Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 44.djvu/851

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SKETCH OF L. D. VON SCHWEINITZ.

It may be remarked, with reference to plant forms, that the boreal flora of that epoch, not being at all menacing, could furnish little food for superstition, and no drawings of plants are found in the caves.

On the whole, the condition of the art of design with primitive man appears to be in complete harmony with the meaning we have attributed to design itself—it being regarded as inspired by the belief in the existence of a material relation between a being and its image, and in the possibility of acting on the object by means of the picture.

Consequently, the principle of painting is not to be found in a natural tendency of primitive man to the artificial imitation of living Nature, but seems to be derived from the wish to subject that Nature to its wants and to subdue it.

By progressive improvements, the art of drawing has gradually lost its primitive significance and original meaning till it has become what it is now. It does not differ, however, much from what it was originally; for, while primitive man fancied he could reach the living being in its image, it is still life that living man seeks to-day in works of art.—Translated for The Popular Science Monthly from the Revue Scientifique.


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SKETCH OF L. D. VON SCHWEINITZ.

DURING colonial times in America, and even down into the present century, science advanced over a much obstructed path. Not having then attained to its present power and esteem, there were but few of its votaries whose whole time and best energies it could command. The explorations by which the animals, plants, and minerals of the vast Western continent were made known to science were accomplished in large part by naturalists who either followed some other vocation as a means of livelihood, or were mainly occupied by some other career to which they felt more strongly bound. Franklin was a printer and later a statesman, being an electrician only at odd times; John Bartram was a farmer; Mitchell, Hosack, and Barton were physicians; while Muhlenberg and the subject of this article were clergymen.

Lewis David von Schweinitz was born, February 13, 1780, at Bethlehem, Pa., then a Moravian Church settlement which had been founded by his family in 1741. His father. Baron Hans Christian Alexander von Schweinitz, came from an ancient and distinguished family residing on the ancestral estate called Leubla, in the present limits of Saxony. That he was a man of stable