Reference numberJBO/1/132
Alternative reference numberJBO/1/175
TitleMinutes of an ordinary meeting of the Royal Society
Date26 May 1663
Description ' Colonel Long had observed, that the grasse was blasted where Toads Live; and the surface of such blasted earth being taken away, (?) several Toades were found lying under it.

Mr Hook was charged to look upon sage with a Microscope, and to observe, whether there did Lurke, any little Spiders in the Cavityes of the leaves, that might make them noxious.

Dr Pope said upon this occasion, tht Spiders seemed to be poisonous, because he had observed, that aFly, bit by a Spider, dyed immediately ; whereas another Fly whose head is pulled off, will stir apretty while after it. To this Colonel Long suggested, that a Merlin would kill a Partridge presently, so that it should lye quite mouelesse; whereas another, whose head was wrung off, would flutter a while after : which made him Surmise, that in both cases, the fright might rather be the cause of the suddain death, than any poysonousnesse.

Colonel Long desired further time to make his Collections of Insects, for a present to the Society.

The same shewed an Ermin, taken in Wiltshire about Dracot, as white as those that come from abroad, and having likewise the tail black, to speckle them with.

Sir Robert Moray recommended the improuement of Silk-making heretofore begun in England : in order to which it was suggested, that white Mulberries should be increased ; for which, their grwth by cuttings put in good ground, was by Colonel Long preferred as more speedy, before their propagation from roots. It was also mentioned, tht Eggs of Silkwormes fetcht from abroad, out of warmer Countreys would thrive better : Monsr. Monconis affirming, that in France they send for Eggs out of Italy ; and offering himselfe to procure some store of them, as also to give full Account of the way, they use in France, of ordering Silkworms.

Mr Howard was desired to pursue the planting of Mulberries mention was made ofr Dr Brian, a Minister of Coventry, having so much Silke made by his Family, tht they furnished themselves with Silk-Stockings.

Colonel Long affirmed that in the Indies the Silkworme-flyes, having cut themselves out of the Balls, do fly awa to the Mulberryes, laying Eggs upon the Leaves of thereof, which do vivify and feed there etc.

Sir Robert Moray gave occasion to enquier, of what importance is the Custome of changing Seed-corne every year ; concerning which, Colonel Long thought it matter of great advantage, to change the ground from worse to better, and to sow lean and small corns in richer soyle. He added, that though Husbandmen, seldome sow the same grain in the same ground, for several years together with good success; He observed further, that corne will smutt, if from one rich ground it be sowne upon another, rich ground, but not so much the second as the third and following years.

Mr Brereton mentioned that in Cheshire to preserve corne from Smut, as also from being eathen by birds, they dd steep it in brine Sprinkled with Lime.

Mr Hoskins said that Colonell Sands intended to bring gravel saved from the Sea-shore out of Cornwall into Herefordshier, to manure their ground with.

Sir Robert Moray inquired, whether manuring the ground with Lime, maketh wheat more wholesome or not ; Colonel Long said that the signs f the wholesomenesse of Corne, being, to keep well, and corne grown from Lime, or other good natural manure, keeping better, than from compost and dung, or ither foul manure it was manifest, that liming the ground mde the corne wholesome; He observed further, that Asparagus and other herbs growing from rank manure, were not so good, nor so firme or well-tasted, as those that grew from a good natural Soyle, or from a clean manure.
Mr Awbrey mentioned, that liming the ground, altered the wooll for the worse; and that it was found so by experience in Herefordshire.

Mr Ball said, that though wooll grew courser from Limed ground, yet the sheep thrived better by it : which he said to have observed in Devonshire.

Mr Brereton observed, that Sheep without Horns, if brought into a woodland, or downs, or other hard Country, will get Hornes in a few generations : an on the Contrary, if they come out of a woodland-country into a Low-land and rich pasture, loose their hornes.

Colonel Long affirmed, that the Large-horned Oxen, brought into Sommerset-shier, or other rich Soyle, get short heads.

The odde productions of Trees of different kinds, growing upon one another, being mentioned again, Dr Glisson abserved that an Ashe does sometimes groe upon a Willow : and that himselfe had seen an Ashe so growe, upon the head of a rotten willow, that it had shott its root through it into the ground, and grew up, thrusting the willow out its place.

Sir Robert Moray related that in Scotland, neer Lough-Crum, between the Lough and a Hill, there was an old firre-wood, all fallen downe, the Trees lying crosse over one another, to a mans hight, and in part couered with Mosses, the Earth being grown and raised to these Trees, though not yet so high, as to reach the top ; which he conceiveth it will doe in progresse of time, and so busy the trees ; as it is found in Cheshire and else-where.

Mr Hoskins said, that in Lincolnshire it did not dew upon those parts, where Trees lay buried under ground : and that by that token such trees were found out.

Upon this occasion, Mr Brereton was desired to make futher inquiry of those trees, that are found buried in Cheshire, and to obtain their posture, depth, weight, figure, smell, when burned etc
Hence some of the Company conceived, that the Earth did grow and did in time cover faln trees ; That Turfs did grow again etc filled up the cavities made in such ground by digging : Item, that mountains did grow, seeing there was continually so much wasted of them, by the Rain washing away much of the Earth, which if it were not supplyed by their growing, would in time very sensibly lessen them. Others thought that several Mountains, that are not rocky were indeed by such washings Lessened ; and that others of them were raised, but such onely, as are Vulcans, that make eruptions, and by casting up new matter, raise them to a greater hight.

It was also discussed, whether Minerals do grow : where Mr Brereton observed, that in Chesheir he had found very many differing kinds of vines under ground, and that the deeper vine were nearer to Oar and metal ; the higher, more earthy.

Sir Robert Moray conceived, that for ought we know, all minerals might have been so from the beginning ; and said, he should be glad to see any thing, no metal, become Mettall.

Others thought that Minerals were produced by certaine Subterraneous juices, which passing through the Veins of he Earth, and having mingled therewith, do afterwards precipitate, and Chrystallize into Stones, Oars, and mettalls of various kinds and figures, according to the various kinds of Salts, continued in the juices and the Earth.

Dr Pope alledged the Observation of Monsr. Peyreskins, of a Ground in the River Rhodanus which having by him been found even and somewhat soft under his feet at one time, was found hardened into oval stones some daes after.

The same said, that having evapourated some of the petrefying water of Oaky-hoek, no stony matter did Subside.

Sir Robert Moray said hereupon, that according as the evaporation was made, stony parts did Subside ar not : That himselfe had distilled some of the Spaw-water by fier, and nothing remained at the bottom ; but when he evaporated of the same in the Sun, there did : the violence of the fire carrying all away ; but the Gentlemess of the Sun, leaving grosse mater behind.

Dr Clarke related, that in a certain field in Sussex, the Stones being carried away by 20 & 30 loads, once in 2 or 3 years, the place is found continually filled again with stones

Dr Goddard Spoke of the production of Gray-Marble, made of Cockles and other shells, compacted by intercurrent Stony juices ; there being a continual permeation of various kinds of them through the Earth, whereby the Several parts thereof are strangely shifted fromone place to another.

Dr Glisson thought that the petrification of wood was done by the passing of Stony juices, into the pores of the wood throughout and by the filling them all up, and so coagulating there, without changing any thing of he figures of the wood.

Mr Hook produced Dr Goddards petrifyed wood, being cut smooth, and having polish ; which being Veiwed by him in a Microscope, in its closest part, did still appear porous. He was desired to cause the same Stony wood, to be cut sideways ; and also to bring in his Observtion upon it.

Dr Goddard read his Experiment of a Tube and Quicksilver which was ordered to be entered.

Mr Hook brought in his Microscopical Observtion of a Male Gnatt. He was charged to bring in writing, the Experiment of air exhausted out of Water, and relapsing to it again. '
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