Strata of the Tertiary Series.
THE Tertiary Series introduces a system of new phenomena, presenting formations in which the remains of animal and vegetable life approach gradually nearer to species of our own epoch. The most striking feature of these formations consists in the repeated alternations of marine deposits, with those of fresh water (see Pl. 1, sect. 25, 26, 27, 28).
We are indebted to Cuvier and Brongniart, for the first detailed account of the nature and relations of a very important portion of the
[077 FOURFOLD DIVISION.] tertiary strata, in their inestimable history of the deposits above the chalk near Paris. For a short time, these were supposed to be peculiar to that neighbourhood; further observation has discovered them to be parts of a great series of general formations, extending largely over the whole world, and affording evidences of, at least, four distinct periods, in their order of succession, indicated by changes in the nature of the organic remains that are imbedded in them.*
Throughout all these periods, there seems to have been a continually increasing provision for the diffusion of animal life, and we have certain evidence of the character and numbers of the
* We owe to Mr. Webster, the first discovery of the Tertiary strata in the I. of Wight, and S. E. Part of England. (See Geol. Trans. Lond. O. S.Vol. 2. p. 161.)
Mr. Lyell, in Vol. II. of his Principles of Geology, has given an interesting map, showing the extent of Europe, which has been covered by water since the commencement of the Tertiary strata.
M. Boué, also, has published an instructive map, representing the manner in which central Europe was once divided into a series of separate basins, each maintaining, for a long time, the condition of a fresh-water lake; those which were subject to occasional irruptions of the sea, would, for a while, admit of the deposition of marine remains; the subsequent exclusion of the sea, and return to the condition of a fresh-water lake, would allow the same region to become the receptacle of the exuviæ of animals inhabiting fresh water. — Synoptische Darstellung der Erdrinde. Hanau, 1827. The same map, on a larger scale, appears in the 2nd series of the Trans. of the Linn. Soc. of Normandy.
In the Annals of Philosophy, 1823, the Rev. W. D. Conybeare published an admirable memoir, illustrative of a similar geological map of Europe.
[078 TERTlARY SERIES.] creatures that were permitted to enjoy it, in the multitude of shells and bones preserved in the strata that were deposited during each of the four epochs we are considering.
M. Deshayes and Mr. Lyell have recently proposed a fourfold division of the marine formations of the tertiary series, founded on the proportions which their fossil shells bear to marine shells of existing species. To these divisions Mr. Lyell has applied the terms Bocene, Miocene, Older Pliocene, and Newer Pliocene; and has most ably illustrated their history in the third volume of his Principles of Geology.
The term Eocene implies the commencement or dawn of the existing state of the animal creation; the strata of this series containing a very small proportion of shells referrible to living species. The Calcaire Grossier of Paris, and the London clay, are familiar examples of this older tertiary, or Eocene formation.
The term Miocene implies that a minority of the fossil shells, in formations of this period, are of recent species. To this era are referred the fossil shells of Bordeaux, Turin, and Vienna.
In formations of the Older, and Newer Pliocene, taken together, the majority of the shells belongs to living species: the recent species in the newer, being much more abundant than in the older division.
To the Older Pliocene, belong the Sub-apennine
[079 FOURFOLD DIVISION.] marine formations, and the English Crag; and to the Newer Pliocene, the more recent marine deposits of Sicily, Ischia, and Tuscany.*
Alternating with these four great marine formations above the chalk, there intervenes a fourfold series of other strata, containing shells which show them to have been formed in fresh water, accompanied by the bones of many terrestrial and aquatic quadrupeds.
The greater number of shells, both in the fresh-water and marine formations of the tertiary series, are so nearly allied to existing genera, that we may conclude, the animals by which they were formed, to have discharged similar functions in the economy of nature, and to have been endowed with the same capacities of enjoyment as the cognate mollusks of living species. As the examination of these shells would disclose nearly the same arrangements and adaptations that prevail in living species, it will be more important to investigate the extinct
The total number of known fossil shells in the tertiary series is 3,036. Of these 1,238 are found in the Eocene; 1,021 in the Miocene; and 777 in the Older, and Newer Pliocene divisions.
The numerical proportions of recent to extinct
may be thus expresscd. — In the
|Newer Pliocene period||90 to 95%|
|Older Pliocene period||35 to 50%|
|Eocene period||3 1/2 %|
— Lyell's Geology, 4. Ed. vol. iii. p. 308.
[080 TERTIARY SERIES.] genera of the higher orders of animals, which seem to have been constructed with a view to the temporary occupation of the earth, whilst the tertiary strata were in process of formation. Our globe was no longer tenanted by those gigantic reptiles, which had been its occupants during the secondary period; neither was it yet fit to receive the numerous tribes of terrestrial mammalia that are its actual inhabitants. A large proportion of the lands which had been raised above the sea, being covered with fresh water, was best adapted for the abode of fluviatile and lacustrine quadrupeds.
Our knowledge of these quadrupeds is derived solely from their fossil remains; and as these are found chiefly (but not exclusively)* in the fresh-water formations of the tertiary series, it is to them principally that our present attention will be directed.
* The remains of Palæotherium occur, though very rarely, in the Calcaire Grossier of Paris. The bones of other terrestrial mammalia, occur occasionally in the Miocene and Pliocene marine formations, e. g. in Touraine and in the Sub-apennines. These are derived from carcases which, during these respective periods, were drifted into estuaries and seas.
No remains of mammalia have yet been found in the plastic clay formation next above the chalk; the admixture of fresh-water and marine shells in this formation seems to indicate that it was deposited in an estuary. Beds of fresh-water shells are interposed more than once between the marine strata of the Calcaire Grossier, which are placed next above the plastic clay.
[081 MAMMALIA OF EOCENB PERIOD.]
Mammalia of the Eocene Period.
In the first great fresh-water formation of the Eocene period, nearly fifty extinct species of mammalia have been discovered by Cuvier; the greater number of these belong to the following extinct genera, in the order Pachydermata,* viz. Palæotherium, Anoplotheriuin, Lophiodon, Anthracotherium, Cheropotamus, Adapis (see Plates 3 and 4).
* Cuvier's order Pachydermata, i. e. ammals having thick skins, includes three subdivisions of Herbivora, of which the Elephant, Rhinoceros, and Horse are respectively examples.
The place of the genus Palæotherium (see plates 3 and 4) is intermediate between the rhinoceros, the horse, and tapir. Eleven or twelve species have already been discovered; some as large as a rhinoceros, others varying from the size of a horse to that of a hog. The bones of the nose show that, like the tapir, they had a short fleshy trunk. These animals probably lived and died upon the margins of the then existing lakes and rivers, and their dead carcases may have been drifted to the bottom in seasons of flood. Some perhaps retired into the water to die.
Five species of Anoplotherium (see plates 3, 4) have been found in the gypsum of the neighbourhood of Paris. The largest (A. Commune) being of the size of a dwarf ass, with a thick tail, equal in length to its body, and resembling that of an otter; its probable use was to assist the animal in swimming. Another (A. Medium) was of a size and form more nearly approaching the light and graceful character of the Gazelle; a third species was nearly of the size of a Hare.
The posterior molar teeth in the genus Anoplotheriuin resemble those of the rhinoceros; their feet are terminated by two large toes, like the ruminating animals, whilst the composition of their
[081 TERTIARY SERIES.] The nearest approach among living animals to the form of these extinct aquatic quadrupeds, is found in the Tapirs that inhabit the warm regions of South America, Malacca, and Sumatra, and in the Daman of Africa,
It is not easy to find a more eloquent and striking acknow1edgrnent of the regularity and constancy of the systematic contrivances that pervade the animal remains of the fossil world, than is contained in Cuvier's Introduction to his account of the bones discovered in the gypsum
tarsus is like that of the camel. The place of this genus stands, in one respect, between the rhinoceros and the horse; and in another, between the hippopotamus, the hog, and the camel.
The Lophiodon is another lost genus, allied most nearly to the tapir and rhinoceros, and, in some respects, to the hippopotamus, and connected closely with the Palceotherium and Anoplotherium. Fifteen species of Lophiodon have been ascertained.
The genus Anthracotherium was so called from its having been first discovered in the Tertiary coal, or Lignite of Cadibona in Liguria: it presents seven species, some of them approximating to the size and character of the hog; others approaching nearly to that of a hippopotamus.
The Cheropotamus was an animal most nearly allied to the hogs; in some respects approaching the Babiroussa, and forming a link between the Anoplotherium and the Peccary.
The last of the extinct Pachydermata found in the gypsum quarries of Montmartre, is the Adapis. The form of this creature most nearly resembled that of a hedgehog, but it was three times the size of that animal it seems to have formed a link connecting the Pachydermata with the Insectivorous Carnivora
[083 MAMMALIA OF EOCENE PERIOD.] quarries of the neighbourhood of Paris. It affords, to persons unacquainted with the modern method of conducting physical researches, an example of the kind of evidence on which we found our conclusions, as to the form, character, and habits of extinct creatures, that are known only through the medium of their fossil remains. After stating by what slow degrees the cabinets of Paris had been filled with innumerable fragments of bones of unknown animals, from the gypsum quarries of Mont Martre, Cuvier thus records the manner in which he applied himself to the task of reconstructing their skeletons. Having gradually ascertained that there were numerous species, belonging to many genera, "I at length found myself," says he, "as if placed in a charnel house, surrounded by mutilated fragments of many hundred skeletons, of more than twenty kinds of animals, piled confusedly around me: the task assigned me was, to restore them all to their original position. At the voice of comparative anatomy, every bone, and fragment of a bone, resumed its place. I cannot find words to express the pleasure I experienced in seeing, as I discovered one character, how all the consequences, which I predicted from it, were successively confirmed; the feet were found in accordance with the characters announced by the teeth ; the teeth in harmony with those indicated beforehand by the feet; the bones
[084 TERTIARY SERIES.] of the legs and thighs, and every connecting portion of the extremities, were found set together precisely as I had arranged them, before my conjectures were verified by the discovery of the parts entire: in short, each species was, as it were, reconstructed from a single one of its component elements." (Cuvier's Ossemens Fossiles, 1812, tom. iii. Introduction, p. 3, 4.)
Thus, by placing before his readers the progress of his discovery, and restorations of unknown species and genera, in the same irregular succession in which they occurred to him, he derives from this disorder the strongest demonstration of the accuracy of the principles which formed his guide throughout the whole enquiry; the last found fragments confirming the conclusions he had drawn from those first brought to light, and his retrograde steps being as nothing, in comparison with his predictions which were verified.
Discoveries thus conducted, demonstrate the constancy of the laws of co-existence that have ever pervaded all animated nature, and place these extinct genera in close connexion with the living orders of Mammalia.
We may estimate the number of the animals collected in the gypsum of Mont Martre, from the fact, stated by Cuvier, that scarcely a block is taken from these quarries which does discIose some fragment of a fossil skeleton. Millions of such bones, he adds, must have been
[085 MAMMALIA OF EOCENE PERIOD.] destroyed, before attention was directed to the subject.
The subjoined list of fossil animals found in the gypsum quarries of the neighbourhood of Paris, affords important information as to the population of this first lacustrine portion of the tertiary series.* (See Pl. 1 . Figs. 73 to 96.)
[086 TERTIARY SERIES.] Besides the many extinct species, and extinct genera of Mammalia that are enumerated in this list, the occurrence of nine or ten extinct species of fossil Birds in the Eocene period of the tertiary series, forms a striking phenomenon in the history of organic remains.*
In this small number of species, we have seven genera; and these afford examples of four, out of the six great Orders into which the existing Class of Birds is divided, viz. Accipitres, Gallinaceæ, Grallæ, and Palmipedes. Even the eggs of aquatic birds have been preserved in the lacustrine formations of Cournon, in Auvergne.
* The only remains of Birds yet noticed in strata of the Secondary series are the bones of some Wader, larger than a common Heron, found by Mr. Mantell in the fresh-water formation of Tilgate Forest. The bones at Stonesfield, once supposed to be derived from Birds, are now referred to Pterodactyles. A discovery has recently been made in America by Professor Hitchcock, of the footsteps of Birds in the New Red sandstone of the valley of the Connecticut, which he refers to at least seven species, all apparently Waders, having very long legs, and of various dimensions from the size of a Snipe, to twice the size of an Ostrich. (See Pl. 26a. 26b.)
In the same Eocene formation with these eggs, there occur also the remains of two species of Anoplotherium, a Lophiodon, an Anthracrotherium, a Hippopotamus, a ruminating animal, a Dog, a Martin, a Lagomys, a Rat, one or two Tortoises, a Crocodile, a Serpent or Lizard, and three or four species of Birds. These remains are dispersed singly, as if the animals from which they were derived had decomposed slowly and at different intervals, and thus fragments of their bodies had been lodged irregularly in various parts of the bottom of the ancient lake: these bones are sometimes broken, but never rolled.
[087 MAMMALIA OF EOCENE PERIOD.] It appears that the animal kingdom was thus early established, on the same general principles that now prevail; not only did the four present Classes of Vertebrata exist; and among Mammalia, the Orders Pachydermata, Carnivora, Rodentia, and Marsupialia; but many of the genera also, into which living families are distributed, were associated together in the same system of adaptations and relations, which they hold to each other in the actual creation. The Pachydermata and Rodentia were kept in check by the Carnivora — the Gallinaceous birds were controlled by the Accipitres.
"Le Règne Animal, à ces époques reculées, était composé d'après les mêmes lois; il comprenoit les mêmes classes, les mêmes familIes que de nos jours; et en effet, parmi les divers systèmes sur l'origine des êtres organisés, il n'en est pas de moins vraisemblable que celui qui en fait naître successivement les différens genres par des développemens ou des métamorphoses graduelles." (Cuvier, Oss. Foss. t. 3, p. 297.)
This numerical preponderance of Pachydermata, among the earliest fossil Mammalia, beyond the proportion they bear among existing quadrupeds, is a remarkable fact, much insisted on by Cuvier; because it supplies, from the relics of a former world, many intermediate forms which do not occur in the present distribution of that important Order. As the living genera of Pachydermata are more widely separated
[088 TERTIARY SERIES.] from one another, than those of any other Order of Mammalia, it is important to fill these vacant intervals with the fossil genera of a former state of the earth; thus supplying links that appeared deficient in the grand continuous chain which connects all past and present forms of organic life, as parts of one great system of Creation.
As the bones of all these animals found in the earliest series of the tertiary deposits are accompanied by the remains of reptiles, such as now inhabit the fresh waters of warm countries, e. g. the Crocodile, Emys, and Trionyx (see Pl. 1, Figs. 80, 81, 82), and also by the leaves and prostrate trunks of palm trees (Pl . 1, Figs. 66, 67, 68, and Pl. 56), we cannot but infer that the temperature of France was much higher than it is at present, at the time when it was occupied by these plants and reptiles, and by Mammalia allied to families which are natives of some of the warmest latitudes of the present earth, e. g. the Tapir, Rhinoceros, and Hippopotamus.
The frequent intrusion of volcanic rocks is a remarkable accompaniment of the tertiary strata of the Eocene period, in various parts of Europe; and changes of level, resulting from volcanic agency, may partially explain the fact, that portions of the same districts became alternately the receptacles of fresh and salt water.
The fresh-water calcareous deposits of this period are also highly important, in relation to
[089 ORIGIN OF LIMESTONE.] the general history of the origin of limestone, from their affording strong evidence of the sources whence carbonate of lime has been derived.*
* We see that thermal springs, in volcanic districts, issue from the earth, so highly charged with carbonate of lime, as to overspread large tracts of country with beds of calcareous tufa, or travertino. The waters that flow from the Lago di Tartaro, near Rome, and the hot springs of San Filippo, on the borders of Tuscany, are well known examples of this phenomenon. These existing operations afford a nearly certain explanation of the origin of extensive beds of limestone in fresh-water lakes of the tertiary period, where we know them to have been formed during seasons of intense volcanic activity. They seem also to indicate the probable agency of thermal waters in the formation of still larger calcareous deposits at the bottom of the sea, during preceding periods of the secondary and transition series.
It is a difficult problem to account for the source of the enormous masses of carbonate of lime that compose nearly one eighth part of the superficial crust of the globe. Some have referred it entirely to the secretions of marine animals; an origin to which we must obviously assign those portions of calcareous strata which are composed of comminuted shells and corallines: but, until it can be shown that these animals have the power of forming lime from other elements, we must suppose that they derived it from the sea, either directly, or through the medium of its plants. In either case, it remains to find the source whence the sea obtained, not only these supplies of carbonate of lime for its animal inhabitants, but also the still larger quantities of the same substance, that have been precipitated in the form of calcareous strata.
We cannot suppose it to have resulted, like sands and clays, from the mechanical detritus of rocks of the granitic series, because the quantity of lime these rocks contain, bears no proportion to its large amount among the derivative rocks. The only remaining hypothesis seems to be, that lime was continually introduced to lakes and seas, by water that had percolated rocks through which calcareous earth was disseminated.
[090 TERTIARY SERIES.]
Mammalia of the Miocene Period.
The second, or Miocene System of Tertiary Deposits, contains an admixture of the extinct genera of lacustrine mammalia, of the first or Eocene series, with the earliest forms of genera which exist at the present time. This admixture was first noticed by M. Desnoyers, m the marine formations of the Faluns of Touraine.*
* Although carbonate of lime occurs not in distinct masses among rocks of igneous origin, it forms an ingredient of lava and basalt, and of various kinds of trap rocks. The calcareous matter thus dispersed through the substancc of these volcanic rocks, seems to afford a magazine from which percolating water, charged with carbonic acid gas, may, in the lapse of ages, have derived sufficient carbonate of lime to form all the existing strata of limestone, by successive precipitates at the bottom of ancient lakes and seas. Mr. De la Beche states the quantity of lime in granite composed of two-fifths quartz, two-fifths felspar, and one-fifth mica, to be 0.37; and in greenstone, composed of equal parts of felspar and hornblende, to be 7.29. (Geol. Researches, p. 379.) — The compact lava of Calabria contains 10. of carbonate of lime, and the basalt of Saxony 9.5.
We may, in like manner, refer the origin of those large quantities of silex, which constitute the chert and flint beds of stratified formations, to the waters of hot springs, holding siliceous earth in solution, and depositing it on exposure to reduced degrees of temperature and pressure, as silex is deposited by the hot waters that issue from the geysers of Iceland.
* Here, the remains of Palæotherium, Anthracotherium, and Lophiodon, which formed the prevailing genera in the Eocene period, are found mixed with bones of the Tapir, Mastodon, Rhinoceros, Hippopotamus, and Horse: these bones are fractured and rolled, and sometimes covered with flustra, and must have been derived from carcases drifted into an estuary, or sea. Annales des Sciences Naturelles. Février, 1828.
[091 MAMMALIA OF MIOCENE PERIOD.] Similar admixtures have been found in Bavaria,* and near Darmstadt. Many of these animals also indicate a lacustrine, or swampy condition of the regions they inhabited: one of them, the Dinotherium giganteum (gigantic
Count Munster and Mr. Murchison have discovered, at Georgensgemünd, in Bavaria, the bones of Palæotherium, Anoplotherium, and Anthracotherium, mixed with those of Mastodon, Rhinoceros, Hippopotamus, Horse, Ox, Bear, Fox, &c.; and several species of land shells.
A very interesting detailed description of the remains found at this place has been published by Hermann von Meyer, Frankfurt, 1834, 4to. with 14 plates.
We learn from the excellent publication of Professor Kaup, of Darmstadt, that at Epplesheim, near Altzey, about twelve leagues south of Mayence, remains of the following animals have been found, in strata of sand, referrible to the second or Miocene period of the tertiary formations. These are preserved in the museum at Darmstadt.
See Description d'Ossemens Fossiles, par Kaup. Darmst. 1832.
[092 TERTIARY SERIES.] Tapir of Cuvier), is calculated to have been eighteen feet in length, and was much the largest of all terrestrial Mammalia yet discovered, exceeding even the largest fossil elephant.
The Dinotherium will be described in a subsequent chapter.
Mammalia of the Pliocene Periods.
The third, and fourth, or Pliocene divisions of the tertiary fresh-water deposits, contain no more traces of the extinct lacustrine genera of the Pakeotherian family, but abound in extinct species of existing genera of Pachydermata, e. g. Elephant, Rhinoceros, Hippopotamus, and Horse, together with the extinct genus Mastodon. With these also occur the first abundant traces of Ruminantia, e. g. Oxen and Deer.
The number of Rodentia becomes also enlarged; and the Carnivora assume a numerical importance commensurate with the increased numbers of terrestrial herbivora.
The seas, also, of the Miocene and Pliocene periods, were inhabited by marine Mammalia,. consisting of Whales, Dolphins, Seals, Walrus, and the Lamantin, or Manati, whose existing species are chiefly found near the coasts and mouths of rivers in the torrid zone (see Pl. 1, Figs. 97 to 101). The presence of the Lamantin adds another argument to those which arise from
[093 MAMMALIA OF PlIOCENE PERIODS.] the tropical character of many other animals, even of the latest tertiary strata, in favour of the opinion, that the climate of Europe maintained a high, though probably a gradually decreasing temperature, even to the latest period of the tertiary formations.
We have many sources of evidence whereby the history of the Pliocene periods is illustrated: First, we have the remains of terrestrial animals, drifted into estuaries or seas, and preserved together with marine shells; such are the Subapennine marine formations, containing the remains of Elephant, Rhinoceros, &c. and the Crag of Norfolk.*
Secondly, we have similar remains of terrestrial quadrupeds, mixed, with fresh-water shells, in strata formed during the same epoch, at the bottom of fresh-water lakes and ponds; such as those which occur in the Val D'Arno, and in the small lacustrine deposit at North Cliff, near Market Weighton, in Yorkshire. (See Phil. Mag. 1829, vol. vi. p. 225.)
Thirdly, we have remains of the same animals
* In the museum at Milan, I have seen a large part of the skeleton of a Rhinoceros, from the Sub-apennine formation, having oyster shells attached to many of its bones, in such a manner as to show that the skeleton must have remained undisturbed for a considerable time at the bottom of the sea. Cuvier also states that in the museum at Turin there is the head of an elephant, to which shells of the same kind similarly attached, and fitted to the form of the bones.
[094 TERTIARY SERIES.] in caverns and fissures of rocks, which formed parts of the dry land during the more recent portions of the same period. Such are the bones collected by Hyænas, in the caves of Kirkdale, Kent's Hole, Lunel, &c.: and the bones of Bears in caverns of the limestone rocks of central Germany, and the Grotte d'Osselles, near Besançon. Such also are the bones of tile osseous breccia, found in fissures of limestone rocks on the northern shores of the Mediterranean, and in similar fissures of limestone at Plymouth, and in the Mendip Hills in Somerset. These are derived chiefly from herbivora which fell into the fissures before they were partially filled with the detritus of a violent inundation. Fourthly, we have the same remains contained in deposits of diluvial detritus, dispersed over the surface of formations of all ages.
As I have elsewhere (Reliquæ Diluvianæ)*
* The evidence which I have collected in my Reliquiæ Diluvianæ, 1823, shows, that one of the last great physical events that have affected the surface of our globe, was a violent inundation, which overwhelmed great part of the northern hemisphere, and that this event was followed by the sudden disappearance of a large number of the species of terrestrial quadrupeds, which had inhabited these regions in the period immediately preceding it. I also venture to apply the name Diluvium to the superficial beds of gravel, clay, and sand, which appear to have been produced by this great irruption of water.
The description of the facts that form the evidence presented in this volume, is kept distinct from the question of the identity of the event attested by them, with any deluge recorded in
[095 MAMMALIA OF PLIOCENE PERIODS.] entered into the evidences illustrating the state of animal life, during the period immediately preceding the formation of this diluvium, I must refer to that work for details respecting the nature and habits of the then existing population of the earth. It appears that at this epoch, the whole surface of Europe was densely peopled by various orders of Mammalia; that the numbers of the herbivora were maintained in due proportion by the controlling influence of carnivora; and that the individuals of every species were constructed in a manner fitting
history. Discoveries which have been made, since the publication of this work, show that many of the animals therein described, existed during more than one geological period preceding the catastrophe by which they were extirpated. Hence it seems more probable, that the event in question, was the last of the many geological revolutions that have been produced by violent irruptions of water, rather than the comparatively tranquil inundation described in the Inspired Narrative.
It has been justly argued, against the attempt to identify these two great historical and natural phenomena, that as the rise and fall of the waters of the Mosaic deluge are described to have been gradual, and of short duration, they would have produced comparatively little change on the surface of the country they overflowed. The large preponderance of extinct species among the animals we find in caves, and in superficial deposits of diluvium, and the non-discovery of human bones along with them, afford other strong reasons for referring these species to a period antcrior to the creation of man. This important point, however, cannot be considered as completely settled, till more detailed investigations of the newest members of the Pliocene, and of the diluvial and alluvial formations shall have taken place.
[096 TERTIARY SERIES.] each to its own enjoyment of the pleasures of existence, and placing it in due and useful relations to the animal and vegetable kingdoms by which it was surrounded.
Every comparative anatomist is familiar with the beautiful examples of mechanical contrivance and compensations, which adapt each existing species of herbivora and carnivora to its own peculiar place and state of life. Such contrivances began not with living species: the geologist demonstrates their prior existence in the extinct forms of the same genera which he discovers beneath the surface of the earth, and he claims for the Author of these fossil forms under which the first types of such mechanisms were embodied, the same high attributes of Wisdom and Goodness, the demonstration of which exalts and sanctifies the labours of science, in her investigation of the organizations of the living world.