Abbildungen der Seite

interview; and, besides, his style, colouring, &c. are widely different. The name of the painter, however, is immaterial.

We must add, that the head of King Henry appears to have been cut out of the picture, and afterwards restored. This was a contrivance of Philip Earl of Pembroke, after the death of King Charles I. to prevent a French agent, who was in treaty for it, from purchasing the piece: and it succeeded, for, finding it thus mutilated, the Frenchman declined the purchase. By this means it was preserved in the palace till the Restoration, when the Earl of Pembroke delivered the mutilated piece to King Charles II. who imme. diately ordered it to be restored to its place.

Of this remarkable picture, at the request of the Society of Antiquaries, his Majesty having given permission for a drawing to be taken, it was accordingly executed, with great correctness, by Mr. Edwards, of the Royal Academy, and is now said to be in the possession of the Earl of Huntingdon, and from it Mr. Basire, at the Society's expence, engraved his plate (just published ;) the largest ever engraved in England, being, in height, two feet three inches; in breadth, four feet and one inch ; and equally an honour to those artists and their employers.

The frame for the paper (which is two feet seven inches, by four feet four inches) was made on purpose by Mr.Whatman, near Maidstone, at the expence of about 50l. for which (we hear) there has since been a great demand from abroad, as plates can thus be worked off of a larger size than before was practicable.

The above exact description, which we have abridged from that which was read at the Society of Antiquaries, by Sir Joseph Ayloffe, Bart. in 1770, will enable any purchaser of this most curious print to have it coloured with tints of the original picture; of which (if executed with judgment) it will then have all the effect. And every other reader of taste, we doubt not, will be gratified by the historical anecdotes here conveyed.

1775, June.

[ocr errors]

LIV. Effects of Salt in fattening Cattle.

Surry, Dec. 19. IN looking over the first volume of the Memoirs of the Royal Academy of Sciences at Paris, I met with a paper entitied “ Physical Observations on the Effects of Salt in fattening Cattle.” The title excited my curiosity; and, on reading the Memoir, the author's reasoning appeared to me not only plausible, but convincing. His views are certainly enlarged, and directed to objects of the most important kind, viz. the improvement of land, and the increase of cat. tle. He lays it down as an axiom, or self-evident truth, that by increasing cattle, land may be improved ; and, by improving land, cattle inay be multiplied.

The farmer, he says, who has a more than ordinary stock of working cattle, reaps a double advantage: one, by having his work done in season; the other, by enriching a greater proportion of his land by means of their additional ma. nure; the only difficulty is, how to maintain an increased number without increasing the expence. This, he asserts, may be done by the use of salt; and advances the three following propositions :

1. That salt, given with the food of cattle, augments the pourishment.of that food.

2. That, in proportion to the quantity of salt eaten by cattle, the effects of that augmentation will be perceivable.

3. That no ill consequences will follow from excess of salt eaten by cattle, even though it should be given them without stint.

These propositions he endeavours to support by unquestionable facts.

In the jurisdiction of Arles, in the county of Provence, there is, he says, a district called the Crau, extending in length about six leagues, and in breadth about three, the whole surface of which is covered with small rough stones, and not a tree or bush is to be seen in the whole district, except here and there on the borders; yet on this spot, so seemingly sterile, by the free use of salt, more numerous flocks of sheep are bred and reared, than upon any other common of equal extent throughout the whole kingdom ; and, what is no less remarkable, the sheep are healthier, hardier, and endure the severity of the winter with less loss, though they have fewer sheep-cots for covering, than those bred and fed on more copious pastures, and that have, be

sides, the advantage of more convenient shelter. Add to this, that the wool of the flocks bred and brought up in the Crau is not only the finest in the whole country, but bears the highest price of any in France. From hence he concludes, that it is to the unlimited use of salt that these surprising effects are to be ascribed ; for it frequently happens that the Crau is so burnt up in the summer, that the poor animals are forced to turn up the very stones to come at the few blades of grass that grow round them, and yet none perish for want of food. Let every excellence, therefore, that can reasonably be supposed inherent in the herbage, be allowed to it, yet the quantity of it is so small, that, without the abundant use of salt, a fourth part of the sheep kept in the Crau could not subsist in it.

But, as a still farther demonstration, that this astonishing effect is solely to be attributed to salt, we have, says the writer, in Languedoc, on the borders of the Rhone, a spot of the same kind of stony land, in every respect similar to that of the Crau; yet, for want of the free use of salt, that of Languedoc does not maintain a tenth part of the number of sheep that are brought up in the Crau, though in other respects it is nowise inferior, the wines and other fruits

produced on the borders of both, being, in their goodness and other essential qualities, equal.

Having proved his first proposition incontrovertibly, he proceeds in proof of the second, to recommend an easy ex. periment, which it is in every farmer's power to make; and that is, to give to one half of his cattle salt, and to the other 'half none. By this simple trial, he says, in less than a month, the difference will be discernible. The cattle to whom the salt is given will shew it in their looks, in the sleekness of their coats, in their growth, and in their strength and fitness for labour. He adds, that with little more than half their usual food all these effects will be produced.

To establish his third proposition, he appeals to the practice about Arles, where the cattle have as much salt as they will eat, and none are so healthy, or thrive so fast, as those that eat the most of it.

From these observations, there cannot remain a doubt of the good effects of salt in the feeding and fattening of cattle; but it is much to be regretted, that the writer is totally silent with respect to the method of giving the salt to the labouring cattle. He has, indeed, informed his readers, that in eight days his fock of 300 sheep eat 151b. of salt, being one pound to every score; and it should seem by his manner of expressing himself, that he gave them the whole


E e

quantity in one day, as he cautions the farmer against suffering his sheep to drink on the day the salt is administered, apprizing him at the same time how much it sharpens their appetite ; and that he had seen them not only browse upon stubs after eating the salt, but even gnaw pieces of wood of a surprising bigness.

As the subject of the above Memoir appeared to me of importance, I have only to request of you, Mr. Urban, the immediate insertion of the few hints which are here ex. tracted from it; as, during the present scarcity of hay, it may be interesting to many; and as it has, in its consequences, a tendency to lower the price of provisions, it is to be hoped, that a discovery that promises so much benefit to the public, will not wholly be orerlooked.

W. W.

1776, Dec.

LV. Particulars relative to large Diamonds, MR. URBAN, PERHAPS your curious correspondent may receive some pleasure from the following account of the most capital diamonds now known; and will excuse some palpable inaccuracies in the relation, owing probably to different weights being used in different countries.

The Duke of Tuscany's diamond, according to Tavernier, weighs 140carats (the biggest in Europe before Gov. Pitt's ;) is of a yellowish water; said to have been bought for 75,000 scudi, equal to 8,7501. of a Religious, who bought it at a stall in Piazza Navona, as a bit of crystal, for a single paolo, value seven-pence. Keysler's Travels, ii. 183.

The Mogul's famous diamond is not so broad as Mr. Pitt's, though it exceeds the largest (then) in Europe for depth. Keysler, iy. 298.

The diamond brought into England by Governor Pitt in 1706, weigbed, when cut, 1364 carats; was two years in cutting, which cost 45001. the pieces sawed off were valued at 5000l. was sold to the crown of France, in 1717, for 125,000l. and was paid for at several times. Dr. Mead's model of it measured, in the expanse, one inch and 4, and in depth it of an inch. I have seen another account which makes this stone to weigh only 127 carats, aud that it was sold for 120,000L

It is well known, that diamonds are cut to perfection in Europe only. Mr. Hanway, in his Travels, mentions seeing a prodigious fine suit of horse-furniture of Kouli Khan's covered with diamonds, but so disadvantageously, that he could not help telling the person who shewed them, that, if he was allowed to take them to Europe, he would return them in a far superior condition ; and seems to express some surprise at his offer not being accepted. The European method of cutting diamonds was, I think, the invention of a Fleming ; and now, I believe, the English artists are in the highest repute. Diamonds now are rarely sawn, as the powder of them, which comes off in grinding; is of great value for cutting others, and the sawing is exceeding tedi. ous, which is done by drawing backwards and forwards a very fine copper wire; every minute almost the wire snaps in two, and then a fresh one is taken, and so on.

I do not know whether diainond-powder, emery, &c. is used in this process :* however, after constant working for a mouth, perhaps a hair-like line may be perceived on the diamond.

It is remarkable, that the Czarina could buy, and pay for at once, one or more of the finest diamonds upon sale, that no other crown was disposed or able to do, and that, too, towards the close of a long and expensive war. She gave about 70,000l. for one, which was much below its value.

In 1741, a diamond was brought from the Brazils to the King of Portugal, weighing seventeen ounces, in shape of a turkey-egg, but much bigger, and was found on the surface of the ground. The same account says, it weighed 1680 carats, or twelve ounces and a half, in 1746, I suppose, after it had been cut.

As the bistory of all these diamonds is pretty well known, except the Duke of Tuscany's, may it not be proposed as a proper subject of a literary inquiry, What is become of all the diamonds of the Ancients? Are they all lost in the ravages of war, &c. or co they subsist in the ancient crowns of the present sovereigns of Europe? Or, indeed, is it certain, that those alluded to were true diamonds ? To say a word of the inferior stones : the largest emerald in a dish is at Ge. noa, though Condamine believes it to be only coloured glass; and the largest granate and turquoise are at Venice. See the figures of them in Motraye's Travels, Engl. edit.

* Diamond-powder only is used. Edit.

« ZurückWeiter »