Page:Philosophical Transactions - Volume 095.djvu/26

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Mr. Carlisle's Lecture

with numerous limbs, and variety of organs, and appendages of convenience, are not effected by simple apparatus; thus, the skeleton which gives a determinate figure to the species, supports its Soft parts, and admits of a geometrical motion, is placed interiorly, where the bulk of the animal admits of the bones being sufficiently strong, and yet light enough for the moving powers; but the skeleton is placed externally, where the body is reduced below a certain magnitude, or where the movements of the animal are not to be of the floating kind: in which last case the bulk is not an absolute cause. The examples of testaceous vermes, and coleopterous, as well as most other insects, are universally known.

The opinion of the muscularity of the crystalline lens of the eye, so ingeniously urged by a learned member of this Society, is probably well founded; as the arrangement of radiating lines of the matter of muscle, from the centre to the circumference of the lens, and these compacted into angular masses, would produce specific alterations in its figure.

This rapid sketch of the history of muscular structure has been obtruded before the Royal Society to introduce the principal experiments, and reasonings which are to follow: they are not ordered with so much exactness as becomes a more deliberate essay, but the intention already stated, and the limits of a lecture are offered as the apology.

Temperature has an essential influence over the actions of muscles, but it is not necessary that the same temperature should subsist in all muscles during their actions; neither is it essential that all the muscular parts of the same animal should be of uniform temperatures for the due performance of the motive functions.