Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 14.djvu/112

This page has been validated.

grander reign than that they now engross. Immense bowlders of basalt, sixty-seven miles distant from the nearest mountain, pebbles of porphyry, fragments of granite and slate, border the Santa Cruz River, impede its course, and lie broadcast upon the plain which rises 1,100 feet above its bed. From the encircling shores of Beagle Channel, glaciers born upon the lofty slopes and granitic peaks 4,000 and 5,000 feet above the sea, push their frozen lengths into the sea, which is shaken into waves as successive ruptures into the ice launch mimic icebergs upon its surface. "Almost every arm of the sea," writes Darwin, "which penetrates to the interior higher chain, not only in Terra del Fuego but on the coast for 650 miles northward, is terminated by tremendous and astonishing-glaciers." Old channels, now dry by the elevation of the land, are diversified with groups of traveled blocks, and the bowlders, so well known, from the distant Andes, lying upon the island of Chiloe, are further indications of an action in the past identical with that exerted at present.

In conclusion, without rehearsing the evidence drawn from the Pyrenees or the Caucasus, where glaciers still exist, we see in the northern and southern hemispheres the imposing remains of primitive areas of ice which in a more congenial era projected their confluent and inter-mingling branches over vast regions of the earth, where, as they have retreated, they have left irrefragable evidence of their power. We have observed the same processes at work, the same results produced, the same methods utilized, in the world about us, and the clearest analogy compels us to accept a theory which ascribes the morainic débris piled up in hills and islands, the engraved rocks, the excavated basins, and the rounded slopes, to an identical though vastly-magnified cause in times only within the ken of Geology in its retrospective glance of ages.



A FEW days ago I was invited by a medical friend to visit him at his house, and hear two musical mice sing a duet, the performance to begin punctually at 8 p. m. I had never heard a singing mouse, though I had read and been told a good deal of the vocal accomplishments the little animal occasionally displays; so I gladly availed myself of the opportunity, and duly arrived half an hour before the commencement of the concert. My friend explained to me that every evening two little mice came out from behind the skirting-board in his dining-room, and sang for their supper of cheese, biscuit, and other muscine delicacies, which he took care to place on the carpet for them always at the same hour. One of them had received the name of "Nicodemus"—an allusion, I suppose, to a certain furtive visit by