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Page:Notes and Queries - Series 9 - Volume 11.djvu/221

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appears to move. In consequence of these causes the solar day is variable in length, but clocks must be constructed to go as nearly as possible uniformly, making each day of twenty- four hours of the average or mean length of a solar day ; hence time so reckoned is called by astronomers mean time, and is that which would be shown by a fictitious sun travelling along the equator at the same average rate as the real sun in the ecliptic. Now the first of the above causes would put the true and fictitious suns together, or make the equation of time nothing, when the earth is at its greatest and least distances from the sun (the aphelion and perihelion of its orbit, as they are called), which it now occupies (but this is subject to a slow change) at the begin- ning and middle of the year (more exactly on 4 January and 3 July). The second cause by itself would bring the true and fictitious suns together four times a year, at the equinoxes and solstices. The combination of the two produces these coincidences (or reduces the equation of time to nothing) on 16 April, 15 June, 2 September, and 25 December, which dates will, in process of time, become later, in consequence of the motion of the line of apsides of the earth's orbit.

W. T. LYNN. Blackheath.

There is nothing "arbitrary " at Christmas or any when ; nor is the equation always "at zero on Christmas Day." If MR. WILSON will turn to the * Explanation ' pages at the end of the 'Nautical Almanac' he will find a clear account of apparent time and of the astro- nomer's mean time. The "equation' 1 is the difference between these. The earth revolves on its axis uniformly, and a perfect clock no clocks are perfect, "of course would always complete its revolution of the hands in the time of an earth revolution, i.e., would indi- cate mean time. But the earth in its orbit changes its position in regard to the sun, and, moreover, does not move at a uniform pace along its orbit. Hence the popular "clock before," or "after," the sun of Whitaker and its confreres. Clock time and true sun time sometimes coincide this year in April, June, September, and December. C. S. WARD.

COUNSELLOR LACY, OF DUBLIN (9 th S. xi. 149). John Lacy, son and heir of Piers Lacy, of Athlacca, co. Limerick, was born about 1645, being aged eight when he and his father ("of Athleackage "), then aged forty -four, were " transplanted " from the co. Limerick in 1653. He was admitted to Gray's Inn (his father "of Ashlackagh ") 15 December, 1673, and to the King's Inns, Dublin, Michaelmas,

1678. He was the only barrister of the name of Lacy admitted to the King's Inns between 1607 and 1765. Rose Lacy, who married Thomas Fitzgerald in 1747, was not the daughter of " Counsellor " Lacy, but of Francis Lacy, of Dublin, gent., whose will, dated 20 June, 1766, was proved in the Prerogative Court, Ireland, 28 July the same year. He left four daughters and co-heirs : (1) Rose, married by licence, 20 February, 1747/8, Thomas Fitzgerald, of Narraghmore, co. Kildare ; (2) Mary, married by licence, 24 July, 1749, Daniel Molloy, of Gortacur, King's County; (3) Anne; (4) Bridget, married Richard Strange. This Francis Lacy had a brother Mark Lacy, so they are probably the younger sons of Thomas Lacy the elder, and grandsons of Walter Lacy, referred to in D'Alton's ' King James's Irish Army List,' vol. ii. p. 391. G. D. B.

CONSTANTINOPLE (9 th S. xi. 68, 152). I was long inclined, with the writer in ' Chambers's Encyclopaedia,' to regard the derivation of Istamboul from s rrjv iroXiv as " fanciful." But it seems to be proved beyond question by the parallel Stanco, which appears in old (and perhaps some recent) maps as the name for the island of Cos. Stanco clearly = ets rrjv Kwv, and the last lingering doubt is removed by L. L. K.'s observation at the last reference that XL^TIV becomes in Turkish limdn. Other- wise one would still ask why ets TYJV Tr6X.iv should make Stamboul rather than St^mboul. S. G. HAMILTON.

THACKERAY AND ' VANITY FAIR ' (9 th S. xi. 128). In Admiral Lord Colling wood's 'Correspondence,' fifth edition, vol. i. pp. 141, 142 (letter to J. E. Blackett, Esq., from Dreadnought off Ushant, 4 February, 1805), there is the following paragraph :

" If the country gentlemen do not make it a point to plant oaks wherever they will grow, the time will not be very distant when, to keep our Navy, we must depend entirely on captures from the enemy. You will not be surprised to hear that most of the knees which were used in the Hibernia were taken from the Spanish ships captured on the 14th February ; and what they could not furnish was supplied by iron. I wish every body thought on this subject as I do ; they would not walk through their farms without a pocketful of acorns to drop in the hedgesides, and then let them take their chance."

This answers MR. KITTON'S query on this subject. HARRY B. POLAND.


" Latude's beard and whiskers." Would not this refer to Henry Mazers de Latude, a Frenchman, who was confined in the Bastille and other prisons during thirty-five years?