Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 34.djvu/344

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330
THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

integrity. Nor is there the faintest silver lining to this dark social cloud. These people have not the relieving benefit of sleeping in pure air after a day of hard work of twelve or fourteen hours' duration in the disease-laden atmosphere of insanitary workshops, but are subjected by day and by night to conditions as far removed from the sources of health as the poles are asunder. Their daily occupations and mode of life in the workshop are bad, and their homes also are bad.

It may pertinently be asked. What is the remedy to hinder further degradation of racial power, and rescue the town-dwellers from the agencies so powerfully operating upon their physical competency? I fully recognize the cogency of such a question, but I must at once admit my inability to suggest a satisfactory answer. It may to some extent be found in adopting legislative measures. No doubt sanitary reform is doing an excellent work. Insanitary surroundings, overcrowding, uncleanliness, impurity, and intemperance, must all be done away with or lessened. Educate the children in the pure air of the country, make the parents aware of the great constitutional value of sobriety and morality, give them all pure air and plenty of it, and away fly the pale faces, cachexia, lowered vitality, stunted development, muscular attenuation, and the imperfect elimination of functional products.—The Lancet.

 

SEA-LIONS AND FUR-SEALS.
By W. H. LARRABEE.

THE animals of the seal-kind include two groups or families which, with a general similarity of structure, exhibit quite distinct features in their appearance, habits, and movements. The order to which they belong is named Pinnipedia, from the structure of the paws, which are webbed down to the ends of the fingers, and in one of the families beyond them. The families are the Phocidæ, or true seals; and the Otariidæ, eared seals, sea-lions, or sea-bears. Two articles of the same name but very different qualities are derived from them and form important commercial wares. Seal-skin from the true seal has short, bristly hairs, and is used for trunk-covers, coats, caps, gloves, etc.; seal-skin from the eared seals is the soft, fine, glossy fur which the ladies prize so highly, and which has an important place in our luxurious winter wardrobes. These animals are carnivorous mammalia, and breathers of the air; while they hunt their food in the water, they must live out of it; hence they are found most frequently near the water, on the rocks of the coast, or floating on cakes of ice. In connection with the walrus, they have been aptly de-