« AnteriorContinuar »
faith, said unto the sick of the palsy, Son, be of good cheer, (Greek (àpoel, Latin confide) thy sins be forgiven thee.” Anglo-Saxon, “Tha geseah se Hæland heora geleafan, and cwæth to tham laman, Sa bearn gelyfe, the beoth thine synna forgyfene."
This derivation of belief from love is admitted by several recent etymologists of high authority. Gabelentz and Loebe and Diefenbach, place the words according to this derivation. Junius connects the English believe with Gothic galaubjan, but pursues the analysis no further.
It is difficult to resist the feeling of a close etymological connexion between the words live and love, German leben and lieben, Gothic liuban and liban, Anglo-Saxon lybban or leofian, and lufian. This resemblance runs through all the Teutonic languages. These forms with the exception of a few words in Latin are not found in the other branches of the family.
This connexion was not unperceived by our older philologists. Junius on the word live observes, " plures petierunt ex lieben amare, diligere, quod miseris mortalibus nihil vitâ carius.” Should this speculation prove correct, that live, love, and believe, are derived from the same original, it gives a remarkable illustration of the simplicity of the ancient roots, and of their vital power in expanding and giving bodily form to the ever widening demands of the human mind.
I must here bring these remarks to a close. I have brought under notice a mere fragment of a wide field which lies open for exploration, and in which patient study will produce results of a very important nature as regards English etymology. When the study of the Sanskrit roots shall have been thoroughly and systematically worked out, the philology of the Aryan tongues in general will assume a character of accuracy and science which it has never yet attained.
In our own tongue this is peculiarly important. The English language, in one respect, may be said to be unique. We have seen that there are two divergent channels along which derivatives from the original roots have descended to modern times. I have called these the Classical and the Teutonic. Some roots have followed the one course and others the other; many have been transmitted to us through both. The mixed character of modern English speech has been sometimes represented as a defect, but there was never a greater mistake. The two streams, descending from long remote ages, have united on English ground, and nowhere else, and have imparted to our tongue a strength and vigour, combined with a richness and fertility, which have never been surpassed in the world's history, and which render it unrivalled amongst modern languages as a vehicle for thought. I shall be glad if any remarks of mine may have given an impulse, however feeble, to an inquiry of the most interesting character, and which will well repay research.
At the conclusion of this paper a vote of thanks was proposed by Mr. Birch and seconded by Mr. Danson, (who referred to the valuable Sanskrit collection in the Free Public Library, the credit of which was due to Mr. Picton,) and carried unanimously. Dr. Ginsburg made some supplementary remarks upon the analogy of some of the roots mentioned by Mr. Picton and those of oriental tongues.
FIFTH ORDINARY MEETING,
ROYAL INSTITUTION, December 14th, 1863,
JAMES A. PICTON, Esq., PRESIDENT, in the Chair.
Messrs. R. D. Holt, Robert Erskine, Rudolph Zwilchenbart, judr., and Theophilus Ashe, were balloted for, and duly elected members.
It was announced that Mr. S. H. Behrend, M.A., had accepted the post of Librarian, and he was requested to prepare a catalogue of the books in the library as soon as possible.
The PRESIDENT stated that, thinking it would be interesting to the society, and through the society to the public at large, to have brought before them objects of interest acquired from time to time by purchase or donation for the Free Public and Derby Museum, he had laid such a proposal before the Committee, who gave it their cordial approval. Mr. Moore had, in consequence, brought, as an instalment, some remains of the great fossil cave-bear (Ursus spelaus). Of this gigantic extinct beast the skull and under jaws, the greater part of the vertebræ and of the bones of the limbs, as well as ribs and phalanges, had lately been obtained by purchase, from Arriège, in the south of France, forming a most important addition to the Palæontological collection, on account of the great interest attaching to it in connexion with the question of the antiquity of man. Mr. Moore also exhibited some nests of weaver birds, (Ploceus baya?) from Burmah, recently presented, with other specimens, by Captain Major, of the ship Norway.
A specimen of Comatula, and a series of Gorgoniæ, or sea fans, from the collection of Mr. I. O. W. Fabert, were exhibited by that gentleman. They had been recently obtained in twenty fathoms water, in lat. 0.30 N., lon. 105.14 E., near the island of Linga.
MR. MOORE stated that he had compared the Comatula
with the most recently published list of species, but could not at present satisfy himself with its identity with any therein enumerated. The series of Gorgoniæ consisted of exceedingly beautiful specimens of several distinct species, of which no examples existed in the museum.
DR. CollinGWOOD communicated some experiments of M. Thury, professor in the academy of Geneva, who has made a discovery, which, if it be corroborated, will be one of the utmost value in the farm and homestead. He has arrived at a formula for obtaining cattle of either sex at will. It is necessary to exclude from the experiment those animals in which the signs of heat are vague and uncertain, as is observed in fat cattle and confined individuals; but healthy cows, and those living in the open air, must be used for the purpose. The experiments made upon cattle at Montel, appear to have been decisive, if we may judge from the following results :“In the first place,” says the breeder, “in twenty-two successive cases I have sought to obtain heifers; my cows were of the Schwitz race, and my bull pure Durham blood. I obtained the result sought for in every case. Having later purchased a Durham cow, I sought to obtain a pure Durham bull calf, and succeeded, and have since obtained six other bulls, crossed between Durham and Schwitz. Altogether I have made twenty-nine experiments, and every one has given the result sought.” The importance of such a law will be evident, and especially will such results be valuable in countries where it is desirable to obtain oxen for working purposes; as in others, cows are the most valued animals. Moreover, the same remark will apply to sheep.
DR. COLLINGWOOD exhibited a photolithograph by the process Marquier, of Paris, and explained the manner in which it was obtained.
A paper was then read, of which the following is an abstract:
ON LONGEVITY IN ENGLAND.
BY THOMAS BALMAN, M.D.
AFTER some general remarks on the great interest manifested in very old people by all classes, and that they had long been regarded as the special protégés of crowned heads, he said, At page 102 of any volume of the Registrar-General's reports of the births, deaths, and marriages, we find recorded the deaths occurring in England at different ages, from the first year of infant life to the age of 95 and upwards : the last column also includes the deaths of persons who had either attained or exceeded the age of 100 years. The place where these deaths were registered is marked by an asterisk, and the precise age specified in a foot note. These he had collected together, and tabulated in such a way as to show how these deaths were distributed throughout the different towns and registration districts of England during a period of six years from 1855-60. The sum of deaths of centenarians during this period was 501; 157 males and 344 females, the average being 83. This was about the same proportion as France. Thus England, with a population of 20 millions, gave an annual average of deaths at the age of 100 and upwards of 83 persons which was 41 to every million of its inhabitants. France, with a population of 36 millions, gave an annual average of deaths at the same age of 148, which was exactly 4•111 to every million. It was generally believed that about one in every 10,000 attained the age of 100 years. His own calculations gave somewhat different results, and seemed to show that there were about two centenarians to every 10,000 deaths. For example, in six years, 1855-60, the sum of deaths registered in the metropolis was 366,581 ; of