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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 29.djvu/360

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THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

There is the preservation of custom and the growth of equity, which is the function of the law, the courts, the Legislature; and there is the execution of the law, which is the function of the ruler and his assistants. A superior civilization aids commerce by the establishment of lighthouses, by improvements of rivers and harbors, constructs canals, looks after the public health in the establishment of quarantine, prevents the spread of infectious disease, provides cities with water and sewers, seeks to insure education among its citizens, regulates and controls the medium of exchange. The governments of civilization have been progressive in these regards. This country now confronts the problem of too great power in the hands of the wielders of transportation—they thwart the first principles of our Government, and the iron of their oppression has entered into the soul of our people.

 

BOHEMIAN GLASS.
By Professor HEINRICH SCHWARZ.

THE northern edge of Bohemia, which borders on Silesia, Saxony, and Bavaria, is at once the principal seat of the German population of the country and of its industrial activity. A person approaching this border region from the interior will be struck at once with the contrast between the stagnation of the Czech districts and the freedom and active enterprise of the Germans, under the impulse of which a not very fertile soil has been made to support a dense population. Besides the textile industries which profitably utilize the water-powers of the mountainous region, and the large mining, metallurgical, and chemical enterprises, the ceramic establishments, and the manufactories of stone-ware, porcelain, and glass, are prominent features of the district.

Notwithstanding numerous efforts, the quality of the famous Bohemian art-glass has never been quite equaled anywhere else. The principal seat of its production is in Northeastern Bohemia, where this district is separated by the Riesengebirge from Silesia; but, as the result of the active trade which has been carried on over that chain for several centuries, branches of the manufacture have also spread into the latter country. The exquisite products of the Josephinenhütte at Warmbrunn have long maintained a rivalry with the Bohemian wares, and Frau Heckert's establishment in Petersdorff can exhibit wonderful specimens of luster and color, polish and etching, that might almost make one imagine he had been transported into Aladdin's palace. The bases of the manufacture are really the same on either side of the range. The mountains furnish a pure quartz and a limestone of snowy whiteness for raw materials, and the abundant woods, with which they were clothed, formerly supplied the best of fuel to the furnaces, while