Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 40.djvu/67

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57
POSSIBILITIES OF ECONOMIC BOTANY.

and bodily protection; to it we owe the development of our æsthetic sense in large degree. It may be true that to-day in a civilized democracy there is no proper place for personal ornament and decoration; but we can forgive much of weak display and many a useless survival of the past on account of what personal vanity has done for man's progress.


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SOME OF THE POSSIBILITIES OF ECONOMIC BOTANY.[1]

By GEORGE LINCOLN GOODALE.

OUR Association demands of its president, on his retirement from office, some account of matters connected with the department of science in which he is engaged.

But you will naturally expect that, before I enter upon the discharge of this duty, I should present a report respecting the mission with which you intrusted me last year. You desired me to attend the annual meeting of the Australasian Association for the Advancement of Science, and express your good wishes for its success. Compliance with your request did not necessitate any material change in plans formed long ago to visit the South Seas; some of the dates and the sequence of places had to be modified; otherwise the early plans were fully carried out.

I can assure you that it seemed very strange to reverse the seasons, and find midsummer in January. But in the meeting with our brethren of the southern hemisphere nothing else was reversed. The official welcome to your representative was as cordial and the response by the members was as kindly as that which the people in the northern hemisphere would give to any fellow-worker coming from beyond the sea.

The meeting to which I was commissioned was held in January last in the cathedral city of Christchurch, New Zealand, the seat of Canterbury College.

Considering the distance between the other colonies and New Zealand, the meeting was well attended. From Hobart, Tasmania, to the southern harbor, known as the Bluff, in New Zealand, the sea voyage is only a little short of one thousand miles of rough water. From Sydney in New South Wales to Auckland, New Zealand, it is over twelve hundred miles. If, therefore, one journeys from Adelaide in South Australia, to Christchurch, New Zealand, where the meeting was held, he travels by land and by

  1. Presidential address delivered before the American Association for the Advancement of Science, at Washington, August, 1891.