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L A N D-S UR V E YING,
IN ALL ITS DEPARTMENTS:
For the Use of Schools and Pribate Students.
AM NESBIT, 1778371859
LAND SURVEYOR; AND MASTER OF THE CLASSICAL, COMMERCIAL, AND
AND AUTHOR OF
“ An Essay on Education," &c. &c.
THE NINTH EDITION,
REVISED, CORRECTED, IMPROVED, AND GREATLY ENLARGED,
TO WHICH ARE NOW ADDED,
of Surveying by the Theodolite, including Railway Surveying ;
elevation of exterior Rail in Curves, &c. &c. ;
BY T. BAKER,
The whole illustrated by Numerous Practical Examples, Wood Cuts, Copper Plates,
and un Engraven Field Book of Sixteen Pages.
The various works which so imperfect a being as man is able to perform, and the great advances which he is capable of making in the arts and sciences, are astonishing. He comes into the world devoid both of strength and of reflection ; nor are the powers of his body more rapidly developed, than those of his mind. But however ingenious and active the individual may prove, when arrived at maturity, his efforts would generally be unavailing, if they were not combined with those of his fellows. His first improvements he acquires from the suggestions of his contemporaries, or from the works of his predecessors, whose rules and demonstrations have been the
labour of ages.
From the Old Testament, it appears, that the arts and sciences were cultivated to a certain extent, before the flood. Among the offspring of Cain, Jubal was the father of all such as handled the harp and organ; and Tubal-Cain was the instructor of every artificer in brass and iron. According to Josephus, the posterity of Seth also observed the order of the heavens, and the course of the stars. The same author asserts, that the Assyrians and Chaldeans were the first, after the deluge, who applied themselves to the cultivation of the sciences. Their king, Belus, is said to have converted the tower of Babel into an observatory, and upon it to have made many astronomical discoveries.
With regard to the origin of Land-Surveying, historians vary in their opinions. Diodorus, Herodotus, and Strabo, attribute the invention of it to the Egyptians; whom they represent as constrained by the annual inundation of the Nile, removing or defacing their land-marks, to devise some method of ascertaining the ancient boundaries after the waters had retired. By Josephus, however, it is ascribed to the Hebrews. According to him, the arts and sciences of Egypt were derived from the patriarch Abraham, who conveyed them into that country, from Ur of the Chaldees.
The science in question was originally called “Geometry ;” but this being deemed too comprehensive a title for the mensuration of superficies, it was afterwards denominated “ The Art of Measuring Land.”
From the banks of the Nile, it was carried into Greece by Thales, one of the seven wise men, born before Christ, 640 years.
This philosopher travelled into Egypt, and studied, under its sages, astronomy, geometry, and other branches of the mathematics; but having given offence to king Amasis, by the freedom of his remarks upon the conduct of princes, he returned home, and employed himself in communicating the knowledge which he had acquired.