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MISCELLANEOUS ITEMS.

Kentucky reports a blue s.iow-stor.n. Yokohama, it is stated, will shortly be lighted with gus. A Scotchmt:) hasjust written a Nations?! anthem for Japuu. Two sous of Brigham Young have begun the study of medicine. Musk rats are said to damage the Erie canal about 50,000d01s per year. It is estimated that 12,000 drowned rats have been washed into the Seine by floods. Madame fatti's share of the receipts taken at the Moscow Opera House on the occasion of her benefit amounted to nearly £1500. Within eighteen months work will be commenced on a telegraph line to connect the United States and Europe with South America. Mr Stanley received a rather demonstrative reception from the mill-girls at Paisley. Two thousand of them surrounded the explorer, who was in the end glad to escape to his carriage. At Lyons, during a fete and illuminators which attracted many persons into the streets, some vagabonds took advantage of the crowd to throw vitriol and ink upon the ladies' dresses. One of the boys (says an American paper) in speaking of Mays City as a quiet place to live in, said " They have a graveyard out there a hundred strong, and every one of 'em went there with his boots on." The Rev. Robert Bruce, chairman of the Relief Committee at Ispahan, writes tint in that city alone the assistance forwarded through Sir Moses Montefiore, the president of the Jewish Board of Deputies, was the means of saving a thousand lives. The following seductive advertisement appears in the columns of the Liverpool Mercury: — "How to fascinate, and gain the respect, admiration, and undying love and affection of anyone you wish. Messrs Henry, late of Liberty-street, New York, purchased this secret for 100 dollar?. Sent to any address for six stamps." Several States in Central America, believing the maxim " Union is strength," are at present in treaty for confederation. According to latest adi Ice*, a circular had been issued inviting the small Republics to follow the example of the United States, and to combine in desiring " one Govern-r ment and one country." A statement (says the Anglo-Brazilian Times) has appeared iv some English . scientific periodicals, to the effect th it the monkeys of Brazil have been dying of yellow fever, We have made enquiries from a number of the most eminent scientific gentlemen of Rio, who should be most likely to be informed in such a matter, and they all agree in saying that they are not aware of any grounds existing; for suck an assertion, and that, though deaths from consumption are not unfrequent among the monkeys of Brazil, no case of death from yellow fever has ever come to their knowledge. The Americans seem to have had some trouble in mastering the correct pronunciation of the name of the distinguished writer who is now lecturing in the United States. They have invented a memoria tcclinica to assist them in this respect, which must be successful in every case but that of exceptional capacity for blundering. All mention of Froude Is henceforth disallowed. Nor shall anyone now deScribe him as Froude ; For he swears by the rood That his name it is Froude.

It is cited as an instance showing the solvent power of sea water, and the readiness with which human bones disappear, that the Dutch Government iv 1853 drained off the Harlem Lake, on wh'eh there had been many shipwrecks and naval battles, aid where thousands had found watery graves. The canals and trenches dug to a considerable depth through the rescued land must have had an aggregate of thousands of miles, and yet not a sragle human bone was exhumed from first to last.. Some weapons and a few coins, and one or two wrecked vessels, alone rewarded the antiquaries who watched the operations with the hope of a llch harvest.

Dr Pusey haß explained in a letter to TJie Times his abstention from opposition to the Dean of Westminster at the late contest at Oxford. He thought that opposition! to the. Dean would kindle the enthusiasm of the younger men of the TJniYersity in his favor. He also characterised the Dean as a " pioneer of unbelief," anil in reference to this, "a member of

Convocation writc3 :—": — " Members of the Church' of England ""who belong to a different school of theology from Dr Pusey have pi equal right, with still stronger reason, to denounce him as a pioneer for Popery. The present Pope, who is likely to know the mental history of many converts to his religion, has compared Dr Pusey to a church bell, which goes on ringing to call men to church, but never gets into the church itself."

Five hundred pounds having been placed at the disposal of the Council of the Society of Arts, through Sir William Bodkin, by a gentleman who does not wish his name to appear, for promoting, by means of prizes md otherwise, economy in the use of coal for domestic purposes, the council have decided to offer five prizes, each to consist of the Society's gold medal and £50, for, respectively, a new and imprved system of grate suitable to existing chimneys as generally constructed, which shall, with the least amount of coal, answer best for warming and ventilating 'a room ; another, which shall best answer for cooking food, combined with warming and ventilating the room ; a new and improved system of apparatus which shall, by means of gas, most efficiently and ecomically warm and ventilate a room ; and, lastly, any new and improved system or arrangemeuts not included in the foregoing, which shall efficiently and economically meet domestic requirements. The articles are to be delivered not later than the Ist of December, 1873, with a view to their being tested, and subsequently shown in the London International Exhibition of 1874.

It is hard to understand the tenacity of the opposition made by The Times to Polar expeditions —on the ground of danger to human 'ife. We should have thought that was a proper question for the volunteers, but not for the public. The amount of evidence laid before Mr Lowe and Mr Goschen as to the advantages to be derived from a North Polar expedition is really remarkable. The astronomers showed that the Antarlic observations of the transit of .Venus in 1882 would he most needful, and that no Antartic expedition could be conducted with good result without a commander already trained in the less dangerous Arctic Seas ; the Linnacan Society wanted a heap o( evidence about the flora of the Arctic regions ; the Geological Society about its coal and meteoric iron ; the Meteorlogical Society said sucli an expedition would throw great light on our t-.torms ; ethnologists wanted something which cannot be be got without doring sacrifice. Most of all, (he countiy ilsslf wan is these qualities of dariug and sacrifice, and the emulation they create. It is nonsense to talk of such cxpedi lions — which train the specific qualities wauled for the N.-ivy, as well as the less specified qualities wanted for all Englishmen — as wasteful of life and lavish of suffering. There would be a great deal less true life, and a good deal more true suffering, if we had not shown the soit of public spirit and contempt for danger which these expeditions train and hold up to the aclmirationjjof the nation.

The missing Comet — Uicla's — which was divided into two by some disturbing nfluence in 1846, and which hi its periodic return in 1866, and again this year, had inauaged to escape observation, has been found by a very curious astronomical conjeetnrer. Mr Hind had indicated to the Astronomical Society that the groat meteoric shower of November 27th last, was, in all probabilitj', part of the train of Biela's comet ; indeed, a well-known astronomical writer in the Daily News had suggested this explanation as probable before Mr Hind showed how closely the two phenomena corresponded. A Continental astronomer, lvlinkcrfucs, took the hint, and telegraphed to Mr Pogson, at Madras. " Bicla touched earth on 27th ; search near Theta Centauri." The neighborhood of Thcta Centauri cannot be well observed in Europe, and even at Madras the time for observing it well is not long. On the third evening of his research iMr Pogson found what he sought for — the truant comet. It was described by him on his second sight of it as " circular, bright, with a faint but distinct tail," but the companion comet at the last advices Mr Pogson had not seen. Thus astronomers have not only got hold of one at least of the mis&iug twins, but have a further confirmation of the connection between meteoric flights and comets. The calculated path of a comet passing near the path of our earth suggests a flight of meteors, and the flight of meteors comes. Again, a flight of meteors suggest the passage of a comet, and the comet is found iust where it is looked for.

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MISCELLANEOUS ITEMS. West Coast Times, Issue 2337, 27 March 1873

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