these infinite relations could only be the work of an artist infinitely wise. He inade little account of the proof from the succession of beings. It is commonly said, that if men, animals, vegetables, and whatever compose this world, were eternal, a series of generations without cause must of consequence be admitted. The existence of these beings, it is said, would have no origin; no eternal can be supposed to rise again from generation to generation without a beginning; no eternal, because no one can exist of itself. Thus every thing would be effect, and nothing cause. This argument appeared to him founded only on the ambiguity of generations, and of beings formed one by the other. For Atheists, who admit a plenum, answer, that there are, properly speaking, no generations; there are not several substances: the universe is a whole, necessarily existing, inces. santly displaying itself. It is one and the same being, whose nature is immutable in its substance, and eternally varied in its modifications. Thus the argument drawn from the succession of beings would, perhaps, prove very little against an Atheist whe should deny the plurality of beings. He would have recourse to those ancient axioms, That nothing is produced by nothing; that one substance cannot produce another; that every thing is eternal and necessary.
Matter, says the Atheist, is necessary, because it exists; motion is necessary, because nothing is at rest; and motion is so necessary, that in nature never any motive forces are lost.
What is to-day was yesterday ; therefore it was before yesterday, and thus recurring without end. No person will dare to say, that things shall return to nothing; how then dare to say, that they came from nothing? In a woru, I know not if there be a metaphysical proof more striking, and which speaks more strongly to man, than the admirable order in the world; and whether there has ever been a finer argument than the following, The heavens declare the glory of God. Accordingly, you see that Newton, at the end of his Optics and Principia, uses no other. No reasoning appeared to him more grand and convincing in favour of a Deity than that of Plato, who makes one of his interlocutors say, You think I have an intelligent soul, because you perceive order in my words and actions ; surely, then, from the order you see in this world, there must be in it a spirit supremely intelligent.
But if the existence of an eternal almighty Being be proved, it is not equally proved that this Being is infinitely good in the general sense of the word.
This is the grand refuge of the Atheist. If I admit a God, says he, this God must be goodness itself. He who has given me a being, should also give me happiness : but I see only disorder and calamity among mankind. The necessity of an eternal matter offends me less, than a Creator dealing so harshly with his creatures. My doubts are not to be removed by being told, that a first man, composed of a body and soul, offended his Creator, and that mankind suffers for his offence. For if our bodies are derived from the first man, our souls are not; and even if they are, it seems the most horrid injustice, for the punishment to descend from the father to the children.
It is evident, that the Americans, and the people of the old world, the Negroes and the Laplanders, are not at all descended from that first man.
The interior constitution of the organs of the Negroes is a palpable demonstration of this. I had, there.