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STBANGE AND WONDERFUL. I Curious Relic. This curious italic is to be found in the top loft (the rafters of which are shown) of an old monastery near Cirencester, which is 7ictw a farmhouse, and the mill (probably cut lerust 350 years old) is the only relic of the monastic pur- pose of the building. It was used by the monks for grinding their corn, and the "dress," or toolmarke, of the steel pick used to break up the surface of the stone are still piLainiy visible. ▲ QUAINT HANDMILIi. I This stone the photographer stood on edge vertically, to show its face, but it, of course, worked in a, horizontal position. The arrange- ment of the gear is quaint—many of the teeth axe broken off, and the wooden casing of the handle has nearly crumbled' away. The frame is of oak, and) traces of ornamental carving still show on it. Laying Sea Cables. For landing heavy submarine telegraph cables the method; employed is unfamiliar to most people, and is an interesting process. Two light ropes tare first brought ashore from the cable-laying ship; one is passed round a pulley firmly secured, into the ground and spliced to the second. On an agreedi signal being given, the ship, which is, of course, anchored, hauls on one end of the rope, and a heavier rope attached to the other end is drawn in to the shore. This also passes round the pulley, and is taken back to the ship, but previous to its second) end leaving the vessel the cable itself is attached to it. A number of barrels are them fixed at regular intervals between the vessel and the shore, and over these the cable passes, thins facilitating the ¡ hauling of the cable. When the shore end of the cable has been made fast the barrels ill:0 1 released and the cable drops to the bottom. T The cable-steamer then heads seawards, paying I out the cable as it proceeds. I The Devil's Corkscrews. Nobody knows with certainty what the BO- called "devil's corkscrews" really are. They are found by tens of thousands out in Nebraska, most particularly in Sioux county, and! some of them are as much as forty feet in height, with- out counting the gigantic "roots" presently to be described. Quartz is the substance of which they are madle, but how they came to be embedded, numbers of them together, in the sandstone cliffs of that region, is more than anybody can tell, unless, perhaps, one theory is to be accepted as correct. Professor E. H. Barbour, of the University of Nebraska, declares QUARRYING OUT A GIANT CORKSCREW. I -and. his decision is accepted provisionally, until somebody offers a better—that the cork- screws are. of vegetable origin. They are foseil caste of, the prehistoric water weeds. just as they stoodl when they grew hundreds of thousands and probably millions of years ago. Their tissues were replaced, as they decayed, by silica from the water, particle by particle, and thus, as if by magical means, their like- nesses have been preserved for the, wonder and I admiration. of the present survivors on the earth. Making New Money. As the New Year is essentially the time for I tips, and as the modest shilling or half-crown assumes an inereased value if it is bright and ) new from the Mint, there is always a great demand for new coins, and for some time before the festive season the Royal Mint on Tower Hill is exceptionally busy. We give an illus- tration of one of the rooms where the machinery is in full work. In th;c> room there are eighteen coining presses, each one of which its capable of striking 110 per minute, so I A SCENE AT THE MINT. I that when all are at work 1,980 new coins come into existence. Our readers, remarks the "London Argus" may exercise their leisured moments by multiplying this number by sixty to discover the number produced in one hour, by eight to obtain the for a day, by seven for a week, and by fifty-two for a year. And when the grand total is discovered a further arithmetical problem will be to discover how many coins will fall to the lot of each member of the population.




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