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To suspend a Ring by a Thread that has been burnt.........................

Chemical Illuminations......

A Flash of Lightning when one enters a Room with a lighted Candle........
The Fiery Fountain......

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A Lamp that will burn Twelve Months without replenishing..

The Magic Oracle..

Method of constructing a Voltaic Pile.

Magnetical Experiments....

Light produced by Friction, even under Water..........................................................................................................................
Hydraulic Experiments.....

Another Hydraulic Experiment, called the Miraculous Vessel
A curions Hydraulic Experiment, called Tantalus's Cup
A curious Chemical Experiment, called the Tree of Diana
A remarkable Experiment, called Prince Rupert's Drops
How to make Sympathetic Inks of various Kinds......
Other Sympathetic Inks....

A Sympathetic Ink which appears by being wetted with water
Experiments with Sympathetic Ink..

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How to Write on Glass by means of the Rays of the Sun..
To produce different Colors, by pouring a colorless Liquor into a clean Glass.
To produce a Color which appears and disappears by the Influence of the Air.
To turn a colorless Liquor Black, by adding a White Powder to it..
Freezing Mixture....

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Experiments with the Microscope...

Experiments with the Thermometer and Barometer......
Rules for judging of and predicting the State of the Weather by the Barometer........
Method of Preserving Birds..

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To take the Impression of the Wings of a Butterfly in all their Colors...

To take the Impression of a Leaf of any Tree, Plant, or Shrub, with all its Veins....... 894
Experiments respecting Colors, etc.........

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A Qantity of Eggs being broken, to find how many there were without remembering

the Number.....

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How to make a Peg that will exactly fit Three different Holes....
To place Three Sticks upon a Table in such a manner that they may appear to be
unsupported by anything but themselves.....

How to prevent a heavy Body from falling, by adding another heavier Body to it on that
side toward which it inclines

To make a false Balance that shall appear perfectly just when empty, or when loaded
with unequal Weights.....

How to lift up a Bottle with a Straw, or any other slight Substance

To make a Pen, which holds One Hundred Sheep, hold double the Number, by ouly

Water like a Cork.

How to prove that Two and Two do not make Four........................................................................................................
Method of Secret Writing...

Optical Experiments...

How to make a violent Tempest by means of artificial Rain and Hail
Magic Square...........

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INTRODUCTION

It was well observed by Lord Bacon, that "It would much conduce to the magnanimity and honour of man, if a collection were made of the extraordinaries of human nature, principally out of the reports of history; that is, what is the last and highest pitch to which man's nature, of itself, hath ever reached, in all the perfection of mind and body. If the wonders of human nature, and virtues as well of mind as of body, were collected into a volume, they might serve as a calendar of human triumphs."

The present work not only embraces the Curiosities of human nature, but of Nature and Art in general, as well as Science and Literature. Surrounded with wonders, and lost in admiration, the inquisitive mind of man is ever anxious to know the hidden springs that put these wonders in motion; he eagerly inquires for some one to take him by the hand and explain to him the curiosities of the universe. And though the works of nature are great, and past finding out, and we cannot arrive at the perfection of science, nor discover the secret impulses which nature obeys, yet can we by reading, study, and investigation dissipate much of the darkness in which we are enveloped, and dive far beyond the surface of this multifarious scene of things. The noblest employ. ment of the human understanding is to contemplate the works of the great Creator of the boundless universe, and to trace the marks of infinite wisdom, power, and goodness throughout the whole.

A considerable portion of the following pages is devoted to Curiosities in the works of Nature. It also presents to the reader a view of the great achievements of the human intellect in the discoveries of science, and the wonderful operations of the skill, power, and industry of man in the invention and improvement of the arts, in the construction of machines, and in the buildinga and other ornaments the earth exhibits, as trophies to the glory of the human race.

The work is divided into ninety-one chapters. The Curiosi ties respecting Man occupy eleven chapters. The next four chap ters are devoted to Animals; then two to Fishes; one to Serpents

and Wortus; three to Birds; eleven to Insects; six to Vegeta bles; three to Mountains; two to Grottoes, Caves, etc.; one w Mines; two to the Sea; one to Lakes, Whirlpools, etc.; one to Burning Springs; one to Earthquakes; one to Remarkable Winds; one to Showers, Storms, etc.; one to Ice; one to Ruins; four to Buildings, Temples, and other Monuments of Antiquity; and one to Basaltic and Rocky Curiosities. The fifty-eighth chapter is devoted to the Ark of Noah, the Galley of Hiero, and the Bridge of Xerxes. The next six chapters detail at length the various Customs of Mankind in different parts of the World, and also explain many Old Adages and Sayings. The next five chapters exhibit a variety of curious phenomena in nature, such as the Ignis Fatuus, Thunder and Lightning, Fire Balls, Water Spouts, Fairy Rings, Spots in the Sun, Volcanoes in the Moon, Eclipses, Shooting Stars, Aurora Borealis or Northern Lights, etc., etc. The seventieth chapter is on Galvanism. The seventy-first on Magnetism. The next three chapters delineate the principal Curiosi ties respecting the Arts. Then follow five chapters on some of the principal Curiosities in History; three on the Curiosities of Literature; and nine on Miscellaneous Curiosities.

Truthful descriptions are given of the finest Buildings, the most remarkable Ruins; of the most extensive Libraries; of Animals, their propagation, nature and habits; of Wonderful Automatons and strange Machines; of Icebergs and Hot Springs; of huge Mountains and deep Caverns; of Bees and Birds; of the Ant and the Beaver; of Mines, Mining, Currency, and Coins; of Diseases and Cures; of Mesmerism and Galvanism; of Feasts and Famines; of Female Beauty, how to promote and how to injure it; of splendid Palaces and gorgeous Temples; of Scientific Investigations and priceless Discoveries; of Music and Musical Instruments; of Microscopic and Telescopic Wonders; of Human Perfections and Monstrosities; of Lightning, Thunder, Tornadoes, Cyclones; of Virulent Poisons and their Antidotes; and of the other wonders of Air, Earth, Fire, and Water.

An Appendix is added, containing a number of easy, innocent, amusing Experiments and Recreations.

The Compiler trusts the work will afford both entertainment and instruction for the leisure hour of the Philosopher or the Laborer, the Gentleman or the Mechanic. In short, all classes may find in the present work something conducive to their pleasure and improvement, as it will afford a constant source of subiecta for interesting and agreeable conversation.

THE

BOOK OF WONDERS AND CURIOSITIES.

CHAP. I.

CURIOSITIES RESFECTING MAN.

The Human Body-the Countenance-the Eye-the Ear-the Heart-the Circulation of the Blood-Respiration--the Hair of the Head-the Beard-Women with Beards-Sneezing.

"Come, gentle reader, leave all meaner things
To low ambition, and the pride of kings.
Let us, since life can little more supply
Than just to look about us, and to die;
Expatiate free o'er all this scene of Man,
A mighty maze! but not without a plan.
A wild, where weeds and flow'rs promiscuous shoot;
Or garden, tempting with forbidden fruit.
Together let us beat this ample field,
Try what the open, what the covert yield;
The latent tracts, the giddy heights, explore,
Of all who blindly creep, or sightless soar:
Eye nature's walks, shoot folly as it flies,
And catch the manners living as they rise;
Laugh where we must, be candid where we can,
But vindicate the ways of God to man."

WE shall, in the first place, enter on the consideration of THE CURIOSITIES OF THE HUMAN BODY.-The following account is abridged from the works of the late Drs. Hunter and Paley.

Dr. Hunter shows that all the parts of the human frame are requisite to the wants and well-being of such a creature as man. He observes, that, first the mind, the thinking immaterial agent, must be provided with a place of immediate residence, which shall have all the requisites for the union of spirit and body; accordingly, she is provided with the brain, where she dwells as governor and superintendant of the whole fabric.

In the next place, as she is to hold a correspondence with all the material beings around her, she must be supplied with organs fitted to receive the different kinds of impression which

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they will make. In fact, therefore, we see that she is provided with the organs of sense, as we call them: the eye adapted to light; the ear to sound; the nose to smell; the mouth to taste; and the skin to touch.

Further, she must be furnished with organs of communication between herself in the brain, and those organs of sense; to give her information of all the impressions that are made upon them; and she must have organs between herself in the brain, and every other part of the body, fitted to convey her commands and influence over the whole. For these purposes the nerves are actually given. They are soft white chords which rise from the brain, the immediate residence of the mind, and disperse themselves in branches through all parts of the body They convey all the different kinds of sensations to the mind in the brain; and likewise carry out from thence all her commands to the other parts of the body. They are intended to be occasional monitors against all such impressions as might endanger the well-being of the whole, or of any particular part; which vindicates the Creator of all things, in having actually subjected us to those many disagreeable and painful sensations which we are exposed to from a thousand accidents in life.

Moreover, the mind, in this corporeal system, must be endued with the power of moving from place to place; that she may have intercourse with a variety of objects; that she may fly from such as are disagreeable, dangerous, or hurtful; and pursue such as are pleasant and useful to her. And accordingly she is furnished with limbs, with muscles and tendons, the instruments of motion, which are found in every part of the fabric where motion is necessary.

But to support, to give firmness and shape to the fabric; to keep the softer parts in their proper places; to give fixed points for, and the proper directions to its motions, as well as to protect some of the more important and tender organs from external injuries, there must be some firm prop-work interwoven through the whole. And in fact, for such purposes the bones are given.

The prop-work is not made with one rigid fabric, for that would prevent motion. Therefore there are a number of bones. These pieces must all be firmly bound together, to prevent their dislocation. And this end is perfectly well answered by the ligaments.

The extremities of these bony pieces, where they move and rub upon one another, must have smooth and slippery surfaces for easy motion. This is most happily provided for, by the cartilages and mucus of the joints.

The interstices of all these parts must be filled up with some soft and ductile matter, which shall keep them in their

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