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CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY. Dec. 22. The subject of tbe Chancellor's prize tor the forthcoming year is, "The conflagration of Rome in the time of Nero."
The subjects of the prizes of fifteen guineas each, given by the two Representatives for the encouragement of Latin prize composition, are—I. For the Bachelors—" Qutrnam bencficia Academia, quaiis nostra est constitutione ac forma, ad rcmpublicam affer.it?" 2. For the Undergraduates—" Utrumque tempus consulas, turn antiquins, tit cognosens, quid optimum fuerit; tarn recentius, ut notes, quidfuerit aptissimum."
The subject of Sir W. Browne's medals will this year be—For the Greek Ode— "Ingenium cul sit, cui mens divinior atque os [norem." Magna sonaturum, des nominis hujus hoFor the Latin Ode.—" Newtonus." For the Greek Epigram—
"Nil fuit unquam
Sic impar sibi." For the Latin Epigram—" Proximus sum egomet mi hi." The subject of the Porson prize is— Shakspeare, King Lear, Act 3, Scene 2, —The speech of King Lear, omitting the intervening passages by which its continuity is broken: Beginning—"Blow winds, and crack your cheeks! rage ! blow!" And ending— "lam a man
"More sinned against than sinning."
SALE OF THE EFFECTS OF THE LATE
Nov. 29. This day the disposal commenced of the household property of the late Deputy Licencer, by Mr. George Robins. There were some original pictures, interesting to artists as well as to collectors: the well-known portrait of George Colman, by Sir Joshua Reynolds, from which the engraving was taken; another by Gainsborough, also engraved; a third in crayons by Rosalba, painted in Florence; and a fourth by Zoffani, which formerly belonged to Garrick. Ahighly-finished miniature of Shakespeare, by Ozias Humphrey, in 17£4, a copy of which, taken for the late Duchess of Chandos, was sold at her sale for 40/. There were also some water-colour drawings by the late John Emery, esq., Mrs. Terry, and others; some excellent engravings, more than a thousand volumes of books, French and in English; and a collection of miscellanies, including the MSS. of the elder G. Colman's most esteemed productions, and several of G. Colman the younger— amounting in all to twenty-six pieces.
SCIENTIFIC EXPERIMENTS AT THE HOUSE OF COMMONS. Shortly after the termination of the last session of Parliament, very extensive alterations in the existing House of Commons, with a view both to ventilation and improved transmission of sound, were commenced under the auspices of Dr. Reid of Edinburgh. In the first place a new ceiling of an entirely novel construction has been interposed between the ancient roof and the floor. The ceiling may be considered as divided into three portions, the centre from one end to the other being perfectly horizontal; the two other compartments are inclined planes, each making with the centre an angle of about 120 decrees. Those portions of the ceiling which form inclined planes are glazed, while the centre is panelled, to aid in accomplishing the great purpose of ventilation. The side galleries, occupied solely by members, have had their floors materially altered, and an inclination has been given to the ceiling beneath them, which corresponds exactly with tbe inclination of the lateral compartments in the newly-constructed ceiling above. The strangers' gallery has been advanced and lowered, so that its front row is on a level with the members' side gallery, and altogether it is brought more within the body of the House, so that its back forms a much better reflector for sound than heretofore existed. The reporters'gallery has been similarly advanced. The floor of the House itself remains at its original level, but is entirely perforated with small holes in close proximity, in aid of the object of ventilation.
The works having been brought so far near completion as to warrant it, an experiment was made with the House filled by men from the foot .guards.
Dr. Reid then proceeded to exhibit by means of a glass model on the table of the House, tbe operation of his plans. He stated that the main object which he had proposed to himself to achieve was to introduce imperceptibly a constant supply of fresh air, either cool or heated, as the state of the weather or the number of members in the House might require. He pointed out that a short distance beneath the former floor a second floor had been formed, in which were between 20 and 30 large apertures of about 18 inches in diameter. Through these apertures the cool or heated air was in the first instance admitted j and immediately over them were placed large platforms like tables, sustained by short feet, which had the effect of dispersing the great body of air which the large apertures admitted. The air then entcis through perforations made in the actual floor of the House, consisting of the almost incredible number of 330,000. They are about the sixth of an inch in diameter on the surface of the floor, but expand downwards in order to prevent their being easily choked or becoming atopped. The egress of the vitiated air is provided for by means of each punel of the centre compartment of the ceiling being raised by blocks several inches above their styles; and it is drawn off by the action of a large circular shaft, which has been erected in Cotton-garden at a distance of about 20 feet from the eastern wall of the building, and constructed so as to contain at an elevation of 10 feet from the earth an exceedingly large coalrirc. The draft created by this shaft draws the air from the roof of the House down a smaller square shaft. The action of both shafts is regulated by dampers.
Dr. Reid tried several experiments, with a view to show the rapidity of circulation through the House:—He first caused the introduction of a smoke so dense that it was impossible to see five yards
forwards. In about one minute and a half, by the action of the shaft, it was entirely expelled. He next introduced: the odour of ether, which was strongly perceptible to every person present, and dispersed in an equally short space of time by the active but imperceptible introduction of heated air. In like manner was the scent of oranges raised and dispersed. It was reported that during the whole of the experiments the temperature varied only from 60 to G2 degrees, but Dr. Reid stated it was quite in his power to lower it to the condition of the outer atmosphere. The acoustics were then tried by speaking and reading in all parts of the House, and by various voices, and were pronounced by the gentlemen present to be at all points in the highest degree satisfactory. It ought, however, to be mentioned that there was an absence of that continual murmur or buz which characterises the sittings of the legitimate occupants of the House.
The expense of the alterations is estimated at about 12,000/.
SOCIETY OF ANTIQUARIES.
Dec. I. W. R. Hamilton, esq. V.P.
George Robert Rowe, esq. M.D. member of the Roy. Coll. of Surg, and formerly Surgeon to his Majesty's forces, now of Chigwell, Essex, was elected a Fellow of the Society.
Sir T. Phillipps, Bart. F.S.A. exhibited an original painting of Queen Mary I.
The Rev. Thomas Streatfeild, F.S.A. exhibited some drawings from paintings at Knole in Kent, the ancient seat of the Earls and Dukes of Dorset.
Sir Henry Ellis, K.H. Secretary, communicated a paper on a Greek inscription found in Egypt, now in the British Museum, and supposed to have been originally placed under a statue of Jupiter.
Mr. Brandreth's essay on the Roman remains in the vicinity of Dunstable, was then concluded.
Dec. 8. Mr. Hamilton in the chair.
William Berkeley Call, esq. of Whiteford House, Cornwall, and Old Bondstreet, London, was elected a Fellow of the Society.
A letter was read from Mr. Streatfeild, descriptive of the paintings at Knole, of which Mr. Herbert Smith's drawings were exhibited. Tbey are in the form of an ancient altar piece, representing a story in which an elderly personage, whose portrait is highly finished, is several times
repeated, together with St. James, and evil spirits in hideous forms. Mr. Streatfeild expressed some anxiety to ascertain the history of the picture and of the story; but if, as is most probable, it is a curiosity brought from the continent during the last century, these are questions of less interest.
A. J. Kempe, esq. F.S.A. communicated a drawing of part of a fluted column, evidently of Roman architecture, though subsequently wrought on one side into a clustered pillar of English architecture; which was found during the recent alterations at Christ's Hospital, in an ancient wall belonging to the monastery of the Grey Friars (a spot very little removed from that of the Roman altar found on the site of the New Post Office, and recently published by the Society). Mr. Kempe remarked that the great rarity of relics of Roman architecture, occurring within the bounds of Londinium, may be attributed to the constant practice of the builders of the middle ages in working up the materials of former structures: of which practice this was an instance.
H. W.Diamond, esq. F.S.A. exhibited an impression of a large and very rare print of the Princess Mary, the eldest daughter of King Charles the First, executed in mezzotinto, with a back-ground in the line manner, by the Count de Siegen, the person who in many of his plates has put forward the claim (and apparently
with the best right) to have been the in. Tentor of the art of mezzotinto. (See a notice of Mr. Diamond's former communication on this subject, in our number for last March, p. 296.) The Count was a man of rank, and being a mere amateur, his works were probably only privately circulated; which may account for their present rarity (and that of the Princess Mary is one of the scarcest), and for the circumstance of his claims to the invention having been hitherto so little known. Mr. Diamond now presented a catalogue of the several plates in mezzotinto known to have been executed by the Count Siegen, Furstenberg, and Prince Rupert respectively, together with their dates as far as can be ascertained.
Dec. la. Thomas Amyot, esq. Treasurer, in the chair.
Mr. Kempe exhibited a cinerary urn, of plain red pottery, found inclosed within a larger one, of coarser materials, at the Dissenters' burial-ground, in Deverilstreet, Dover-road; the same spot where the mirror and lachrymal bottle, represented in our Nov. number, p. 507, and several other Roman relics, have been exhumed.
Mr. William Hardy, of the Duchy of Lancaster Office, communicated a copy of a charter of King Richard I. granted during the interval between his father's death and his own coronation. His style is Dominu* Angloram and not Rex; he uses the singular Ego,and not the plural Not; and the document furnishes additional proof that Richard's reign was not considered to begin until his coronation, and that all his regnal years were dated from that solemnity. Henry the Second died on the 7th July 1189, and Richard was not crowned until the 3d of September; so that the chronological importance of this circumstance is very great, as affecting one sixth part of every year of Richard's reign.
Sir W. Betham, F.S.A. and Foreign Secretary of the Royal Irish Academy, presented a printed copy of three papers lately read by him at that institution, with some additional remarks. They are, 1. On an astronomical instrument of the ancient Irish, in the possession of the Dean of St. Patrick's; 2. On the ring money of the Celtic, and showing its similarity to that now current at Sennaar, and generally through Abyssinia; 3. On the identity of the Phoenician and Irish languages, as proved from the ancient names of places in the shores occupied and frequented by the Phoenicians, which are shown by Sir William to be highly appropriate and significant when translated by the usual explanations of the
Irish dictionaries. We shall notice these interesting papers more fully hereafter.
John Bruce, esq. F.S.A. communicated (from the Arundel MSS. now in the British Museum) some interesting documents relative to the latter days of Sir Thomas More, which have hitherto been overlooked by his biographers. One is a pathetic petition to the King, in the name of his wife and children, written at the time when the ex-Chancellorhad suffered eight months' imprisonment; and when, in consequence of the confiscation of his property, his family were reduced to a state of great deprivation, though he does not appear to have then imagined his life to be in danger; Mr. Bruce thinks it was probably penned by Sir Thomas himself. It appeals forcibly to the "most blessed disposition " of the King, on the ground that the offence for which Sir Thomas was then a prisoner in the Tower was "grown not of any malice or obstinate mind, but of such a long-continued and deep-rooted scruple as passeth his power to avoid or put away." The petition prayed the King, "for the tender mercy of God, to deliver him out of prison, and suffer him quietly to live the remainder of his life, with only such entertainment of living as it should like" his most noble Majesty, of his " gracious almoys and pity to appoint him." The other document was a copy of the indictment preferred against Sir Thomas More. Considerable doubt has existed with respect to the exact legal crime for which he was put to death. Such doubts are put an end to by this document, which proves that he suffered under the Statute of 27 Henry VIII. which made it treason to 'imagine, invent, practise, attempt, wish, will or desire, to deprive the King of the title of his Royal Estate,' or to counsel others to do the like. Three facts were alleged by which Sir Thomas was brought within this Statute. I. That he ' maliciously held his peace' when interrogated as to whether he would accept the King to be Supreme Head of the Church. II. That he counselled Bishop Fisher in his Treason, by writing letters to him whilst in the Tower; and III. That in a conversation with Mr. Solicitor-general Rich, bedenied the power of Parliament to make the King the Head of the Church; it being a dignity over which they had no control.
Dec. 22. Mr. Hamilton in the chair.
The Rev. James Basnett Miles, B. C. L. of Queen's College, Oxford, Perpetual Curate of Hannam, near Bristol; the Rev. Samuel Fox, of Morley, near Derby, translator i William Fletcher, esq., and Mr. Charle
lei Fox, of Morley, near or of Boetbius; Thomas er,of Dudley, co. Wore. Charles Roach Smith, of A
Lothbury, were elected Fellows of the
Mr. Amyot communicated a drawing, made by a German artist, under the directions of Sir Thomas Reade, the British Consul-general at Tunis, of a very important Punic inscription, cut on a monument or mausoleum, at Thugga, near Carthage. Copies of this inscription bad been already published by Sir Grenville Temple and by General Camilltis Borgia; but as these copies had been represented by Professor Gesenius, of Halle, to differ materially from each other, the present had been very carefully made, atthe request of the Council of the Society, and, though differing from each of the former, Sir Thomas Reade,in the strongest terms, vouched for its perfect accuracy, the stone itself being now in his possession at Tunis. He, at the same time, sent drawings of other inscriptions, selected from more than a hundred observed by him during his journey to Thugga; and states that a very large number of splendid remains, hitherto unpublished, might be copied with great advantage to literature, by a competent person employed for the purpose, in that part of Africa.
The Society adjourned to Jan. 12.
ROMAN COINS FOUND NEAR FAKEN-
Mr. Urban, Lothbury, Nov. 1
THE Roman Coins, of which a descrip. tion is herewith sent, were found a few years since near Fakenham, in Norfolk, by a labourer. They are all of small brass, and generally of the commonest reverses. The mint letters, as may be supposed in a collection of fifteen hundred coins, are combined in a variety of ways, indicating chiefly the mintages of the towns of Aries, Treves, Aquileia, and Lugdunum. None occur among those of the Emperor Constantine of the particular classes assigned to the London Mint, from which we may reasonably infer that the hoard remained in the same state in which it was imported from the continent. Neither doesthis collection contain any of the coins of the intervening emperors Carausius and Allectus (frequently found throughout this county), which, individually, probably would have been the case, had it been formed of coins current in Britain at the period of Con. stantine the Great. This part of Norfolk IIi particularly abundant in coins and other Roman remains. At Wighton (near W alsingham), not long ago, as some workmen were cutting a water-course in
rt.r °ui e'°W ° risin8 ground, which the neighbouring people have always
[Jan.known by the name of the Roman Encampment, they discovered a great number of human skeletons, four of which had in each of their mouths one of the small coins assigned to the Constantine lera, with 'urbs Roma' on the obverse, and the 'Wolf suckling Romulus and Remus' on the reverse. Yours, &c. Chas. Roach Smith.
Tacitus. — Imp. c. M. CL. TACITUS Aug. Radiated head of the Emperor. Rev. Victoria Gotthi. Victory standing, with wreath and palm branch. In exergue p.
IMP. CL. TACITUS AUG. Rev. SPES PUBLICA.
Idem. Rev. felicitas Temporum. Idem. Rev.Felicitas Saeculi.
Diocletiama.—Imp. Diocletianus P. F. AUG. Rev. Moneta Sacra Augg Et Caess Nostr. In exergue s A.
Maximianus (Herculius) — MaximiaNus Nobil. c Rev. Moneta Augg Et Caes Njj j in the field s F in exergue
IMP. C. MAXIMIANUS P. F. AUG. Rev.
Virtuti Augg. Hercules strangling a lion. °
IMP. MAXIMIANUS P. F. AUG. Rev.
Pax Augg. exergue B.
D. N. MAXIMIANO P. F. AUG. Rev.
Herculi Conservatori. (in exercue Pi.n. °
Idem. Rev. Genio Pop. Rom. in exergue Pln.—39 more of this reverse with a trifling variation, such as a small altar by the side of the Genius on some, and an N in the field on others.
Constantius.—fl. Val. Covstantius N. c. Rev. Moneta Augg Et. Caes. N N in field s p. in exergue Ptr.
Divo Constantio pio (Veiled head.) Rev. Memoria Felix (in exergue Ptr. an altar with fire; on eitherside an eagle.
Idem. Rev. Idem, in exergue pln.— There are 14 more of the two last.
Galeriut Maaimianu*.—Imp. G. Val.
MAXIMIANUS P. F. AUG. Rev. GENIO.'
Pop. Rom; in field Sa; in exergue ptr: with 20 similar.
Maximinu*—Maximinus P. F. Auo Rev. Genio. Pop. Rom: with 90 similar.
IMP. C GAL. VAL. MAXIMINUS P. F. INV. AUG. Rev. GENIO IMPERATOR1S.
in exergue At.
IMP. C. GAL. VAL. MAXIMINUS P. F.
Aug. Rev. Idem, in exergue Ktv.
Maxentiua.—imp. c. Maxentius P. F. Aug. Rev. CONSERV: Vrb. Suae. Rome personified and seated in a temple of 6 columns.—24 more with the same legend, bat almost all differing in the structure and ornaments of the temples, some of which also contain 2 figures. The marks in the exergues are, Ao.p—St—Rbs.—Ft
A BQ TT T.
Idem. Rev. Aeternitas Aug. N. in exergue Mostt. The Dioscuri with horses and spears.
Idem. Rev. Victorijk Aetern. Aug, N. in exergue Mostq. Victory with wreath and palm branch.
Liciniiu.—Imp. Licinius. P. F. Aug. Laureated head to right. Rev. Genio Pop. Rom; in field Sf; in exergue Pln. —90 similar with the exception of some having a star and some Tf in the field.
Idem. Rev. Genio Pop. Rom. in exergue Ptr.—90 more of the same.
Idem. 39 similar. Rev. Idem, exergue
Constantinus.—Fl. Val. ConstantiNo Nob. c. Laureated head to the right; bust togated and, on some, in armour. Rev. Principi Juventutis. Infield Sa; in exergue Ptr.—Four similar, in exergue pln and plc.
FL. VAL. CONSTANTINUS NOB. C. Rev.
Genio Pop. Rom. in exergue Pln. — About a dozen similar with sc—Sa—and A in the field, and in the exergue Plc.
Idem. Rev. Masti Propuonatori; in field Sa, in exergue PTXl.
Idem. Rev. Marti Patri Profug
Idem. Rev. Marti Patri Conserva
Idem. Rev. Marti Pacif.—Pln.
IMP. C. CONSTANTINUS P. F. AUG.
Rev. Genio Pop. Rom. in field ci" exergue Plc.
Idem. Rev. Principi Juventutis
Idem. Rev. Marti Patri PropugNatori.—About 80 of the above.
IMP. C. CONSTANTINUS P F AUG.
Rev. Spqr Optimo, Principi. In exergue Mostt. 3 military standards.—Four similar.
Constantinus p. F. AUG. Laureated head to right. Rev. Adventus Aug. exergue Pln. The Emperor on horseback; on the ground a captive.
Constantinus P. F. Aug. Rev. FELicitas Aug. N N.—Iii exergue pln. A helmeted female seated in a chair.
Idem. Rev. Comiti Augg. NN Pln. The Sun standing; in his right hand a globe, in his left a whip.
Idem. Rev. Principi Juventutis —Pln.
Idem. Rev. Concord, Milit. Pln. Female between 2 standards.—2 similar. Constantinus Aug. Armed head.
Rev. Soli Invicto Comiti.—175 of this type ; marks in exergue Parl, Mil, and Tt.
IMP. CONSTANTINUS AUG. Rev. MARTI Conservatori. Head of Mars.
Idem. Rev. Soli Invicto Comiti. Head of the Sun.—60 of these two.
IMP. Constantinus P. F. AUG. Rev. Soli Invicto Comiti.—There are upwards of 800 of this type, differing from each other only in the exergue marks, which are Ptr — Msl — Tarl — Rtr— Mln and BTR.
EXCAVATIONS AT ROME.
The excavations at the Forum of Rome, ordered by Government, have, it is said, ascertained the precise position of the Tribune, from which the orators harangued the people. It has hitherto been supposed to have been in the centre of the Forum; but it appears now to be proved that it stood at the top of the capitol. All that has now been cleared, appears to agree perfectly with the descriptions of the historians and the ancient medals. The arch of Septimus Severus is on one side, and that of Titus and the Colosseum in front.
A large wooden chair has been preserved at Pezenas, in the south of France, which is called Moliere's arm-chair. It appears that when Moliere visited Pezenas, he was accustomed every afternoon to go to a barber's shop in the town, which was the general resort of loungers and newsmongers, and used to sit in this chair while he was being shaved, and that he held a sort of levee in the shop, for some hours. The Municipal Council of Pezenas lately entered into some inquiries, with a view to prove that this chair was really the one in question, and, the fact having been established, they decided upon sending it to Paris as a valuable relic.
In carrying into effect the improvements in the church of St. Helen, Worcester, it has been found necessary to remove the ancient pulpit from which Latimer poured forth his peculiar but effective eloquence. The sacred reiic has been purchased by a gentleman of the neighbourhood. It is so connected with the history of the Reformation, that it ought to be preserved in some national depository. The pulpit from which Richard Baxter preached is carefully preserved at Kidderminster, as is the chair of Wickliffe at Lutterworth, and the chair of Bunyan at Bedford.