Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 30.djvu/36

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24
THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

money to the wine-merchant's. It would never give up its money till it had got its wine, and would never touch that, although it was fond of it. Père Vincent Maria, procurator of the bare-footed Carmelites in the Indian Peninsula, tells of a Macacus silenus which imitated perfectly all the acts which it was shown how to perform. It would go at it so seriously and exactly that one could not help being surprised to see an animal do it all so well. Breton has in his Chinese pictures a representation of monkeys of one of the smaller species gathering tea-leaves on the tops of one of the steep ridges of Chansung. Williams doubts the truth of the story, but there is nothing in it outside of the probabilities. The ancient Egyptians obtained considerable services from the Cynocephalus.

Du Grandpré, of the French marine, speaks of a female chimpanzee that would heat the furnace on board the vessel. It was able to judge when the required degree of heat was reached, and would call the cook at the right moment. It would join the sailors in turning the capstan, would go on the yards with them, could pull ropes as well as any, and, observing that the ends were tied to keep them from hanging down, tied the ends which she held. Buffon mentions another female at Loango which could make the beds, sweep the house, and help turn the spit.

These monkeys had to be tamed before they could be taught; but, as they breed in captivity, Houzeau suggests that there is little doubt that the principal species are susceptible of domestication. Then it will only be necessary to train individuals for their special work. "Female monkeys," he adds, "might be employed in taking care of children. They would make excellent nurses, for their milk is rich in butter (ten per cent). These facts can hardly fail in time to strike the residents of European origin in Asia and Africa, where these animals are easy to get. We anticipate a time when these races, bred by man, will render great services in daily life and industry, and will contribute to the general progress. There is nothing in such a prediction which does not rest on scientific premises, and nothing in it to laugh at."—Translated for the Popular Science Monthly from the Revue Scientifique.

 

RECENT ADVANCES IN SOLAR ASTRONOMY.
By Professor CHARLES A. YOUNG.

WHILE during the past four years there has been no great or startling discovery in solar astronomy, there has been beyond question important progress at many points. Increased precision of numerical data has been attained, new methods of observation have been devised and put in practice, theories have been brought to trial with varying results of condemnation or approval, and mathematical