tion, the sound at two miles' distance on July 1st must have had more than forty times the intensity which it possessed at the same distance at 3 p. m. on the 3d.
"On smooth water," says Sir John Herschel, "sound is propagated with remarkable clearness and strength." Here was the condition; still, with the Foreland so close to us, the sea so smooth, and the air so transparent, it was difficult to realize that the guns had been fired, or the trumpets blown at all. What could be the reason? Had the sound been converted by internal friction into heat, or had it been wasted in partial reflections at the limiting surfaces of non-homogeneous masses of air? I ventured, two or three years ago, to say something regarding the function of the imagination in science, and, notwithstanding the care then taken, to define and illustrate its real province, some persons, among whom were one or two able men, deemed me loose and illogical. They misunderstood me. The faculty to which I referred was that power of visualizing processes in space, and the relations of space itself, which must be possessed by all great physicists and geometers. Looking, for example, at two pieces of polished steel, we have not a sense, or the rudiment of a sense, to distinguish the inner condition of the one from that of the other. And yet they may differ materially, for one may be a magnet, the other not. What enabled Ampère to surround the atoms of such a magnet with channels in which electric currents ceaselessly run, and to deduce from these pictured currents all the phenomena of ordinary magnetism? What enabled Faraday to visualize his lines of force, and make his mental picture a guide to discoveries which have rendered his name immortal? Assuredly it was the disciplined imagination. Figure the observers on the deck of the Irene, with the invisible air stretching between them and the South Foreland, knowing that it contained something which stifled the sound, but not knowing what that something is. Their senses are not of the least use to them; nor could all the philosophical instruments in the world render them any assistance. They could not, in fact, take a single step toward the solution without the formation of a mental image; in other words, without the exercise of the imagination.
Sulphur in homogeneous crystals is exceedingly transparent to radiant heat, whereas the ordinary brimstone of commerce is highly impervious to it—the reason being that the brimstone does not possess the molecular continuity of the crystal, but is a mere aggregate of minute grains not in perfect optical contact with each other. Where this is the case, a portion of the heat is always reflected on entering and on quitting a grain; hence, when the grains are minute and numerous, this reflection is so often repeated that the heat is entirely wasted before it can plunge to any depth into the substance. The same remark applies to snow, foam, clouds, and common salt, indeed to all transparent substances in powder; they are all impervious to