The Plant ; a Biography: In a Series of Popular Lectures

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H. Bailliere, 1848 - Botany - 365 pages
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Page 142 - that a pious hermit, who, in his watchings and prayers, had often been overtaken by sleep, so that his eyelids closed, in holy wrath against the weakness of the flesh, cut them off and threw them on the ground. But a god caused a tea-shrub to spring out of them, the leaves of which exhibit the form of an eyelid bordered with lashes, and possess the gift of hindering sleep.
Page 306 - Man himself from the arena of his actions, leaving the impoverished earth to barbarous races or to animals, so long as yet another spot in virgin beauty smiles before him. Here again in selfish pursuit of profit, and, consciously or unconsciously, following the abominable principle of the great moral Vileness which one man has expressed, " apres nous le deluge," he begins anew the work of destruction.
Page 306 - Deluge,' — he begins anew the work of destruction. Thus did cultivation, driven out, leave the East, and perhaps the deserts formerly robbed of their coverings ; like the wild hordes of old over beautiful Greece, thus rolls this conquest with fearful rapidity from East to West through America ; and the planter now often leaves the already exhausted land, and. the eastern climate, become infertile through the demolition of the forests, to introduce a similar revolution into the Far West.
Page 45 - ... fluid nutriment from the surrounding parts ; out of which, by chemical processes which are constantly in action in the interior of the cell, it forms new substances which are partly applied to the nutrition and growth of its walls, partly laid up in store for future requirements, partly again expelled as useless, and to make room for the entrance of new matters. In this constant play of absorption and excretion, of chemical formation...
Page 225 - In Rome upon Palm Sunday they bear true Palms, The Cardinals bow reverently and sing old Psalms ; Elsewhere those Psalms are sung 'mid Olive branches, The Holly branch supplies the place among the avalanches ; More northern climes must be content with the sad Willow.
Page 304 - Rhine where, two thousands years ago, no Cherry ripened, but on the other hand, those lands where the dense population of the Jews was nourished by a fruitful culture, are in the present day half deserts. The cultivation of Clover, requiring a moist atmosphere, has passed from Greece to Italy, from thence to southern Germany, and already is beginning to fly from the continually drier summers there, to be confined to the moister North. Rivers which formerly scattered their blessings with equal fulness...
Page 36 - There can, however, be no possible doubt that it indicates a most barbarous age, or a very low state of refinement, when the value, the importance of a thing is measured by great and small, a standard indeed which finds no application in all that we know most essential and valuable, for the human mind is not to be defined by foot, inch or line. Physical magnitude imposes only on the sensuous nature ; cultivated man seeks to know the object of his contemplation perfectly in all its relations ; and...
Page 193 - Cujete, ) placed beneath. Close by squats a little boy, and dips his father's arrows in the deadly milk, while the wife lights a fire to dry the pressed roots, and by heat to drive off more completely the volatile poisonous matter. Next, it is powdered between two stones, and the Cassavameal is ready. Meanwhile, the boy has completed his evil task ; the sap, after standing some considerable time, has deposited a delicate, white starch, from which the poisonous fluid is poured off. The meal is then...
Page 265 - ... barley will no longer ripen. Consequently, to define accurately the conditions of temperature which a plant requires to maintain it in a flourishing condition, we must state within what limits its period of vegetation may vary, and what quantity of heat it requires. This most remarkable circumstance was first observed by Boussingault...
Page 306 - True it is that thorns and thistles, ill-favoured and poisonous plants, well named by botanists rubbish plants, mark the track which man has proudly traversed through the earth. Before him lay original Nature in her wild but sublime beauty. Behind him he leaves the desert, a deformed and ruined land ; for childish desire of destruction, or thoughtless squandering of vegetable treasures, has destroyed the character of nature ; and, terrified, man himself flies from the arena of his actions, leaving...

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