The Lithology of Edinburgh

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William P. Kennedy, 1859 - 102 pages
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Page xxxi - For, to say nothing of half the birds, and some quadrupeds which are almost entirely supported by them, worms seem to be the great promoters of vegetation, which would proceed but lamely without them, by boring, perforating, and loosening the soil, and rendering it pervious to rains and the fibres of plants, by drawing straws and stalks of leaves and twigs into it ; and, most of all, by throwing up such infinite numbers of lumps of earth called worm-casts, which, being their excrement, is a fine...
Page xxxi - Earthworms, though in appearance a small and despicable link in the chain of Nature, yet, if lost, would make a lamentable chasm. For to say nothing of half the birds, and some quadrupeds which are almost entirely supported by them, worms seem to be great promoters of vegetation...
Page 98 - A great wave swept over the coast of Spain, and is said to have been sixty feet high at Cadiz. At Tangier, in Africa, it rose and fell eighteen times on the coast; at Funchal, in Madeira, it rose full fifteen feet perpendicular above high-water mark, although the tide, which ebbs and flows there seven feet, was then at half-ebb.
Page xlv - Many horses' heads, and bones of several kinds of deer, the horns of the antelope, the heads and tusks of boars, and the heads of beavers, are also found embedded in it.
Page xxxi - Worms probably provide new soil for hills and slopes where the rain washes the earth away ; and they affect slopes, probably, to avoid being flooded. Gardeners and farmers express their detestation of worms ; the former, because they render their walks unsightly, and make them much work ; and the latter, because they think worms eat their green corn. But these men would find, that the earth without worms would soon become cold, hardbound, and void of fermentation ; and consequently sterile...
Page xlii - ANGER is one of the sinews of the soul: he that wants it hath a maimed mind, and with Jacob sinew-shrunk in the hollow of his thigh, must needs halt. Nor is it good to converse with such as cannot be angry, and with the Caspian Sea, never ebb nor flow.
Page 48 - Lyell has given to the divisions of the tertiary strata the appellations pleiocene, meiocene, eocene, accordingly as they contain a majority of recent species of shells, a minority of such species, or a small proportion of living species, which may be looked upon as indicating the dawn of the existing state of the animate creation. But in this case, he wisely treats his distinctions, not as definitions, but as the marks of natural groups. " The plurality of species indicated by the name pleiocene,...
Page 53 - ... Taragmite series, formed subsequently to the dressings and groovings of the solid rocks, and, where present, reposing on them. They seem to have been formed when violent aqueous movements were taking place, and probably at a period when the state of our island was widely different from the present. The second, or Akumite series, is chiefly characterised by its laminated clays and sands, and indicates the assorting power of water under circumstances of comparative tranquillity. The third, or Phanerite...
Page 98 - There were twenty-three ships and vessels, great and small, in the harbor of Callao, of which nineteen were sunk ; and the other four, among which was a frigate called St. Fermin, were carried by the force of the waves to a great distance up the country, and left on dry ground at a considerable height above the sea.
Page 4 - It is thus, for example, turned to account by the author of the " Vestiges of the Natural History of Creation.

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