Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 4.djvu/136

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terior cerebral lobes. He claims that his theory is confirmed by the results of several autopsies, and asserts that, wherever he has had an opportunity to examine the brain of patients affected in this way, he always found the anterior lobes softened, inflamed, and more or less profoundly disorganized. These views gave rise to a warm discussion when they were first published to the Academy, and Flourens contributed an important memoir on the subject, in which he took the ground that while the cerebral lobes possess the faculties of will and perception, they do not coordinate movements, the latter function appertaining, according to him, to the cerebellum.

M. Bouillaud sums up as follows the conclusions to which he has been led in the course of his studies: 1. All lesions of the faculty of speech have their origin in affections of the frontal lobes. In some instances, this lesion to the faculty of speech is owing to the fact that the coördinated movements requisite for the pronunciation of words cannot be executed. Therefore, there exists in these anterior lobes a coördinating centre for this description of voluntary movements. In other instances, lesions of the faculty of speech have a bearing on the words themselves, and not on the act of pronouncing them. Therefore, there exists in the same lobes another centre, without the coöperation of which speech is impossible.

2. When either or both of these conditions exist, the faculty of speech may be injured or utterly lost, while all the other special intellectual faculties remain intact, and vice versa.


The Rebuilding of Antioch.—In the rebuilding of the city of Antioch, destroyed by earthquake last year, the chief engineer of the province of Aleppo, Mr. Haddan, an Englishman, did his best to induce the people to profit by the experience of the past, and to construct their houses and lay out their streets in such a manner that the recurrence of earthquake might not again prove so destructive. But immobility is the law of the East, and the people will not quit the ancient paths. It is a significant fact, says the Builder, that many of the victims on the occasion of the last earthquake might have escaped, if the houses had been built with lime or bound with wood, and if the streets had not been so narrow that the rows of falling buildings met as they crumbled down, to form one destructive heap over the crowds of people. Mr. Haddan proposed that skeleton houses should be erected with timber battens, well tied together with iron bands, on which overhanging roofs would rest. Stone-walls, cemented with lime, were then to be run up around the wooden frames, in order to afford protection from sun and rain. A shock of earthquake (which is a matter of frequent occurrence at Antioch), how formidable soever it might be, could then do no more than throw the stone-walls outward, while none of the falling stones could injure those in the houses. The new plan of the town, by straightening and widening the labyrinth of tortuous lanes which previously existed, would save the inhabitants from much of the danger after escaping from their houses. But, as has been already said, these suggestions have been disregarded, and the town is beginning to rise again on its old foundations, built with mud instead of lime, and likely to destroy its future population in even greater proportion than it did last year, for increased poverty makes the new houses weaker than even the old ones were.


Intelligence of the Toad.—At the recent meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, held at Portland, Mr. Thomas Hill read a note on the intelligence of toads, giving, among other interesting examples of their sagacity, a description of the means by which the creature contrives to force down inconvenient forms of food. "When our toad," says Mr. Hill, "gets into his mouth part of an insect too large for his tongue to thrust down his throat (and I have known of their attempting a wounded humming-bird), he resorts to the nearest stone," and uses it as a pièce de résistance in a very literal sense. This can be observed at any time, continues the author, by tying a locust's hind-legs together, and throwing it before a small toad.

On one occasion Mr. Hill gave a small locust to a little toad in its second summer. At once the locust's head was down the creature's throat, the hinder parts protrud-