Page:Amazing Stories Volume 01 Number 02.djvu/40

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135
 

A Trip to the Center of the Earth

By JULES VERNE

(Continued)

"Doubtless—I am very uneasy on the point. We have certainly not enough water to last us five days."

"Be quite easy on that matter," continued my uncle. "I answer for it we shall find plenty of water—in fact, far more than we shall want."

"But when?"

"When we once get through this crust of lava. How can you expect springs to force their way through these solid stone walls?"

"But what is there to prove that this concrete mass of lava does not extend to the center of the earth? I don't think we have as yet done much in a vertical way."

"What puts that into your head, my boy?" asked my uncle, mildly.

"Well, it appears to me that if we had descended very far below the level of the sea—we should find it rather hotter than we have."

"According to your system," said my uncle; "but what does the thermometer say?"

"Scarcely 15 degrees by Reaumur, which is only an increase of 9 degrees since our departure."

"Well, and what conclusion does that bring you to?" inquired the Professor.

"The deduction I draw from this is very simple. According to the most exact observations, the augmentation of the temperature of the interior of the earth is 1 degree for every hundred feet. But certain local causes may considerably modify this figure. The difference evidently depends on the conductibility of certain rocks. In the neighborhood of an extinct volcano, it has been remarked that the elevation of temperature was only 1 degree in every 125 feet. Let us, then, go upon this calculation—which is most favorable—and calculate."

"Calculate away, my boy."

"Nothing easier," said I, pulling out my note-book and pencil. "Nine times one hundred and twenty-five feet, make a depth of eleven hundrd and twenty-five feet."

"Archimedes could not have spoken more geometrically."

"Well?"

"Well, according to my observations, we are at least ten thousand feet below the level of the sea."

"Can it be possible?"

"Either my calculation is correct, or there is no truth in figures."

The calculations of the Professor were perfectly correct. We were already six thousand feet deeper down in the bowels of the earth than anyone had ever been before. The lowest known depth to which man had hitherto penetrated was in the mines of Kitz-Bahl, on the Tyrol, and those of Wuttemburg in Bohemia.

The temperature, which should have been eighty-one, was in this place only fifteen. This was a matter for serious consideration.


(To be continued in our June issue)


To Our Readers

SOME of our readers seem to have obtained the erroneous idea that AMAZING STORIES publishes only reprints, that is, stories that have appeared in print before. This is not the case. We have a great number of new manuscripts on hand at the present time, and are buying quite a good many more.

Today, more than at any other time, is the day of Scientifiction. Authors, great and small, are taking more and more to this type of fiction, and we are getting an excellent supply of stories right along. Our only problem at the present time is to find room enough to publish all the good ones.

If you or your friends know how to write a scientifiction story, the editors will be only too glad to look them over. At the present time, only rather short stories are required, as we are well stocked up for some time to come with serials and long stories.

If, on the other hand, you have heard of a good scientifiction story that may have appeared in print at some time or other, and which you think should be published in AMAZING STORIES, we shall be grateful to hear from you. We have an index of most scientific stories that have ever been published, but of course we can not know all of them. If you know of a good one, or have one in your possession, we will be more than glad to have you send it in, or put us in touch with the persons or Parties who have such stories.

EDITOR.