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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 35.djvu/714

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THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

the sago or rice, by means of a knife, file, or any other sharp-edged stone, a little gold-dust off his ornaments. After this has been done, he ties the parcel together and suspends it by means of a split cane from a branch of the sacred tree, under fervent prayers to his god. In some parts of the island the traveler will find these sacred trees, ornamented from top to bottom, like a German Christmas-tree, with these odd-looking palm-leaf parcels. In other parts of the Key group there are still found public places for sacrificing, consisting of a fanciful carved box, elevated on a pole about four or five feet high. The sacrifice is conveyed through a small opening in the box. Some places are shunned by the natives, who prefer walking a long distance out of their direct way, to being obliged to pass the haunted spot where some imaginary Satan and his followers are supposed to hold their meetings.—Abridged from the Proceedings of the Royal Geographical Society.

 

SKETCH OF JOSEPH LOVERING.

A COMPANY of about one hundred and fifty gentlemen distinguished in science and literature sat down a few months ago to a banquet in the Hôtel Vendôme, Boston. The festival was one tendered by his colleagues, classmates, and friends to Prof. Joseph Lovering in honor of the distinction he enjoyed of having served for fifty years as a professor in Harvard College. He was the first professor who held that position for so long a time. Previous to entering upon this office, he had served two years as tutor; and, adding the two terms together, his was the second longest period of consecutive service recorded in the history of the institution. President Eliot presided at the banquet, and the tables were occupied by members of the Board of Overseers, the teaching faculty, and distinguished graduates and friends of the oldest American institution of learning. The speakers were too many to be specified here; and we shall have to be satisfied with saying that their names are associated with what is best in the thought and learning of the period. A similar scene was witnessed in this city at the dinner of the Harvard Club on the 21st of February, 1889, when Prof. Lovering, being a guest, received congratulations.

Joseph Lovering was born in Charlestown, Mass., December 25, 1813. His father was surveyor of ice, wood, and lumber. He attended a grammar school of his native town, and seems there to have outrun the capacity of his teachers; for it is recorded of him that he went through Colburn's Algebra by himself, none of