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Micrographia - or some physiological descriptions of minute bodies made by magnifying glasses with observations and inquiries thereupon/Table

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Observat. 1.Of the point of a Needle.

2A Description of it:what other
Bodies have the sharpest points:
of the ruggedness of polisht Metal.A
3description of a printed point.Of very
small writing, and the use of it for
secret intelligence: the cause of the
coursness of printed lines and points.


Observ. 2.Of the Edge of a Razor.

A description of it: the causes of
5its roughness: of the roughness of very
well polisht Optick Glasses.

Obser. 3.Of fine Lawn.

A description of it: A silken Flax
mention'd, an attempt to explicate the
6Phænomena of it, with a conjecture
at the cause of the gloss of Silk.

Observ. 4.Of Tabby.

A short description of it. A conjecture
7about the reason why Silk is so
susceptible of vivid colours:and why
Flax and Hair is not. A conjecture,
that it may perhaps be possible to spin
a kind of artificial Silk, out of some
glutinous substance that may equalize natural Silk.


Observ. 5.Of water'd Silks.

The great unaccurateness of artificial
works. A description of a piece of
9water'd Silk; an Explication of the
cause of the Phænomena: the way by
which that operation is perform'd:
10some other Phænomena mention'd
depending on the same cause.

Observ. 6.Of Glass-Canes.

The exceeding smallness of some of
these Bodies. By what means the hollowness
of these small pipes was discover'd:
11several Phænomena of it mention'd.
An attempt to explicate them
12from the congruity and incongruity of
13Bodies: what those proprieties are. A
hypothetical explication of fluidity: of
14the fluidity of the air, and several other
15Phænomena of it: of congruity & incongruity;
16illustrated with several Experiments:
17what effects may be ascrib'd
18to these properties: an explication of
the roundness of the surface of fluid
19Bodies: how the ingress of fluid bodies
20into a small hole of an heterogenious
body is hindred by incongruity; a
21multitude of Phænomena explicable
hereby.Several Quæries propounded;
1. Concerning the propagation of light
22through differing mediums.2. Concerning
Gravity.3. Concerning the
roundness of the Sun, Moon, and Planets.
4. Concerning the roundness of
Fruits, Stones, and divers artificial
23Bodies. His Highness Prince Rupert's
24way of making Shot. Of the roundness
of Hail. Of the grain of Kettering
25Stone, and of the Sparks of fire.5. Concerning
springiness and tenacity.
266. Concerning the original of Fountains;
several Histories and Experiments
27relating thereto.7. Concerning
the dissolution of Bodies in Liquors.
288. Concerning the universality of this
Principle: what method was taken in
making and applying experiments. The

explication of filtration, and several
29other Phænomena; such as the motion
of Bodies on the surface of Liquors;
30several Experiments mention'd to this
purpose. Of the height to which the
water may rise in these Pipes; and a
31conjecture about the juices of Vegetables, &
the use of their pores. A further explication of Congruity:
And an attempt of solving the Phænomena of the strange
Experiment of the suspension of the
32Mercury at a much greater height
then thirty inches. The efficacy of
immediate contact, and the reason of it.

33Observ. 7.Of Glass drops.

Several Experiments made with
34these small Bodies. The manner of the
breaking and flawing of them, explicated
35by Figures. What other bodies
will be flawed much in the same manner:
so other tryals, and a description
of the Drops themselves: some
conjectures at the cause of the Phænomena,
indeavoured to be made probable
36by several Arguments and Experiments.
An Experiment of the expansion
of Water by heat, and shrinking by
cold: the like Proprieties suppos'd in
37Glass drops, and what effects proceed
from them: the seven Propositions on
which the conjectures are grounded.
Experiments to shew, that bodies expand
38by heat. The manner of making
Thermometers, and the Instrument
39for graduating them. The manner of
graduating them, and their use: Other
Experiments to prove the expansion
40of bodies by heat. Four experimental
Arguments to prove the expansion
41of Glass by heat: further prov'd by the
Experiment of boyling Alabaster;
which is explicated. An explication
of the contracting of heated Glass upon
42cooling. An explication how the
parts of the Glass become bent by sudden
cold, and how kept from extricating
themselves by the contignation of
the Glass drop; which is further explicated
by another Experiment made
43with a hollow Glass ball: the reason of
the flying asunder of the parts further
explicated: that 'tis probable these bodies
may have many flaws, though not
visible, and why: how a gradual heating
44and cooling does put the parts of
Glass, and other hardned bodies,
into a looser texture.

Observ. 8.Of Fiery Sparks.

The occasion and manner of making
this Experiment: divers Observations
45set down in order to the finding
out the reasons: some conjectures
concerning it, which are endeavoured
to be explicated and confirm'd by several
Experiments and Reasons: the
46Hypothesis a little further explicated.
Some Observations about the
47Globular Figure: and an Experiment
of reducing the filings of Tin or Lead
to exactly round Globules.

Observ. 9.Of Fantastical Colours.

The texture of Muscovy Glass; its
Figures: what other Bodies are like it:
48that it exhibits several colours, and
how: several Observations and Experiments
about those colours: the reason
49why on this occasion the nature of colours
is inquir'd into. A conjecture at
50the reason of these colours explicated
by several Experiments and Reasons:
First, by continual cleaving the Body
till it become colour'd. Secondly, by
producing all kinds of colours with
two flat Plates of Glass. Thirdly, by
blowing Glass so thin in the Lamp, till
51it produce the same effect. Fourthly, by
doing the same with Bubbles of divers
other transparent Bodies: the
reasons of the colours on nealed Steel,
52where by the way the causes of the

52hardning and tempering of Steel,
endeavour'd to be shewn and explicated
by several Reasons and Experiments:
the reason of the colours on
53Lead, Brass, Copper, Silver, &c. other
Instances of such colour'd bodies in
animal substances: several other
distinguishing Observations. Des Cartes
54Hypothesis of Colours examin'd. An
Hypothesis for the explication of
light by motion, indeavoured to be
explicated and determined by several
55Reasons and Experiments: three
distinguishing Properties of the motion
56of light. The distinguishing Properties
of a trasparent Medium [that
there seems to be no Experiment that
proves the Instantaneous motion of
57light] the manner of the propagation
of light through them. Of the
homogeniety and heterogeniety of
transparent Mediums, and what
effects they cause on the Rayes of light,
explicated by a Figure: an Examination
58of the refraction of the Rays
by a plain Surface, which causes Colours.
An Examination of the like effects
59produced by a spherical Surface:
the use that may be made of these
Experiments, for the examination of
several Hypotheses of Colours. Des
60Cartes Hypothesis examin'd. Some
61Difficulties taken notice of in it. What
seems most likely to be the cause of colour:
that propriety is indeavoured
92to be shewn in a Glass ball: that the
reflection is not necessary to produce
63Colours nor a double refraction: the
Hypothesis further examined, both in
64the pellucid Medium and in the Eye.
The definitions of Colours; and a further
65explication and examination of
66the Proprieties of laminated Bodies;
67by what means they conduce to
the production of Colours.

Observ. 10. Of Metalline Colours.

68That all Colours seem to be caus'd by
refraction. An Hypothesis consonant
69hereunto, explicated by Figures. How
several Experiments, of the sudden
changing of Colours by Chymical Liquors
70may be hereby explicated: how
many wayes such Chymical Liquors
may alter the colours of Bodies.
71Objections made against this Hypothesis
of two colours only, indeavoured
to be answer'd, by several Reasons
72and Experiments. The reason why
some Colours are capable of being diluted,
others not: what those are: that
probably the particles of most metalline
Colours are transparent; for this
several Arguments and Observations
73are recited: how Colours become incapable
of diluting, explicated by a
74Similitude. An Instrument, by which
one and the same coloured Liquor at
once exhibited all the degrees of colours
between the palest yellow and
deepest red: as likewise another that
exhibited all varieties of blues: several
Experiments try'd with these
75Boxes. An Objection drawn from the
nature of Painters colours answered:
that diluting and whitening a colour
are different operations; as are
deepening and blackening: why some
may be diluted by grinding, and some
other by being tempered with Oyl:
76several Experiments for the explicating
77of some former Assertions: why
Painters are forced to make use of
many colours: what those colours are:
78and how mixt. The conclusion, that
most coloured Bodies seem to consist
79of transparent particles: that all colours
dissoluble in Liquors are capable
of diluting: some of mixing, what
a strange variety may thereby be produc'd.

Observ. 11. Of the Figures of Sand.

80Of the substances and shapes of

common and other Sands: a description
of a very small Shell.

81Observ. 12.Of Gravel in Urine.

A description of such Gravel, and
82some tryals made with it, and conjectures
at its cause.

Obser. 13.Of Diamonds in Flints.

A description and examination of
some of them, explicated further by
83Cornish Diamonds: several Observations
about reflection and refraction:
and some deductions therefrom; as
an explication of whiteness; that the
Air has a stronger reflection then Water.
84How several Bodies may be made
transparent: an explication of the
85Phænomena of Oculus Mundi. Of
the regular Geometrical Figures of
86several Bodies: an hypothetical
87explication mentioned: the method of
prosecuting this inquiry.

88Observ. 14.Of frozen Figure.

The Figures of hoar Frost, and the
89Vortices on windows: several Observations
on the branched Figures of
90Urine: the Figures of Regulus
91Martis stellatus, and of Fern. Of the
92Figures of Snow. Of frozen water.

Observ. 15.Of Kettering Stone.

93A description of the Figure of the
94Particles, and of the Pores, and of the
95Contexture. Several Observations and
96Considerations thereupon: some
Conjectures about the medium and
97propagation of light, and the constitution
of fluid and transparent Bodies. Several
98Experiments to prove the porousness
of Marble, and some other
Stones. An account of some Experiments
to this purpose made on an
99Oculus Mundi: some other Considerations
and Experiments about the
100porousness of Bodies: some other
Considerations about the propagation of
light and refraction.

Observ. 16.Of Charcoal.

101Of two sort of Pores to be found
in all Woods and Vegetables; the
shape of them; the number, thickness,
manner and use of these Pores.
102An explication of the Phænomena
of Coals. The manner of charring
Wood, or any other body. What part
103of Wood is combustible. An Hypothesis
104of fire explicated in twelve
particulars, wherein the Action of
the Air, as a Menstruum in the
dissolution of all sulphureous bodies, is
105very particularly explicated, and
some other Considerations about the
Air proposed: the examination of
106a piece of Lignum fossile sent from
Rome, and some Conclusions thence

107Observ. 17.Of Wood, and other Bodies, petrified.

Several Observations of divers
108kinds of these substances. A more
particular examination and explication
of one very notable piece of petrified
Wood; and some Conjectures about
the cause of those productions:
109several Observations made on other
110petrified Bodies, as shells, &c. And
111some probable Conclusions thence
112deduc'd, about the original cause of
those Bodies.

113Observ. 18.Of the Pores of Cork, and other Bodies.

114Several Observations and Considerations
about the nature of Cork:
the number of Pores in a cubical

Inch, and several considerations
115about Pores. Several Experiments
and Observations about the nature
of Cork: the Texture and Pores of
the Pith of an Elder, and several
other Trees: of the Stalks of Burdocks,
Teasels, Daisies, Carret, Fennel,
116Ferne, Reeds, &c. of the frothy
texture of the Pith of a Feather: some
Conjectures about the probability of
values in these Pores. Argued also
from the Phænomena 'of sensible
117and humble Plant:
120some Observations on which are inserted.

121Observ. 19.Of a Vegetable growing on blighted Leaves.

122Several Observations and
123Examinations made of them: several
124Considerations about spontaneous
125generation arising from the
putrefaction of Bodies.

Observ. 20.Of Blew Mould and Mushromes.

126The description of several kinds
127of Moulds. The method of proceeding
in natural Inquiries. Several
Considerations about the nature of
Mould and Mushromes. 1. That
they may be produc'd without seed.
2. That they seem to have none.
3. That Salts, &c. are shap'd into as
128curious figures without a seed. 4. Of
a kind of Mushrome growing in a
Candle: A more particular explication
of this last sort of Mushromes.
1295. Of the figure and manner of the
production of petrified Iceicles:
several deductions from these Considerations,
130about the nature of the vegetation
of Mould and Mushromes.

131Observ. 21.Of Moss.

132The description of several sorts of
Mosses; upon this occasion several
Conjectures, about the manner of the
production of these kinds of Bodies,
are hinted, and some of them explicated
133by a Similitude taken from a
134piece of Clock-work, The vast difference
of the bigness of vegetable
Bodies; and the probability that the
least may comprehend as curious
135contrivances as the greatest. Of multitudes
of other Moulds, Mosses, and
Mushromes, and other vegetating
Principles, in Water, Wood, &c.

Observ. 22.Of Sponges, and other fibrous Bodies.

136Several Observations and Conjectures
about the making of these
Bodies, and several Histories out of
137Authors. Scarce any other Body hath
138such a texture; the fibrous texture
139of Leather, Spunk, &c. (which are
there describ'd) come nearest to it.
That upon tryal with a piece of
140Spunge and Oyl the necessity of
respiration could not be alter'd.

Observ. 23.Of the Form of Seaweed.

From the curiously shap'd
Surface of this Sea-weed, and some
141others, is conjectured the possibility of
Multitudes of the like.

Observ. 24.Of the Surfaces of some Leaves.

The description, 1. Of the bald
Surfaces of Leaves. 2. Of the downy
Surfaces of several others.
3. Of the gummous exsudation, or
142small transparent Pearls, discovered
with a Microscope in several
others. An Instance of all which is
afforded in a Rosemary Leaf.

Observ. 25.Of the stinging Points of a Nettle.

143A description of the Needles and
several other contrivances in the leaf
144of a Nettle: how the stinging pain is
created: upon this several considerations
about poysoning Darts are set
down. An Experiment of killing Effs,
and Fishes with Salt. Some conjectures
at the efficacy of Baths; the use that
may be made of injecting into the
145Veins. A very remarkable History
out of Bellonius; and some Considerations
about staining and dying of Bodies.

Observ. 26.Of Cowage.

The definition of it out of Parkinson:
146an Experiment made of it: a description,
and some conjectures at the
cause of the Phænomena.

Observ. 27.Of the Beard of a wild Oat.
148The description of its shape and
149properties: the manner of making a
150Hygroscope with it; and a
151Conjecture at the causes of these motions,
152and of the motions of the Muscles.

Observ. 28.Of the Seeds of Venice Looking-glass.

153The description of them.

Obser. 29.Of the Seeds of Time.

154A description of them. A digression
about Natures method.

Observ. 30.Of Poppy Seeds.

155The description and use of them.

Observ. 31.Of Purslane Seeds.

A description of these and many
other Seeds.

157Observ. 32.Of Hair.

158The description of several sorts of
Hair; their Figures and Textures:
159the reason of their colours, A description
160of the texture of the skin, and of
161Spunk and Sponges: by what passages
and pores of the skin transpiration
seems to be made. Experiments
to prove the porousness of the skin of

162Observ. 33.Of the Scales of a Soale.

A description of their beauteous form.

163Observ. 34.Of the Sting of a Bee.

164A description of its shape, mechanisme,
and use.

165Observ. 35.Of Feathers.
167A description of the shape and
curious contexture of Feathers: and
some conjectures thereupon.

Obser. 36.Of Peacocks Feathers.

168A description of their curious form
169and proprieties; with a conjecture at
the cause of their variable colours.

Obser. 37.Of the Feet of Flyes, and other Insects.

170A description of their figure, parts,
171and use; and some considerations thereupon.

172Obser. 38.Of the Wings of Flyes.

After what manner and how swiftly
173the wings of Insects move. A
description of the Pendulums under the
174wings, and their motion; the shape
and structure of the parts of the wing.

175Obser. 39.Of the Head of a Fly.

1. All the face of a Drone-fly is nothing
almost but eyes.2. Those are
176of two magnitudes.3. They are
Hemispheres, and very reflective and
smooth.4. Some directed towards every
quarter.5. How the fly cleanses
them.6. Their number.7. Their order:
177divers particulars observ'd in the
178dissecting a head. That these are very
probably the eyes of the Creature; argued
from several Observations and
179Experiments, that Crabs, Lobsters,
Shrimps, seem to be water Insects, and
to be framed much like Air Insects.
180Several Considerations about their
manner of vision.

Obser. 40.Of the Teeth of a Snail.

181A brief description of it.

Observ. 41.Of the Eggs of Silkworms.

182Several Observables about the
Eggs of Insects.

183Observ. 42.Of a blue Fly.

184A description of its outward and
inward parts. Its hardiness to indure
185freezing, and sleeping in Spirit of wine.

Observ. 43.Of a water Insect.

186A description of its shape, transparency,
motion, both internal and progressive,
187and transformation. A History
somewhat Analogus cited out of
188Piso. Several Observations about the
various wayes of the generations of
189Insects: by what means they act so
190seemingly wisely and prudently. Several
191Quæries propounded.Postscript,
192containing a relation of another very
odd way of the generation of Insects.
An Observation about the fertility of
the Earth of our Climate in producing
193Insects, and of divers other wayes of
their generation.

Observ. 44.Of the tufted Gnat.

Several Observables about Insects,
194and a more particular description of
the parts of this Gnat.

195Ob. 45.Of the great belly'd Gnat.

A short description of it.

Obser. 46.Of a white Moth.

196A description of the feathers and
197wings of this, and several other
198Insects. Divers Considerations about the
wings, and the flying of Insects and Birds.

Obs. 47.Of the Shepherd Spider.

A description of its Eyes: and the
199sockets of its long legs: and a Conjecture
of the mechanical reason of its
fabrick; together with a supposition,
that 'tis not unlikely, but Spiders may
have the make of their inward parts
200exactly like a Crab, which may be
call'd a water Spider.

Obser. 48.Of the hunting Spider.

A short description of it; to which
201is annext an excellent History of it,
made by Mr. Evelyn. Some further

202Observations on other Spiders, and
their Webs, together with an examination
of a white Substance flying up
and down in the Air after a Fog.

203Obser. 49.Of an Ant.

That all small Bodies, both Vegetable
and Animal, do quickly dry and
wither. The best remedy I found to hinder
it, and to make the Animal lye still
204to be observ'd. Several particulars related
of the actions of this Creature;
205and a short description of its parts.

Obs. 50.Of the wandring Mite.

206A description of this Creature, and
of another very small one, which usually
207bore it company. A Conjecture at
the original of Mites.

Observ. 51.Of a Crab-like Insect.
208A brief description of it.

Observ. 52.Of a Book-worm.

209A description of it; where by the
way is inserted a digression, experimentally
explicating the Phænomena
210of Pearl. A consideration of its
digestive faculty.

Observ. 53.Of a Flea.

211A short description of it.

Observ. 54.Of a Louse.

212A description of its parts, and some
213notable circumstances.

Observ. 55.Of Mites.

The exceeding smalness of some
Mites, and their Eggs. A description
214of the Mites of Cheese: and an intimation
of the variety of forms in other
215Mites, with a Conjecture at the reason.

Ob. 56.Of small Vine-Mites.

A description of them; a ghess at
their original; their exceeding smalness
216compar'd with that of a Wood-louse,
from which they may be suppos'd to come.

Observ. 57.Of Vinegar-worms.

217A description of them, with some
considerations on their motions.

Obs. 58.Of the Inflexion of the Rays of Light in the Air.

218A short rehearsal of several Phænomena.
219An attempt to explicate
them: the supposition founded on two
Propositions, both which are indeavoured
to be made out by several Experiments.
What density and rarity
is in respect of refraction: the refraction
of Spirit of Wine compared with
220that of common Water: the refraction
of Ice. An Experiment of making an
Undulation of the Rays by the mixing
of Liquors of differing density. The
221explication of inflection, mechanically
and hypothetically: what Bodies
have such an inflection. Several Experiments
to shew that the Air has
222this propriety; that it proceeds from
the differing density of the Air: that
the upper and under part of the Air
223are of differing density: some Experiments
to prove this. A Table of the
strength of the spring of the Air,
answering to each degree of extension;
224when first made, and when repeated.
225Another Experiment of compressing
226the Air. A Table of the strength of the Air,
answering to each compression
and expansion; from which the height

227of the Air may be suppos'd indefinite;
228to what degree the Air is rarifi'd at
any distance above the Surface of the
Earth: how, from this, Inflection is
229inferr'd; and several Phænomena
230explain'd. That the Air near the
Earth is compos'd of parts of differing
231density; made probable by several
232Experiments and Observations; how
this propriety produces the effects of
the waving and dancing of Bodies;
and of the twinkling of the Stars.
233Several Phænomena explicated.
Some Quæries added.
1. Whether this Principle may not
be made use of, for perfecting Optick
234Glasses? What might be hoped from
it if it were to be done?
2. Whether from this Principle
the apparition of some new Stars may
not be explicated?
3. Whether the height of the Air
may be defin'd by it?
4. Whether there may not sometimes
be so great a disparity of density
between the upper and under parts
of the Air, as to make a reflecting
2355. Whether, if so, this will not
explicate the Phænomena of the
Clouds. An Experiment to this purpose?
2367. Whether the Rayes from the
top of Mountains are not bended into
Curve-lines by inflection? An Argument
for it, taken from an Experiment
made on St. Paul's Steeple.
8. Whether the distance of the
Planets will not be more difficult to
237be found? What wayes are most likely
to rectifie the distance of the Moon:
the way of fitting Telescopes for
such Observations. How to make the
238Observations, and how from them to
find the true distance of the Moon at
any time. How the distance of the Sun
239may be found by two Observators. The
way by the Dicotomy of the Moon uncertain.
That the distance of the
Moon may be less then it has
been hitherto suppos'd. Kepler's Supposition
240not so probable: the explication of
the Phænomena by another Hypothesis.

241Observ. 59.Of the fixt Stars.

Of the multitudes of Stars discoverable
by the Telescope, and the
variety of their magnitudes: 78. Stars
distinguisht in the Pleiades: that there
are degrees of bigness even in the Stars
accounted of the same magnitude: the
longer the Glasses are, and the bigger
apertures they will indure, the more
fit they are for these discoveries: that
'tis probable, longer Glasses would yet
242make greater discoveries. 5. Stars
discover'd in the Galaxie of Orion's Sword.

Observ. 60.Of the Moon.

A description of a Vale in the
Moon; what call'd by Hevelius and
Ricciolus, and how describ'd by them:
243with what substances the hills of the
Moon may be cover'd. A description
of the pits of the Moon, and a conjecture
at their cause: two Experiments
that make it probable, that of the surface
244of boyl'd Alabaster dust seeming
the most likely to be resembled by eruptions
of vapours out of the body of the
Moon: that Earthquakes seem to be
generated much the same way, and
their effects seem very similar. An Argument
that there may be such variations
in the Moon, because greater
have been observ'd in the Sun: because
245the substance of the Moon and Earth
seem much alike: and because 'tis probable
the Moon has a gravitating
principle: this is argued from several
246particulars. The reason why several
pits are one within another. The use
that may be made of this Instance of
a gravity in the Moon.