Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 50.djvu/695

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675
THE BLASCHKA FLOWER MODELS.

mit, but here, again, all are so exquisite that it is difficult to make a choice. Equally fine are the golden butterfly-plant from Trinidad, the spiderlike, black-barred Brassias, the beautiful blue and white Catteya crispa with its crimped edges, and the lustrous rose-tinted Catteya amethystina.

New beauties appear at every step. Convolvuli and starry Ipomeas fling their light garlands across their cardboard tablets, as if feeling for some trellis to wind about; the pimpernel opens its little red weather-glass of a flower; the dainty sundew catches the light in its tiny diamonds; the Venus's flytrap shows the unwary victim caught in its fatal leaves.

In the gallery overhead are the cryptogams—plants whose nature renders them difficult subjects for illustration. The utmost care has been exercised here in selecting the types which will prove of the greatest use, and there will probably be added from time to time the examples most needed. It is intended to present the lower forms of plant life in a well-chosen series of types from motile protoplasm, fungi, and algæ, through mosses, club mosses, and liverworts to ferns. These models are quite as wonderful in their way as those of the flowering plants, if less interesting to the general public. Among the ferns an Adiantum shows in its magnified details the entire process of reproduction, from the tiny spores to the young fern with developed rootlet and frond.

No written description of these models can give an adequate idea of the immense service rendered to science by them; to appreciate this it is necessary to study the collection in all its length and breadth.

Considered in the light of a memorial, we need only say it is worthy of the earnest life it commemorates. The bronze tablet on the wall, beautiful in its simplicity, bears the following inscription:

mdccxiv mdcclxxxvii
in memoriam
caroli eliot ware
medict
hujus universitatis alumni
hasce imagines
donaverunt
conjux et filia superstites
rura flores amicus ex animo colvit
valdeque dilenit
 


 
Marvelous stories are told, according to Mr. St. George B. Littledale, by the natives of Keria, near Khotan, of the gold and precious stones they dig up from the ruins of cities buried in the sands. They make regular expeditions into the desert to recover the lost treasures, and come back telling of fortified cities guarded by ancient men in quaint Chinese costumes, speaking an unknown tongue.