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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 73.djvu/46

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infant when he left America, now a young lady, joined him in London and lived with him for many years.

He was now forty-two years of age, and the main purpose of his return to England was to publish his essays. Several editions were subsequently brought out in both Europe and America, and they have been translated into German, French and Italian. While on this visit he presented a fund of one thousand pounds to the Royal Society, the interest of which was to be awarded every second year to the author of the most important discovery in light and heat. The society decided that the awards should be made in the form of medals, one of gold and one of silver, which together should contain an intrinsic value equal to the interest.

Rumford, at the same time, gave $5,000 to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, of Boston, to be used in the same way. In 1837 this fund had increased to $20,000. It has now grown to $59,000 and the annual income is $2,550. Up to 1905, the Rumford premium had been awarded but twenty times. The academy has, however, made a great number of grants of money from the fund to assist those who are making researches in the phenomena of heat and light, and by a decision of the Supreme Court of Massachusetts, a portion of the income from the fund has been diverted to Harvard University. The Rumford professorship of Harvard will be referred to later.

After remaining a year in England, Rumford, accompanied by his daughter Sarah, returned to Munich. Here they occupied a palace supplied with every elegance, convenience and luxury. They were also permitted to use the princely summer residence of the elector, with its extensive park and mountain scenery. His daughter was made countess of the empire and allowed a pension of 2,000 florins for life.

When Napoleon repulsed the Austrians at Friedburg they retreated towards Munich, followed by the French. The elector, delegating Rumford with full authority, left the city, taking refuge in Saxony. Count Rumford at once employed his military talents to meet the emergency. He took chief command of the Bavarian forces, determined to prevent both the Austrians and French from entering the city. The gates were ordered closed and the Austrian forces occupied the opposite side of the river, where they planted their batteries. By a show of force, firmness and presence of mind, he was successful in preventing the occupation of the city by a foreign force.

In 1798 he was appointed Bavarian minister to the court of St. James's. It was a thing quite unprecedented to receive at the English court a subject of Great Britain as a representative of a foreign country, and it was one of the great disappointments of his life when informed that, being a British subject, he could not be received in a diplomatic capacity. He did not receive information of his ineligibility until he had arrived in London in company with his daughter.