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crescent, like the waning moon: and, at
tance from the sun. This last number, last, after a period of nearly 584 days, multiplied by 3985, the number of miles comes again into conjunction with the in the earth's semi-diameter, gives 95,173. sun, with an apparent diameter of 59". 122 miles for the mean distance of the She does not move exactly in the plane earth from the sun. This being obtained, of the ecliptic, but deviates from it several we easily, by calculation, find the disdegrees. Like Mercury, she sometimes tances of all the other planets. Other obcrosses the sun's disk. '1 he duration of servers made the parallax somewhat difthese transits, as observed from different ferent, but it was generally admitted that parts of the earth's surface, are very dif. this distance is somewhere between 95 ferent: this is owing to the parallax of and 96 millions of miles. Venus, in consequence of which different Venus, in natural history, a genus of the observers refer to different parts of the
Vermes Testacea class and order. Animal sun's disk, and see her describe different a tethys; shell bivalve, the frontal mar. chords on that disk. In the transit which gin flattened, with incumbent lips; hinge happened in 1769, the difference of its with three teeth, all of them approximate, duration, as observed at Otaheite, and at the lateral ones divergent at the tip. Wardhuys in Lapland, amounted to 23 There are nearly two hundred species, minutes, 10 seconds. This difference in sections. A. Shell somewhat'heartgives us the parallax of Venus, and of shaped. B. Orbicular. These are found course her distance from the earth during in different parts of the world. V. verrua conjunction. The knowledge of this cosa inhabits the Mediterranean, English, parallax enables us, by a method to be and Antilly coasts: thick, two inches afterwards described, to ascertain that of long, and as much broad; sometimes the sun, and consequently to discover its marked with a few brown spots and rays. distance from the earth. The great vari- V. mercenaria, or clam, is the species ations of the apparent diameter of Venus which abounds in the bays of the United demonstrate that her distance from the States; is edible, and is brought to marearth is exceedingly variable. It is largest ket in great quantities. when the planet passes over the surface VERATRUM, in botany, a genus of the of the sun. Her mean apparent diameter Polygamia Monoecia class and order. Nais 58".
tural order of Coronariæ. Junci, Jussieu. Venus, as we have already observed, is Essential character: calyx none; corolla occasionally seen on the disk of the sun, six-petalled; stamina six: hermaphroin form of a dark round spot. This hap: dite, pistils three : capsule many-seeded: pens when the earth is about her nodes at male, rudiment of a pistil. There are the time of her inferior conjunction. four species. These appearances, called transits, hap
VERB. See GRAMMAR. pen but very seldom. During the last VERBASCUM, in botany, mullein; a century there were two transits, one in genus of the Pentandria Monogynia class June, 1761, and the other in 1769: no
and order. Natural order of Luridæ. So. other will occur till the writers and most laneæ, Jussieu. Essential character: coof the present readers of this Dictionary rolla wheel-shaped, a litttle unequal; shall be no more, viz. in 1874. Excepting capsule two-celled, two-valved. There such transits as these, Venus exhibits the are nineteen species. same appearances to us regularly every
VERBENA, in botany, vervain, a geeight years; her conjunctions, elonga- nus of the Diandria Monogynia class and tions, and times of rising and setting being order. Natural order of Personatæ. very nearly the same, on the same days, Vitices, Jussieu. Essential character : as before. From the transit of Venus in corolla funnel.shaped, almost equal, 1761 was deduced the sun's parallax, and curved; calyx, one of the teeth truncate ; of course his distance from the earth, with seeds two or four, naked or very thinly very great accuracy. See Philosophical arilled; stamina two or four. There are Transactions, vol. li. and lii. On the day twenty-three species. of the transit, when the sun was nearly at VERBESINA, in botany, a genus of his greatest distance from the earth, the the Syngenesia Polygamia Superflua class parallax was found to be 8' 52""; there. and order. Natural order of Composita fore, at his mean distance, it will be g“ Oppositifoliæ. Corymbiferæ, Jussieu. 65". Whence, by logarithms, we have Essential character; calyx a double row; 10,000, &c.--5.622 (sine of 8" 65'"')= florets of the ray about five ; pappus 4.376 23882.84, the number of semi- awned; receptacle chaffy. There are diameters of the earth contained in its dis twelve species.
VERDICT, the answer of a jury made &c. though it is also an ingredient in some pon any cause, civil or criminal, com. medicinal compositions, and is used by mitted by the court to their examina- the wax-chandlers to purify their wax. tion : and this is two-fold, general or spe. VERMES, in natural history, the last cial. A general verdict is that which is class of the animal kindom, according to given or brought into the court in like the Linnæan system. The animals in this general terms to the general issue ; as, class are not merely those commonly guilty or not guilty generally. A special known by the name of worms, but like. verdict is, when they say at large that wise those which have the general chasuch a thing they find to be done by the racter of being “ slow in motion, of a soft defendant, or tenant, so declaring the substance, extremely tenacious of life, course of the fact as in their opinion it is capable of reproducing such parts of proved; and as to the law upon the fact, their body as may have been taken away they pray the judgment of the court; or destroyed, and inhabiting moist places." and this special verdict, if it contain any There are five orders in this class, viz. ample declaration of the cause from the the beginning to the end, is also called a verclict at large. A special verdict is usually Infusoria
Testacea found where there is any difficulty or Intestina
Zoophyta doubt respecting the laws, when the Mollusca jury state the facts as proved, and pray the advice of the court thereon. A less These animals are generally considered expensive and more speedy mode, how. as the lowest in the scale of animated be. ever, is, to find a verdict generally for the ing. The simplicity of their form, the plaintiff, subject, nevertheless, to the humility of their station, and the low de. opinion of the judge, or the court above, gree of sense and motion wbich they seem or a special case drawn up and settled to enjoy, hare rendered them objects of by counsel on both sides.
but little attention to mankind in general, VERDITER, a kind of mineral sub- excepting as they contribute to the supstance, sometimes used by the painters, ply of their wants, or to render them&c. for a blue ; but more usually mixed selves formidable, by the pain and distress with a yellow for a green colour.
which they occasion to those bodies which VERDOY, in heraldry, denotes a bor. nature seems to have destined for their dure of a coat of arms, charged with any habitation. But, to the curious investigakinds or parts of flowers, fruits, seeds, tor of the ways of heaven, every part of plants, &c.
the vast creation becomes interesting, and VERGE, signifies the compass of the this class of animated beings has, in latter King's court, which bounds the jurisdic. times, attracted a considerable share of tion of the Lord Steward of the House. attention. To this they seem fully entihold; and which is thought to have been tled, if we consider the number of animals twelve miles round.
which are included under the general The term verge is also used for a stick name of worms: if we observe the simplior rod, whereby one is admitted tenant city of form in some of them,and the comto a copyhold estate, by holding it in his plicated structure of others; in short, if hand, and swearing fealty to the lord of we reflect on the various modes in which the manor.
they are propagated, and on the surpris. VERGERS, certain 'officers of the ing faculty which many of them possess, courts of King's Bench and Common of spontaneous reproduction, the imagi. Pleas, whose business it is to carry white nation will be astonished with their num. wands before the judges.
ber and variety, and confounded by their There are also vergers of cathedrals wonderful properties. The waters are and collegiate churches, who carry a rod peopled with myriads of animated beings, tipped with silver before the bishop, which, though invisible to our unassisted dean, &c.
eyes, are unquestionably endowed with VERGETTE, in heraldry, denotes a organs as perfect as the largest animals, pallet, or small pale; and hence a shield, since, like these, they reproduce others divided by such pallets, is termed ver- similar to themselves, and hold in the gette.
scale of nature a rank as little equivocal, VERJUICE, a liquor obtained from though less obvious and obtrusive. The grapes or apples, unfit for wine or cyder: elegance of form, and beauty of colour, or from sweet ones, whilst yet acid and which some of the “i mollusca,” and “zooinripe. Its chief use is in sauces, ragouts, plıyta” possess, cannot fail to render them
4 m =
If n =
and m =
objects of admiration to the most indiffer. The most commodious perceptible dient observer.
1 1 VERMICELLI, a composition of flour,
of an inch.
10 cheese, yolks of eggs, sugar, and saffron,
Example. Suppose an instrument of 30 reduced to a paste, and formed into long inches radius, into how many convenient slender pieces, like worms, by forcing it
parts may each degree be divided ? how with a piston through a number of little
many of these parts are to go to the holes.
breadth of the vernier, and to what parts VERNIER, a scale adapted for the gra- of a degree may an observation be made duation of mathematical instruments, so by that instrument ? called from Pierre Vernier, the inventor. Now, 0.01745 X R = 0.5236 inches, Under the article BAROMETER will be seen
the length of each degree: and if p is some account of this scale as applied to that instrument: here we shall take it up supposed about of an inch for one di
8 more generally This scale is derived from the following the number of such parts in a degree.
vision; then 0.5236 X p = 4.188 shows principle. If two equal right lines, or circular arcs, A B, are so divided, that the
But as this number must be an integer, number of equal divisions in B is one less
let it be 4, each being 15'; and let the
breadth of the vernier contain 31 of those than the number of equal divisions in A, parts, or 77°, and be divided into 30 parts. then will the excess of one division of A
1 be compounded of the ratios of one of A
then to A, and of one of B to B. For let A
30: 4 contain 11 parts, then one of A to A is as
of a degree, or 30', which is the least 1 to 11, or Let B contain 10 parts, then 11°
part of a degree that instrument can show.
1 1 one of B to B is as 1 to 10, or Now
Х 10 1 1 11-10
60 1 1 1
of a minute, or 20". 10 11
11: 5 X 36
VERONICA, in botany, speedwell, a geOr if B contains n parts, and A contains
nus of the Diandria Monogynia class and n+1 parts; then - is one part of B, and
order. Natural order of Personatæ. Pe
diculares, Jussieu. Essential character: 1
1 1 corolla four-cleft, wheel-shaped, with the is one part of A. And ntn
lowest segment narrower; capsule supen+1-12 1 1
rior, two-celled. There are fifty-seven Х
species. nxn+1 n+1
VERSED sine of an arch, a segment of The most commodius divisions, and the diameter of a circle, lying between their aliquot parts, into which the degrees the foot of a right sine, and the lower exon the circular limb of an instrument may tremity of the arch. be supposed to be divided, depend on VERT, in heraldry, the term for a the radius of that instrument.
green colour. It is called vert in the bla. Let R be the radius of a circle in inches;
zon of the coats of all under the degree and a degree to be divided into n parts, called emerald; and in those of kings,
of nobles; but in coats of nobility, it is each being - th part of an inch.
Venus. In engraving, it is expressed by
diagonals, or lines drawn athwart from Now the circumference of a circle, in right to left
, from the dexter chief corner parts of its diameter 2 R inches, is to the sinister base. 3.1415926 x 2 Rinches.'
VERT, or GREEN HUE, in forest law, any Then 360° : 3.1415926 X 2 R:: 1° : thing that grows and bears a green leaf 3.1415926 x 2 R inches.
within the forest, that may cover a deer. 300
This is divided into over-vert and nether. Or, 0.01745329 X R is the length of vert: over-vert is the great woods, which, one degree in inches.
in law-books, are usually called hault Or, 0.01745329 X RX p is the length bois ; nether-vert is the underwoods, of 1o, in pth parts of an inch.
otherwise called sub-bois. We sometimes But as every degree contains n times also meet with special vert, which desuch parts, therefore n = 0.01745329 X notes all trees growing in the king's RX p.
woods within the forest;
and those which VOL. XII.
grow in other men's woods, if they be rior cavity from the effects of cold and such trees as bear fruit to feed the deer. moisture; the whole nest, comprising
VERTEBRÆ, in anatomy, the twenty- both walls and cells, is composed of a four bones of wbich the spine consists, substance very much resembling the and on wbich the several motions of the coarser kinds of wbitish-brown paper, trunk of our bodies are performed. and consists of the fibres of various dry
VERTEX is used, in astronomy, for vegetable substances, agglutinated by a the point of heaven perpendicularly over tenacious Auid, discharged from the our heads, properly called the zenith. mouths of the insects during their opera
VERTICAL circle, in astronomy, a great tions. The female wasps deposit their circle of the sphere, passing through the eggs in the cells, one in each cell approzenith and nadir, and cutting the horizon priated for that purpose ; from these are at right angles; it is otherwise called hatched the larva, or maggots, which azimuth.
bear a near resemblance to those of bees : VERTICAL prime, is that vertical circle they are fed by the labouring wasps with or azimuth which passes through the a coarse kind of honey, and when arrived poles of the meridian; or which is per- at their full size, close up their respecpendicular to the meridian, and passes
tive cells with a fine tissue of silken through the equinoctial points.
filaments, and, after a certain period, VERTICAL plane, in perspective, is a emerge in their complete or perfect plane perpendicular to the geometrical form. The male insect, like the male plane, passing through the eye, and cut- bee, is destitute of a sting. The society ting the perspective plane at right an- or swarm of the common wasp consists gles.
of a vast number of neutral or labouring VERTICAL plane, in conics, is a plane insects, a much smaller number of males, passing through the vertex of the cone, and still fewer females. They do not, and parallel to any conic section.
like bees, prepare and lay up a store of VESPA, in natural history, the wasp. honey for winter use ; but the few which Mouth horny, with a compressed jaw ; survive the season of their birth remain feelers four, unequal, filiform ; antennæ torpid during the colder months. filiform, the first joint longer and cylin- V. crabo, the hornet, is a species of a drical; eyes linear; body glabrous; up- far more formidable nature than the comper wings folded in each sex; sting pun. mon wasp, and is of considerably larger gent, concealed in the abdomen. More size : its colour is a tawny yellow, with than two hundred species have been ferruginous and black bars, and variega. enumerated, divided into three sections, tions. The nest of this species is gene. which are again divided into sub-sections. rally built in the cavity of some decayed A. tongue simple, or without any. B. tree, or immediately beneath its roots; Tongue bifid, retractile. C. Tongue in- and not unfrequently in timber yards and flected, and five-cleft. Wasps live most. other similar situations. It is of a smaller ly in numerous societies, constructing size than that of the wasp, and of a somecurious nests, or combs, generally under what globular form, with an opening be. ground; they prey upon other insects, neath; the exterior shell consisting of especially bees and fies, and devour more or fewer layers of the same strong meal, bread, and fruit; the larva is soft, paper-like substance with that prepared without feet, and feeds on the nectar of by the wasp: the cells are also of a simi. flowers and honey; the pupa quiescent, lar nature, but much fewer in number, and has the rudiments of wings. V. vul and less elegantly composed. The hor. garis, or common wasp, of Europe. The net, like the wasp, is extremely voranest of this species is a highly curious cious, and is an inhabitant of Europe. structure, and is prepared beneath the VESPERTILIO, the bat, in natural his. surface of some dry bank, or other con- tory, a genus of Mammalia, of the orvenient situation. Its shape is that of an der Primates. Generic character: teeth upright oval, often measuring ten or erect, sharp-pointed, approximated; fore twelve inches at least in diameter: it con- feet palmated, with a membrane sur. sists of several horizontal stages or stories rounding the body, and by which the ani. of hexagonal cells, the interstices of each mal is enabled to fly. Bats fly only by story being connected at intervals by up- night, in quest of their food, consisting of right pillars ; and the exterior surface of gnats and moths, and when deprived of the nest consists of a great many layers their eyes, appear to feel no want of them, or pieces, disposed over each other in having a supplemental power of percepsuch a manner as best to secure the inte. tion, by which they avoid objects in the
way with nearly as much precision as in feet and a quarter. Its chief residence is their perfect state. In cold climates they in palm-trees. pass the winter in torpor, assembling in V. vampyrus, or the vampyre bat, is an holes and in caverns, in which they are inhabitant of India and South America, is occasionally seen adhering in great num. about twelve inches long, and the extent bers to the walls, and sometimes suspends of its wings is four feet, and in some exed by their hind legs. The bones of the traordinary instances, it is said, six. Its extremities of the fore legs of bats are tongue is pointed, and terminated by continued in long and thin processes, sharp prickles. It is reported to suck connected by a fine and almost transpa- the blood of cattle, by inserting the point rent skin, which they are enabled to un. of its tongue into one of their veins durfold optionally, for flight, or to withdraw ing sleep, so as to excite little or no pain. into a very small compass, when they this is said to be done by them with rewish to repose. The general division is spect to men also. Various writers, of into those which have tails, and those general respectability, concur in these which have none. . There are twenty-five statements, and have observed, that in species.
some parts of South America, and in India, V. murinus, or the common bat of Eu. it is, on this account, highly dangerous to rope, is two inches and a half long, includ. sleep in the open air, or in apartments ing its tail, and nine wide, and is of a red- with open windows. This property of dish-brown colour, with black wings and sucking the blood of human beings has ears, the last rounded and small. It is long been affirmed of the bats of Europe ; found almost throughout Europe. When but though assertions of this nature are on the ground, it is frequently unable to incapable of being contradicted, there rise, without ascending some eminence does not appear to be any detail of well for the greater convenience of managing authenticated facts in their support. The its wings.
two last species have no tail. V. auritus, or the great-eared bat, is VESTA, one of the small planetary distinguished from the former by the bodies discovered lately to revolve be. size of its ears, which are more than an tween the planets Mars and Jupiter: the inch long. This is very common in Eng- following account is taken from the “Philand, and its manners, food, and size, are losophical Transactions." similar to those of the former. These “At our very first observations, with animals are stated to take their drink, as magnifying powers of 150 and 300, apwell as food, while upon the wing, as plied to the excellent new fifteen feet rethey futter over streamlets or ponds, Aector, we found the planet Vesta with. which they often do for the insect food so out any appearance of a disk, merely as a copiously supplied by these situations. point, like a fixed star, with an intense On the river Thames, in a fine evening in radiating light, and exactly of the same summer, they may occasionally be seen appearance as that of any fixed star of the to the number of several scores, or even sixth magnitude. In the same manner we hundreds, in one view. By the ancients both afterwards saw this planet several the bat was consecrated to the goddess of times with our naked eyes, when the sky the infernal regions, and its general as- was clear, and when it was surrounded pect, and nocturnal flights, and leathern by smaller invisible stars, which precludwings, render it not an inappropriate in- ed all possibility of mistaking it for ano. habitant of those obscure and dismal ter. ther. This proves how very like the inritories. These animals are capable of tense light of this planet is that of a being tamed, and have been brought to fixed star. As the observations and mea. feed from a person's hand. In one in- surements of Ceres, Pallas, and Juno, stance of this kind, they showed extreme were made with the same eye-glasses, dexterity in clearing Aies of their wings, but with the thirteen feet reflector, we which they always refuse. They partook soon after compared the planet Vesta of raw flesh, but preferred insects; and with the same glasses of 136 and 288 in taking their nourishment, they were times magnifying power in the thirteen desirous to avoid observation, and for feet reflector. In both these telescopes this purpose stretched round their wings its image was, without the least differbefore their mouth. They occasionally ence, that of a fixed star of the sixth ran, but with extreme awkwardness. magnitude, with an
intense radiating V. spectrum, or the spectre bat, is light; so that this new planet may, with found in South America, and is a large the greatest propriety, be called an as. species, its wings extending nearly two teroid.