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IV. Reports of Observations of the “ November Asteroïds,” or Shooting or Falling Stars, as seen in Europe on the night of the 13th of November, 1836, are added to what had been stated in the first edition ; together with other facts, and with accounts of the Planetary explanations of Messrs. Arago, Olmsted, and Biot; of the Meteoric explanation, both of these stars, and of the zodiacal light, by other astronomers and philosophers; and a retrospective glance at the opinions of the preceding century, as to Shooting or Falling Stars, and Star-jelly; and at the improved explanation, in the same century, of that particular substance, Star-jelly, as being either vegetable, or else naturally formed of the bodies of dead frogs.

V. Sir John Herschel's latest description of his discoveries and observations under the Southern Celestial Hemisphere, will be found in this edition.

VI. The formal denial of the pretended “ Lunar Discoveries” of the same indefatigable astronomer, appears, also, in these pages.

VII. In the brief chapter upon the Centrifugal and Centripetal Forces, room, though but of two lines, has been found, for intimating the existence of the new doctrine of Professor Mozotti, of Corfu, already favourably received by the highest philosophical authorities in England; a doctrine which, enlarging, but not detracting from the philosophy of Newton, reduces the phenomena of all the forces discovered in nature to a single force ; conformably with the glimpse of many preceding inquirers, and with the persuasion, for years past entertained, that “ perhaps the day may come, when even gravitation, no longer regarded as an ultimate principle, may be resolved into a yet more general cause, embracing every law that regulates the material world *."

To admit the introduction of these new materials into the volume, besides an extension of the number of its pages, many chapters, or parts of chapters, have been re-written, or re-modelled, and many changes as to the distribution of the engravings have been made; all to the end of providing, for the little readers of the work, increased instruction, pleasure, and entertainment.

Finally, the order of almost the whole of the chapters (and that, therefore, of the several topics to which they are respectively devoted) has been entirely new disposed. In doing this, a notion has been acted upon, that the most general contemplation of the heavenly bodies, and a description and explanation of their most obvious, and most familiar phenomena, are the objects of the earliest interest to the youthful observer; and that all which is particular, and still more all which is recondite, and the topic of a higher curiosity, should come but after the foregoing. With this view, the order observed in the present impression, after commencing in a manner incapable of improvement (that of dilating upon the Moon, and of illustrating the Moon, which is always distant from us, by a Balloon, which we can see both near and at a distance); this order leads us, in the second place, to the Sun; then, to the Stars; then, to the Nebules of the astronomers; thus embracing the whole heaven under a general aspect; and thus leaving us to contract our subsequent picture, from the whole starry heaven, to that

Somerville's Connexion of the Physical Sciences. London. 1836.

of what Sir William Herschel has called the Nebule of the Earth, within which is the Solar System ; and, in this System, to descend, at last, from the general survey of all its Planets,—all its Comets,—and all the recent suggestions of its extended contents,-to our single and dearest planet the Earth, with its familiar and yet wonderful phenomena of Day and Night, and the Four Seasons. We descend, in short, even in the bounds of the Solar System,

From solitary Mars; from the vast orb
Of Jupiter, whose huge gigantic bulk
Dances in ether like the lightest leaf;
To the dim verge, the suburbs of the System,
Where cheerless Saturn, ʼmidst his watery moons,
Girt with a lucid zone, in gloomy pomp,

Sits like an exiled monarch *;and, after having begun our contemplation from the Earth, repose upon Earth once more:

-The known accustomed spot,
Dressed up with sun and shade, and lawns, and streams :-
A mansion fair and spacious for its guest,

And full replete with wonders *. Upon the whole, then, this second edition of my Tales OF THE SUN, MOON, AND STARS, presents almost an entirely new and original volume, the contents of which (as it is hoped) will be found at least not less pleasing, nor less instructive, than those that were offered in the first impression.

* Barbauld's Summer Evening's Meditation. London. 1771. The Georgium Sidus was at this date unknown.

A List of the popular works of Mr. Peter Parley,

VOYAGER, TRAVELLER, AND STORY-TELLER.

1. TALES OF ANIMALS. Comprising QUADRUPEDS, Birds, Fishes, REPTILES, and INSECTS. The Sixth Edition, embellished with Two Hundred and Eighty Cuts. Price 5s. in cloth boards.

“ Natural History is a subject which affords more amusing details and more astonishing facts, and suggests more deep and important reflections, than any other in the whole range of natural science. The matter in this volume is very excellently adapted to the capacity and the wants of children. The style is simple, neat, and perspicuous; the subjects are well selected and happily treated.”

2. TALES ABOUT EUROPE, ASIA, AFRICA, and AMERICA. A New Edition, with great Additions. Embellished with One Hundred and Thirty-six Cuts. Price 7s. 6d. in fancy boards.

“The execution of this work, as respects typography and arrangement, is admirable and attractive; the wood cuts are of uncommon excellence. Here is that specific kind of literature for youth, combining information with amusement, which is adapted to counteract the taste for silly tales, awaken a laudable cariosity, and gratify an intelligent youth in a manner and io an extent which mere fiction never can.”

3. TALES ABOUT GREAT BRITAIN AND IRELAND. A New Edition, greatly improved, and embellished with One Hundred and rty-two Cuts. Price 7s. 6d. in fancy boards.

4. TALES ABOUT THE SEA, AND THE ISLANDS IN THE PACIFIC OCEAN. The Second Edition, enlarged. Embellished with numerous Cuts. Price 4s. 6d. in fancy boards.

“The recent boisterous weather and its calamitous results on our shores, make us take up this volume in the hope of soothing our anxiety for those whose march is on the mountain waves, and home upon the deep.' The charm of its graphic descriptions and fascinating tales fell on us with all the power of enchantment. It is a lively little volume, well adapted for the instruction and amusement of children.'

5. TALES ABOUT ANCIENT AND MODERN GREECE. Embellished with One Hundred Cuts. Price 4s. 6d. in fancy boards.

“ The works of Peter Parley will need no puffing to insure success, they are really the most ingenious and taking conceits yet developed to aid the cause of education ; they are full of simple and substantial food for the juvenile mind, and add to the many claims of the benevolent Peter to the gratitude both of parents and children.

6. TALES ABOUT THE SUN, MOON, STARS, and COMETS. A New and very greatly improved Edition. With One Hundred and Thirty Cuts. Price 4s. 6d. in fancy boards.

CONTENTS.

Chap.

Page

1. PARLEY tells about a Balloon..

1

2. Parley tells of the Moon. Map of the Full Moon. Powers of

Telescopes.

6

3. Parley tells again of the Moon. Spots upon the Moon. Face

of the Moon. Old Woman in the Moon. Man in the

Moon. German Philosopher. Peruvian Tale of the Spots

on the Moon....

12

4. Parley tells still more of the Moon. Telescopic Appearances

in the Moon. Ancient Acquaintance with the Moon. An-

cient and Modern Questions. Crescent, or increasing

Moon, eastward of the Sun

15

5. Parley tells of the Mountains in the Moon. Sir David Brew-

ster's Description of the Mountain-scenery in the Moon,

and his apparent Disagreement with Sir William Herschel

as to the Height of the Mountains

19

6. About the Volcanoes in the Moon. About the Likeness of the

Volcanoes in the Moon to those upon our Globe. About

Clouds and Water in the Moon

25

7. Parley still tells about the Moon. What Things might be

supposed to be seen upon the Earth, if there were Astrono-

mers and Telescopes in the Moon .

32

8. About the Influences of the Moon upon the Earth, and of the

Earth upon the Moon. About the Influence of the Mass of

the Moon. About Tides

38

9. About the Influences of the Light of the Moon. About the

Weather. About the Changes of the Moon. About Old

Moons and Young Moons. About New Moons, Full Moons,

Half Moons, and Three-quarter Moons. The Sailor's Voy-

age to the End of the World, and his Discovery of the Heaps

of Old Moons

42

10. More about Moonlight and its Influences. About the Freez-

ing Influence of Moonlight. About the Nature of Frost,

or Phenomenon of Freezing About Crystallization. M.

Becquerel and Mr. Crosse. About Playing and Dancing

by Moonlight

52

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