Page:Transactions of the Geological Society, 1st series, vol. 2.djvu/399

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Dr. Mac Culloch on the Geology of various parts of Scotland.

elucidation, the references to the places where they were found will enable future visitors to verify or correct them. In this view the remarks which I have hazarded are even more necessary than in that of perfecting a catalogue of hand specimens, since of many important geological facts, it is impossible to preserve a sufficient record in a mere collection of rocks. A great portion of the country which is the subject of this miscellaneous notice, has been already surveyed by various geologists, and particularly by Professor Jameson in his tour to the Western Isles. Those who are accustomed to geological investigations will be as little surprised to find me occasionally differing from those observers as I shall be to find future observers differing from me. The science is as yet far removed from the class of accurate ones, and must still owe a great deal to that free enquiry which alone can lay the foundation of a precise and stable induction. It is peculiarly necessary in its present state that the labours of many should co-operate, as the wide diffusion and difficult accessibility of its leading facts put in out of the power of any single observer to add much from his own stock.

To the more extended geological remarks which seem to be called for by the peculiar circumstance of some of the rocks included in the catalogue, I have added a few words on specimens which scarcely involved any novelty either of a mineralogical or geological nature. Yet it will not be useless to describe their situation, since our Society among other objects offers itself as a deposit of miscellaneous information on those subjects, and of such detached facts as must otherwise perish in the portfolios or memories of those whose fortune it has been to notice them. It is not one of its least advantages that it forms a school of practical knowledge for those whose opportunities are circumscribed by the scarcity of scientific institutions or schools of this nature, and with this view, even the humble offering of a new habitat is deserving of record.