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Professor Mosetig of Vienna, it is claimed by the British Medical Journal, was the first to utilize the new method, reporting two cases in which operations had been performed under guidance of the exact knowledge of anatomical conditions obtained by the new radiation. Professor Neusser of Vienna was the first to apply the new discovery to medical diagnosis. On January 29 he succeeded in locating gallstones and a vesical calculus by means of X rays. Brilliant results have also been reached in America, and their number is being daily added to. Professor M. I. Pupin of Columbia University, New York city, shows a remarkable radiotype, in which the exact location is indicated of upward of forty shot embedded in a human hand, some of them appearing behind the bones, the latter being partially transparent to X rays.
Professor Czermark of Grätz, in Austria, Mr. Edison, and others have endeavored to apply the new method to brain study, but so far without satisfactory results. Under direction of the New York city Board of Health, experiments have been instituted to test the practical possibilities of the new rays in the destruction of bacilli.
Great results are also indicated in the application of the discovery to the metallurgic arts. Not only is each metal distinct from every other in relative transparency to X rays, but these rays are themselves sensitive to the slightest variations in the thickness of the metals. In this way it is thought that all alloys or composite metals may be made to show on a photographic plate whether they are homogeneous throughout, and where and to what extent one metal (as, e. g., the zinc or the copper in steel-bronze) has not thoroughly amalgamated with another. Owing, too, to the different effects of the rays upon iron and carbon, it may be possible to detect at once the quality of specimens of iron and steel, and even to furnish a simple method of control in the processes of manufacture.
Should the possibilities here indicated be realized, the result would be a revolution in many branches of metallic industry, especially in the making of arms, armor plate and other products of manufacture, in the construction of which composite metals are employed.
RÖNTGEN, WILHELM KONRAD, was born in Holland in 1845, and was graduated at the University of Zurich, taking a doctorate at twenty-five years of age. He was a pupil of Professor Kundt, and followed the latter from Zurich to Würzburg, and later, in 1873, accompanied him to Strasburg as assistant professor. In 1875 he became professor of mathematics and physics in the Agricultural Academy of Hohenheim, a small village near Stuttgart, in Würtemberg; but re
turned a year later to Strasburg; and in 1879 became professor in and director of the University and Institute of Physics in the old university town of Giessen, a city rendered illustrious before this time by the labors of the great Liebig. In 1888 he returned to his old college at Würzburg, where he now holds the chair of physics.
His published papers began to appear in 1873. The isothermal surfaces of crystals and calorimetry of the sun, using an ice calorimeter; electrically produced dust figures and transmission of the electric discharge through gases; diathermacy; a new aneroid barometer; flame sounds; and the telephone, are typical subjects of his original investigations. As a reward for his discovery of X rays, he was decorated by the German emperor, and was made a baron by Prince Ludwig of Bavaria.
His essays may be found in Poggendorff and Wiedmann's Annalen, the Zeitschrift für Kristallographie, the reports of the Vienna Academy of Sciences, of the Gesellschaft der Wissenschaften of Göttingen, as well as in those of the Gesellschaft für Natur und Heilkunde of Upper Hesse, and of the Physico-Medical Society of Würz burg.
THE VENEZUELAN CONTROVERSY.
THE crisis which instantly followed President Cleveland's startling message of December 17 last (Vol. 5, p. 803), subsided before the middle of January. The remarkable threat of war served as an explosive opening of discussion, which, after the first flush of excited patriotism in this country and of angry surprise in Great Britain, rapidly tended toward lines of peace. The era of discussion continued through the quarter, at whose end there were signs that the era of negotiation was opening. Meanwhile, investigation by the commission proposed and selected by President Cleveland and authorized by congress, has been and is in progress, with gratifying indications of a settlement satisfactory and honorable to all parties concerned. Such settlement may be delayed by the usual slow pace of diplomacy; though a casual observer of certain omens in European, African, and Asiatic skies might expect the government of the world-wide British empire to make no needless delay in freeing it from American entanglements.
Probably the whole affair, now that its effervescent period has passed, takes its place in many minds as a family quarrel-very natural in its arising, very interesting and dramatic in its outburst of a deep sense of injury from
kinsfolk, combined with the grandeur of a patriotic selfassertion; but a quarrel soon felt to be distressing and unnatural if pressed to its end in an armed contest on land and sea, and indeed seen to be so absurd at that end as to be impossible unless one or both of the peoples had gone insane. Inasmuch as national feeling is a chief spring of national action, it is a part of current history to record the fact that this nation, and both nations, while recog- | nizing that a war even at the risk of final destruction might under conceivable circumstances be a duty, saw after a very few hours that as between these two nations, at the present stage of human development, war, for any cause likely to be involved in the affair now in hand, simply had no place. It was not so much decided that war should not be, as it was seen that this war could not be.
A reference to the preceding number of this quarterly will show the origin of the controversy, its historic development, the official action on both sides which brought it to a head, with the main contentions of the parties concerned when it suddenly emerged into public view as a critical and pressing issue. Also, notices are there given of the five commissioners appointed by the president under authority from congress to investigate and report on the true divisional line between Venezuela and British Guiana.
The Boundary Commission.-The commissioners met for preliminary conference with Secretary Olney on January 4, all the members except Mr. White being present, and receiving their formal certificates. They then proceeded to hold a private session, in which they elected Justice Brewer to be their president. The oath of office was then administered. The next meeting was on January 11, and was given largely to organizing the various departments of work. At the meeting on January 20, S. Mallet Prevost was formally appointed secretary (or executive officer) of the commission. Previous to this
meeting the commission addressed to the secretary of state a letter alluding to the lack of official information before them from the two governments principally concerneda lack due to the fact that the commission was in no way constituted as an international tribunal though called to deal with international concerns; and suggesting that the attention of the governments of Great Britain and Venezuela might be called to the commission with explanation of its objects and scope.
"It may be," thus runs the letter, "that they will see a way, entirely consistent with their own sense of international propriety, to
give the commission aid in the way of documentary proof, historical narrative, unpublished archives, or the like." "If either should deem it appropriate to designate an agent or attorney whose duty it would be to see that no such proofs were omitted or overlooked, the commission would be grateful for such evidence of good will." The letter further suggested that such an act of either government might be accompanied by an express reservation of its claims.
These suggestions were communicated to the two governments by Secretary Olney.
The conciliatory tone of this letter was praised by the London Times, which, however, remarked that it was obviously impossible for Great Britain to recognize the acts of the commission directly or indirectly. Not all the leading English newspapers agreed with this view. On both sides of the sea the proposal was regarded as at least a wise step on the part of the commission. A reply from Lord Salisbury, dated February 7, said that any information at the command of Her Majesty's government would be readily placed at the disposal of the president, also advance copies of documents soon to be published relating to the boundary question.
On March 6 Señor Andrade, the Venezuelan minister, introduced to the commission Mr. William L. Scruggs, ex-minister from the United States to Venezuela, who had been appointed by the Venezuelan government to serve as its counsel.
At the end of January the commission began regular weekly meetings, held usually on Friday. A great mass of materials had already accumulated, sent from the files of the state department or procured by purchase or loan -maps, documents, and old books-whereby a general estimate of the case had become possible, with a separation into departments and an assignment of individual members to specific researches. These researches were vigorously prosecuted in the intervals between meetings. From time to time experts have been summoned to aid the commission on questions of special difficulty. Mr. Justin Winsor of Harvard University, cartological expert for the commission, had, on March 6, finished his report on nearly 300 maps, showing their sources, accuracy, and relative value.
British Case Presented.-The British blue book on the Venezuelan question was laid on the table of the house of commons on March 6. It gives in general outline the position of Great Britain in the boundary dispute, prefacing this outline with a reference to the chief historical events involved in the foùr successive periods (1520-1648,