I WILD MAN OF THE MOUNTAINS. The discovery of a troglodyte (cave-dweller), in the Basque provinces, near Fuenterrabia., on the Franco-Spanish frontier, has (says a Madrid message) aroused considerable curiosity here. As a Customs guard with his dogs was search- ing in a wood the other day an extraordinary being in the image of a man was seen to rush before him with 0 wonderful rapidity, and dis- appear into a hole in the mountain. The guard followed on, and found the wild man had blocked up the entrance to his cave with pieces of timber and stones, which, however, were easily removed, and the man was captured. He was absolutely prehistoric in appearance. His only garment was a skin tied round the hips. His long and matted beard fell over his chest like a cloak, while his hair trailed down his back in a thick mass. In his cave were found numerous bones of sheep, deer, and other animals which he had eaten, a sling, a club, and a stone axe. A bed of moss was his only furniture. The guard brought the troglodyte to Fuen- terrabia, where his appearance created a sensa- tion. Before the magistrate he explained that his name was Prudencia, he was twenty-eight years old, and had been, when an infant, au inmate of a foundling hospital in San Sebastian. He had formerly acted as farm hand, but two years ago, being unable to find work, and being in great distress, he took to the forest. There he lived on acorns, hazel nuts, and birds' eggs. j Little by little he learned the use of a sling and the axe, and was able to kill deer and sheep which had strayed. As he had no fire he ate the flesh of these animals raw. „
THE LAST OF THE IRISH DUELLISTS. I was fortunate enough (writes Mr. T. P. i O'Connor in his "Weekly") to know intimately ) the last of the great Irish dueliists-a man, too, who had been the companion and comrade-in- arms of O'Connell in his greatest struggle. This was the late O'Gorman Mahon. He be- lieved to his dying day in the daty of a gentleman to avenge any attack upon his character by an appeal to the pistol. For days during the 'eighties he was in a condition of intense excitement and of almost pathetic joy because he thought that Parnell had made up his mind to send a challenge to Sir William Harcourt, and I can still see the look of almost incredulous sorrow with which he heard Parnell announce that he did not believe in the duel as a means of settling political struggles.
WHEN WILL OUR COAL GIVE OUT ? Such is the question discussed in the "En- gineering Magazine" for December^ It appears that there is coal in the United Kingdom to a depth of 4,000 feet, sufficient, at about the pre- sent rate of output, to suffice for 371 years, but that this period will be considerably extended seeing that there is every probability that min- that this period will be considerably extended seeing that there is every probability that min- ing can be carried on to a depth of 7,000 feet, though at this depth there will not be anything like the area of coal that there is at the former limit. It is also reasonable to expect that this period of supply may be still further extended by the more economical use of fuel, due to the establishment of central electrical supply sta- tions, and the utilisation of Mond and other gas-producing processes, and of gas-driven en- gines, as well as other means of obtaining a higher percentage of the heat value of the fuel.
— — APT ILLUSTRATION. A "limb of the law" says:—"It is frequently an easy task to confuse a witness by making him explain the meaning of his words, "knowing that few people can do so without getting ex- cited. Sometimes a victim resents this method and answers in an unexpected manner. "A lawyer was examining a young woman of a high temper. She had testified that she had seen the defendant shy' a book at the plaintiff, and the lawyer seized on the word. Shy—shy a book? What do you mean by that? Will you explain to the court what the word shy' means? "The young woman leaned over the desk, be- neath the witness-box, picked up a law book and threw it at the lawyer's head, who dodged it just in time. 'I think,' said the judge, 'the court has had an illustration of the word shy,' and the witness was allowed to proceed with her testimony without interruption."
ABOUT WALKING. Walking, says an authority, which also means standing erect, with shoulders thrown back, lungs expanded, and head well poised, is the best tonic that can be prescribed for exhausted brains, weakened muscles, and worn-out nerves. It strengthens the digestive organs, drives the blood away from the tired brain, and is one of the best remedies for nervousness. There is no better way of curing rheumatism than by a walk in warm weather. You have all the advantages of the Turkish bath without the danger of breath- ing impure air. Physicians have subdued the worst kinds of rheumatism, stubborn forms of indigestion, aggravated cases of insomnia, and all sorts of nervous diseases by exercises in breathing and walking. There is, says "Health," a famous medical man of Munich who has for- mulated a, system of breathing and walking by which asthmatic patients are taught to walk without getting out of breath, while sufferers from weakness of the heart and nervously exhausted persons are cured. No matter how long the walk or how steep the climb, no one who follows this simple system need "get out of breath," the breathing and walking being in time together. In ascending a staircase or path, one should take one breath for every step, and the fuller the breath the better. In walking along a level stretch one should take two steps to every breath thus the inhala- tion and exhalation always begin as the same foot touches the ground. The tired feeling which walking brings on is natural, but with a few weeks' practice one is able to walk a mile or more without fatigue. The walking is of itself a recreation, and a great help to the development and preservation of physical symmetry its tonic effects are much better when one walks correctly and at regular times. In order to walk correctly, one should stand quite erect, and breathe in a proper manner, then swing the leg from the hip. By so doing, the muscles which are strongest bear the strain, And the length of the stride is increased several inches. The heel touches the ground first, and not the toe, and a slight spring is given from the ball of the foot to aid in making another step.
The architect of the new Union Station in Washington says it will be the most ornate as well as the largest in the world. The cost is estimated at £ 3,000,000. Inside the structure there will be playing fountains and terraces in the Romanesque style. Among the novel fea- tures will be an invalids' room, where doctors will be in constant attendance, and in addition there will be swimming baths, Turkish baths, acid mortuary chambers.
THE "CURSE" OF OATMEAL. I WHO SHALL DECIDE WHEN DOCTORS DIFFER ? The discussion raised by a Scottish doctor's con- demnation of porridge as an article of food has re- vealed a remarkable difference of opinion among medical men. There are some who describe it as a starva- tion diet," and absolutely destructive of the diges- tion, and others who uphold it as an ideal diet— stimulating, sustaining, bone forming, and fatten- ing. The latter point triumphantly to the stamina and power of endurance of the Scottish race as a proof of their contention. When doctors thus differ it will be difficult for the lay mind to decide as to the merits of por- ridge, but a view expressed by a large number of Scottish correspondents resident in England may provide an explanation of the difference of opinion. They declare that porridge is seldom, if ever, pro- perly cooked in England, that it is insufficiently boiled, and that whereas it is cooked with salt in Scotland, it is almost invariably eaten with sugar in England. In the house-surgeon's quarters in one of the large London hospitals, the subject was the other day discussed over the luncheon table. One doctor who supported the theory that porridge was the cause of indigestion immediately found himself in a minority. Oatmeal is certainly the greatest thing in the world for keeping the system in good working order," said a member of the party. "It is easily digested, and it is a fattening agent of great value. It acts as a slight medical stimulant." The chief virtne of oatmeal lies in the phos- phates found in the husks. It is far better than eggs and bacon for breakfast," was another opinion. The carbo-hydrates in oatmeal are more fattening than the proteids in bacon and eggs. Again, oatmeal is better than ordinary white broad." Before the discussion ended, those believing in porridge had quoted the opinions of Sir Thomas Lauder Brunton expressed in his "Action of Medicines," and of Drs. Ringer and Sainsbury, who in their Handbook of Therapeutics," stated that porridge and exercise were good for brain fag. The late Sir Thomas Grainger Stewart, a Physi- cian-in-Ordinary to Queen Victoria, had no faith in porridge, but the late Professor Edmund Parkes, a great authority on dietetics, thought there was no better food during the period of growth.
I NATURE NOTES. THE FRIGATE BIRD. Mr. J. Lancaster, an American naturalist, what spent five years on the west coast of Floridv studying birds, there, came to the conclusion that, of all the feathered tenants of the air, the frigate- bird can fly the longest without resting., He has seen one flying for a whole week, night and day, without repose. The frigate-bird can feed, collect materials for its nest, and eveiv sleep on the wing. The spread of the frigate-bird's wings is very great, and it can fly at a speed of nir^ty-six miles an hour wthout seeming to' flap its wings very much.. ST. KILDA WRENS. In "Bird Notes" is an earnest appeal on behalf of that most interesting of the small birds, the- St. Kilda wren. A colony of wrens first estab- lished themselves on the island early is the century, and about 1884 the insular birds were found to have developed some slight variations from the ordinary w-ren. They were discovered. to be a little lighter in colour, more conspicuously barred, with stouter legs, and thicker bill, with eggs a trifle bigger, ana nest made, perforce, of C! 9 slightly different material. These slight pecu- liarities were enough to inflame the greed of dealers and collectors, and unless Parliament intervenes, a local race that is full of interest will shortly be annihilated. BIRD TRAINING. A middle-aged journeyman daily gives, for his own amusement, an exhibition of bird-train- ing in the little pa k, under the shadow of Notre Dame, Paris, his pupils being the sparrows there gathered. The birds recognise him as soon as he appears. He brings with him a crust of bread or a rolf, and breaks it into crumbs, which he tosses towards the birds. At first they wait to pick the morsels up from the grass or pavement, but as the competition among them grows keener, the more venturesome rise to meet the crumbs, and easily catch them in mid-air. The feathered rivals, twittering loudly while the game is going on, are for all the world like a lot of boys wait ing to scramble for pennies. TRANSVAAL FLOnA. Mr. J. B. Davy, an American botanist, finds that grasses are the most conspicuous feature of the Transvaal flora, at least in the high veldt. Succulents are practically confined to rocky kopjes and randjes (ridges). Bulb and corn- producing plants abound among the grasses. Trees and shrubs are scarce as a rule, but ever- green Proteas and other bushes or small trees occur on kopjes and randjes, and there are dwarf woods near water. In the moist veldt grasses are eight or ten feet high. Boer and Kaffir use "hist" or dried ox-dung for fuel. About 50 genera and 130 species of grasses are known to science in the Transvaal. Of the genera as many as 44 are seemingly indigenous, a fact account- able to the isolation of the country, and unlikely to continue much longer. Andropogons and An- thistirias are, perhaps, the commonest grasses of the high veldt. Bermuda grass (capriola dac- tylon) is frequent besides roads, in lawns, and cattle kraals, and seems to be introduced by cattle, which are fond of it. The reed (Phrag- mites vulgaris) j common along streams. A rainless winter of four to five months (May to September) and a fair rainfall (25 to 30 inches* the rest of the year has developed the habit of producing bulbs, tubers, and corn. Many of the plants flower without rain having fallen for months, but the heavy dews may help to start the growth. To some extent, also, the new grass comes without rain. A DESTRUCTIVE FISH. The attention of the Canadian Parliament was called recently to the fact that the fisheries of Nova Scotia are threatened with destruction by the common Atlantic dogfish. Mr. Kaul- bach, one of the representatives of that pro- vince, asked that a bounty of five dollars per ton be offered for the killing of the dogfish. Other members from the provinces down by the sea advocated the adoption of a similar measure. This destructive fish is largely on the increase at present, and according to the fishermen, the number of salmon, shad, alewives, cod, and pol- lack which it destroys exceeds the total catch of these fish for domestic and commercial use. It is reported that they have been found during the present year for the first time on the Grank Banks of Newfoundland, and that if they begin infesting that region they will utterly destroy the valuable cod fisheries. Unless a sufficient bounty is speedily offered, and proves to be effectual in prosecuting a destructive crusade against the dog-fish, it is believed that the time is near at-hand when the Government itself will have to fit out an expedition to endeavour to, exterminate it. A New Brunswick paper re- cently reported that one of these fish attempted to seize by the leg a boy who was bathing. Notwithstanding the voracious character of these fish, it is scarcely credible that one of them should have attacked even a very small specimen of the human species, though the monster pike of Lake St. John, not very much larger, after all, than the Atlantic dog-fish, has, to withstand quite a number of similar charges. THE CHANGING CHAMELEON. Perhaps the most extraordinary of all the members of the Lizard tribe is the Chameleon, of which there are nearly twenty distinct species. This reptile enjoyed a reputation among the ancients, somewhat ill-deserved as modern inves- tigations prove, of being able to assume almost all the colours of the rainbow, and it was com- monly believed that these hues were not only a, result of propinquity to some coloured object, but were also changed at the will of the Chameleon itself. As a matter of fact it has been proved that the changes of colour are in reality very slight, and although it is known that the colours vary when the reptile is excited or angered, it is probable that these effects are due to the greater or less rapidity Gf circulation. Mr. Milne Edwards is of opinion that they are caused by two layers of pigment cells which move one upon the other and so produce the varying tints. Dr. Weisenbaum, in the "Magazine of Natural History," says :—"The remote cause of the difference of colour in the two lateral folds of tHe body may be distinctly referred to the manner in which the light acts upon the animal. The statement of Murray that the side turned towards the light is always of a darker colour is per- fectly true this rule holds good with reference to the direct and diffused light of the sun and moon, as to artificial light. Even when the animal was moving in the walks of my garden and happened to come near enough to the border to be shaded by the box edging, that side so shaded would instantly become less darkly coloured than the other. Now the light in this way seldom illumines exactly one half of the animal in a more powerful manner than the other, and as the middle line is constantly the line of demarcation between the two different shades of colour, we must evidently refer the different effects to two different centres, from which the nervous currents can only radiate, under such circumstances, towards the organs respectively situated on each side of the mesial line. Many other circumstances may be brought forward in favour of the opinion that the nervous currents in one half of the Chameleon are going on independently of those in the other and that the animal has two lateral sides of perception, sensation, and motion, besides the common one in which must reside the faculty of concentra- tion. Notwithstanding the strictly symmetrical construction of the Chameleon as to its two halves, the eyes move independently of each other, and convey different impressions to their different centres of perception the consequence is that when the animal is agitated the move- ments appear like those of two animals glued together. Each half wishes to move its own way, and there is no concordance of action. The Chameleon therefore is not able to swim like other animals it is so frightened when put into water that the faculty of concentration is lost and it tumbles about as if in a state of intoxica- tion. On the other hand, when the creature is undisturbed, the eye which receives the strongest impression propagates it to the common centre and prevails on the other eye to follow that impression and direct itself to the same object." —"Illustrated Scientific News."
FIELD AND FARM. Jk- WINTER WORK. Prost (writes Professor John Wrightson in the :IIr Agricultural Gazette") is beneficial as a pul- veriser of clods and a powerful disintegrator of the mitral food of plants. It is a tillage instru- ment of infinitely greater power than ploughs and hariows. It supplements their action, especially when the soil is deeply stirred and roughly laid up to its influence. In many districts frost is looked for as necessary for tillage purposes, although for several years past it has not visited us with anything like its full power. Neither is it entirely beneficial, for keen frost is not good for wheat in its earliest stages of growth. Root crops are also liable to injury in heavy frosts un- accompanied with a protective covering of snow. Cattle req uire to be sheltered, and if still out in the ftelds they ought to have a plentiful supply of hay until the yards are ready to receive them. We have, in fact, passed rather suddenly from the moist and comparative warmth of autumn into the depth of winter, and live stock require attention. Their comfort and warmth is not, as in our case, supplied from without, but must be generated within their bodies by heat-supplying foods, such as hay and cake or corn. There is such an abundance of damaged corn in the country that it is likely to take the place of cake to a great extent this winter. I have been asked to contribute a note upon the best manner of using damp and unmarketable corn. In cases where it is likely to come naturally into condi- tion by simply putting off threshing, the right course is perfectly plain. When corn is rlready threshed, and is too damp for marketing, it may be used for all sorts of stock. The worst of it ean be mixed with water and given to pigs as swill or wash. If passed through a bruiser, it will mix better with the water, which ought to be well stirred up before serving. Work horses and colts will have to put up with damp corn. A boiled mess of mixed corn given twice a week to horses is beneficial at any time. and would at least get rid of a little. Cows in milk always do well upon oats, and the fact that oats are often given in the straw, as sheaves, indicates that cows will not swallow them •••^ule. If damp or damaged corn is mixed together in equal proportions, and passed through a mill, it may be given to cows, fattening cattle and stores, and save cake. Sheep, however, will in many cases be the largest consumers of damaged corn. I have been giving a sack a day for some time of oats from the tops of ricks. The feeding vdue has not suffered materially, and the sheep are doing well on them, with hay, kale, and cake in addition. As to the corn which was out during the whole of October, it is difficult to say v hat it may be worth. One large farmer informed me he was cutting a. good deal into chaff without threshing it, but in some cases it must be absolutely worthless for any purpose except serving direct to cattle in yards as fodder, in many cases it must have been scarcely worth the labour of carting. The manurial value of such a wasted crop must be if we take into account the known effect of its removal. The wreck should be spread on the surface and ploughed in, and the land brought into corn again. It is rather strange that pigs should have gone down in price in spite of so much offal corn to consume. Such, I am told by pig buyers, is the case, all hough pigs are among the best converters of damaged corn into marketable food. Pigs always fluctuate in value, and cheap pigs at the present time and a large quantity of damaged grain on hand point to the advisability of hold- ing pigs and buying more. One might have expected that store pigs would have gone up to famine prices in the face of present circum- stances. HOW TO SELECT A DAIRY COW. An inexperienced man should always (remarks Mr. James Long) leave the selection of a cow to someone else, if he is acquainted with any person of experience whom he can trust. A man who buys a cow knowing nothing either of value 1 cl or points, is like an inexperienced amateur who acts as his own lawyer. The object in buying 1 a cow is naturally that of endeavouring to obtain an animal which will produce a, large quantity of rich milk. There are many who insist that it is impossible to obtain quantity j and quality in the same animal; modern practice, however, has dispelled this illusion. But these points are not all. The practical man requires a cow which has a long life before her, which is healthy and well bred, and which is likely to realise something in case of accident. The richest milk is produced by Jerseys, Guernseys, and Devons, although among all other breeds there are individual cows which produce very rich milk. Among the Shorthorns, Ayrshires, Red Polls, and common cattle, are many which are deep milkers, but which yield poor milk. The question is how to discriminate and to select an economical and consequently profitable anmal. A cow should be well formed, yet perfect form is not an essential point in a deep milker. We should, however, look to smallish horns of fine make, a broad muzzle, depth or thickness through the heart, a fairly large abdomen, fine withers and forequarters, especially a slender neck and a long head, breadth across the hips, and plenty of width between the buttocks, which gives room for the udder. The udder itself should be broad from flank to flank, and long from the base of the abdomen to the extreme rear. It should be rather flat or globular than pendent. The Ayrshire possesses an exceptionally flat udder; the Jersey, a globular one but many common cows possess huge. fleshy, pendent udders, which are as large after milking as they are before milking whereas in the well-bred cow the udder is thin, and shrinks to nothing after the milk has been extracted. The teats should be wide apart, and of fairly good size. There must be vitality and vigour, plenty of appetite—for a cow should be a good feeder—with good digestion, and all this neces- sitates room in the thorax or forequarters for the lungs, he:vt, and liver. Evidence should be given, if necessary, as to when the cow was calved. To ascertain that she is a good milker it is best to visit her at milking time, unexpected by the cowman, that her milk may be measured, and that she may be seen during milking, for many cows are kickers and troublesome. The uddev should be well stripped, and the milk tested if possible. The novice will not be able to manage this, but he had better get the help of some exuert friend, or, failing this, he may fet a sample of the milk after stirring, and for 8. fid. obtain an analysis from an agricultural acaylst, as the mere cream percentage is not a sufficient guide. A big milker yielding rich milk I may be worth £10 more t'hpn an ordinary cow; in other words, she may yield £10 more produce in a venr and cost no more to feed. No money is better spent in stock of this character than ail extra pound or two as between a big milker and a small milker. The average yield of the cows of England is about 440 gallons, but. cows can be purchased which yield from 700 to 1.000 gallons, although, naturally, the owners of the very best are usually unwilling to sell unless at quite high prices. AGRICULTURAL EDUCATION AND RESEARCH. Dr. Somerville's Annual Report on the Distri- bution of Grants for Agricultural Education and Research, for 1902-3, issued by the Board of Agri- culture, is a very interesting one. He notices, in the first instance, steady progress and con- siderable development. While the older and larger institutions have more than maintained their former level of efficiency, five additional institutions of somewhat different type have been considered by the Board deserving of grants, which have been accordingly accorded. These are the Harper-Adams Agricultural College, the Cheshire Agricultural and Horticultural School at Holmes Chapel, the East Sussex Agricultural and Horticultural College at Uckfield, the Harris Institute at Preston, and the Cumberland-West- moreland Farm School. It is strange that some of these have not received practical recognition before. The Homes Chapel School and the East Sussex College have long done useful work, and the latter can hardly be described properly as of different type from that of the ok!?r colleges. The Harper-A-dams College gets £ 300 from tha Board; the Holmes Chapel School, £ 200; the East Sussex College, £ 200 the Harris Inst¡tute, £ 150; and the Cumberland-Westmoreland School, £ 100. Several new grants for experi- ments and research have also been made, in- cluding some in maize-growing, and one on the effects of poisonous spray in orchards where stock are grazed. The grants to institutions now amount to £ 8,900, as compared with £ 7,950 for 1001-2; and those for experiments and research to JE864, against £ 818. Altogether the grants amount to Z9,784, or L996 more than those of 1901-2.
I GARDEN GOSSIP. f Remember (says "The Gardener") in stoking fires that it is not always the greatest body of fuel that gives the most heat. A small bright fire in a clean boiler will give far more heat than one that is badly tended, even when double the amount of coke or coal is used. In working land never bring the poor subsoil to the surface. Stir it well and improve its quality, but only allow it to come to the top a little at a time. It is much better to use Galanthes in a cut state than to allow the plants to be used in draughty rooms and corridors. When checked, as they frequently are in this manner, the plants seldom do well in the succeeding season. Do not be afraid to prune recently planted fruit trees it is not necessary to do this at once, but the work should be done before growth com- mences in spring. Endive blanched in the position where grown is always of superior quality to that lifted and ¡ treated in warm sheds or Mushroom houses. When digging masure into land, always en- deavour to distribute it evenly through the soil; never bury it in lumps, as is sometimes done. Where a constant supply of French Beans must be maintained by means of pot culture, sowings should now be made every fortnight. z, Oshorn's Forcing is still one of the best sorts for this purpose, though Ne Plus Ultra has much to recommend it. Spring bedding plants, with the exception of Wallflowers, should be planted rather thickly for the sake of effect. Remember that stiff soils in particular are greatly improved by being thrown up roughly in late autumn for the frost and rain of winter to crumble and pulverise them. In foggy weather keep Orchid houses rather dry, with the ventilators closed. That fine incurved Japanese Chrysanthemum Mdme. Debrie is again proving itself one of the best pink varieties we possess. Christmas Roses will soon need shelter if the flowers are to be kept from being soiled by wet. When using anthracite as fuel, do not be too free with the poker keep the firebars and flues clean, and a good draught will do the rest. Coke ought always to be broken when used in small furnaces. Special attention will now be needed in water- ing Indian Azaleas that are standing in cool houses. The plants should not be supplied with stimulants until the flowering season is over. The present is a good season for burning, as far as possible, all weeds and rubbish the ashes thus obtained are valuable for many purposes and should be kept dry. Yucca gloriosa should have a sheltered posi- tion, and looks best planted in the grass of a lawn. Pteris tremula, one of the most useful of ferns for cool houses and room decoration, freely re- produces itself from spores, and may be readily raised by this means. PROPAGATING CHRYSANTHEMUMS. — Obtain cuttings of a stout and short jointed character. The best are. as is well known, the sucker growths from the base. Insert them after pre- paration in small pots singly, or place several round the edge of larger pots. A suitable com- post is loam, leaf soil, and sand in equal parts. Place the pots in a glass covered frame, and wipe off the moisture from inside the glass each morning. LATE CHRYSANTHEMUMS.—A late display of bloom forms a. welcome attraction at this dull period, not only for cutting, but for decoration. Stand the plants thinly, intermixing with ferns and foliage plants. Gentle fire heat will be beneficial. CINEEARIAS.—Give the plants ample room, and accord unobstructed light above them, standing the pots on a moist base. For the destruction of insects vaporise occasionally with nicotine. Maintain the soil just moist. Small plants with pots full of roots may receive a shift, affording them a rich, light compost. BULBS IN POTS.—Encourage the growth of Roman Hyacinths and Polyanthus Narcissi in a temperature of 50 degs. Early Tulips may have a temperature of 55 degs. Cover the soil with moss. Pots of bulbs removed from ashes must be inured to full light gradually. Keep Freesias near the glass. Any plants showing flower buds may receive the gentle stimulus of increased temperature. CAMELLIAS AND AZALEAS.—The leaves and wood should be cleaned of dirt and insects pre- paratory to the flowers expanding. With the exception of some of the early varieties of Azaleas, such as Deutsche Perle, the plants must be kept as cool as practicable. PLANTING TREES AND SHRUBS.—All deciduous trees and the majority of the freest growing ever- green shrubs should be planted now during favourable periods. Hedges also of Privet, Thorn, Holly, Yew, and Rosa rugosa may be planted. PLANTS FOR FORCING.—Deutzias, Prunus, Lilac, Ghent, and Mollis Azaleas, and Tea Roses should receive the protection of a frame without heat, so as to prepare them for placing in a forc- ing temperature. RHUBARB.—Clumps of Rhubarb roots should be lifted. Trim them to a portable size and transfer to a warm structure of about 60 degs. If the place is moist as well as warm the roots need not be surrounded with soil, but in the case of a dry heat they will be better for such assistance in retaining moisture about them. The crowns under the influence of heat and moisture will push growth in a few weeks. SEAKALE.-Strong, prepared roots of Seakale may be forced into growth in a dark, warm structure. It is necessary to surround the roots with soil, either in a bed or in pots or boxes. Keep the soil moist. Introduce successive batches of roots every few weeks. A tempera- ture of 55 degs. to 60 degs. is best. HORSERADISH.—If plenty of good roots are available a number should be dug up, and laid in soil or ashes for convenience during bad weather. At the same time reserve some of the weaker crowns for planting. PARSNIPS.—These roots are usually best left in the ground for the present, taking them up as required, but when the ground is hard with frost this is not easy. Therefore lift a few and bury them under a wall in ashes or soil. JERUSALEM ARTICHOKES.—The lifting and storing of these is not necessary except to have a few roots in reserve for immediate use. Bury in soil or ashes. The white skinned variety should be crown in addition to the pink or in place of it if liked better. SEED POTATOES.—Select these from the general store of varieties and lay in shallow boxes, which place on a*cool, light shelf. The tubers must be well selected, choosing the best shaped, of medium size, and free from disease.
I our, SRORTSTOlty. THE BRIGHT-EYED 8TKANGEK. Never before had I felt so unutterably lonely; the rattle and roar of the express as it hurried north, grew wearily monotonous; the rain streamed down the carriage windows, and the wind dashed against them m heavy gusts; and I was alone in the compartment. I was on my way home to spend a few days' holiday with my parents, who dwelt in the far north of England. The miserable lamp burnt dimly, and I soon wearied of my reading. Laying down my book, I took out my watch, and was annoyed to find that it had stopped. This completed my discom- fort not that there was any real necessity for me to know the time, but I wanted to know it simply because I could not, and this added to my irrita- tion. I peered out at the blackness we fla,shed through a dreary little station, and I saw the lights of the village through the rain-mist; then I heard a church-clock striking. Should I be able to hear the whole of the chime? I knew it must be near midnight. One! Two! Three! The sound of the bell did not diminish as we rushed on. Ten! Eleven! Twelve! Thirteen!! A, ,U rang on What was it? On we tore through the darkness, and still on and on rang the bell, still distinct, growing louder, ringing more slowly. It sounded like a passing bell or a toll for a. funeral. It was uncanny! Still on and on it rang. Would it never stop? Was it reality, or a dream? I stuffed my fingers into my ears, maddened by the sound, and involun- tarily closed my eyes. Now I could no more hear it. With much hesitation, I dropped my hands I heard the bell no more. But, as I opened my eyes, I saw that I was no longer the sole occupant of the carriage opposite me was a stout, bright-eyed little man, who was gazinsj intently at me. He looked pallid with cold though wrapped in heavy furs, and I could onlv see a portion of his face, as his neck was swathed in a monstrous comforter. But his eyes fascin- ated me, they gleamed so bright, and looked so straight- into mine. How had he come there? What was he?" "It is a cold night, Mr. Beach, is it not?" lie said softly, addressing himself to me. How did he know my name? I was—confess it I must-too frightened to replv. "It is cold. Don't you wish you were by the warm fireside at Helmhurst?" He knew where I was going as well as who I was! A cold shiver crept over me as I stared fascinated at him, he looked so like a goblin as he sat there but-pooh, nonsense! I must be dreaming But no, it was all too real even for the most real of dreams I was face to face with a mystery. I did not feel comfortable. He laughed, but his laugh died away in a shivering chuckle. "It is cold. Don't you find it so?" he re- peated. "Very," I answered, almost in a whisper. His bright eyes sparkled as he noticed my trepi- dation. "Nearly a cold as that winter's night when you were lost on the fells, and were only just found in time to save your life, eh? You remember fch at ?" Remember it! How could I forget it? But how did he come to know of it? It happened years and years ago, when I was quite a boy, and yet this—man knew all about it. "Nearly as cold as that winter's night," he went on, "when you went out to catch the poachers in the Valley Wood, eh? You remem- ber that?" Yes, I did. But how did he know all this about me? What was he? Was I going mad? Was it all some hallucination? I shut my eyes, opened them again there he sat, still smiling, still gazing at me with his bright eyes, that seemed to twinkle with suppressed merriment as he watched my bewilderment. F-or I was bewildered—and amazed. What was this strange being who had so mysteriously appeared, who knew all about my past? Creepy tales my old country-bred nurse had told me when a boy flashed across my mind: tales of goblins, and ghosts, and nameless horrors. And then—that horrid tolling bell! Of that, too, I had heard. It meant death to the hearer. I tried to laugh, and shake off the horror that was fast paralysing me what a mockery of a laugh My lips were dry, my teeth chattered, the hair seemed creeping on my head. The little man laughed again, as he watched my terror, and his bright eyes twinkled the more. "Do you recall," he asked again, "the old oak room that is haunted at Helmhurst? Do you remember the night you spent there- before it was closed-when you saw-or dreamed that you saw-all manner of strange things, and how you roused all the house with your screams? Do you remember how vou used to sit and dream in the woods all day, thinking that you would be a poet, and make the world echo with your songs? You little dreamed that you would settle down as a steady-going London merchant, a lonely old bachelor, with no illusions left, no more dreams of fame, but only fortune to console you, eh?" I could stand it no more; I must get away from this—-man—with his glittering, bright eyes, where I cared not, stay I could not. I jumped up, let down the window; death lay that way. A miserable choice—death or the—well, I knew j not what. "Do shut that'window, my dear sir. I shall perish of cold." I shut it, and oat down again. "You are anxious to get to your destination? By the by, can you tell me the time?" T did not answer. "You seem disturbed; you look afraid, of what? Of me? Surely you are not afraid of me?" How he chuckled as he asked me if I was afraid of him. I was—but could not speak. Besides, he knew almost more about me than I did myself. What was the use of telling him what he already knew? "Afraid of me? He he he! My dear Will, you used not to be in the old days I distinctly remember your bullying me upon several occasions." What was coming next? I wondered. There was something familiar now in -the voice, even in the look, of my tormentor. "Bullying you? I gasped. "Yes. me-me, Arthur Mayhew." "Arthur Mayhew? Arthur- Tell me—• how did you come here? What are you?—what —is it a dream? Why-" "A dream? No! A reality, of course. I'm your old boy-chum, Arthur, back unexpectedly -even to myself-from the States. I got in at where the train stopped, while you were asleep, and have had a very amusing time bewil- dering you." "But how did you know me?" He pointed to the place where my bag was stowed away, with my name painted on the side. A comedy of errors. All's well that ends well.
STRANGE MURDER SENSATION. I A sensation has been caused at Marseilles by I the arrest of a young man and a widow, belong- ing to well-known families, on a charge of murder. The young man is named Edouard Hubac, aged twenty-three, son of a vice-pre- sident of the Civil Tribunal, and the woman Madame Massot, aged 27, widow of M. Georges Massot, who died in October last. The story is that M. Massot was poisoned by his wife, acting in complicity with her lover, Edouard Hubac. Their intimacy began about eight months ago, when Edouard Hubac was introduced to Madame I Massot by a former lover of that lady. M. Massot was quite ignorant of the intimacy. After her husband's death the widow was seen to tear I up some letters, the fragments of which were collected by Lucie Clar, the chambermaid. Those letters were in the handwriting of Edouard Hubac, who complained to his mistress of "the disappointing slowness of her husband's illness." He told her that he was sending another bottle of poison, and instructed her how to administer it. The girl gave information, and the couple were arrested. M. Massot's remains have been exhumed, and are to be analysed.
Sam "How is itpete Green wears sech fine clothes en doan' do nuffin'?" Remus: "Why, he lies a washin' machine dat suppohts him, and does it very well, too." Sam: "Huh! Did he invent it?" Remus: "No; married it."
I HiUDKN HUMBERT PAPERS. I At the inquiry into the Humbert case in Paris the other day, M. Cross, a garrulous southerner, of Carcassonne, who was called to give evid- ence at his own request, stated that he where there were hidden papers of the highest importance. "Where are they?" asked the president, smiling.—"They are in the provinces, and I'll take you there at once," replied M Cross, Ivc- the amusement of the Court. He then stated that his uncle was a great friend of Mme. Hum- bert, and that before the Humbert family Red ,the papers were left with his uncle. He dis- covered them in his uncle's safe, into which he once took a peep when it was accidentally left open. "And, gentlemen," he added, "they compro- mise a former Prime Minister and a wiiolo basketful of politicians." The house in which the Humberts lived in Spain, said the witness, belonged to his uncle. It is rumoured that the committee intend to pay a visit to the south of France to see what truth there is in the story.
I GORDON-BENNETT CUP. Homburg, the scene of the next Gordon-Bennett Cup race for the automobiles, is already getting ready for the big event. The course, as was the case in Ireland, will be a circular one that is to say, both start and finish will be seen from the same spot. The Saalburg, the highest point on the Homburg-Mayence road, has been selected as the starting-post, and here a grand stand, shaped like an amphitheatre, will be ereeted. The road will divide this building into two section&, which will be joined by a subway. There will be seats for 3000 spectators and ,.n Imperial box for the Kaiser and his entourage. The Burgomaster of Homburg, Herr von Marx, to whom the Kaiser has delegated the preparations for this international contest, has set about his task in a very businesslike way. His first object has been to settle the housing problem. To effect this he has canvassed the hotel-keepers of the entire district, and will tabulate the accommoda- tion obtainable at Homburg, Frankfurt, Wiesbaden, Bieberich, Donaldshausen, &c., so that none of the* numerous visitors that are expected need sleep out. of doors. The information thus collected will be sent on to the secretaries of all the leading automobile clubs, who will be warned that quarters for their members will have to be ordered in advance. An immense garage will also be erected, pro- bably on the paddock of Herr von Marx.
CIYJL SERVICE DEFERRED PAY. I The general council of the Civil Service De- ferred Pay Movement have passed a series of resolutions on the report of the Commission on Superannuation in the Civil Service. They consider that the provision of an endow- ment assurance for each civil servant would prove an ecceptable amendment of the present pension system, provided that a substantial addi- tion be made to the one year's pay proposed to be given, or that the present scale of pensions should not be substantially diminished. But they urge, as an alternative, that the pre- sent scale should remain in force, with a grant of not less than one year's salary to the represen- tatives of those civil servants who die in active service, or, in case of death after superannua- tion, an amount which would make up the dif- ference between one year's salary and the sum received in pension.
A TREASURE ISLAND. UNKNOWN COLONY OF ITALIAN FARMERS. A remarkable story has been unfolded by I France's claim to the long-forgotten island of La Galite, which is situated in the Mediterranean, off the African coast, about 50 miles from Bizerta. Recently a French gunboat stopped off the island, and was surprised to find it inhabited. The fact was duly reported in the log, and on the information reaching the naval authorities the French resident at Tunis was requested to supply a report as to the island and its people. An official was sent aboard a small steamer to the island, and there found a colony of farmers, a sort of Swiss family Robinson, about a, hun- dred in all. They were of Italian nationality, and were ruled with benevolent despotism by an elderly Italian named Darco. This man in 1850, then 20 years of age, killed a companion in a quarrel, and fled from Italy. He embarked as a seaman on board a. sailing vessel trading on the African coast, and twice the vessel passed close by the island, which was then uninhabited. Eighteen months later Darco, having obtained his discharge, invested in a small open sailing boat, and without saying any- thing of his intentions sailed off to the island. On arriving he discovered that the land was I excellent for farming, and that there ere plenty of wild goats. During his explorations he came across a sort of rocky cave, m which he found hundreds of ancient gold and silver coins belong- ing to various countries. The cave had evidently been the hiding-place of Barbary pirates prior to the conquest'of Algiers by the French. Darco having collected the treasure, sailed in his little barque to Tunis, and from there made his way to Naples. Having disposed of his trea- sure, he invested the proceeds in agricultural im- plements, and returned to the island with four relatives, two young men and their wives. Since then the family has grown to considerable pro- portions, Darco himself having no fewer than 57 children, grandchildren, and great-grand- children. Having been left for half a century in unin- terrupted possession of the island, Darco natu- rally resents the presents of a French official, who has been sent ther*. by the Governmnt to see to the payment of taxes. Old as he is, he has made a trip to Italy to get the Government to take up his case, but has been received with a deaf ear. Since then he has endeavourd to interest the Pope, but has met with no better success.
It is believed, says a correspondent, that by a new and important development in cable im- provement, the cable companies will be able to reduce the cost of Press messages to Id. a word to the United States, and still be in a position to make a satisfactory profit. A wild boar in the Belgian Ardennes got into a mine for refuge from some huntsmen. The miners stopped their work, and an improvised hunt of the unusual visitor took place, and it was killed at the entrance to the mine. "Poor thing, did she take her husband's death much to heart?" "Why, she's prostrated with grief She can't see a soul, except the dress- maker." Hoogley: "When I entered your yard last evening your dog barked at me." Wilby "You could hardly expect me to keep servants and let them fill in their time barking at folks, and I'm them fill in their time barking at folks, and I'm too busy myself to attend to it."