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ice bank, near the mouth of a river in the north of Siberia, the nature of which he did not understand, and which was so high in the bank as to be beyond his reach. He next year observed the same object, which was then rather more disengaged from among the ice, but was still unable to conceive what it was. Towards the end of the following summer, 1801, he could distinctly see that it was the frozen carcase of an enormous animal, the entire flank of which, and one of its tusks, had become disengaged from the ice. In consequence of the ice beginning to melt earlier and to a greater degree than usual in 1803, the fifth year of this discovery, the enormous carcase became entirely disengaged, and fell down from the ice-crag on a sand-bank, forming part of the coast of the Arctic ocean. In the month of March in that year, the Tungusian carried away the two tusks, which he sold for the value of fifty rubles; and at this time a drawing was made of the animal, of which I possess a copy.
Two years afterwards, or in 1806, Mr. Adams went to examine this animal, which still remained on the sandbank where it had fallen from the ice, but its body was then greatly mutilated. The Jukuts of the neighbourhood had taken away considerable quantities of its flesh to feed their dogs; and the wild animals, particularly the white bears, had also feasted on the carcass; yet the skeleton remained entire, except that one of the fore legs was gone. The entire spine, the pelvis, one shoulder blade, and three legs, were still held together by their ligaments, and by some remains of the skin; and the other shoulder blade was found at a short distance. The head remained covered by the dry skin; and the pupil of the eyes was still distinguishable. The brain also remained within the skull, but a good deal shrunk and dried up; and one of the ears was in excellent preservation, still retaining a tuft of strong bristly hair. The upper lip was a good deal eaten away, and the under lip was entirely gone, so that the teeth were distinctly seen. The skin was extremely thick and heavy, and as much of it remained as required the exertions of ten men to carry away, which they did with considerable difficulty. More than thirty pounds weight of the hair and bristles of this animal were gathered from the wet
sand-bank, having been trampled into the mud by the white bears, while devouring the carcass. It consisted of three distinct kinds: one of these is stiff black bristles, a foot or more in length; another is thinner bristles, or coarse flexible hair, of a reddish brown colour; and the third is a coarse reddish brown wool, which grew among the roots of the long hair. These afford an un.deniable proof that this animal has belonged to a race of elephants inhabiting a cold region, with which we are now unacquainted, and by no means fitted to dwell in the torrid zone. It is also evident that the enormous animal must have been frozen up by the ice at the moment of its death.*
TORNADOS are violent gusts of wind, which come from the eastward, attended by thunder, lightning, and, in general, heavy rain. The violence of the wind seldom continues longer than half an hour; but the scene during the time that it continues may be considered as one of the most awfully sublime in nature. Its approach is foretold by certain appearances, which enable people to be on their guard. A dark cloud, not larger than "a man's hand," is just observed on the verge of the eastern horizon. Faint flashes of lightning, attended sometimes by very distant thunder, are then seen to vibrate in quick succession. The clouds in that quarter become gradually more dense and black; they also increase in bulk, and appear as if heaped on each other. The thunder, which at first was scarcely noticed, or heard only at long intervals, draws nearer by degrees, and becomes more frequent and tremendous. The blackness of the clouds increases, until a great part of the heavens seems wrapped in the darkness of midnight, and it is rendered still more tremendous by being contrasted with a gleam of light which generally appears in the western horizon. Immediately before the attack of the tornado, there is either a light breeze, scarcely perceptible, from the westward, or, as is more common, the air is perfectly calm and still. Men and animals fly
* In a future number, we will give, under the head of Natural Phenomena, an article, containing a compendium of all that is known respecting the Mammoth.---ED.
for shelter; and while expectation stands in horror, the thundering storm in an instant bursts from the clouds. It is impossible for language to convey a just idea of the uproar which then takes place.
The temperature of the air is greatly affected by a tornado; it becomes cool and clear, and it is not unusual for the thermometer to suffer a depression of eight or ten degrees within two or three minutes after the storm has come on. After a tornado, the body feels invigorated and more active, and the mind recovers much of that elasticity which long-continued heat tends to impair. On the African coast, towards Sierra Leone, the tornado season lasts two months, beginning in March.
TO THE EDITOR OF THE POCKET MAGAZINE. MR. EDITOR, I HAVE to return thanks for your favourable reception of my last communication, "Five hundred years hence!" and for its insertion, and also for your observations on the same.
Perhaps I did not sufficiently explain my intention in giving such a sketch of futurity-I intended it more as a speculation than a prediction. However, taking the thing in both lights, I give the following arguments for its ultimate truth. I enclose another article as a continuation, which you can either insert as such, or otherwise, as you may think fit; it was written at the time but mislaid: its object is "Future inventions and improvements."
I think it will be generally admitted, that the proper business, end, and object of human pursuit, is not, as is often supposed, happiness, or to gratify the appetites or passions, but the improvement of our whole intellectual faculties. This I could prove by argument, if I thought it necessary.
If, then, we are not to pursue the dictates of passion, because being of a nature generally contrary to reason, they act against it; we therefore must pursue passion only when it is subservient to wisdom, and wisdom for the sake of itself.
If we examine into the causes of the decline of empires, we shall find, that it has been the indulgence in
ambition, envy, pride, revenge, and the other despicable passions, which has in a great measure produced that decline; but this fluctuation has never been caused by the steady pursuit of wisdom; the errors of ages are indeed sufficient to manifest that she is the only proper pursuit.
To reduce this argument to our present purpose, we need but remark, that when a man pursues only that which is reasonable and right, he will ensure to himself his portion of prosperity. And to make use of analogy, and consider a kingdom as one ;-if the governors of a kingdom, pursue the course of reason, it will, in like manner, ensure to that kingdom, prosperity; and that prosperity will last as long as the governors pursue the course which accords with wisdom.
In this point of view, then, how do we account for the fall of empires? I answer, history affords examples numerous enough to demonstrate, that it is by the governors of nations having been hurried on by ambition, pride, avarice, revenge, cruelty, that nations have been brought to a level with barbarism. But when a contrary course is embraced, and every action of man is made subservient to his reason, then it is that nations rise, and rise never to fall!
Whether the passions, or the causes (whatever they may be) which contributed to the decline of the eastern nations, now reside amongst us, I will not determine. I may, however, repeat, that it is on the folly, weakness, and ignorance of governments, or their wisdom and energy, that the events of nations depend. And if this be the case, which will perhaps be admitted, it only remains to know, whether these faults do exist or not, to determine the truth of the speculation. Time, which proves most things, will also prove this; and posterity must judge of the excellence of governments by the balance of prosperity.
October 15, 1818.
INVENTIONS AND IMPROVEMENTS.
FIVE HUNDRED YEARS HENCE!
FREDERICK, NEW BRUNSWICK, NOVEMBER 1, 2318.-Near this place, the workmen have begun to
sink an amazing pit, which is intended to investigate the interior of the earth. Whether it is hollow, as some have asserted, or whether filled with condensed air, as Dr. Franklin supposed, or whether it has a regular solid strata of stone, earth, coals, clay, and the other materials which we discover on the surface, has long been an object of enquiry among intelligent men. This is the object of the present enterprise. They have now arrived to the depth of forty miles, and have discovered many metals, gems, &c. unknown before; the most prominent of which is the new metal, which from its properties is called Hardoniensiana, which possesses many peculiarities. Five years have already been expended in this interesting search, but the time it is intended to take is not known.
NEWCASTLE-UPON-TYNE, NOVEMBER 1, 2318.→ We were witnesses lately to a bargain for a chaldron of coals, for which the buyer gave twenty pounds. They came from Ireland, and are thought a great rarity here. We understand that about four or five centuries ago, coals were as plentiful here as they are now at Cork and Dublin, and were to be bought as low as from forty to fifty shillings per chaldron! but owing to the amazing expenditure of them for machinery and gaslights, it need not be wondered that coals have become nearly annihilated here; our pits have been long exhausted. Wood is now much cultivated.
BALTIMORE, NOVEMBER 1, 2318.-JOURNEY TO THE MOON! The late journey to the moon, which has excited so much interest, was performed in four weeks and two days. As our readers may not be possessed of the whole particulars, we will endeavour to relate them. Mr. Oliver Airbuilder, and Mr. James Sharpe, having examined into the nature of the inflammable matter of which balloons are composed, considered that a journey to the moon was practicable, and might be performed, by making the car considerably lighter, and supplying themselves with dense air from the earth, in case of necessity, by means of long tubes, and glass boxes, to fit the head. After supplying themselves with necessary provisions, &c. they entered the balloon, and went to the height of twenty miles, for the purpose of making experiments. Here they made