Scientific American, Volume XXXVI., No. 8, February 24, 1877

A Weekly Journal of Practical Information, Art, Science, Mechanics, Chemistry, and Manufactures.

Author: Various Authors
Published: 1877
Language: English
Wordcount: 41,653 / 134 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 42.5
LoC Categories: AP, Q
Downloads: 685
Added to site: 2006.09.30
mnybks.net#: 14894
Genre: Periodical
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Excerpt

es, but the real motive is apt to be something very different. To perpetuate their own name or fame, men or nations often set up lasting monuments, and sometimes unintentionally convey thereby to after times a few more or less instructive indications of the artistic or industrial skill of their day and generation. To further their own immediate ends, or to secure some benefit to their immediate descendants, men frequently undertake great material enterprises, and sometimes the work so done remains for ages the source of perennial good. But very rarely, if ever, can it be said that any work of man was undertaken solely, or even chiefly, for the benefit of posterity--more rarely still, for remote posterity.

Hence it happens that we owe far more to accident, to fire, rapine, volcanic outbursts, and the protecting care of desolation, for the knowledge we have of times long past, than to any intentional legacies of art or learning left us by the men of those times. The lost and abandoned tools, weapons, and

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