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398
POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

bites of insects and the infections they bring by fumigating the entire body with sulphur. For this purpose he covered the unclothed body with a suitable envelope, under which the sulphur was burned. The remedy was communicated to M. d'Abbadie by a hippopotamus hunter who had, by using it, escaped all the diseases incident to the swamps to which he had to resort.

The Gregorian Calendar is to be adopted by the Russian Government on January 1, 1901, or at the beginning of the new century.

The following figures, from the Engineering and Mining Journal, are of interest as showing the enormous quantity of iron and steel which was manufactured in 1898, and the leading position which the United States has already assumed in the industry:

Iron and Steel Production, is Metric Tons.*

Countries. pig iron. steel.
1897. 1898. 1897. 1898.
United States 9,807,123 11,902,317 7,289,300 9,045,315
United Kingdom 8,930,086 8,769,249 4,559,736 4,639,042
Germany 6,889,087 7,402,717 5,091,294 5,784,807
Total 25,626,296 28,134,383 16,940,330 19,418,664
Austria-Hungary 1,205,000 1,250,000 553,000 605,500
Belgium 1,024,666 982,748 616,604 653,130
Canada 41,500 46,880 . . . . . . . . . . . .
France 2,472,143 2,534,427 1,281,595 1,441,632
Italy 12,500 12,850 57,250 58,750
Russia 1,857,000 2,228,850 831,000 1,095,000
Spain 282,171 261,799 121,800 112,665
Sweden 533,800 570,550 268,300 289,750
All other 450,000 545,000 310,000 355,000
Grand total 33,505,076 36,507,487 20,979,179 24,030,032
* A metric ton is about 2,200 pounds.
 

Although fewer casual members or members for the year than usual were present at the recent meeting of the British Association at Dover, the attendance of distinguished men of science and of active scientific workers, according to the London Times, seemed to be greater. And so far as the proper work of the association is concerned, the meeting should take a high rank. Excellent and serious work was done in all the sections.

A paper has been published by Pliny T. Sexton, of Palmyra, N. Y., setting forth reasons for favoring the unification of the whole educational system of the State of New York under the jurisdiction of a single board—that of the Regents of the University. The reasons are presented in the form of various newspaper articles which were published last year against a proposition of an opposite character—to abolish the present Department of Public Instruction and create a State Commission of Education, the affiliations of which would be political.!Mr. Sexton has further offered two prizes of one hundred dollars each for articles or essays by women and similar productions by men in support of the proposed unification.

M. Hildebert Richard, of Avignon, France, relates that he experimented upon two adult geranium plants, both healthy and of vigorous growth, under like conditions of exposure, watering one (A) with well water and the other (B) with water containing a measured proportion of butylic alcohol daily. A kept on with its healthy growth. B, after four days of alcoholization, showed an enfeebled growth, with symptoms of jaundice, drowsiness, and intoxication; a special odor perceptible in all parts of the plant, partially burned spots, and melanosis and geotropism in the leaves.

In his papers on The Art and Customs of Benin, Mr. Ling Roth concludes that the art of that savage land consists of mixed elements, partly European forais which the native mind was prone to copy, partly introduced from other parts of Africa. It is characterized by boldness, freedom, clearness in execution, originality, and variety. Among the customs he mentions are the practice of human sacrifice and the sprinkling of the blood of the animals killed at the periodical sacrifices on the ivories and 'on the cast-iron or bronze figure-heads placed on the altars. When there was too much rain, a woman had a message saluting the rain god put into her mouth. She was then killed and set up in the execution tree, so that the rain might see.

Our scientific obituary list of the month includes the names of Sir William Dawson, the distinguished Canadian geologist, of whom a fuller notice is given in another place; Dr. Luther Dana Woodbridge, Professor of Anatomy and Physiology in Williams College, at Williamstown, Mass., of heart disease, November 3d, aged forty-nine years; Dr. Oscar Baumann, African explorer, geographer to the Austrian Congo Expedition of 1885, who made studies for the projected railroad from Tanga to Karog; Dr. F. Kuhla, botanical explorer, at Manfios, Brazil; Percy S. Pilcher, inventor of flying machines, from an accident while experimenting.