صور الصفحة
النشر الإلكتروني

on his list of" species imperfectly known." The foliation and female flowers are however, very well described, and to complete the description, I may add the male flowers are pedunculated, but the peduncles are shut, and they might be characterized as sub-sessile. The anthers, like those of the female flowers, are sessile, depressed or flattened above, and dehisce circularly. The ripe fruit is globose, and not furrowed. As I send along with this paper specimens of both the male and female flowers, any of your botanists will be able to correct me at a glance, if I be in error.

Neither Wallich, Wight, nor Griffiths appear to have been at all aware that this species produces Gamboge. Dr. Wight, in a recent number of his Neilgherry plants says, "Two species of the genus Garcinia are known to produce Gamboge, most of the others yield a yellow juice, but not Gamboge, as it will not mix with water." The species which he has described as producing Gamboge, and to which I suppose he refers, are G. Gutta or H. Cambogioides, (Graham,) and G. Pictoria, (Roxburgh.) That others may be enabled to judge of the character of the Gamboge produced by this tree, I have the pleasure to send specimens of its exudation. In its appearance to the eye, and in its properties as a pigment, I have failed to discover the slightest difference between it and the Gamboge of commerce. It serves equally well to color drawings, the Burmese priests often use it to color their garments and the Karens to dye their thread. It is also used by the native doctors in medicine, but I think not extensively. Dr. Lindley, in his new work the "Vegetable Kingdom," says:-"The best Gamboge comes in the form of pipes from Siam, and this is conjectured to be the produce of Garcinia Cochinchinensis." As G. elliptica is spread all over the Province of Mergui, is it not probable that it extends into Siam, and that the Siamese Gamboge is the produce, a part at least, of this tree?

There are several other species of Garcinia indigenous to the Provinces, but I know of no others producing any thing resembling Gamboge, except G. Cambogia; the exhudation of which, though it will not dissolve in water, dissolves in spirits of turpentine and forms a very beautiful yellow varnish for tin and other metalic surfaces.

On a Sculpture from the Site of the Indo-Greek city of Bucephalia; by Captain JAMES ABBOTT, Boundary Commissioner, &c.

Herewith I have the pleasure to enclose you a drawing of a sculptured red freestone, dug from the Site of the Indo-Greek city of Bucephalia on the Hydaspes, by, I believe, General Ventura, and now lying in front of the castle of the present city of Jelum. It is one of many relics disinterred from time to time, in searching for bricks, all those used in Jelum being thus derived. The tracery is evidently Greek; for there is no such design to the best of my belief in Hindoo sculpture, and it seems to have been the lintel of a temple to Ceres or to Bacchus. Many Indo-Greek coins are found in the same spot, and it is here that the Empire seems to have found its eastern limit. The sculpture is in good preservation owing to having been buried so many hundred years. Its style is as decidedly Grecian, as its outline, being altogether deeper and more massive than that of the Hindoos, although I am not sure that it has any advantage in delicacy or grace. The square panels upon the pilaster, seem to me Hindoo; but both the lozenge and the ellipse are Greek or Egyptian, as is the Thyrsus, if I rightly designate as such the two undefaced figures of the beading. I do not know whether the maize represented in this sculpture was known to the Greeks previous to the conquest of Alexander; but it seems probable that Osiris, whose conquest of the Punjaub appears almost as well authenticated as that of Alexander, must have brought it with him from India, if indeed he did not first introduce it there. It seems to me that I have met with it in sculpture brought from Greece. Other portions of the same temple are said to have been removed by General Ventura. I shall not omit any opportunity of observing them, should I return to Lahore, where they are supposed to be. This fragment is very massive, being about six feet in length and 20 inches thick. If you consider it worth removal, which I should doubt, it could be conveyed by water free of expense to Ferozpoor or Loodiana.

My professional duties have so little leisure for transcribing sketches that I have found it impossible to complete this until now. Meanwhile, on a visit to Aknoor, a town on the right bank of the Chenaub, where it debouches from the mountains, I was attracted by the novelty

of a temple to Kam Deo or Cupid. The building, a recent obelisk, had fallen in, and the supposed statue of the deity had been removed into a modern Seebwala or Temple of Seeb close by, this temple being a facsimile of the most modern of the Mohammadan Tombs.

The figure is about 2 feet high, carved upon a dark stone (lime apparently) and in good preservation.-A sketch is enclosed. I was iminediately struck with the outline of the club, as precisely similar to the club of the Grecian Hercules and entirely different from the mace of Hunnoomaun or the club of Hurr, the Indian Hercules. Its figure is graceful and the knots represent exactly in three touches of the chisel the stumps of branches roughly lopped away. All the rest of the figure appears to me rather Egyptian than Hindoo. The thick under lip, the teeth developed, the heavy ringlets falling upon either shoulder, the precision with which the perspective is preserved, and the minute development of every joint and member, so that even the finger nails are correctly chiselled. Unfortunately the head is broken away above the mouth; but from the impression left upon the stone it must have been unusually high. It appears to me to be a figure of Osiris in the joint capacity of Bacchus and Hercules. But, whatever it be, it is the indubitable original of the figures of Hunnoomaun, so common in upper India; that is, the peculiar bend of the body in this statue has been copied in the rude representations of the Monkey-God. The only drapery is the Hindoo dhotie, well and deeply cut. The most perplexing circumstance is the presence of the Junnoo or sacred thread worn by Brahmuns and Rajpootres. This is beautifully chiselled, but I was not aware that it was in use amongst the Egyptians. If not, it may have been added when their descendants had become naturalised in India. You are aware that there is a city upon the Indus bearing the name of Bacchus Lyah, and that Alexander met with the descendants of his followers upon that river. Although the club is so decided a facsimile of that of the Grecian Hercules, there is nothing else in the figure breathing of the Grecian chisel. The muscles are not developed. The hero has not been elevated by art into the character of a demi-god, but remains a clumsy mortal, and appears to be an imitation of the original, carried to a minuteness which distinguished the Egyptians, but which I have never observed in Hindoo sculpture. The left arm had been broken away so that I am uncertain whether the second left

arm belongs to this figure, or to another which has been grouped with it. The latter opinion seems more probable, as there is no articulation for a second arm upon the left shoulder, and no symptom of a second arm on the right. The second left hand presents a bunch of grapes or a custard-apple. The leaf accompanying is more like that of the latter fruit. It will be remembered that the custard-apple is to this day called Seeta-phul, (Seeta's fruit,) because she fed upon it whilst wandering in the woods. It is a native of the Dukhun. This second hand is beautifully sculptured. The foreshortening is perfect. This circumstance seems to strengthen the analogy between the Raam of India and the Raam of Egypt. Unfortunately the statue is still an object of worship, so that I could not make free with it. There is an ancient site close to Aknoor from which are dug the bricks of the present city. But all my endeavors to procure coins or relics were fruitless, and I doubt whether this image could have been found in its ruins, as the Indo-Greek empire seems to have been bounded eastward by the Jelum, and it is not probable that the Egyptians spread themselves farther eastward. On either side the mouth of the figure are horizontal lines apparently representing thin tufts of hair, as in some Chinese figures.

Additional Observations on the Damask Blade of Goojrat; by the same.

A few observations suggest themselves in addition to the account I had lately the pleasure to send you, of the fabric of the Goojratie Damask. It appears to me upon second thoughts that the figure of the mass of cast steel may be selected by design, though probably hit upon originally by accident. For if we follow the arrangement of the needles of crystallization from the mass into the blade, we shall perceive that the edge of the latter is a serrated spine of these needles, radiating from the elongated ellipse into which the centre has been drawn. And as the power of swords, knives, razors, &c., to sever soft substances, depends upon the serration of their edge, we have here the finest and most perfect natural saw that can be imagined, justifying the half marvellous records of feats performed with Damascus blades.

This property being inherent in the structure of the crystallization is not liable to be effaced by accident or use. The acuteness of the wedge may be blunted, but the teeth of the saw cannot be destroyed.

That this arrangement of the crystals is not disturbed by the action of the hammer, we learn from the water of the blade and from the seam remaining inclosed in the back.

It follows that however perfect the edge of the natural damask may be, it must always be especially liable to cross fracture at that point where the radiation of the crystals is perpendicular to the edge of the blade. And accordingly Asiatics use such sabres with extreme caution, not ordinarily striking with them but drawing the edge lightly and swiftly over any unguarded part: a touch sufficing to disable; or severing their adversary's reins; a practice which renders necessary the use of chains upon the bridle to the distance of 18 inches from the bit.

The natural damask therefore seems ill-adapted to the purposes of war as practised by European nations, but seems especially suited to the fabric of razors, penknives and surgical instruments, in which keenness of edge is of the first consequence and elasticity of none.

The art of giving elasticity to the cast steel or natural damask is a secret known only to the discoverer, Col. Anosoff of Engineers, Master of the Fabric of Arms at Zlataoost. The knives, &c., warranted to be of cast steel, and professing considerable elasticity, which are common enough in England, are made of blistered steel, which bears that appellation amongst us, but is not bonâ fide cast steel, having never been in a state of fusion.

On the Local and Relative Geology of Singapore, including Notices of Sumatra, the Malay Peninsula, &c.-by J. R. LOGAN, Esq.

(Concluded from page 557.)

Extract from a letter to Professor Ansted, Vice-Secretary of the Geological Society of London, dated Malacca, 4th February, 1847.

"Subsequently to the date of the above paper, finding that but a slow and unsatisfactory progress could be made by land, I availed

« السابقةمتابعة »