ePub 版

The result is obvious. The pushing in the rear overcomes the inertia and resistance, and the mass of snow is crowded down the ravine towards the base of the mountain. The pressure consolidates the snow till it has the consistency and the appearance of ice. And so, year after year, century after century, this compressed snow is pushed forward. It keeps mostly to the ravine by the force of gravitation, and of course, varies in breadth and in the angle of its inclination as its channel varies. More snow falls each year than melts; and so the movement downward keeps on. The movement is slow and generally unperceptible, but it goes on surely, resistlessly. It encounters obstacles, but it either works around, or climbs over, or bears them away. As the lower end gets down nearer the valley it melts more or less in the summer sun. This operates to saturate the mass more or less, and when it friezes again in the winter it is still more like a coarse-grained ice. And thus it goes on, approaching nearer and nearer to the valley, until it has reached a climate sufficiently mild to melt away at the lower end as rapidly as it moves. And this is the simple philosophy of the formation of a glacier,- -a river of compressed snow, its lower portions, especially, hard like ice, having its chief source in the snows at the top of the mountains, and extending along the slope and ravine often nearly to the foot, moved slowly and irregularly downward by pressure from behind, and melting away at the base.

Of the remarkable appearance and phenomena of the glacier, I have room for only a few words. The magnitude of some of them is overwhelming. The largest are from ten to twenty miles long, from two to five miles wide, and in depth, in certain portions, from five hundred to a thousand feet. The surfaces are frequently so irregular that to climb over them is impossible. There are hills on them two hundred feet high; ravines or cravases down which you look perpendicularly two hundred feet into the darkness; deep basins out of which it would be impossible to climb; huge blocks of icy snow flung about, weighing thousands of tons each. Sand, gravel, boulders, masses of rock twenty feet square which have been brought down by the avalanches on the sides of the ravine, or torn off and born away by the glacier itself as it moved on, are scattered over the surface, and at certain points hide the glacier, and you deem yourself on land. In the warm season there are rivulets running here and there over the surface; the cascades leap and sparkle as among the hills in the country; while now and then the numerous streams combine and pour their waters down one of the crevasses with almost the majesty of a cataract, while the roar of the waters which you cannot see, far down beneath your feet, appeals to your imagination, and taxes your powers of self control not less than does Niagara when you stand behind the sheet near the Canada shore.

The rate of motion in the glacier is not uniform. Now it seems to hasten, now to delay. It ordinarily moves faster down the steep slopes; slower when the bed is nearly level. Where resistance is less it moves with more regularity; opposed by a great force, it halts to gather up its forces, tears its way onward with a crash and jump. Like a stream of water, the movement is faster in the centre where the friction is less, than at the sides where it comes in contact with the mountain. At the end a stream rushes out-the accumulated waters that results from the melting snow, combining to form a river.

There are caverns and grottoes here and there at the base, into which one may pass for a considerable distance, and find darkness at noon, a wintry temperature in August, a wild, weird, subduing majesty always, that fills the soul with wonder, awe and a kind of delicious fear. God's wonders are about you, and it seems to be his voice that fills the strange solitude.

But the glacier will not be described, and the Alps seem defying me to put their greatness into half a dozen pages of manuscript. I cannot brave the awful mockery, and so lay down my pen.-REV. GEORGE T. DAY, in Providence Press.

THE TEACHER'S ENCYCLOPEDIA.-Teachers, as a class, cannot provide themselves with encyclopedias, or such other books of reference as would aid them in their labors, but in the latest edition of Webster's magnificent Quarto Dictionary they have a worthy substitute. Whenever I meet teachers in their associations or institutes, or in private, I earnestly present to them the great advantage they would derive from having this work near them. It will tend to make them accurate, while the definitions and illustrations will suggest many new ideas for elaboration among their pupils.-W. R. White, State Superintendent of Free Schools for West Virginia. (Wheeling, March 21, 1866.)


AIDS TO SCHOOL DISCIPLINE, BEAUTIFULLY ILLUMINATED.-We have received from the Publishers a set of beautifully engraved cards, which are intended to be used by teachers as aids to discipline in school. Perhaps there is no one thing which has perplexed the teacher so much, as to know how to secure good order in school. Whatever will induce pupils to be faithful to their duties in school, will be hailed with joy by every teacher. The failure on the part of the teacher to keep a strict account of the daily deportment and recitations of each pupil will be followed in all cases by loose discipline, and finally by an utter want of all the characteristics of a good school. Children are always pleased when they can give their parents any testimonials of correct deportment in school, and teachers should use every means in their power to encourage the children in being able to make good report of their school work. We are favorably impressed with these cards as a means of securing so important an object in the teacher's work. We refer the teachers to an advertisement in this number, explaining the manner these cards may be used. J. W. Schermerhorn & Co., 430 Broome street, New York, are the publishers. Teachers can obtain of this firm everything they need in the school-room. Send for a circular of their School Furniture. Teachers wanting situations, or committees desiring teachers will do well to communicate with this firm.


TREASURES FROM MILTON'S PROSE WRITINGS. 1 vol. 16mo, morocco cloth, bevelled boards and red edges. With fine Portrait. $2.50.

[ocr errors]

This volume consists of selections from the most famous of Milton's prose writings,The Areopagitica, Tractate on Education, Defence of the people of England, Apology for Smectymnuus, besides extracts from other treatises less generally known. These selections embrace the richest portions of those wonderful essays "in Liberty's defence, of which all Europe rung from side to side;" and display Milton's vast learning, vigorous thought, and rare sublimity of character.

LIFE AND LETTERS OF JAMES G. PERCIVAL. By Julius H. Ward. 1 vol. large 12mo, 600 pages. Morocco cloth, bevelled boards. With Portrait. $3.00.

A curious and interesting biography of a man of the most original character and of the finest poetical genius. It has been prepared with the greatest care, and its materials have been gathered from every accessible source of information. It delineates Percival's

varied experiences, his few successes, his many struggles, his literary and scientific attainments and labors. Numerous original letters written by and to distinguished men, are included, and an elaborate Index is appended to the work.

POEMS OF ELIZABETH AKERS, (Florence Percy.) 1 vol. 32mo. Blue and Gold. $1.50

The numerous admirers of "Florence Percy," will find in this beautiful little volume a collection of her best and most popular poems,- "Rock me to sleep," "Spring at the Capital," "Violet Planting," "Among the Laurels," and others universally known and admired.

SPARE HOURS. Second Series. By John Brown, M. D., Author of "Rab and His Friends," etc. 1 vol. 16mo, $2.00.

This series of papers, by one of the first of living essayists, has been collected by the author expressly for this American Edition. It contains some of his most striking sketches," Pet Majorie," almost unequalled for curious and pathetic interest; a thoroughly appreciative and interesting sketch of John Leech, the distinguished humorous artist; and an admirable criticism of Thackeray.

The volume is embellished with a fine new Portrait of the Author, and several illustrations.

ROXAL TRUTHS. By Henry Ward Beecher. 1 vol. 16mo. With excellent new Portrait. $1.75.

A book full of those vigorous, striking, and beautiful statements and interpretations of facts and principles, for which Mr. Beecher is distinguished. His numerous admirers will find this one of his richest and most suggestive volumes.

For Sale by all Booksellers. Sent, postpaid, on receipt of price. Ticknor & Fields, Publishers, Boston.

THE CAMP, THE BATTLE FIELD, AND THE HOSPITAL; or, Lights and Shadows of the Great Rebellion. Heroic, Patriotic, Romantic, Humorous, and Tragical. Splendidly Illustrated with over one hundred fine Portraits and beautifiul Engravings. Address, New England Publishing Co., 14 Phenix Building, Boston, Mass. This work for genial humor, tender pathos, startling interest, and attractive beauty, stands peerless and alone among all its competitors. The Valiant and Brave Hearted, the Picturesque and Dramatic, the Witty and Marvellous, the Tender and Pathetic. The Roll of Fame and Story, Camp, Picket, Spy, Scout, Bivouac, and Siege; Startling Surprises; Wonderful Escapes, Famous Words and Deeds of Woman, and the whole Panorama of the War are here thrillingly portrayed in a masterly manner, at once historical and romantic, rendering it the most ample, brilliant and readable book that the war has called forth. This work sells itself. The people are tired of dry details and partizan works, and want something humorous, romantic, and startling. We have agents clearing over $200 per month. Send for circulars, and see our terms and proof of the above assertion.


MERICAN TABLET CO., 29 Brattle St., Boston, Manufacturers of GRISWOLD'S PATENT ERASABLE TABLETS, MEMORANDUMS, &c., for Office and School use, also sole agents in New England for the application of MUNGER'S EUREKA LIQUID SLATING. Henry A. Clark, H. J. Griswold, Agents; Henry A. Clark, Treasurer. Erasable Tablets, made in imitation of Ivory Tablets, and are put together with or without clasps, and name plates; some of them are beautifully ornamented with paintings of Flowers, Landscapes, Birds, &c., and are equal in the facility with which they are written upon and erased, to the best Ivory Tablets. Erasable Diary Slips, two leaves for insertion in the pocket of Diaries and Wallets. Erasable Memorandum Books, made in various styles for pocket use, and are invaluable for merchants and clerks, also conductors on railroad and horse cars, (seven sizes). Erasable Tuck Memorandums, containing four leaves of our Erasable Board, and pockets for letters and papers. Erasable Folio Tablets, for office and school use; two leaves of our Erasable Board neatly bound in muslin; sizes, 5-7 and 6-9. Erasable Leaf Tablets, are intended for spelling and other written exercises. Other goods will be ready for the market soon. In color, texture, and the facility with which it is erased, this composition is superior to any ever before made, and only equalled by ivory itself. AMERICAN TABLET Co., 29 Brattle St., Boston.

J. Warren for CYBER." Warren's Primary Geography,

L. HAMMETT, introducing agent for CowPERTHWAIT & Co's LIST OF Books.

Warren's Common School Geography, Warren's Physical Geography. Greene's Improved Grammars: Greene's Introduction, Greene's English Grammar, Greene's Analysis. Colburn's Series of Arithmetics: The Child's Arithmetic, Colburn's Intellectual Arithmetic, Colburn's Common School Arithmetic, Colburn's Arithmetic and Application. Berard's History of the United States. Leach's Complete Speller. Very low terms for first introduction. Old books taken in exchange. Potter & Hammond's System of Penmanship, Potter & Hammond's System of Book-Keeping, Potter & Hammond's School Pens, Potter & Hammond's Extra Fine Pens, Potter & Hammond's Commercial Pens. Warren's Outline Maps, Warren's Physical Charts. American Educational Monthly, per annum, $1.50. Address, J. L. HAMMETT, care of C. G. Cooke, 37 & 39 Brattle Street, Boston.

CHOOL OFFICERS desiring to secure the services of a person of ample and HIGH SCHOOL, can do so by addressing "R. I. SCHOOLMASTER," Providence, R. I.

ROBERT E. LEE, late of the Confederate army, is President of Washington College, at Lexington, Virginia. This Institute was founded in 1778, and endowed by General Washington. The College of William and Mary, and the University of Virginia, are soon to resume operations.

[blocks in formation]

THE expediency and necessity of laws for the prevention of truantship, or idle absence from school, among school children, is a subject which is attracting the earnest attention of the teachers of the State. The evil sought to be removed is a very grave one: it is everyway opposed to both the successful operation of the schools and the best interests of the community, whether present or prospective. That its correction is a matter of great importance, cannot be denied; but whether it can consistently be corrected by direct legislation, is a question the solution of which is attended with some difficulty.

The chief difficulty lies in the fact that a law to prevent truantship, must practically be a law compelling attendance on school; in other words, it must substantially force the youth of the community to become educated. And yet, no principle of public liberty under a free government would seem clearer than that a State can no more compel its citizens to become intelligent, than it can force them to become virtuous. Whether men shall grow up either fools or knaves, involving as that must the voluntary control of either the individual intellect or heart, would seem, beyond a doubt, a matter of purely individual freedom and responsibility. How then can the State touch it, and on what grounds?

The grounds upon which the State might justify legislative interference in the premises can only be the following: First, a State must claim as a fundamental right, that of providing for its own pre

servation. But it has been clearly demonstrated that, under a free government, no element, save public immorality, is more directly hostile to the well-being of the State, or more surely subversive of its very existence, than popular ignorance. It is only on this ground that it becomes competent for a State to assume a direct control of the education of the masses, and to provide for the institution and maintenance of a sytem of public schools. But truantship is the inception of adult ignorance, and, as such, is little other than a crime against the required intelligence of a free commonwealth.

Again, in attempting to secure the just education of its citizens as requisite to its own safety, the State has established a system of public schools. To their support she has appropriated an important part of the public revenue. But the right to establish this system of schools, and to devote so much of its revenue to their oversight and support, must also involve the right and the duty to do whatever else may be needful to secure that these schools shall not be needlessly prevented from effecting the desired object; in short, that the public money shall not be wasted upon ineffectual and useless efforts. Truantship, however, is directly subversive of the best organization and operation of the public school. Unfaithful attendance on the part of the pupils, not less than incompetent or unfaithful instruction on the part of the teacher, is, then, practically a crime against the intention of the State.

Finally, on more general grounds, a State may lawfully, so far as it can without infringing upon private freedom, provide for securing the peace and good order of the community. This every well-ordered State does in all its laws relative to disorderly places of resort, demoralizing occupations, and vagrancy in general. But nothing can be clearer than that the streets are unsafe places of congregation for idle children, and that truantship is demoralizing in its tendency. Indeed, truantship is to a great extent incipient disorderliness and vagrancy. It is, then, substantially a crime against the ultimate, if not the present peace and good order of the community. On this, then, as well as the foregoing grounds, it would seem fully competent for the State to legislate for the prevention of the evil in question.

How, now, may the State consistently legislate against this, and seek to secure a regular and faithful attendance upon the schools? First, indirectly, by so restricting the possession and exercise of political rights among its citizens, as to make ignorance a disenabling or degrading element, and thus to offer a substantial premium upon a

« 上一頁繼續 »