RECORD: Fitton, William Henry. 1833. Notes on the progress of geology in England. London: Richard Taylor.

REVISION HISTORY: Transcribed by AEL Data 04.2014. RN1

NOTE: This work formed part of the Beagle library. The Beagle Library project has been generously supported by a Singapore Ministry of Education Academic Research Fund Tier 1 grant and Charles Darwin University and the Charles Darwin University Foundation, Northern Territory, Australia.


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NOTES

ON

THE PROGRESS OF GEOLOGY

IN

ENGLAND.

BY

WILLIAM HENRY FITTON, M.D. &c.

[From the LONDON and EDINBURGH PHILOSOPHICAL MAGAZINE,

vol. i. and ii. 1832 – 1833.]

The under-mentioned portions of this Paper correspond to those in the Philosophical Magazine.

(Magazine.)

Page 1 to page 14, line 20.. Vol. I. page 147—160.

——14, line 21 to page 22, line 2. —— —— 268—275.

——22, — 3 —— 29, — 23. ——442—450.

——29, — 24 to the end Vol. II.—— 37—57.

LONDON:

PRINTED BY RICHARD TAYLOR,

RED LION COURT, FLKET STREET.

1833.

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ERRATA.

Page 9, line 41 (Magazine, page 156, line 25):

for coming read common.

——10, ——21 (Magazine, page 157, line 7):

for fig. 2. read fig. 1.

——11, ——8 (Magazine, page 157, line 27):

for Plate I. read Plate II.

——11, note, line 2 (Magazine, page 158. note, line 2):

for In the North of England, read In some places in the North of England,

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Notes on the History of English Geology, By WILLIAM HENRY FITTON, M.D. F.R.S. &c.

To the Editors of the Philosophical Magazine and Journal.

Gentlemen,

AN article which I published in the Edinburgh Review for February 1818, On the Geological Map, and other works of Mr. William Smith*, having been frequently referred to, the historical part of it was printed, with some additions, in 1821, for insertion in a Journal more immediately devoted to science than that in which it originally appeared; but its publication was at that time prevented by accidental circumstances. As the Review has been more recently mentioned by the late President of the Geological Society, in announcing the award of the first Wollaston Medal to Mr. Smith†, I now beg leave to place at your disposal one of the printed copies above mentioned.

I remain, Gentlemen, &c. &c.

London, July 1832. WM. H. FITTON.

A Map may not, at first sight, appear to come within the scope of a literary publication; but the performance now before us, with the other works connected with it, has more than ordinary claims upon the attention of the public. It contains a great deal of information, of practical importance as

* The following is a list of Mr. Smith's works, prefixed to the article in the Review,—vol. xxix. p. 310, &c.
"1. A Delineation (Map) of the Strata of England and Wales, with Part of Scotland; exhibiting the Collieries and Mines, the Marshes and Fenlands originally overflowed by the Sea, and the Varieties of Soil according to the Variations of the Substrata, illustrated by the most Descriptive Names.—15 sheets, coloured. Carey, London. August, 1815.
2. A Memoir of the Map and Delineation, &c. pp. 51. 1815.
3. Geological Section from London to Snowdon. 1817."
"4. A Series of County Maps, on a much larger scale than that of the General 'Delineation,' &c, coloured to correspond with it. 1817.
5. Strata identified by Organized Fossils, containing Prints on coloured paper of the most characteristic Specimens in each Stratum. 4to. Published in Numbers. 1816.
6. Stratigraphical System of Organized Fossils, with reference to the Specimens of the original Geological Collection in the British Museum, 4to. 1817."

† See Phil Mag. and Annals, N.S. vol. ix. p. 275.—EDIT.

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well as speculative interest, It is the first work of the kind that has ever appeared in England; and it is the production, after the labour of more than twenty years, of a most ingenious man, who has been singularly deficient in the art of introducing himself to public notice.

Mr. Smith is by profession a civil engineer, and, we are informed, is particularly skilled in that department of his business which relates to draining, and the structure of canals. It appears, that in the course of the inquiries to which his occupations naturally led him, he had occasion, many years ago, to observe the regularity and steadiness of the order exhibited by the strata in the vicinity of Bath; and about the year 1793, he drew up a tabular view of the stratification of that district, which in fact contained the rudiments of all his subsequent discoveries, and was in itself a proof of great sagacity and application. In the course of different journeys afterwards made, he not only recognised, among the strata in the North of England, several of his old acquaintances at Bath, but was surprised to find them in the same company with which they are associated in that neighbourhood: and, after full investigation, he became at last convinced, that the series of beds was uniform throughout the whole of the south-eastern portion of the island; and that the edge of every stratum, with very few exceptions, might be traced uninterruptedly, from one shore to the other, in a direction from S.W. to N.E. These important observations, which were made, we have no doubt, without any acquaintance with previous publications on the subject, led very naturally to the project of a map, in which they might be embodied and combined, and gave birth to the valuable works at present under our consideration.

It has been unfortunate for the celebrity of Mr. Smith, that he did not communicate to the public, in a more early stage of his inquiries, some general account of the principles which he had developed, with an outline at least of the detail. If, for example, he had given to the Royal Society a list and brief description of the English strata, his claims would have been recorded in the most dignified and authentic form, and his further progress would, no doubt, have been assisted by all those who felt an interest in the subject. His wish, however, seems to have been to abstain from publication till his project was completed; and the accomplishment of this purpose was from time to time delayed, in part, by his necessary attention to the pursuits of his profession; by the great expense attending an undertaking of such magnitude; and by his anxiety to give his work that perfection which every discoverer is naturally ambitious of conferring on his publications. In the mean

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time, as his inquiries advanced, he did not hesitate to make known the facts and inferences which occurred to him, and to exhibit freely his maps, sections and specimens*, with the warmth and liberality, and we may add, with the want of prudence, which are frequently characteristic of men of talents. Not only the elements, but a great part of the detail, of the present performances, were thus, in fact, made public; and the knowledge so diffused has had a most important, though unobserved, effect upon the labours of all succeeding inquirers; who were, perhaps unconsciously, but not less really, indebted to the author for very essential assistance in their progress, long before the productions now before us had actually issued from the press.

In an early stage of his inquiry, Mr. Smith communicated his observations to the Rev. Joseph Townsend, the author of a well-known book of travels in Spain; and subsequently to Mr. Farey, who was at that time we believe his pupil; two gentlemen who must, in fact, be considered as the chief editors of his opinions. The title of the book in which Mr. Town-send has given an account of Mr. Smith's discoveries, "The Character of Moses established for Veracity as an Historian†,"was certainly not calculated to attract the attention of geologists, and has apparently very little connexion with the stratification of England; but the ingenious author conceived the credibility of the Mosaic account of the creation, to derive important support from the existing appearances of the globe; and, for the purpose of illustrating those appearances, he has entered into a full description of the British strata. He professes however, very candidly, to have obtained his knowledge of the subject almost entirely from Mr. Smith; of whom, after stating that, with a view to the completion of his own work, he had lost no opportunity of conversing with foreign mineralogists of eminence, he thus expresses his opinion:—The discoveries of this skilful engineer have been of vast importance to geology, and will be of infinite value to this nation. To a strong understanding, a retentive memory, indefatigable ardour, and more than common sagacity, this extraordinary man unites a perfect contempt for money, when compared with science. Had he kept his discoveries to himself, he might have accumulated wealth; but, with unparalleled disinterestedness of mind, he scorned concealment, and made known his discoveries to every one who wished for in-

[* Some of the documents here referred to, of very early date, have recently been presented to the Geological Society:—1832.]—See Phil. Mag. and Annals, N.S., vol. ix. p. 281.—EDIT.

† Two vols. 4to. 1813-1815, Bath and London (Longman).

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formation. It is now (1813) eleven years since he conducted the author in his examination of the strata which are laid bare in the immediate vicinity of Bath; and subsequent excursions in the stratified and calcareous portion of our island have confirmed the information thus obtained*.'

Mr. Farey, the other person above mentioned, who is himself a geologist of no inconsiderable merit, has not confined himself to the diffusion of Mr. Smith's opinions; but has very strenuously asserted the claims of his preceptor, not merely to having actually traced and demonstrated the order of the strata in England, and devised for their discrimination a number of subordinate distinctions, to which we believe his title cannot be disputed; but to his having been the first to ascertain' that the fossil productions of the strata are not accidentally distributed therein, but that each particular species has its proper and invariable place in some particular stratum; and to having proved that some one or two, or more, of these species of fossil shells may serve as new and more distinctive marks of the identity of most of the strata of England†.' Now, upon these points we shall observe—1st, That we do believe Mr. Smith to have been led by his own observations to the discovery of the doctrines and facts which are claimed for him by Mr. Farey. But, 2ndly, It is equally certain, that a very near approach had been made by preceding writers to the doctrines maintained by Mr. Smith upon the subject of stratification; and, more especially, as to the possibility of deducing distinctive characters of the strata from their organized contents:—though it is only candid to allow, that the passages which bear upon these points might possibly have slept much longer in the volumes which contain them, if the attention excited by Mr. Smith's publications had not led to their detection; and that the light in which they now appear to us is very different from what it would have been without such assistance. 3rdly, That Mr. Smith deserves, undoubtedly, the credit of having first conceived, and actually executed, with extraordinary devotion, the project of tracing the strata entirely across this island; and of having thus established upon positive evidence, principles till then (at the utmost) considered rather as probable than as true. It is therefore very far from our intention, in the subjoined sketch of the progress of opinion and discovery respecting the newer and more regularly stratified portion of the globe, to detract from the great merit of Mr. Smith's investigations; or to impeach, if we may be allowed the expression, his consciousness of discovery: our sole object

* Townsend, vol. i. Introduction, pp. 4, 5.

† Phil. Mag. vol. li. p. 173, &c.

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being to found the history of this subject, upon what we think must be regarded as the only safe and tangible standard in the chronology of science,—the relative order of publication*.

The French Encyclopédie Méthodique contains, under the article Physical Geography, published in 1796, by the late M. Desmarest†, a full account of some of the principal publications upon that subject, to the middle of the last century; from whence may be obtained some valuable facts, diluted very plentifully with speculation about the primeval state of the globe. But, on the whole, these volumes have not much increased our respect for the geologists of the last two centuries; and we can select from the list of philosophers whom they enumerate, the names of a few only who have given anything substantial to the science of geology. It is only fair to add, that we are far from supposing Mr. Smith to have been acquainted with these writings.

The zeal with which the collection of organized fossils was pursued during the latter part of the seventeenth century was very remarkable; and perhaps there is not any thing more extraordinary in the history of geological opinions, than the doctrine maintained at that period by Ray, Lister, and other eminent naturalists, respecting the substances now universally considered as the remains of animated beings.' The great question now so much controverted in the world,' Dr. Plot tells us, in 1667,' is, Whether the stones we find in the form of shell-fish, (and in his plates they are, with the caution usual at that period upon this subject, denominated' formed stones,') be lapides sui generis, naturally produced by some extraordinary plastic virtue, latent in the earth, in quarries where they are found; or whether they rather owe their form and figure to the shells of the fishes they represent:‡—and this learned Writer gives no fewer than seven reasons for adhering to the former of these opinions, in opposition to the sentiments of Hooke and other persons, who entertained more rational views-It will seem almost incredible to those who are acquainted with the works of Cuvier, and other inquirers of our days, that such a notion could at any time have found supporters: and it is the more strange that Lister should have maintained these views, as he was an excellent conchologist, and is to this day, we believe, considered as one of the best authorities in that department of natural history: yet Woodward says of him, that

* [In this and some other paragraphs, in which additions have been made to the original paper, the style of the Review has been preserved, to avoid the necessity of changing the form of the whole.]

Encycl. Méthod., Geogr. Physique, tom. i.

‡ Natural History of Oxfordshire, p. 111.

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notwithstanding the strongest evidence,' he bravely continued to the last firm and unshaken in his opinions *.'

This curious absurdity affords a good illustration of the dan-, ger of hypothesis in natural history; since it was connected with, if it did not originate in the assumption, that a general deluge was the only cause that could have occasioned the deposition of the bodies in question: For, as such an event must evidently have been too transitory to have produced appearances observable at great depths from the surface, and within the substance of strata in which no marks of disturbance were to be detected, there was no resource but in denying that the fossils of the solid beds had ever been endowed with life. The obstinacy with which the doctrine was adhered to, is no less surprising. Palissy indeed is praised by Fontenelle in 1720, for having overthrown it more than a century before†; yet in the year 1708, a book was published by Scheuchzer, under the title of Piscium Querelæ et Vindiciæ, where the fishes, entombed in stony substances, are represented as deploring, in very pathetic language, the indignity under which they suffer, in being degraded from the animal kingdom to the rank

* Catalogue, part ii. p. 6.—[The following specimen of Lister's reasoning upon this subject, will show, that notwithstanding his accordance with the great error of his day, he had some very just notions respecting fossil species. * We will easily believe,' he says,' (what I have read in Steno's Prodromus) that all along the shores of the Mediterranean Sea, there may all manner of sea shells be found promiscuously imbedded in rocks or earth, and at good distance too from the sea. But for our English in- land quarries, I am apt to think, there is no such matter as petrifying of shells in the business: but that these cockle-like stones are everywhere as they are at present, Lapides sui generis, and never were any part of an animal. It is most certain that our English quarry shells (to continue that abusive name) have no parts of a different texture from the rock in question whence they were taken; that is, that there is no such thing as shell in these resemblances of shells, and that they never were any part of an animal. My reason is, that quarries of different stone yield us quite different sorts of species of shells, not only from one another,—but I dare boldly say, from any thing in nature besides, that either the land, or salt or fresh water doth yield us.' Tis true that I have picked out of one quarry of Wansford very near resemblances of Murices, &c.; and yet I am not convinced that I did ever meet with any of these species of shells anywhere else but in their respective quarries: whence I conclude them to be Lapides sui generis, and that they were not cast in any animal mould, whose species or race is yet to be found in being at the present day!'—Phil. Trans.—Lowthorp's Abridgement, vol. ii. p. 425.]

Encycl. Méthod. tom. i. p. 406.—Bernard Palissy was born between 1514 and 1520. He delivered his opinions at Paris in 1575, in public lectures of which he has given an entertaining account in a treatise" Des Pierres."His works were republished in 1777, by Faujas St. Fond; and Fontenelle is there quoted (among a crowd of authors who commend him) from L' Histoire de l' Académie, 1720, p. 5.

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of mere inorganic matter. This remonstrance, however, does not seem to have been effectual; for Woodward, in 1723, still thought it necessary to reason against the doctrine we have mentioned: and afterwards, so late as 1752, M. Bertrand, a Swiss clergyman, made a last effort in its favour, contending that fossils are nothing more than links in the progressive series by which unorganized matter is connected with the animated world; or perhaps the unfinished materials ('in feri,' as Dr. Plot had long before expressed it,) out of which the Creator might have formed, and in part did form, the existing races of similar beings.

In the Philosophical Transactions for 1684, there is published,' An ingenious proposal for a new sort of maps of countries; together with tables of sands and clays, such as are chiefly found in the north parts of England, by the learned MARTIN LISTER, M.D.*. —'We shall then,' the author begins, be the better able to judge of the make of the earth, and of many phænomena belonging thereto, when we shall have well and duly examined it, as far as human art can possibly reach, beginning from the outside downwards. As for the inward and central parts thereof, I think we shall never be able to refute Gilbert's opinion thereof, who will, not with- out reason, have it altogether iron. And for this purpose, it were advisable that a soile or mineral map, as I may call it, were devised. The same map of England may, for want of a better, at present serve the turn. It might be distinguished into countries, with the rivers and some of the noted towns put in. The soile might either be coloured, or otherwise distinguished by variety of lines or etchings; but the great care must be, very exactly to note upon the map, where such and such soiles are bounded. As for example, in Yorkshire, 1. The Woolds; chaulk, flint and pyrites, &c. 2. Blackmoor; moores, sandstone, &c. 3. Holderness; boggy, turf, clay, sand, &c. 4. Western mountains; moores, sandstone, coal, ironstone, lead-ore, sand, clay, &c. Nottinghamshire; mostly gravel pebbles, clay, sand-stone, Hall-playster or gypsum, &c. Now if it were noted how far this extended, and the limits of each soil appeared upon a map, something more might be compre- hended from the whole, and from every part, than I can pos- sibly foresee, which would make such a labour well worth the pains. For I am of opinion, such upper soiles, if natural, infallibly produce such under minerals, and, for the most part,

* Phil. Trans, vol. xiv. p. 739, &c. In the title, this paper is stated to have been' Drawn up about 10 years since, and delivered to the Royal' Society, March 12, 1683.'—As Dr. Lister lived till 1712, this precision as to dates seems to imply that his priority had been questioned.

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in such order. But I leave this to the industry of future' times.'

So far, therefore, as the project of a geological map, the credit of originality is clearly due to Dr. Lister; and this may be allowed to atone for his adherence to the absurd hypothesis already mentioned, as to the origin of fossil remains.

The arrangement of the "soiles" in Yorkshire, in the passage above quoted, accords with the more recent geological divisions of that county:—The Woolds apparently corresponding to the chalk formation; Blackmoor to the oolites, sands, and lias of the Eastern moorlands; Holderness to the deposits above the chalk; the Western mountains to the coal-formation with the subjacent limestones; and the gypsum, &c. of Nottinghamshire, perhaps to our red-marl and red-sandstone. There is nothing, however, relating to stratification in Lister's paper, nor to the order, or superposition, of the "soiles:"and the only point deserving of notice, in his' scheme of sands' and clays,' which is in general confused and erroneous, is, that in mentioning the sands of Boulogne and Calais, he observes that' although that is not England, yet the sea has but' accidentally divided us. For from Dunstable, ex. gr. in England, even as far as to the walls of Paris by Calais is, as it were, a continued woolds of chalk and flint.'

The geological labours of WOODWARD deserve very honourable mention; for he appears to have had some correct notions as to the general structure of the globe, and the proper method of pursuing the investigation of it; though his views were warped by the taste for antediluvian history which then prevailed, and his opinion that mineral substances were disposed in the earth according to the order of specific gravity, is singularly at variance with many of his own observations.

'I made strict inquiry (he tells us,) wherever I came, and laid out for intelligence of all places where the entrails of the earth were laid open, either by nature (if I may so say,) or by art and human industry. And wheresoever I had notice of any considerable natural spelunca or grotto, any sinking of wells, or digging for earth, gravel, chalk, coal, stone, marble, ores of metals, or the like, I forthwith had recourse thereunto; where, taking a just account of every observable circumstance of the earth, stone, metal, or other matter, from the surface quite down to the bottom of the pit, I entered it carefully into a journal which I carried along with me for that purpose.—The result was, that in time I was abundantly assured that the circumstances of these things in remoter countries, were much the same with those of ours here;

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that the stone and other terrestrial matter in France, Flanders, Holland, Spain, Italy, Germany, Denmark, Norway, and Sweden, was distinguished into strata or layers, as it is in England; that those strata were divided by parallel fissures; that there were inclosed in the stone, and all the other denser kinds of terrestrial matter, great numbers of shells, and other productions of the sea, in the same manner as in that of this island*.'

The zeal with which Woodward devoted himself to natural history was very remarkable; and his Catalogue of English Fossils† is alone sufficient to entitle him to the gratitude of succeeding inquirers. The collection, to which the catalogue relates, is still preserved at Cambridge, and is to this day of great value as an object of reference:—and the professorship which bears his name in that University, in the hands of the able naturalists who have successively held the office, has contributed, and still continues powerfully, to diffuse a taste for geological inquiry.

A letter from the REV. MR. HOLLOWAY to Dr. Woodward, published in the Philosophical Transactions for 1723, gives a good description of the Fullers'-earth-pits near Woburn in Bedfordshire;—pointing out one of the most striking features in the physical geography of England; and connecting it so distinctly with the order of the strata, as to excite some surprise that the application of the principle was not sooner extended to other portions of the island.—' For the geographical situation of these pits, they are digged in that ridge of sand-hills by Woburn; which near Oxford is called Shotover; on which lies Newmarket-heath by Cambridge, and which extends itself from east to west, everywhere, at about the distance of eight or ten miles from the Chiltern-hills,—which in Cambridgeshire are called the Gog-Magogs, in Bucks and Oxon, the Chiltern-hills, from the chalky matter of which they chiefly consist: which two ridges you always pass in going from London into the North, North-east, or North-west counties. After which you come into that vast vale, which makes the great part of the midland counties, and in which are the rivers Cam, Ouse, Nen, Avon, Isis, and others;—which I take notice of, because it confirms what you say of the regular disposition of the earth into like strata, or layers of matter common through vast tracts; and from whence I make a question, whether Fullers'-earth may not probably be found in

* Nat. Hist, of the Earth, 1723, pp. 4, 5.

†' An Attempt towards a Natural History of the Fossils of England, &c. or a Catalogue of English Fossils' in the collection of J. Woodward, M.D. 2 tomes. Lond. 1728 and 1729.

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other parts of the same ridge of sand-hills among other like matter?'*

STUKELEY, the celebrated antiquary, has pointed out the important fact in the disposition of the strata in England, that the steepest sides, or escarpments, are turned towards the west, or north-west: but he hastily generalizes this observation, and ascribes the fact gratuitously to the rotation of the globe†. The Itinerary of this writer contains many notices respecting the rocks and fossils of the districts he has described; to which his index refers, under the title of' Memoirs towards a British Map of Soils,' with allusion, apparently, to the project of Dr. Lister, already mentioned: and his notions about fossils appear to have been more correct than those of his predecessors.

The opinion of Stukeley as to the effect of the rotation of the earth on the position of the strata, was not long after adopted by MR. STRACHEY, the author of two valuable papers on part of the Somersetshire coal-district‡, which, considering the date of their production, deserve particular attention. The first of these papers gives an account and section (Plate I. fig. 1.) of some coal-mines about ten miles S.W. of Bath;—detailing the order and composition of the beds,—and noticing their highly inclined position, their interruption by ridges (faults);—the occurrence above the coal-measures, of freestone (oolite), lias, and red-marl, in some places to the depth of 12 or 14 fathoms: but, it is added, while the coal beds of the country all dip about 22 inches in a fathom, 'the (superior) beds of stone and marl, different from coal, lie all horizontal.'

In the second of the papers above referred to, Mr. Strachey states, that as he had' never heard any coal was found to the west or south of Mendip-hills; so Cotswold to the N.E., and the chalk hills of Marlbury Downs and Salisbury Plain, seem to set bounds to the coal country;' and in a section which ac-

* [Phil. Trans, vol. xxxii. p. 419.—Newmarket is here erroneously placed on the ridge of Woburn sands (now called the lower greensand): it is on the chalk, and the sands in its neighbourhood are above that stratum. The "question,"at the close of the passage, has been justified by the discovery of Fullers'-earth in the lower part of the Woburn sands, almost throughout their course in England.]

Itinerarium Curiosum, &c. By Wm. Stukeley, M.D. &c. London, folio. 1724, p. 3.

‡ Phil. Trans. 1719, vol. xxx. p. 968; 1725, xxxi. p. 395: published also in a separate tract, entitled' Observations on the different Strata of Earths and Minerals, more particularly such as are found in the Coal-mines of Great Britain?' by John Strachey, Esq. London, 1729, 4to, p. 16. Fig. 2 cf the annexed Plate is copied from this tract, and differs a little from that in the Phil. Trans.

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companies this paper, he places the chalk horizontally above the lias, red marl, &c. and, like those strata, unconformably to the coal beds.

At the close of these descriptions the author extends his views, and having' drawn,' as he tells us,' the different strata (which have come to my observation) on a supposed plane, as they there lie; I protract the same in a globular projection, (see Plate I. fig. 2, A and B.) supposing the mass of the terraqueous globe to consist of the foregoing or perhaps of ten thousand other different minerals, all originally, whilst in a soft or fluid state, tending towards the centre; it must mechanically, and almost necessarily, follow, by the continual revolution of the crude mass from west to east, like the winding up of a jack, or rolling up the leaves of a paper book, that every one of these strata (though they each reach the centre,) must in some place or other, appear to the day, in which case there needs no specific gravitation to cause the lightest to be uppermost, &c. for every one in its turn, in some place of the globe or other, will appear near the surface; and were it practicable to sink a pit to the centre of the earth, all the strata that are would be found in that pit, and according to the poet, ponderibus librata suis.'

We have copied the Plate connected with the former of these papers of Mr. Strachey (fig. 1.), because it represents very correctly one of the most striking geological features of the South-west of England, the unconformable position of the superincumbent beds, from the red marl upwards, to that of the coal strata*. And it will be perceived that the order of the strata given in the first "globular projection,"(fig. 2. A) as derived from actual observation, coincides with that which modern inquiry has brought to light:—

Strata mentioned by Strachey. Modern Names.
'Chalk chalk.
'Freestone oolites.
'Limestone
'Marl
lias.
'Yellow earth
'Red earth
red marl.
'Coal cliffs
'Coal
coal formation.
'Lead, copper, &c.' metalliferous rocks.

* [ This however now appears to be rather the exception than the general rule of structure. In the Isle of Arran, and in some places in the North of England, the superior beds are conformable to those of the coal formation.—See Proceedings of the Geol. Society, p. 41, and Geol. Trans., 2nd Series, vol. iii. p. 33.]

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The second diagram (Pl. I. fig. 2. B.) is also inserted here, as it affords a striking proof of the very low state of geological speculation at the period of Mr. Strachey's inquiries; since an author, whose productions were thought worthy of publication by the Royal Society, and who appears to have been an excellent observer, could venture to connect with them so very crude an hypothesis.

The eloquence of BUFFON had great effect in attracting attention, not only to the splendid speculations which may be connected with geology, but to the importance of organized remains, and to the light which may be thrown by them upon the structure and history of the globe. But the most remarkable views entertained about this period appear to have been those of ROUELLE; though it is, perhaps, impossible, at present, to judge of the precise value of his labours; for, like Werner, he delivered his doctrines principally in lectures. He anticipated, or was coincident with Lehman, in the distinction (previously intimated, we believe, by Steno and Targioni,) of the primary from the newer rocks, under the denominations of l'ancienne and la nouvelle terre; and found reason also to make a division between the older and more recent of the secondary depositions, distinguishing the former by the title of Travaille intermédiaire; a discrimination and a name coming very near to the Transition class of Werner,—whom he like-wise anticipated in noticing the comparative rarity and peculiar character of the fossils contained in these intermediate rocks*. The account given by Desmarest, who was Rouelle's pupil, of his observations on the newer portion of the globe, and on the nature of the operations by which fossil bodies were distributed, is especially deserving of notice:—

'En examinant la nouvelle terre, et en observant les différens corps marins qui se trouvent si fréquemment et si abondamment dans les couches horizontales, Rouelle reconnut que ces corps n'étoient pas jettés au hazard ni dans l'état de confusion que l'on avoit imaginé communément avant lui. Il vit que ces coquilles n'étoientpas les mêmes dans toutes les contrées: que certains individus se rencovtroient constamment ensemble, tandis que d'autres ne se trouvoient jamais dans les mêmes lits,

* He placed the coal formation in the intermediate series. See Encyd. Méthode Géogr. Phys. tom. i. pp. 412, 413, 477, 815: and compare with Jameson's Geognosy, pp. 80, 81, 146.—Rouelle was born in 1703, and died in 1770. No dates are given in Desmarest's notice of him; nor does his Eloge (Hist, de l'Académie, 1770,) contain any account of his geological opinions. Bernard de Jussieu, the botanist, was his friend, and the companion of many of his geological excursions. Some curious particulars about his lectures are to be found in the Baron de Grimm's Correspondence.

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dans les mêmes couches; et ce qui après cette même considération, est très-important, il vit que ces collections de coquilles fossiles, à la surface de certaines parties de nos continens, étoient dans le même état d'arrangement et de distribution que dans le bassin de la mer; où certains animaux testucés affectent de vivre ensemble attachés aux mêmes parages, et d'y former ces espèces de sociétés ou familles, de même que certaines plantes qui croissent toujours ensemble à la surface de la terre.—En effet, une inondation passagère telle que le déluge, auroit dû mettre le désordre et la confusion par-tout, si l'on eût chargé ses eaux de transporter les corps marins dans l'intérieur de nos continens. Puisqu'au lieu de cette confusion, on reconnoît un ordre constant dans l'arrangement des coquilles, dont certains individus font bande à part, et ne se confondent point avec d'autres qui ont aussi leur familles séparées, il faut reconnoître dans ces arrangemens non-seulement le travail de la mer, mais encore que ce travail n'a point été dérangé, par les événemens qui ont mis á sec nos continens de la nouvelle terre*.'

Rouelle distinguished, under the general name of Amas, the various assemblages of fossil shells in the earth, and gave denominations, to some of those which had fallen under his own observation in France, derived from the predominant species. In order to judge of the approach which he thus made to more modern opinions, greater detail would be necessary than we are possessed of. If the amas meant beds, the coincidence would be complete; and even what we have quoted indicates a very near approach to the principles, of which the French naturalists have since made such admirable use in their examination of the country round Paris; and which have furnished Mr. Smith with the title of one of his publications, Strata Identified by Organized Fossils†.

In a treatise which LEHMAN published in 1756‡, he claims

* Encycl. Méthod., Géogr. Phys. tom. i. pp. 416,417.

† [Desmarest's exposition of Rouelle's doctrines, in a subsequent volume of the work last referred to, (ii. p. 346, &c, article AMAS, &c.) which however was not published until 1803, contains some passages expressing yet more nearly, the most recent views of geologists, as to the diffusion of organized remains, and their relations to the strata in which they occur. But there is still no distinct enunciation of the principle,—that strata may be traced, in detached and remote situations, by means of their fossils, which Mr. Smith had been acting upon for more than thirteen years, at the time of this last publication. The words "font bande à part?" in the latter part of the passage above quoted, are ambiguous; but they seem rather to relate to horizontal extent, than to vertical superposition.]

Versuch einen geschichte von Floetz Gebürgen, Berlin, 1756. Translated by Holback, with other productions of Lehman, under the title of Traités de Physique, &c. Paris, 1759, vol. iii.

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for himself the credit of being the first to observe and describe correctly the structure of stratified countries: but he does not seem to have been acquainted with the papers of Mr. Strachey above referred to. He supposes that coal-beds are the lowest of the stratified substances; that various' pierres feuillettes' occupy the middle portion,—and the beds that afford the saline springs (fontaines salantes), the uppermost of the strata; which arrangement, he asserts, is universal. He has detailed the order, composition, and thickness of the strata, which surround the nucleus of the Hartz mountains, and occur in detached portions in the north-east of Germany; pointing out the identity of certain beds, which are separated from each other by intervals of several miles, but without asserting that the corresponding strata are absolutely continuous. His treatise is interspersed also with very good remarks upon the nomenclature and general relations of strata, and on the important purposes in practical mining, which may be promoted by the study of them; and his observations, we have reason to believe, are regarded in Germany as having thrown considerable light on the geology of that country.

But the most important observations, perhaps, that have ever yet appeared on the subject of stratification, are those of the Rev. JOHN MICHELL, in a paper' On the Cause and Phenomena of Earthquakes,' published in the Philosophical Transactions for 1760*; where the author not only describes the general appearance and structure of stratified countries, but explains most clearly the arrangement of the strata in England:—and this, not as confined to Britain, but as exemplifying a general principle, which he supposes to hold universally in other parts of the globe.

'The earth,' he says,' (as far as we can judge from the appearances,) is not composed of heaps of matter casually thrown together, but of regular and uniform strata. These strata, though they frequently do not exceed a few feet, or perhaps a few inches in thickness, yet often extend in length and breadth for many miles, and this without varying their thickness considerably. The same stratum also preserves a uniform character throughout, though the strata immediately next to each other are often totally different.'

* Vol. li. Part ii. Sections 37 to 49, p. 566, &c.—Mr. Farey states that Mr. Michell was appointed Woodwardian Professor at Cambridge, about 1762; an office which he held, we believe, for about eight years. He was then, unfortunately for Geology, transferred to the Rectory of Thornhill, near Wakefield, in Yorkshire; and died on the 21st of April 1793. Mr. Michell was the author also of some excellent Astronomical papers in the Philosophical Transactions.

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The perpendicular fissures of the strata are then noticed, their bendings, and their position, which is stated to be, in a general view, horizontal.—'What is very remarkable, however, in their situation is, that from most, if not all, large tracts of high and mountainous countries, the strata lie in a situation more inclined to the horizon than the country itself, the mountainous countries being generally, if not always, formed out of the lower strata of earth. This situation of the strata may be not unaptly represented in the following manner: Let a number of leaves of paper, of several different sorts of colours, be pasted upon one another; then bending them up together into a ridge in the middle, conceive them to be reduced again to a level surface by a plane, so passing through them as to cut off all the part that had been raised; let the middle now be again raised a little, and this will be a good general representation of most, if not of all, large tracts of mountainous countries, together with the parts adjacent, throughout the whole world*.

'From this formation of the earth, it will follow, that we ought to meet with the same kinds of earths, stones, and minerals, appearing at the surface, in long narrow slips, and lying parallel to the greatest rise of any long ridges of mountains; and so, in fact, we find them. The Andes, in South America, has a chain of volcanos that extend in length above 5000 miles: these volcanos, in all probability, are all derived from the same stratum. Parallel to the Andes is the Sierra, another long ridge of mountains, that run between the Andes and the sea:' and' these two ridges of moutains run within sight of one another, and almost equally: for above a thousand leagues together † being each at a medium above twenty leagues wide.

'The same thing is found to obtain in North America also. The great lakes, which give rise to the river St. Lawrence, are kept up by a long ridge of mountains, that run nearly parallel to the eastern coast. In descending from these towards the sea, the same sets of strata, and in the same order, are generally met with throughout the greatest part of their lengthy‡.

'In Great Britain we have another instance to the same purpose, where the direction of the ridge varies about a point from

*' Fig. 3. (Plate II.) represents a section of a set of strata, lying in the situation just described. The section is supposed to be made at right angles to the length of the ridge, and perpendicular to the horizon.'

†'See Acosta's Natural History of the Indies.'

†'See Lewis Evans's Map, and Account of North America.'

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due north and south, lying nearly from N. by E. to S. by W.* There are many more instances of this to be met with in the world, if we may judge from circumstances, which make it highly probable that it obtains in a great number of places; and in several they seem to put it almost out of doubt.

'The reader is not to suppose, however, that, in any instances, the highest rise of the ridge, and the inclination of the strata from thence to the countries on each side, is perfectly uniform, for they have frequently very considerable inequalities, and these inequalities are sometimes so great that the strata are bent, for some small distance, even the contrary way from the general inclination of them. This often makes it difficult to trace the appearance I have been relating, which, without a general knowledge of the fossil bodies of a large tract of country, it is hardly possible to do.

'At considerable distances from large ridges of mountains, the strata, for the most part, assume a situation nearly level; and as the mountainous countries arc generally formed out of the lower strata, so the more level countries are generally formed out of the upper strata of the earth.

'Hence it comes to pass that, in countries of this kind, the same strata are found to extend themselves a great way, as well in breadth as in length. We have an instance of this in the chalky and flinty countries of England and France, which (excepting the interruption of the Channel, and the clays, sands, &c. of a few counties,) compose a tract of about three hundred miles each way.'

The account of the districts in America, above referred to, has been confirmed, we believe, in general, by more recent observations: and nothing can be more clear than Mr. Michell's exposition of the principle of the stratification of England. That he was acquainted with the detail also, is proved by a memorandum discovered in 1810, among the papers of Mr. Smeaton, then in the hands of Sir Joseph Banks; in which are enumerated several of the principal beds, from the chalk down to the coal; detached portions, several miles distant from each other, being, in two instances, associated under the same name.—This paper is as follows†:

*' Of this,' Mr. Michell adds in a note,' I could give many undoubted proofs, if it would not too far exceed the limits of my present design.'

† We are indebted to the late Mr. Farey for the publication of this valuable document, in the Philosophical Magazine, vol. xxxvi. p. 102, &c.; and the list of modern names above given has been adopted from him. The thickness of most of the strata, he justly observes, is greatly underrated. —The list was found, in Mr. Smeaton's writing, on a part of the back of a letter bearing the London post-mark of November 21, 1788. Smeaton himself died in September 1792.

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'Mr. Michell's Account of the South of England Strata.
Yards of Thickness. present Names.
' chalk. 120 Chalk.
' Golt. 50 Gault.
' Sand of Bedfordshire. 10 to 20 Woburn Sands,—[Lower Green-sand.]
' Northamptonshire lime, and Portland lime—lying in several strata. 100 Portland and other Oolites.
' Lyas strata. 70 to 100 Lias.
' Sand of Newark. about 30 ?
' Red clay of Tuxford, and several. 100 New-red-sand-stone.
' Sherwood Forest, pebbles and gravel. 50 unequal Probably superficial Gravel.
' Very fine white sand. uncertain ?
' Roche Abbey and Brotherton limes. 100 [Magnesian Lime-stone.
' Coal strata of Yorkshire.' Coal-measures?

It is extraordinary that the very remarkable paper in the Philosophical Transactions from which the foregoing extracts have been taken, embracing general principles of such importance, does not appear to have been mentioned, or alluded to by any writer on geology, either in this country or upon the Continent, during a subsequent period of more than fifty years. This may, perhaps, be accounted for, in some degree, by the title and immediate subject of the paper itself; but it must be ascribed principally to the very languid state of inquiry as to the structure of the earth, in England, for a long time after its appearance*.

[A still more interesting question is,—Whether by the words "fossil bodies" without a general knowledge of which in a large tract of country,' Mr. Michell states,' it is hardly possible to trace the appearances he has been relating'—he intended to signify the organized remains included in the strata:—For, if that were his meaning, there would really be very little in the doctrines of modern geology, in which, as to principle, he did not take the lead. This, however, does not appear to have been the case. Mr. Sedgwick has very justly stated †, that no part of the Woodwardian Collection, which was for some years under Mr. Michells immediate superintendance is stratigraphically arranged; and that, not only in

* After the first publication of Dr. Fitton's article in the Edinburgh Review, Mr. Michell's paper on Earthquakes was reprinted in full, in Phil. Mag. vol. lii. beginning at p. 186.—EDIT.

† Address to the Geological Society, at the Anniversary, February 1831. Proceedings, p. 274 (or Phil. Mag. and Annals, N.S. vol. ix. p. 275.—EDIT.)

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the works and catalogues of Woodward, but in the language of other English naturalists of the last century, every mineral substance was designated under the general term 'fossil;' organic remains almost always distinguished by the name of ' extraneous fossils, organic fossils,' &c. Nor is there any reason to suppose, that Mr. Michell's arrangement of the British strata was made public till the accidental discovery of the slight document above mentioned, many years after Mr. Smith's inquiries had begun; indeed, at a period when his Map of England was far advanced towards publication.]

The next author of note is WHITEHURST, whose Inquiry into the Original State and Formation of the Earth was first published in the year 1778, and reprinted, with considerable improvements, in 1786. A great part of this book is infected with that taste for cosmogony which had misled so many of the author's predecessors; but if the reader be not repelled by the formidable chapters ' Of the component parts of chaos whether homogeneous or heterogeneous,' and ' Of the period of human life before and after the Flood,' he will find some excellent remarks upon organized fossils; and in the latter part of the volume, especially the chapter' on the Structure of Derbyshire and other parts of England,' abundant proofs of the author's acuteness and fidelity as an observer. His statements, indeed, concur precisely with those of Mr. Michell; the arrangement of the strata being such,' he tells us,' that they invariably follow each other, as it were, in alphabetical order, or as a series of numbers. I do not mean to insinuate that the strata are alike in all the different regions of the earth, with respect to thickness or quality—for experience shows the contrary; but that in each particular part, how much so-ever they may differ, yet they follow each other in a regular succession*.'—' It was my intention,' he says in another place, to have deposited specimens of each stratum, with its productions, in the British Museum, arranged in the same order above each other as they are in the earth; being persuaded that such a plan would convey a more perfect idea of subterraneous geography, and of the various bodies inclosed in the earth, than words or lines can possibly express†.' But it is remarkable that Whitehurst, at the close of his work, appears to dwell with much more pleasure on that part which

* Whitehurst, Second Edition, pp. 178, 179.

† Pages 204, 205.—This project has since been executed; Government having, in 1806, purchased, for the British Museum, Mr. Smith's collection of fossils, arranged according to the order of the strata:—an acquisition certainly of the highest interest in the scientific annals of our country, and deserving a most distinguished place in a great national repository.

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relates to the early ages of the world, and the condition of its antediluvian inhabitants,' who slept away their time in sweet' repose upon the ever verdant turf,' than upon the truly important and substantial part of his performance.

The most direct instance that we have met with, of the actual tracing the course of any of the strata in England, before the commencement of Mr. Smith's investigations, occurs in the celebrated work of SMEATON on the Eddystone Lighthouse*; and it affords an excellent proof of the practical benefit to be derived from geological inquiries. Mr. Smeaton was in want of lime which possessed the property of forming a good cement for works exposed to the sea; and finding the lime afforded by the lias limestone at Aberthaw, on the coast of Glamorganshire, to answer his purpose †, he was led to seek for stone of the same qualities in other places. This he found, in the first instance at Watchet, on the Somersetshire coast,' where all agreed, that they were the very same stratum of lias limestone, that were found on each side the Channel, though at the distance of twenty miles.' He went accordingly, to Watchet, and examined the situation of the beds there, which he has very well described; and he subsequently traced the progress of the lias, through Monmouthshire and the intermediate counties, as far north as Newark in Nottinghamshire; a course which corresponds precisely with the results of more recent investigation. He mentions likewise, that Mr. Cavendish and Dr. Blagden had assured him of its existence at Lyme, on the coast of Dorsetshire; which is the more remarkable, as a considerable mass of other strata intervenes, upon the surface, between that place and those which Mr. Smeaton had examined himself. It is not however improbable, that Smeaton's inquiries upon this subject may have been connected with some previous communication with Mr. Michell; since he appears to have received from that gentleman, the list of the strata to which we have already referred, before the publication of his own work on the Lighthouse.

It is difficult to trace the history of WERNER'S doctrines; the most important of his tenets having been delivered only in the form of lectures; while the writings of his pupils, who confessedly borrowed from their master, are generally diluted with large additions of their own. In England especially, a correct view of Werner's geological system was not obtained till long after its promulgation: it was not indeed accessible to persons unacquainted with the German language, till the publication of Mr. Jameson's volume of Geognosy, in 1808; and was very imperfectly appreciated for a considerable time afterwards; the controversy between the Wernerian and Huttonian schools, having called off the attention of those engaged in the study of Geology, to the speculative department of their subject, from the more solid occupation of inquiry into the actual structure of the globe. The Kürze Klassifikation of Werner, a brief but valuable arrangement and description of rocks, published by himself in 1787*, has no allusion nor hint at the doctrine of Formations, the term not once occurring in that work. Nor was the distinction of the transition from the flœtz class introduced into his arrangement for some years afterwards; grey-wacke being placed, in the list of 1787, among the flœtz sand-stones. The opinions of Werner, as to the origin of the basaltic rocks, were formed after his examination of the Scheibenberg in 1787 †. The doctrine of formations was delivered in his lectures only, and may be dated as of 1790 or 1791; that of the transition-class not until 1795 or 1796. But his theoretic views, as to the deposition of rocks in general, and the configuration of the earth's surface,—which, after all, (if what relates to the overlying formations be excepted,) are little more than a selection from the doctrines of preceding writers,—may be collected from his work on Veins, first published in November 1791; at which time it is certain that he was acquainted with the works of Whitehurst, for they are quoted in the book last mentioned.

* London, folio, 1791. Sections 168–190, &c. In the Introduction it is stated that the book was printed in 1786.

† The best cement was found to be a compound of equal parts of bluelias lime and puzzolano.

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The true merit of Werner, on which it is probable his reputation as a naturalist will ultimately rest, appears to consist, in his having drawn the attention of geologists, explicitly, to the Order of succession which the various natural groups of rocks are found in general to present; and in having himself developed that order, to a certain extent, with a degree of accuracy which before was scarcely attainable, from the want of sufficient methods of discriminating minerals and their compounds. He was, we believe, the first to observe, or the first to diffuse the doctrine, that the masses or strata, constituting the surface of the globe, present themselves in groups or assemblages, the members of which are generally associated wherever they occur, and are so connected as to exhibit a certain unity of character. To such assemblages Werner gave the name of Formations; and his doctrine (or hypothesis, if this latter term be preferred,) was, that the exterior of the earth consists of a series of these formations, laid over each other in a certain determinate order. Not that the whole series is anywhere complete; but that the relative place of its members is never departed from. Thus in the ascending series A, B, C, D, it may happen that B or C, or both, may be occasionally wanting, and consequently D be found immediately above A; but the succession is never violated, nor the order inverted, by the discovery of A above the formations B, or C, or D, nor of B above those that follow it, &c.*

* Kü Klassification und Beschreibung den verschiedenen Gebirgsarten. Von A. G. Werner, &c. Dresden, 1787. 4to, pp. 28.

† Bergmännisches Journal, 1788, vol. ii. p. 845.

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A very important exception, however, to this regularity of arrangement, is found in the position of that great class of compound rocks, which includes all those of the trap family, the porphyries, syenites, and some at least of the granites of Werner. The compounds of this tribe, in general, agree, not only in possessing the characters of crystallization, and in being wholly destitute of organic remains, but in exhibiting, at their junction with the stratified substances, the most obvious marks of violent derangement; and the trap rocks, in the form of large and numerous veins, are found to traverse, indiscriminately, all the other formations. It is impossible, then, to believe, that the same laws have governed the disposition, both of these compounds, and of the strata which contain organic remains, and exhibit greater uniformity of structure; and every arrangement which assigns to both a common origin, or attempts to include the trap, and other similar formations, in the general series of rocks, must be defective, and radically inconsistent. The capital mistake of Werner (to which he was led, no doubt, by an erroneous theory), was, that he attempted such a combination, and neglected those demonstrations of violence and disturbance.

In England, although the greater part of the country wants the more striking features of the primitive tracts, it fortunately happens that the series of secondary strata is nearly complete; and, when our great extent of coast is taken into the account, few countries present a field for geological observation in which the phœnomena are at once so varied and so well displayed. It will soon be perceived that the inferences from Mr. Smith's examination of this country, coincide, to a great extent, with those of Werner: and this coincidence, between the results obtained by two independent observers, through channels of inquiry so different, is no small confirmation, both of the fidelity of their observations, and of the correctness of their deductions from them.

[* The substance of this and the following paragraphs, is taken from a preceding article in the Edinburgh Review, by the author of the present paper; Vol. xxix. Nov. 1817, p. 71.]

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In this enumeration of authors, which we have now brought down to the period when Geology, as a branch of inductive science, may be said to have had its birth in England, we have omitted to notice the greater number of an extensive class of writers, the older British Topographers; who contributed to the progress of the subject rather by supplying detached facts and local information, than by connected views of the structure of the country: and hence, although their works may be consulted with advantage by those who are employed in investigating local details, they do not claim particular notice, where general principles are the chief objects of inquiry.

There is one, however, among the topographic antiquaries, who ought, perhaps, to have been mentioned at the very commencement of this paper; and who deserves to be had in remembrance, as the Patriarch of English Geologists;—though his work remained unknown for more than two hundred years. GEORGE OWEN of Henllys in Pembrokeshire, Lord of Cemaes or Kemes, was the author of a History of that county, the manuscript of which bears the date of 1595, during the reign of Elizabeth;—perhaps more than a century before any thought of tracing the strata of England or of the globe, had been acted upon, or even mentioned in this country: but the work remained in manuscript till 1799, when it was published in the Cambrian Register*. The author enters largely and with great intelligence, into topographical and statistical detail; and in one of his chapters, treating of the' natural helpes, which is in the countrey to better the lande'—of which he reckons' lyme' to be the' chiefest,'—'First,' he says,' you shall understand, that the lymestone is a vayne of stones running his course, for the most part right east and west, although sometimes the same is found to approach to the north and south.—Of this lymestone there is found of ancient, two veynes, the one small and of no great account; and not of bredth above a butt length, or stones cast; and therefore whosoever seeketh southward or northward over the bredth misseth it.'—The course of this' veyne' is then traced to a considerable distance eastward, out of Pembrokeshire. The other vayne of limestone, and chiefest of the two, is about

*' A History of Pembrokeshire, from a manuscript of George Owen, Esq. of Henllys, Lord of kemes, &c.—now first published by his great-grandson Richard Fenton, Esq.' Cambrian Register for 1796, vol. i. p.52. London, 1799.—An extract from this History, containing what relates to Coal, has been printed also in Fenton's Historical Tour through Pembroleshire,—Appendix, p.54.

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' seven miles distant from the former, more southerly then it, and soe or neare they continue together as shall be declared;'—and its course is in like manner traced towards the east, to where' it taketh water,' and passing under the sea,—as reason and the course thereof leadeth us to think,' is again resumed in the land;—and it is followed in detail toChepstowe, and for some distance beyond that place.

' This digression,' he adds,' concerning these two vaynes of limestone, taking their original here in Pembrokeshire, I have thought good to insert in this place; for at the request of a dear friend of myne, and famous for his learning, I took some paynes about it,—finding the natural course thereof to be as before a thing perchance not so well noticed as fitt to be known; and being noted and knowne, it may be a guide to some parties to seek the lymestone where it yet lyeth hidd, and may save labour to others in seeking it, where there is no possibility to finde it.'

A third' veyne of lymestone,' is also noticed, more northerly than the other two,—(probably one of the subordinate beds of the transition series),—which is correctly distinguished from those above mentioned, and likewise traced, as far as the author's acquaintance with the country extended.

' For the veyne of coales—which is found between these two vaynes of lymestone, as a benefit of Nature, without which the profit of the lymestone were neare lost:—betweene the sayd two vaynes from the beginning to the ending, there is a vayne (if not several vaynes) of coles, that followeth those of the lymestone, — This vayne of cole in some partes joineth close to the first lymestone vayne, as in Pembrokeshire, and Carmarthenshire; and in some partes it is found close by the other vayne of lymestone, as in Glamorgan, Monmouth, and Somersetshires. Therefore,' it is cautiously added,' whether I shall say that there are two vaynes of coles to be found betweene these two vaynes of lymestone, or to imagine that the cole should wreathe or turne itself, in some places to one, in other places to the other; or to think that all the land betweene these two vaynes should be stored with coles,—I leave to the judgement of the skilfull miners, or to those which with deep knowledge have entered into these hidden secrettes.'

Now these' two vaynes of lymestone' are in fact the boundaries, on the north and south, of the great coal-tract of South Wales; and if the reader will compare Mr. Owen's descriptions, or even our brief abstract, with a good map, and with the account of that tract since published by Mr. Martin *, he will be surprised, perhaps, at the coincidence, and will regret that a work so valuable remained so long unknown and unproductive;—since it would be difficult to produce, even at the present time, a better specimen of geological investigation.

* Philos. Trans. 130G, vol. xcvi. p. 342.

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Another class of authors, still less deserving of specific notice than the topographers, and fortunately of much more frequent appearance during the seventeenth and the beginning of the last centuries, than of later years, is composed of those who mingled Scriptural history with speculative or ideal geology, and weakly fancied that they maintained the authority of the Scriptures, and promoted the cause of truth,—by seeking for traces of the Deluge in all the appearances of the earth, and warping into accordance with the Mosaic account of the Creation, their own scanty and inaccurate notions of the structure of the globe. Of these writers the greater number appear to have forgotten the danger which attended their presumptuous attempts; since if they had succeeded in establishing the connexion of their own views with the sacred writings, the fall of their opinions (and, one after another, they have all passed away,) must necessarily have been accompanied by that of Scriptural authority. An instance of the ill effects of this mode of proceeding has been already noticed, in the history of organic remains; and it would be easy to multiply quotations, which might perhaps surprise our readers of the present day*. There are, however, some very honourable exceptions to these general remarks. The works more especially of Catcott†, in the last century, and more recently of Mr. Townsend‡, whom we have already mentioned, afford in many instances correct views of the operations of nature, and valuable statements of fact; notwithstanding their erroneous notions, as to the objects of geology, and the mode of conducting inquiry in this as in every other department of scientific research.

In that part of Mr. Catcott's work which goes to demonstrate, to use the language of Cuvier,' that the earth has been' recently overwhelmed by the waters of a transient deluge,* there are many excellent observations: but in attempting to include the solid strata within the range of that operation, and ascribing to it the presence of the fossils which they contain, the author shares the fate of all those who before him had indulged in similar speculations: and his Diagram,—' repre-

* Some further reference to the writings alluded to in the text, will be found in an article by the author of the present paper, in the Edinburgh Review of Dr. Buckland's Reliquiæ Diluviaiæ:' Edin. Rev., October 1823, vol. xxxix. p. 196.

† Catcott,' A Treatise on the Deluge.' 8vo, London, 1761.

‡ Townsend,' Vindication of Moses,' &c. 1813.

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senting the internal structure of the terraqueous globe, from' the centre to the circumference,' is the result of suppositions not less visionary than those of Burnett, Hutchinson, and other writers, who treat professedly of events beyond the limits of human observation*.

Having thus sketched the progress of facts and opinions, to the period when Mr. Smith began his researches on the stratification of England, we shall next inquire respecting the method of expressing the results of geological observation by means of maps.

We have seen that LISTER, though he did not carry into execution his own' project for a Map of Soiles,' entertained a very philosophic expectation of the benefit that might result from it:—' If the limits of each soil,' he says,' appeared upon a map, something more might be comprehended from the whole, and from every part, than I can possibly' foresee; but I leave this to the industry of future times†.' We now know how amply the advantages to science, foreseen by the author of this project, have been realized. A still more refined, and, as it then may have appeared, more remote anticipation of the future progress of geological inquiry, occurs at the close of FONTENELLE'S observations on a paper of De Reaumur, giving an account of a remarkable accumulation of fossil shells in Touraine:—'M. de Reaumur' imagine comment le Golfede Touraine tenoit à l'océ;an, et 'quelé;loit le courant qui y charioit les coquilles; mais ce' n'est qu'une simple conjecture, formé;e pour tenir lieu du' vé;ritable fait inconnu, qui sera toujour quelque chose d'ap' prochant. Pour parler surement sur cette matiere, il faudroit avoir des espé;ces de Cartes Gé;ographiques dressé;es selon toutes les minieres de coquillages enjouis en terre. Quelle quantite d'observations ne faudroit il pas, et quel temps, pour les avoir! Qui scait cependant, si les sciences rtiront pas un jourjusque-la, du moins en partie ‡?

'It is now little more than a century since this passage was written: yet, if geology advances during the next hundred years as it has done during the last fifty, is it not highly probable. that the prophetic anticipation of Fontenelle will have been fulfilled ?

The title of Burnett's eloquent and celebrated work, 'Theoriu Sacra,' is as follows:' The Theory of the Earth, containing an Account of the' original of the earth, and of all the great changes which it hath already' undergone, or is to undergo, till the consummation o' all things.' 3rd edition: London, 1697.

† Lister, Phil. Trans. vol. xiv. p. 739. &c.

Hisloire de l' Academie Royale des Sciences, 1720, p. 5; and Memorires, p. 400.—The report here referred to is ascribed to Fontenelle on the authority of Faujas. (E'umes de IJaLsy, 4to, p. li.

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About fifty years after Lister's project for a geological map, a work was published, under the title of' A new Philosophico-' chorographical Chart of East Kent, invented and delineated' by CHRISTOPHER PACKE, M.D., which is one of the most valuable contributions to the physical geography of England that has appeared. It was preceded by a letter to the Royal Society, and accompanied by a Tract of greater length*, explaining the purpose of the work; which, from the author's frequent employment of anatomical terms, seems to have been suggested by his professional studies. The map itself represents, on a scale of rather more than an inch and half to a mile, a circle of about two and thirty miles round Canterbury: the principal object being, as the title of the Tract imports, to represent the course and connexions of the valleys, all of which are described with great minuteness of detail,—their ramifications being compared to those of the veins in the human body. As the greater number of these valleys are at present without streamlets, it is inferred that they were formed not by existing causes, but by the retiring waters of the Deluge; and that the surface since that event has undergone no change. There is no allusion to stratification either in the map or the memoir; but the natural features of the country are very correctly distinguished, and divisions pointed out, which correspond with those of the present day:—the first including the chalk district; the second, under the name of' stone hills,* the ridge of the lower green- sand;—between which and the chalk range, the vale occupied by the gault is also clearly indicated:—and the' clay-hills,' constituting a third division, occupy the valley of the Weald. Nothing can be better than the general plan upon which the author proceeded; more perfect execution only, having been wanting to render his map complete: and he seems himself to have had a just sense both of the importance of his undertaking, and of the true mode of accomplishing it.—' For this,'

* The title is' AΓKOΓPAγIA, sive Convallium Descriptio; in which are briefly, but fully, expounded the Origine, Cause, and Insertion, Extent, Elevation, and Congruity, of all the Valleys and Hills, Brooks and Rivers; as an Explanation of a new Philosophico-chorographical Chart of East Kent. Canterbury, 1743.'
This Tract, which everywhere shows the patriotism of the author, and his enthusiasm about his subject, contains some very amusing passages. He rejects indignantly the title of' Map' for his performance;' there being,' he asserts,' as manifest a difference between this chart and a map, as there is between the frame of any building, and the same finished into a complete house, adorned with all its furniture.'

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he says,' is no dream or devise, the offspring of a sportive or enthusiastical imagination, conceived and produced for want of something else to do, at my leisure in my study,-—but it is a real scheme, taken upon the spot with patience and diligence, by frequent or rather continual observations, in the course of my journeys of business through almost every the minutest parcel of the country: digested at home with much consideration, and composed with as much accuracy, as the observer was capable of'—P. 98.

BUACHE'S map of the Northern Hemisphere, published in 1756*, with his other productions, relate more properly to physical geography, than to geology; and were founded upon an hypothesis which assumed the existence of a frame-work, or skeleton, of the earth, consisting of chains of mountains,—which were supposed to traverse not only the continents, but the seas and oceans, throughout the face of the globe. The islands were considered only as the more prominent points of these chains; and in order to connect the islands of the greater oceans with the continents, the author was obliged to form by interpolation, or to imagine, submarine chains, of many thousand miles in length.

GUETTARD appears to have been the first author, in France, who formed the project of a mineralogical map. His plan was that of representing upon ordinary maps, by means of detached characters, the several mineral substances found at each point observed: but his general views were very loose and hypothetical; nor was there a sufficient stock of facts, at that time, to support them.

The Mineralogical Atlas and Description of France, by MONNET†, was undertaken and conducted in continuance of Guettard's, and expressly upon his principles; though, for some reasons which are not stated, he himself withdrew from the direction of the work. It was an elaborate undertaking; and the value certainly is not proportioned to the labour and expense bestowed upon it: though, if the observations were correct, the collection would still furnish useful materials to those who examine the country with sounder general views. The great defect appears to be, that the authors of the work do not seem to have been impressed with, or to have acted upon, the stratigraphic principles, so well explained by Michell twenty years before its publication; and this is the more extraordinary, as vertical sections, detailing the order of the beds, accompany the maps. Some of the copies; which we have seen,—in which the characters expressing the predominant mineral substances are coloured,—approach so near to the expressive power of the modern geological maps of stratified countries, that one is surprised that the authors did not, by advancing this step, give that connexion to their results, which is the essence of geology.

* Philippe Buache,—Essai de Geographie Physique, ou Von propose des vues generates, sur tespece de charpente du globecomposee de chaines des montaines,qui traversent les mers comme les terres.—Mem. de l'Acad. 1752, pp. 399,416.—Buache was born in 1700, and died in 1773.

Atlas et Description Mineralogique de la France, entrepris par ordre du Roi; par MM. Guettard et Monnet. Publies par M. Monnet, d' apres ses nouveaux VoyagesIrePartie;—Paris: folio, 1780; pp. 212, with31 Maps.

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It is not a little remarkable that DE SAUSSURE, who published some years after the appearance of Monnet's atlas, and must have been acquainted with that work, as well as with the maps of the German school, does not appear to have attempted any geological map of the tracts he has described. Had he made that trial, it is probable that he would have anticipated some of the important results which have since been afforded by the maps and sections of the Alps, by Ebel and Escher †.

We have not yet seen the maps referred to by the late M. DESMAREST, as intended to be annexed to the Encyclopedic Methodique; but this writer judiciously insists on the benefit arising even from attempts to express in maps the results of geological investigation; and on the advantage of combining with them vertical sections of the tracts represented.

Some of the geological maps in colours, of the older German mineralogists, are valuable; but the best plan,—which Mr. Jameson has informed us, was devised, or much improved, by Werner ‡,—is that of representing the several formations in distinct but sober hues, and marking the superior rock by a narrow band of deeper colour along the line of its contact with the subjacent one; and this is nearly the method which is employed by English geologists at present.

Of the county surveys, published by the Board of Agriculture in 1794, five only have maps which indicate the composition of the surface; and of these, that of Devonshire alone has any pretension to geological distinction,—enumerating dun- stone and limestone in its list of' Soil'—The remaining four, Lancashire, Lincolnshire, Sussex, and Wiltshire, represent by colours the superficial soils, in the agricultural sense of the term;—the first two distinguishing also the coal tracts. But there is not in any of these maps any intimation of stratigra- phical structure, nor are any sections connected with them.

* The four volumes (4th edition) of De Sussure's Yoyages dans les Alpes, are dated respectively,—I. 1779; II. 1786; III. and IV. 1796.

Uber der Bau der Erde in dem Alpen Gebirge. II. Tom. 8vo. Zürich, 1808.

‡ Transactions of the Wernerian Society, vol. i. p. 149.

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We are not, indeed, aware that any maps which can be called geological, had appeared in this country before that of Mr. Smith; unless two of the Plates which accompany the Historical Atlas of England, by ANDREWS, published in 1797, are entided to that name. These, however, though very defective in execution, and on a very small scale, are at least well intended: one, exhibiting the basins, valleys and courses of the great rivers; another being entitled,' A map of the summits of the chain of mountains and great ridges of hills of Albion,, as it is supposed they appeared when the water was descended after the Deluge.' This last plate is a sort of skeleton of England, after the manner of Buache, whose system the author seems to have imbibed; it points out the great ridge of "yellow limestone"(perhaps the oolite), and the chalk ranges,—from Sidmouth to the sea in Norfolk, and eastward through Surrey, Kent, and Sussex. To a person acquainted with the geology of England, such a sketch presents some interesting views; but nothing respecting stratification, nor the internal structure of the country, is either indicated in the maps, or mentioned by the author in his treatise†.

The geological publications of Mr. SMITH are now so well known, and the progress of the author's researches has been sketched with so much truth and spirit by Mr. Sedgwick, in one of his addresses from the chair of the Geological Society‡, that the following pages will be little more than a statement of dates and circumstances connected with that diffusion of his views, which is known to have had great effect in the advancement of the subject in this country, before the appearance of his geological map in 1815: and such a statement the writer of these pages is enabled to give upon the best authority, through the kindness of Mr. Phillips of the York Institution, who has entrusted to him several original maps and other papers, of very early date, prepared chiefly by Mr. Smith himself at various times. The collection however, unfortu-

* "Historical Atlas of England, physical, political, astronomical, &c. from "the Deluge to the present time; by John Andrews, Geographer,"&c. London, folio, 1797; printed for the author. This work does not appear to have been completed. The maps are only 13 inches in length by 10 in width.

† [The whole of the subsequent pages, as well as some passages in the preceding parts of this paper, which are between brackets, are recent additions to the original as reprinted in 1821.]

‡ See Phil. Mag. and Annals, N.S. vol. ix. p. 272.

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nately, is but a part of what it was originally; several of the documents having been lost on Mr. Smith's removal from his residence in London in 1819.

The best mode of introducing the information contained in these papers, will be to prefix a brief notice of Mr. Smith's progress, drawn up in very unpretending language by himself, about the year 1804.

"In 1787, at the age of eighteen, I became an assistant of' Mr. Edward Webb, land-surveyor, and was employed in the survey of estates and the inclosure of extensive commons and open fields in the counties of Oxford, Warwick, Worcester, Gloucester, Wilts, Hants, and Somerset; which embraced all the strata, from the red-marl at Inkborough, and Rugby, near Alcester, to the sand and gravel over chalk at Dibden, between the New Forest and Southampton.

"In 1789 I first saw the red-marl at Inkborough, and' made many inquiries respecting it and the lias, and its clays contiguous. The latter were further noticed on setting out the allotments of inclosure at Great Kinton, Warwickshire, and also the red-marl on the road to Warwick. On the latter site of lias, there had recently been an experiment for coal.

"In 1790 I particularly noticed a boring for coal on the' very different soils of the New Forest. All the varieties of soil in so many surveys were particularly entered; and, from still more juvenile habits, some of the organized fossils, as the anomia, and quoitstone, or flat echinus of the under oolite: and employed in the fields, I observed no stone in those parts would set an edge to a knife. The chalk, with which I wrote and drew rude figures, and the black flints used in striking fire with steel, I then also learnt came by the drivers of stage-waggons from Stokenchurch Hills; which chalk hills I passed in my way to and from London, when between twelve and fourteen years of age. The surface of the country from London to Bath, and from Warwick to Southampton, being familiar to me before I settled in Somersetshire, I was struck with the coincidence of certain parts thereof, and the similar nature of its soil and rocks; and particularly with the regular beds of lias-limestone in the quarries between Bath and Stowey, an estate of Lady Jones, which I went to survey; and was surprised to find the red-marl of that place and High Littleton,—so evidently the same as that of Warwickshire, not similarly used for marling land. Coal was worked at High Littleton beneath the red earth. I was desired to investigate the collieries, and state the particulars to my employer. My subterraneous survey of these coal veins,

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' with sections which I drew of the strata sunk through in the pit, confirmed my notions of some regularity in the matter of the hills above the red earth, which they were in the habit of sinking through;—but, on this I began to think for myself.

"My observations on the superposition and continuity of' the strata were greatly extended in 1792; and in the following year, by taking levels for the proposed Somersetshire canal, I proved the red-marl, lias, blue-marl, and inferior oolite on the tops of the highest hills to be generally inclined towards the east: and this notion of a general declination appeared to hold through all the varieties of strata in the considerable extent of country before noticed; and other levels down two parallel valleys in the same strata seemed further to confirm the general notion. It then became a consideration how I could best represent this order of superposition,—continuity in the course, and general eastern declination, of the strata successively terminating at the surface of the earth.

"After attending the Somersetshire Coal Bill in Parliament,' I was appointed, with two gentlemen of the Committee, to go on a tour of observation on canals. Both these gentlemen were coal-owners, and workers thereof, which induced them, as curiosity did me, to keep separate memoranda of all the collieries in our route: but my more eager object was the verification of the preconceived order of superposition continuity and declination of the strata. I had generally the look-out seat in the chaise; and on a journey of upwards of 900 miles, commenced in August, and extended to New-castle-upon-Tyne by one route, and back by another, I returned to Bath the end of September 1794, without communicating to my fellow travellers any of my numerous observations, which confirmed the general principles before entertained.

"For six years I was the resident engineer on the Somersetshire coal canal, which put my notions of coal stratification to the test of excavation; and I generally pointed out to contractors and others, who came to undertake the work, what the various parts of the canal would be dug through. But the great similarity in the rocks of oolite, on and near the end of the canal toward Bath, required more than superficial observation,—to determine whether those hills were not composed of one, two, or even three, of those rocks, as by the distinctions of some parts seemed to appear. These doubts were at length removed by more particular attention to the site of the organized fossils, which I had long collected. This discovery of a mode of identifying the strata by the

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' organized fossils respectively imbedded therein,—the sharpness of those in their primitive sites, contrasted with the same fossils rounded and water-worn in gravel, led to the most important distinctions; which at once seemed to clear away the rubbish and common stumbling-blocks in geology.

"Thus stored with ideas, which I knew not how to make' publicly or privately useful, on being introduced to Dr. Anderson, then at Bath, and to the Rev. Benjamin Richardson, and the late Rev. Joseph Townsend, I was induced by the late Mr. Davis to make known to them some of my discoveries. Dr. Anderson pressed me for a map and some general account of the stratification of England, to publish in his Recreations on Agriculture, and sent me the first and second parts of that work: but getting into a variety of business, in draining land, &c. in remote parts of England and Wales, my correspondence with the Doctor ceased, without my complying with his wishes.—I became intimately acquainted with the two other gentlemen, and opened my mind fully to them; and at the Rev. J. Townsend's house drew up the first tabular account of the order of strata, with the organized fossils by which they are respectively identified, in all the hills around Bath. From hence the information spread like a circle upon water; for my two sanguine friends thought remuneration for my discoveries was sure to follow the publicity of information so useful and important. I found, however, I had still to work my way, against that stream of difficulties which must ever attend the pursuit of such objects by a man like me, who had not property sufficient to publish it.

"The utility of such discoveries in draining and otherwise' improving land, induced some gentlemen of the neighbourhood to put them to the test. This new occupation threw me in the way of T. W. Coke, Esq., who, during his stay at Bath, visited the agricultural improvements on Thomas Crook's estate at Tytherton, where I was employed. From hence I went into Norfolk; and thence soon after to Woburn, where I conceived the complete drainage of Prisley Bog, the site of Mr. Elkington's unsuccessful experiments, and the further converting much of it into excellent water meadow, would have insured me the Duke of Bedford's patronage. But here my hopes of remuneration vanished with the public loss of that great man.

"Business of all sorts connected with the stratification of the' country pressed upon me; and some of my friends thought the retaining of such information would insure me more advantages in my profession than I should derive from the publication thereof; and the late Duke of Bedford himself, in

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'a long interview with him on the subject but a fortnight before his death, said, "the publication would be better deferred a few years, as I should have the more opportunity of perfecting my system, and the public mind would be better prepared to receive it."Mr. Farey was then the Duke's agent,' and was anxious to become acquainted with the subject of strata; which, at the Woburn, Holkham, Smithfield, and Bath agricultural meetings, I scrupled not to explain very freely; and to elucidate by general and local maps of the stratification. Mr. Farey, and his friend Mr. Bevan of Leighton-Beaudesert, who immediately after became an engineer, had very extensive practical lessons, at the Duke's request, as I was informed, in the vicinity of Woburn, the Dunstable chalk hills, and on other strata of the vale of Aylesbury,—confirmed by a collection of the organized fossils by which all these strata are respectively identified.

"Thus before 1803, I had fully taught, in the field, the' practice of tracing all the strata, and of identifying them by the organized fossils, from the highest in the series over chalk down to the coal."

In another paper, which seems to have been intended for publication, as part of a narrative of his earlier progress, after alluding to his surveys during the years from 1787 to 1790, Mr. Smith thus states morefully the result of his proceedings at High Littleton.

"——But the discoveries of regularity in the strata, which' more particularly induced me to pursue the subject of geology to such an extent, chiefly originated in 1790 and 1791, in surveys of estates and collieries in Somersetshire, where I found at High Littleton the same red earth sunk through for the coal. The order of superposition in the coal-measures or strata perforated at each pit in that neighbourhood, seemed well known to some of the colliers; and on drawing a section thereof, with nine veins of coal, I was naturally led to ask, "—Whether the superincumbent strata, rising into hills from 200 to 300 feet above the mouths of their coal-pits, were not also regular?—I was constantly told—there was "nothing regular above the red ground,"which in their sinkings varied' much in thickness; nor could they tell which way the coal would pitch, until the red earth was sunk through. This did not deter me from pursuing my own thoughts on the subject; and in 1792 and 1793, the general declination of the superior strata to the east or south-east was verified, by a survey and levels continued many miles through the adjoining country, for a canal purposed to be made in the vicinity of Bath. Ascertaining this fact by my spirit-level, in three parallel vales some miles apart,—that the lias and freestone of the

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' Stone-brash Hills, which were previously well known to me, had such a general declination,—I soon applied these notions to all the extent of country before mentioned; and began to delineate on maps the courses of the strata; and constantly traced and retraced the order in which they would be intersected in making the canal.

"The superintendence and execution of the canal I had' before surveyed confirmed the notions previously formed of the strata; and the canal excavations, and the new quarries opened, produced organized fossils, for the identification of several strata, which could not have been otherwise distinguished.

"These fossils were collected, written upon, and preserved' in the order of strata, as vouchers thereof; and in June 1799, a written account of these discoveries, in a tabular form, was given to three scientific gentlemen, the Rev. Benjamin Richardson, the Rev. Joseph Townsend, and William James, Esq., from some of whom manuscript copies were multiplied and extensively circulated.

"This paper, printed in the original form in the Memoir' which accompanies the map of the strata, shows also the discovery of regularity in the courses of springs; which soon became an important branch of my mineral surveying. Thus knowing how to distinguish upon the surface the courses of the impervious strata;—and that the water which falls from the heavens is collected in the cavities of rocks and other porous strata, on the subterrene surface of the impervious, and thus forced to run out on the soil, I considered myself qualified for the business of a drainer and general improver of land; and in the extensive prosecution of such works, many of the very best local observations have been made."

It appears, therefore, that Mr. Smith's researches began among the Coal-tracts; and no better school can be imagined for instruction in the phænomena and relations of strata. Not that in many other portions of the series of secondary rocks, equal regularity may not be observed, with equal care; but simply because the commercial value of the coal is great enough to justify a large expenditure of capital in those operations of surveying and levelling, which are indispensable to the perfection of geological maps and sections. Among the documents connected with this early period of his inquiries, is a section of strata sunk through for coal, at Pucklechurch in Gloucestershire, in which a considerable depth of lias and red-marl is represented nearly in a horizontal position reposing directly upon coal-strata, which are highly inclined. The drawing is very well executed, and could not fail to suggest to Mr. Smith the important fact, that these two groups of

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strata are, generally, unconformable in that part of England:—but in this we have already seen that he was distinctly anticipated by Mr. Strachey.

Another document still preserved, of about this date, is a part of a coloured section, from the chalk-downs near Salisbury, to the coal-measures near Bristol. What remains of this drawing goes down to the red marl, and gives in detail, with very little room for correction even at the present day, the outcrop of the several beds, as they appear along the main road through Norton, Hinton, Broadfield, and Mitford. A single transverse section of this kind on a well chosen line, it is obvious, is sufficient to unveil the whole structure of any stratified country.

By his introduction to the Rev. Benjamin Richardson, of Farleigh near Bath, in 1799, he acquired one of his most steady and disinterested friends. When this gentleman, who had been himself a zealous geological inquirer, first showed his collection of fossils to Mr. Smith, the latter began immediately to place them in the order of the strata, to the extreme astonishment of the collector, at the new light thus suddenly thrown upon a subject which he had long and successfully studied in other points of view. By Mr. Richardson, Smith was made known to Dr. Anderson, who, forcibly struck by the novelty and importance of his discoveries, urged him to prepare an account of them for publication in a periodical work on Agriculture, and its kindred branches of knowledge, in which the latter was at that time engaged*; and with this request Smith made some preparations for complying. But the task of composition was new to him, and by no means acceptable. If De Saussure, with all the advantages of education and leisure, felt the imperfections of his own clear and eloquent style†, a man like Smith, engaged in laborious business, and struggling with difficulties, may well be allowed to tremble at the prospect of appearing, for the first time as an author, and on a subject upon which he felt his reputation must ultimately depend. He says himself, in one of his letters,—' Many of the better learned in the world might deem it the height of folly, for a man who has never so much as received a common grammatical education to attempt to instruct the public.' The work of composition,

* "Recreations in Agriculture, Natural History, Arts, and Miscellaneous' Literature: by James Anderson, LL.D."London 1799, &c.

† "Quant à mon style, je n'en ferai point l'apologie: je connois ses' imperfections; mais, plus exerçé à gravir les rochers, qu'à tourner et polir les phrases, je ne me suis attaché qu'à rendre clairement les objets que j'ai vus, et les impressions que j'ai senties."—Voyages dans les Alpes. 4to. Discours preliminaire: tom. i. p. xx.

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therefore, went on but slowly; and in reply to pressing letters from Dr. Anderson during the autumn of 1799, there is a draft of an answer from Smith apologizing for this delay, and stating that without aid and instructions he was much at a loss to arrange his papers in such order as would make them fit for publication:' But,' he continues,' had not business and a multiplicity of concerns diverted my attention more than usual from the pursuit of my favourite subject, you might before this have been in possession of such remarks as I shall be happy to consign to your care, for the good of the public; conscious that they may at some future period be found of much more value than may at first be perceived, by those who have not been accustomed to view things in the same light as I have done for some years past. Yet,' he says, in a draft of another letter,' notwithstanding all the time and thought I have bestowed on the subject, and the ease with which I can trace each stratum distinctly from the chalk hills of this country down to the coal,—I find it still difficult to be described in writing, without entering into the minutiæ of the subject much further than I fear would be consistent with your plan.'

The expected memoir never made its appearance: But the suggestion of it seems to have had the effect of inducing Mr. Smith to put his materials into soméwhat better arrangement, and to hasten the preparation of his maps and papers, several of which bear date soon after this period*.

In 1799 also, he was introduced by his friend Richardson to the Rev. Joseph Townsend, of Bath; at whose house the former wrote, from Smith's dictation, and at the suggestion of Townsend, that "Tabular View "of the order of the strata in the vicinity of Bath, with their respective organic remains, of which the original is now in the Museum of the Geological Society. A copy of this very remarkable document is inserted in the present paper (see the TABLE in p. 38 and 39); and it is unquestionably one of the most striking examples of elaborate and successful research which the history of geology affords. It will be perceived, as Mr. Sedgwick observes†, that the successive groups from the chalk to the coal-measures inclusive, are here denoted by series of numbers; the author not having then decided upon those names for them which he subsequently adopted, and which still form a part of the geological nomenclature of England.

* A letter from Mr. Crawshay of Merthyr, in the beginning of 1804, states that Dr. Turton of Swansea was at that time ready to become the editor of Smith's works; but nothing farther appears to have been done in that direction.

† Geological Soc. Proceedings, 1831; and Phil. Mag. and Annals, N.S. vol. ix. p. 276.

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From such interviews, and from excursions with Smith himself in the neighbourhood of Bath, Mr. Townsend became fully possessed both of his principles, and of the detail of his results: and the knowledge thus acquired he published subsequently (in 1813) in a volume, already mentioned;—which, notwithstanding the incongruity of its title, and the introduction of a great deal of extraneous matter, is the best exposition of Smith's labours that has appeared. But it is to be lamented, if Mr. Townsend's purpose was to place the works of Smith effectually before the public, that he did not choose for his book a title and ostensible subject more congenial: since in its actual form, there was nothing to attract an unlearned reader desirous of obtaining geological information;—and much to repel those who were acquainted with geological history, and with the unhappy results of that alliance, which it is professedly the object of Mr. Townsend's volume to support.

At this period, 1799, Mr. Smith had coloured geologically the old county survey of Somersetshire, and a small circular map of the country around Bath; both works of great merit;—the latter especially, giving proof of extraordinary tact in detailing the minuter divisions of strata. The original of this circular map has been presented to the Geological Society, and is now in their Museum.

Mr. Richardson now justly felt, that the time was come when Smith was called upon to assert his claims to his own discoveries; and on the pressing suggestion of that excellent friend, a Prospectus was published and extensivelydistributed, in June 1801, for a work, to be entitled,' Accurate Delineations and Descriptions of the natural order of the various Strata that are found in different parts of England and Wales, with practical Observations thereon:'—and an agreement was made for its publication with a London bookseller. The subscription filled readily; and the author appears at this time to have applied himself seriously to the task of publication; several different sketches of memoirs, and coloured maps of various sizes, still existing, which bear the date of that year (1801). One of these, a coloured copy of the Index to Carey's England, which has been presented to the Geological Society, is alone sufficient to prove the great extent to which the order of the strata had been ascertained at that period: and among other documents of this date in Mr. Smith's possession, are two copies of Carey's larger map, on a scale of fifteen miles to an inch;—one of them, uncoloured, having the lines of outcrop of some of the strata cut through, so that they can be raised above the general level of the paper, the other coloured geologically, and differing very little, even in the more com-

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Order of the Strata in the Vicinity of Bath;—drawn up by Mr. WILLIAM SMITH in 1799.

[From the Original in the possession of the Geological Society.]—Referred to, p. 36, line 34.

Strata. Thickness. Springs. Fossils, Petrifactions. &c, &c. Descriptive Characters and Situations. Namea and Numbers in the Map, 1815.
1. Chalk. 300 Intermitting on the Downs. Echinities, Pyrites, Mytilities, Dentalia, funnel-shaped Corals, and Madrepores, Nautilites, Strombites, Cochliæ, Ostreæ. Strata of silex, imbedded. 1. Chalk (5).
2. Sand.. 70 The fertile vales intersecting Salisbury Plain and the Downs. 2. Greensand (6).
Firestone.
3. Clay. 30 Between the Black Dog and Berkley. 3. Blue Marl (7).
4. Sand and Stone 30
5. Clay 15 Hinton, Norton, Woolverton, Bradford Leigh. Imbedded is a thin stratum of calcareous Grit. The stones flat, smooth, and rounded at the edges. 5. Forest Marble
(17—18).
6. Forest Marble 10 A mass of Anomiæ and high-waved Cockles, with calcareous Cement. The cover of the upper bed of Freestone, or Oolyte. 6.
7. Fresstone. 60 Scarcely any Fossils besides the Coral. Oolyte, resting on a thin bed of Coral.—Prior Park, Southstoke, Twinny, Winsley, Farley Catle, Westwood, Berfield, Conkwell, Monkton Farley, Coldhorn, Marshfield, Colsashton. 7. Great Oolite of Bath (20).
8.
9.
8. Blue Clay. 6 Above Bath
9. Yellow Clay. 8 Visible at a distance, by the slips on the declivities of the bills round Bath.
10. Fuller's Earth 6 10.
11. Bastard ditto, and Sundries 80 Striated Cardia, Mytilites, Anomiæ, Pundibs, and Duck-muscles. 11.
12. Freestone. 30 Top-Covering Anomiæ with calcareous Cement, Strombites, Ammonites, Nautilities, Cochliæ, Hippocephaloides, fibrous Shell resembling Amianth, Cardia, prickly Cockle Mytilities, lower Stratum of Coral, large Scollop, Nidus of the Muscle with its Cables Ammonites, Belemnites. Lincombe, Devonshire Buildings, Englishcombe, Englishbatch, Wilmerton, Dunkerten, Coomhay, Monkton Combe, Wellow, Mifford, Stoke, Freshford, Claverton, Bathford, Batheaston, and Hampton, Charlcombe, Swainswick, Tadwick, Langridge. 11. Under Oolite
(22—23).
12.
13. Sand. 30 Ammonites, Belemnites. Sand Burs. 13.

[page] 39

14. Marl Blue. 40 Round Bath. Pectenites, Belemnites, Gryphites, highly-waved Cockles.. Ochre Balls.—Mineral springs of Lincombe, Middle Hill, Cheltenham. 14. Blue Marl (25).
15. Lias Blue 25 Same as the Marl with Nautilites, Ammonites, Dentalia, and Fragments of the Enchrini.. The fertile Marl lands of Somersetshire. Twerton, Newton, Preston, Clutton, Stanton Prior, Timsbury, Paulton, Marksbury, Farmborough, Corston, Hunstreet, Burnet, Keynsham, Whitchurch, Salford, Kelston, Weston, Pucklechurch, Queencharlton, Norton-malreward, Knowle, Charlton, Kilmersdon, Babington. 15. Blue Lias(26).
16. Ditto White 15 16. White Lias(27).
17. Marl Stone, Indigo and Black Marl 15 Pyrites and Ochre A rich manure. 17.
18. Red-ground 180 No Fossil known.. Pits of Ruddle. Beneath this bed no fossil shells, or animal remains are found: above it no vegetable impressions.
The waters of this stratum petrify in the trunks in which they are conveyed, so as to fill them, in about fifteen years, with red Watricle, which takes a fine polish.—High-Littleton.
18. Red Marl and Gypsum (28, 29).
19. Millstone. 19.
20. Pennant Stone Impressions of unknown Plants resembling Equisétum. 20.
21. Grays. .. Fragments of Coal and Iron Nodules.—Hanham, Brislington, Mangotsfield, Downend, Winterbourn, Forest of Dean, Pensford, Publow, Chelwood, Cumptondando, Hallatrow near Stratford-on-Avon, Stonebench on-the-Severn, four miles from Gloucester. 21. Coal Districts (30).
22. Cliff. Impressions of Ferns, Olive, stellate Plants, Threnax-parviflora, or Dwarf Fan Palm of Jamaica Stourbridge, or Fire-clay. 22.
23. Coal. 23.

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plex parts in the interior of the south of England, from the more finished map, published several years afterwards. In the North also, the line of the oolites in Yorkshire, derived principally from notes taken during the author's excursion of 1794, deserves, in the opinion of a very competent judge, to be contrasted with a less accurate colouring of that country, subsequently published by Mr. Smith himself in 1821.

One of the chief defects in all these maps is, that the tract between the North and South Downs of Kent, Sussex, &c. is erroneous: being coloured, in some copies, of the same hue with the beds above the chalk; while in others, although the outcrop of that stratum towards the Wealds is expressed, the subjacent beds are not detailed. Nor do the colours, in any of the maps now referred to, extend to Cornwall, the greater part of Wales, or the north-western counties of England. With these exceptions, the maps of this early date do not suffer by comparison with any of the more recent publications; and the great difficulty of the oolitic tracts in the interior seems to have been at that time completely overcome.

Among Mr. Smith's remaining papers, are several fragments intended for a Memoir to be connected with the map and sections; one especially, in his own writing, which contains a "Plan "in detail *, with several pages of a preface and introduction: and these, with some slight defects or rather peculiarities of style, are of such value, that it is much to be lamented that the undertaking was not completed.

* The paper here referred to is as follows: the date is 1801.

'PLAN of the work: To be divided into Two Parts.—
"The First of which should treat of the structure of the earth, or general' disposition of the most remarkable known strata, collected from the best authorities, and arranged according to the order discovered in England; and the Second should enter into the particulars of each stratum, with the fossils and minerals that have hitherto been discovered, with their connection and dependance one upon another. Though it is impossible for the labours of an individual ever to accomplish a thousandth part of what is proposed by this section; yet when a system is established which has Nature for its prototype, every one will be enabled to contribute his mite, and carry it on from time to time, till after ages may get a tolerable description of the habitable world.
"Many sections of the strata, in different directions, will be necessary' to show their various inclinations. In the general section, each principal stratum should be numbered j with progressive numbers, beginning at the eastern strata of the kingdom; or, till that can be accurately ascertained, at some stratum that forms a grand feature therein. As for instance, the chalk which I would call No. 1; and those lesser strata, which are contained within it, or generally attached to it, or form any subdivisions therein,—I would call 1. a., 1. b., 1. c., &c. If any thin straturn should be omitted, or a new one discovered, it may be brought into those numbers, by making it 1 a a., &c.
"After the general section of a country or district, should follow a' large section of each stratum, with its concomitant small strata: with drawings and descriptions of such peculiarities as the principal stratum, or those connected with it, are found to contain; whether the exuviae of marine animals, vegetable impressions, or fossil wood, coal, and metal of every description. The same numbers which refer to the section, may refer to an explanation of the chemical properties of each substance, so far as discovered. This may be placed at the end of the book, or make a separate volume; those properties may be more minutely examined than can consistently be done in the body of the work,—which is intended to form a true representation of the order of Nature, with no more digressions from the main subject than are absolutely necessary to make it intelligible. Plates should be bound up at the end of each volume, in a peculiar manner; these, as well as the strata, to make them more striking, should be coloured.
"The Second Section of the work may be divided into chapters, each stratum making a chapter or division, to which its name in conspicuous characters should stand as a title. The names of particular substances described in this division should also appear conspicuous and striking as well as the places they are found at, or near to; and a more particular section will accompany each part of the work, with the map divided into squares, or published in parts; which may be united together, and form a complete map and general section on a large scale.—[Query, Map of each stratum?']
"The chemical part, which refers to the other by the numbers, may be arranged under the heads Iron, Coal, Limestone, &c. By this means those veins which lie very distant from each other, will admit of an easier comparison. This should form a summary of the more useful minerals."

[page] 41

The failure of the bookseller who was to have published the intended work, most unfortunately defeated this project of publication: but it is clear that Mr. Smith was then in possession of such documents, in a state fit for their appearance, as to embrace all the leading facts, and a great part of the detail of what has since been made known on the stratification of England. Had he published, as he could have done, at this period, he would have stood alone, and anticipated all competition by several years; and his work would have given an impulse to the subject, the effect of which it is now impossible to appreciate. But it is equally clear that, long before the map and sections did issue from the press, quite enough had been done by Mr. Smith himself, and by many of those to whom he communicated his observations, to diffuse a knowledge of his principles, so widely and effectually, as nearly to amount to a publication of them in England.

Though defeated in his purpose of making his discoveries public, in the best and least disputable form, by the unforeseen and critical event above mentioned, he does not seem to have been dispirited, or to have changed his habit of imparting his knowledge without reserve. He continued to exhibit his maps sections and specimens, as usual, and to explain his views to all who were desirous of becoming acquainted

[page] 42

with them. Full of his subject, overflowing with information long familiar to his own mind, but in the then existing state of geology quite new to his contemporaries, he could not help, in fact, diffusing what he knew: and in some instances about this period he was very fortunate in these communications.

"I think (Mr. Bevan mentions, in a letter to the writer of this paper)' the first of my acquaintance with Mr. Smith was in June 1801, at the sheep-shearing of the late Duke of Bedford at Woburn Abbey.

"After dinner I observed a person at the table exhibiting some papers with sketches of the stratification of England. I did not observe any of the company appear to notice with much interest or attention the sections, or attend to Mr. Smith's theory; and he was on the point of folding up his papers, with little hopes of engaging the attention of any of the company, when I requested him to allow me to examine them, which he seemed pleased to do. From that time our acquaintance has continued to the present time.

"In the course of about half an hour, I learned from him the outlines of his discovery:—pretty nearly equal to all that has been since made known, except as to detail.

"In the evening of that day I called at Woburn, on my friend Farey; and explained to him the theory of Smith, and assured him that I had compared it with many facts within my own knowledge in the neighbourhood, and found it fully to agree with them. Mr. F. did not coincide with me at that time; but soon afterwards he entered into the system with great pleasure.

"In January 1802, at the Duke of Bedford's request, Mr. Smith came to Woburn, to investigate the stratification of the southern parts of this country, and the parts of Bucking-hamshire adjoining. The letter announcing the arrival of Mr. Smith, is dated 23rd January 1802, inviting me to join them on the following Monday, to spend three or four days on a geological survey, to commence near Dunstable, at the foot of the chalk hills, and thence to Wendover, Aylesbury, Quainton, Winslow, Leighton, &c. In this survey we loaded ourselves with fossils and specimens;—and thus commenced our geological experience under the guidance of the founder of the system.

"More investigations of this nature would have followed, but for the death of the Duke of Bedford, under whose kind patronage, and at whose expense, the first survey was made."

The picture given in the beginning of these passages is very striking. Those who are acquainted with the imperfect diffusion of geological knowledge in England even at the pre-

[page] 43

sent day, can imagine what it must have been to deliver a lecture on a new geological system, after dinner, to an assembly of English farmers at an agricultural meeting, more than thirty years ago; nor can they be surprised at the result described by Mr. Bevan. Yet even there this zealous devotion and enthusiasm were not without reward: for Smith then made one convert of such value as to compensate for the inattention of many of his reluctant hearers.

Mr. Farey was another pupil who became known to Mr, Smith about the same time: and in a letter to Sir Joseph Banks, giving an account of the geological excursions mentioned by Mr. Bevan, Mr. Farey states, that he had then seen in Smith's possession a coloured geological map, of very large size, (about 7½ feet by 5 feet,) on which the outcrop of the several strata was delineated; and that Smith had given him information of peculiar value on the distinctions between the superficial accumulations of clay, loam, and gravel, and the same substances in the form of regular strata.

In May 1804, he attended a meeting of the Board of Agriculture in London, for the purpose of exhibiting his maps and sections, and of explaining his views, and was requested by the Board to prepare a specific statement of his researches. At the Woburn sheep-shearing of the same year, a paper was drawn up by Sir Joseph Banks, and a sum of money raised, by subscription from the Duke of Bedford and other eminent and patriotic persons, for the double purpose of publishing Smith's works, and of compensating the author,—on the ground that the expenses he had incurred in travelling and in sacrificing time that ought to have been altogether devoted to his professional duties, were not likely to be repaid to him by the profits of their publication.' In the course of this year also his collection of specimens was removed to his house in London; where it was seen and examined by many of the persons interested in the subject; among whom were several of those who afterwards became leading members of the Geological Society, on the institution of that body in 1807. The collection was subsequently (1806) purchased by Government for the British Museum, where it now remains.

In the mean time, this continued delay in the publication of works so long announced, must have appeared unaccountable to those who were not acquainted with the circumstances; and as the hopes of a communication from the author himself had been so often disappointed, it was not to be expected that other persons should abstain from applying the general principles which had been so freely diffused. Those who, from indolence or a fastidious desire of perfection, or— as in the case of Mr. Smith, from a combination of unfor-

[page] 44

tunate events,—too long delay the appropriation of what they have done, must be content to run the risk of seeing their discoveries brought forward by other persons. Nor would it be just or reasonable, without the strongest evidence, to doubt the fairness of such rival claimants. The history of every science abounds in examples of coincidence in discovery, produced by accident,—by the natural course of inquiry,—or by the effect of hints so very slight, as not to be appreciable even by those who act upon them.

During the latter years of Mr. Smith's progress in England, the French naturalists had been intently occupied in the examination of their own country: and in 1810. Cuvier and Brongniart published an abstract of their celebrated work on the environs of Paris*, which was followed during the next year by the volume itself†. Of a work so well known, it is sufficient to say, that no publication has given a greater impulse to geological science;—bringing into view distinctly, and for the first time, that great class of deposits which connects the secondary strata with the products of still subsisting operations, establishing on impregnable ground the importance of zoological inquiries to the history of the earth, and affording some of the most masterly examples of the investigation of local details. The principles on which this memorable work is framed, are precisely those to which Smith had previously been conducted, and which there can be no question he had made known extensively in England, so far back as in 1799,—superposition of strata, identified by the fossils which they contain: and to these principles it is plain the French philosophers must have been led, by the independent inquiries which had been long going on in France, and by the better acquaintance of the French naturalists with Werner's doctrines as to the order of formations. After mentioning the steadiness in the order of the strata throughout the tract which they describe, the authors have thus distinctly announced the principle of which they availed themselves in recognising them.—

' Cette constance dans l'ordre de superposition des couches les plus minces, et sur uneé;tendue de 12 myriamètres au moins, est, selon nous, un des faits les plus remarquables que nous ayons constaté;s dans la suite

* Essai sur la Geograpkie Minéralogique des Environs de Paris.—Annales du Museum, tom. xi. p. 293, &c. This abstract is stated (p. 294-5) to have been read to the Institute in 1810:—and the authors expressly say that their abridgement was published before the completion of their work,—which had been commenced four years before, in 1806,—for the purpose of "taking date "for their researches.—"Quelques circonstances nous obligent "de presenter aujourd'hui cet abré;gé;, et de prendre date pour des recherches "aussi longues, &c

† Paris 1811, 4to. pp. 278.

[page] 45

' de nos recherches. Il doit en ré;sulter pour les arts, et pour la gé;ologie, des consequences d'autant plus inté;ressantes qu'elles sont plus sûres. Le moyen que nous avons employé; pour recoonoître au milieu d'un si grand nombre de lits calcaires, un lit dé;jà observé; dans un canton très eloigné;, est pris da la nature des fossiles renfermé;s dans chaque couche; ces fossiles sont toujours gé;né;ralement les mêmes dans les couches correspondantes, et presentent des diffé;rences d'espèces assez notables d'un système des couches à un autre système. C'est un signe de reconnoissance qui jusqu'à pré;sent ne nous a pas trompé;s*.'

It was not till the summer of 1815,—after an interval during which the author had to struggle with many severe difficulties and trials, that Smith's Geological Map of England at last made its appearance, and was followed by the publication of the other productions enumerated at the commencement of this paper. Of works now so long in the hands of the public it is needless here to speak in detail; but for the purpose of illustrating the progress of the subject, within the limits to which these pages are of necessity confined, a reduced copy of the Geological Section from London to Snowdon† has been inserted in the plate annexed to this paper; so that the series of figures may serve to place before the eye of the reader some of the most important steps which geological science has made in this country. The first figure of the plate represents a real section, by Mr. Strachey, of a colliery in Somersetshire,—in which the relative position of the red-marl and superior strata, and of the coal-measures, is distinctly seen. The second figure proves that Strachey was acquainted also with nearly the whole of the English series of strata, though he suffered himself to be called aside from the facts, by a fanciful and extravagant hypothesis as to their inclined position. The third figure‡ is that by which Mr. Michell illustrates his masterly exposition of the structure of the globe. It i9 in truth an abstract section, on a very small scale, of what really exists in nature. The fourth figure is Smith's section of England just mentioned; and was at the time of its publication not only the first and most perfect display of the strata of this island ever published, but unquestionably one of the most perfect sections of any portion of the globe so complex, which ever had been produced. It is necessary, for the purpose of rendering the numbers on this section intelligible, to subjoin a List of the strata to which they refer, and this has been taken from the engraved table in Mr. Smith's memoir connected with his map. [See the List at page 47.] The reader will thus be in possession of the

* Essai, &c.—Annales du Museum, xi. pp. 307, 308.

† This Section, though not published till 1817, had been long before prepared.

‡ From the Phil. Trans. 1760. vol. li. p. 566.

[page] 46

state of our knowledge respecting the English series at the date of its appearance; and a comparison with the recent list of the strata, on the same page, will show the changes which the farther researches of the last fifteen years have introduced*.

One remark only may be offered here, with respect to the lowest members of the series in Smith's maps and sections, which are confessedly the most imperfect portion of his work;—and though derived from theory, it may perhaps be deserving of attention. It will be seen, even from the section, (fig. 4.) that the lines of stratification above the coal-measures, and on the east of the districts occupied by the slate and other transition rocks, are nearly parallel; all declining uniformly towards the south of east. But no such lines are visible to the westward: the strata thereabouts are contorted and confused; and it has been doubted whether any such permanence really exists among them, as will bear a comparison with that which has been shown to prevail among the higher members of the secondary series. May it not be inquired, Whether this incongruity is not apparent only?,—resulting, not from any want of regularity in the arrangement of the lowest beds themselves, but from the difficulty of detecting their relations, and our very imperfect acquaintance with them?. If the hypothesis be true, which supposes all the stratified rocks to have been produced by deposition, there is no obvious reason why the order should be more constant and regular in one portion of the series than in another:—and if (to advance still farther in theory) the change in the character of the lower secondary rocks has been produced by their proximity to the crystalline, and perhaps at one time incandescent, masses beneath them, may not distinctive characters still survive, if sought for by researches sufficiently acute and persevering, to enable us to detect those proofs of order in their deposition,—which must have been obvious, or at least discernible, at the time when they were deposited, and must have remained so, till their characters were partially changed?

This sketch of the progress of geology in England has now been brought down to the period of Mr. Smith's publications; beyond which it was not the intention of the writer to extend it. In the course of these remarks, conflicting claims may possibly have been weighed with too much exactness, against observations not in the first instance derived from study, but suggested by sagacity, or almost spontaneously arising from the facts as they came into view. It may therefore be right to

* The coincidence of the list of 1815, with the' Tabular view' of 1799, (see pages 38 and 39) proves very remarkably the accuracy of the observations of that earlier date.

[page] 47

Smith–1815. 1832.
No. Names of the Strata on the Map and Sections. Present Names.
Plains. 1
2
3
4
[These upper beds above the chalk not noticed by Smith].
London Clay
Clay, or Brick Earth
Crag
Sand and light Loam
Marine and Freshwater Strata of the Isle of Wight and Dorsetshire, &c.
London Clay.
Plastic Clay.
[The Crag of Suffolk, &c. is superior to all the Strata here enumerated.]
Chalk Hills. 5
6
Chalk Upper
Lower
Green Sand
Chalk Upper.
Lower.
Clay Vales. 7
8
Blue Marl
Sand
Green sands Upper Greensand.
Gault.
Lower Green-sand.
[The Wealden group not distinguished by Smith.] Wealden Weald Clay.
Hastings Sands.
Purbeck Limestone.
9 Portland Rock Portland Oolite.
10 Sand Sand, beneath the Portland Stone.
11 Oak-tree Clay Kimmeridge Clay.
Weymouth Sands and Grit.
12 Coral Rag and Pisolite Coral Rag (Oxford Oolite.)
13
14
15
Sand and Sand-stone
Dark Blue Shale
Kelloway Stone
Oolitic Formations.. Sands and Grit.
Oxford Clay.
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
Cornbrash
Sand and Sand-stone
Forest Marble Rock
Great Oolite
Clay
Upper Oolite
Under Oolite
Fuller's earth & rock
Oolite
Sand
Marlstone
Cornbrash.
Forest Marble.
Bradford Clay.
Great Oolite (Bath).
Fuller's Earth.
Inferior Oolite.
Sand and Grit.
Marl Vales. 25
26
27
28
29
Blue Marl
Lias Blue
White
Red Marl and Gypsum
Magnesian Limestone.
Soft Sand-stone
Lias
new Red sandstone
Marl.
Blue Lias.
White Lias.
Red Marl.
Zechstein, Conglomerate of Exeter.
Coal Tracts. 30 Coal Districts Coal-measures.
Millstone Grit.
Mountainous. 31
32
33
34
Derbyshire Limestone
Red and Dun-stone
Various; Killasor Slate
Granite, Sienite, Gneiss
Mountain, or carboniferous Limestone.
Old Red Sandstone.
Transition Slates,&c. Granite, &c.

[page] 48

repeat, that nothing has been stated here with any intention to question the consciousness of originality, in those inquirers whose observations we have shown to have been anticipated. And after such a list of authorities as it has been our duty to bring together, no better conclusion for this paper can be adopted, than a passage from the eloquent and affecting address delivered from the chair of the Geological Society, in conferring upon Mr. Smith the first mark of public gratitude which it was in the power of that body to bestow.—Mr. Sedgwick, while exercising upon that occasion, what he justly calls the' high privilege' of rewarding distinguished merit, has thus adverted to the labours of preceding inquirers: —' The works of these authors were, however, entirely unknown to Mr. Smith during his early life, and every step of his progress was made without any assistance from them. But I will go further, and affirm, that had they all been known to him, they would take nothing from the substantial merit of his discoveries. Fortunately, placed in a country where all our great secondary groups are brought near together, he became acquainted in early life with many of their complex relations: he saw particular species of fossils in particular groups of strata, and in no others; and giving generalization to phaenomena, which men of less original minds would have regarded as merely local, he proved, so early as 1791, the continuity of certain groups of strata, by their organic remains alone, where the mineral type was wanting. He made large collections of fossils; and the moment an opportunity presented itself, he arranged them all stratigraphically. Having once succeeded in identifying groups of strata by means of their fossils, he saw the whole importance of the inference,—gave it its utmost extension,—seized upon it as the master-principle of our science;—by help of it disentangled the structure of a considerable part of England,—and never rested from his labours till the public was fairly in possession of his principles. If these be not the advances of an original mind, 1 do not know where we are to find them: and I affirm with confidence, after the facts already stated, that the Council of the Geological Society were justified in the terms of their award; and that Mr. William Smith was the first in this country to discover and to teach the identification of strata, and to determine their succession, by means of their imbedded fossils*.'

* Address of Mr. Sedgwick, as President of the Geological Society, on awarding the first Wollaston medal to Mr. William Smith.—Proceedings of the Geological Society, 1831, pp. 273, 274.—See Phil. Mag. and Annals, N.S. vol. ix. p. 275.

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