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ADVERTISEMENT.

IN the INTRODUCTION to the Work which I have now concluded, I traced the origin and progress of the Board of Agriculture;-showed its illegitimacy and deformity-yet augured the benefits that it might, eventually, afford the parent stock, from which it was surreptitiously, and unskilfully, taken.

In developing those public benefits, and adapting them to the permanent uses of the Rural Science, I have, I find, expended ten years of unremitted and pretty close attention. The labors of seventy or eighty public Writers, (many of whose Works have never been published) and the sentiments of some hundreds of Annotators, Correspondents, and parole Contributors,-concerning an important and, with me, a favorite branch of human knowledge, were not to be allowed to sink, unprofitably, into oblivion; even though the task might cost some years of time; and no inconsiderable sum, to boot. The agents of the Board I have ever considered as MY ASSISTANTS,-as laborers in

MY OWN FIELD.

Notwithstanding, however, this interruption to my original design,-which, during the last forty years, I have held constantly in view, as my leading object in life-(see as above)-I despair not to accomplish it. The most important, and by far the most difficult part of it,-the registry of the existing practices of England, at the commencement of the nineteenth century,-IS NOW FINISHED.

WILLIAM MARSHALL.

APRIL 1817.

THE

SOUTHERN DEPARTMENT

OF

ENGLAND.

THE NATURAL DISTINGUISHMENTS of this Department are

strong. Its prevailing SUBSTRUCTURE is CHALK,-of which peculiar fossil it comprizes, I apprehend, nine tenths, or a larger portion, of the whole quantity which this island discloses at its surface. The Wolds of Yorkshire and Lincolnshire are the only specimens of Chalk hill that I have observed, in England, Scotland, or Wales, which are not included within the boundary lines of the SOUTHERN DEPARTMENT of ENGLAND.

Another peculiarity of the SOUTHERN DEPARTMENT, in regard to its substrata, is also observable. There is not, I believe, a mass of noncalcareous rock (unless loosely cemented sand may be deemed such); nor even a stone! (other than fints), unless in a confined district of Kent,-to be found within its limits.*

The AGRICULTURAL DISTINCTIONS, observable in the SOUTHERN DEPARTMERT, are numerous. The CHALK-HILL HUSBANDRY is peculiar.

The

*THE GREY WEDDERS of MARBOROUGH DOWNS. These may be mentioned as another exception to the foregoing position.-The stones which bear that name I have seen and strolled among as a botanist: but without any other view.-They are scattered over an extent of surface, or partially bedded beneath it Their sizes (to convey a general idea) may be said to vary from, the size of a wedder to that of an ox.

But on the theory which I recently suggested (in the Midland Department, p. 14.) those stones might be considered as atmospherical; or, more appropriately, of cometic origin; and not as a native production of the SOUTHERN DEPARTMENT.

The "STONAGE" of SALISBURY PLAIN has been supposed to have been brought to that place, from a distance (of course from a very great distance) by human exertions. But it appears to me more rational to consider the materials of that striking work of art, as a DEPOSIT of SPACE; their present arrangement being the result of DRUIDICAL INGENUITY; the fragments and minor masses having been removed, the more to astonish (as Stonehenge seldom fails to do) the posterity of those extraordinary times.

B

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