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DIFFUSION OF USEFUL KNOWLEDGE.
Jown HEWSTON JR
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BLOIS, an important city of France on the river Loire, ) ice after the hard winter of 1709, unites it with the suburo in the department of Loir et Cher. It is 96 miles from of Vienne on the opposite side of the river. The upper part Paris in a straight line, S.W. by S., or 105 miles by the of the town, which is the most antient, has steep and road through Etampes and Orléans. It is in 47° 33' N. narrow streets : more modern edifices occupy the lower lat., 1° 20' E. long.
part, and accord well with the fine quay that lines the bank Blois is a town of considerable antiquity. An aqueduct of the Loire. According to local tradition, the most antient cut in the rock, which brings water from a spring at the building, if indeed it yet remains *, is the prison. The distance of half a mile to a reservoir close to the walls of the bridge over the Loire is of stone and has eleven arches. town, is thought to be a Roman work; but no Roman geo- The curve formed by the road-way is considerable, and grapher has mentioned any place that can be identified with the centre is consequently much raised above the bed Blois. Gregory, bishop of Tours, a writer of the sixth cen- of the river: in the middle of the bridge rises a pyramid tury (in his History of France), is the first who makes any of about 60 feet high (exaggerated in some geographical clear and distinct mention of this town · he calls it Blesa. works to 100), the effect of which is described as at once Under Charles le Chauve, or the Bald (grandson of Charle- striking and agreeable. The castle was originally built magne), who reigned from 840 to 877, it was a place of some by the Counts of Blois, and some part of the structure consequence; and under the princes of the second, or Car- erected by them (viz., a large tower) still remains. The lovingian, race, money was coined here. Under these eastern front, under which is the gateway of the court, was princes Blois with its surrounding territory was erected into built by Louis XII., whose statue, representing him on a county, and the counts of Blois seem to have acquired horseback, which once adorned this part of the building, considerable power, but their history and succession are con- has been thrown down. The northern front of the building fused and uncertain. Stephen, who usurped the throne of was erected in the reign of Francis I., and another part toEngland upon the death of Henry I. in 1135, and his brother wards the west by the celebrated architect Mansard at the Henry, bishop of Winchester, were sons of one of the counts order of Gaston, duke of Orléans, brother of Louis XIII., to of Blois, by Adela, daughter of William the Conqueror; and whom (as already noticed) the county of Blois was given as the house of Blois was more than once united by marriage an appanage. When M. Millin visited Blois (in the early with the royal family of France. At length the county of part of the present century) the castle was occupied as a Blois, having been sold to Louis, duke of Orléans, brother barrack; to what use it is devoted at present we are unable of Charles VI., came by inheritance to his grandson, Louis; to say. The ‘hall of the States' was, at the time of M. and upon the accession of this prince in 1498 to the throne Millin's visit, used as a place for exercising recruits in bad of France, under the title of Louis XII., his domains, in- weather. A tower in this castle is called the tower of Châcluding this county, became attached to the crown. (Expilly, teau Renault or Regnard,' because from it that place, which Dictionnaire des Gaules, foc.; Millin, Voyage dans les is distant eighteen miles, can be seen. The garden at Départements du Midi de la France.) The county of Blois tached to the castle was planted by Henry IV., and im was subsequently made part of the appanage of Gaston, proved while in the possession of Gason of Orléans. duke of Orléans, brother of Louis XIII., and of Philip, Morison, an Englishman (who having followed the disonly brother of Louis XIV., from whom it was inherited by astrous fortunes of Charles I., found an asylum in France), the subsequent dukes of Orléans.
published a catalogue of the plants of this garden, which After the county was united to the crown, Blois was had acquired considerable celebrity. not unfrequently the residence of the court, and the scene Of the other public buildings at Blois, the bishop's paof several important events. Here Louis XII. sign lace, which appears to have served for a time as the hotel or several treaties; and here were celebrated the feasts and office of the prefecture, is one of the handsomest: from its tournaments which signalized the marriage of the Duke of terraced gardens there is one of the most agreeable prospects Alençon with Margaret, sister of Francis I. Blois was also in France. The present office of the prefecture, built in a the scene of festivity in the reign of Henry II., son and suc- large pluce, or open space; the Hôtel de Ville, or town cessor of Francis; and here Henry IV. married Margaret house, containing the valuable public library; the nunnery of Valois, daughter of Henry II. But the most remarkable of the Carmelites, now used as a dépôt des étalons ; and the event of which this city was the scene, was the assassination Palais de Justice, or court-house, a building erected at in the castle of the Duke of Guise and his brother the Car- various periods, are among the objeots best worthy of nodinal, in the year 1588, during the reign, and by the order, tice. The public fountains contribute to the cleanliness of the king, Henry III. [See Guisk.]
of the place and the health of the inhabitants. These The city stands on the north or right bank of the Loire | fountains are supplied by means of leaden channels o: about midway between Orléans and Tours. It is built on conduits from a reservoir to which the water is brough the slope of a hill, the summit of which is crowned by the by the Roman aqueduct already noticed. The public walk castle: a bridge, erected in 1724, in the place of a more antient structure, the date of whose foundation was unknown,
• We speak doubtfully on this head, for our latest authority for inu ei and which had been carried away by the breaking up of the Citoyens J. A. La Vallée, &c., 13 tomes, Paris, 1793– 1H02.
ence of the prison is the Vuyage dans les Depariemens ita u fraace, pas je, No. 272. (THE PENNY CYCLOPÆDIA.]
which is very beautiful, stretches along the river. (Malte- | the name of Prin, e Joseph de Chimay, who, with rare perBrun.)
severance, and at great sacrifices, has so completely do Before the Revolution Blois possessed many religious voted himself to the noble labour of improving education, houses, there were two abbeys, one of Benedictines (called at an age when so many men have scarcely finished their the Abley of St. Laumer), very antient, and celebrated for own. its school as early as the twelfth century; and one of the The manufactures of this town consist of serges and order of St. Augustin, called the Abbey of Bourg Moyen; other light woollens, leather (which branch of iudustry has convents for Cordeliers, Capuchins, and Minimes; and rather declined), cutlery and hardware, glass, gloves, and nunneries for Carmelites, Nuns of the Visitation, and those liquorice. Beside these articles, there are others in which called Véroniques. There was a Jesuits' college pre- trade is carried on, as timber, drugs, wine, brandy, and vious to 1764, when that order of ecclesiastics was expelled vinegar. from France. There was also an hospital for the sick Blois is the capital of the department. It has a tribunal (Hôtel-Dieu), attended by the nuns called Hospitalières, an de première instance, or subordinate court of justice, and a hospital for the poor (or poor-house), and a seminary for tribunal de commerce, or court for the settlement of merthe education of the priesthood. The churches at Blois were cantile disputes. The arrondissement of Blois comprehends very much injured by the Protestants in the religious wars 718 square miles, or 459,520 acres, and bad, in 1832, a poof the sixteenth century. The buildings of the Abbey of pulation of 114,307. It was subdivided into ten cantons St. Laumer are now used as an hospital, and those of the and 140 communes. Abbey of Bourg Moyen for the college or high school. The Blois was made the seat of a bishopric in the year 1697, church of the Abbey of St. Laumer, now called St. Nicholas, and was, with the exception of the bishoprics of Dijon and is a remarkable monument of the architecture of a period St. Claude, the latest of those established up to the Revowhen the Gallo-Roman style was passing away.
lution. Under the reduced hierarchy of the present day it The gates of Blois have an image of the Virgin placed maintains its episcopal rank. The diocese comprehends the over them all, in commemoration of the deliverance of the department of Loir et Cher; the bishop is a suffragan di townsmen from a dreadful pestilence which ravaged the the Archbishop of Paris. The celebrated M. Grégoire was place in 1637, and from which they were, as they deemed bishop of Blois, or rather of the department of Loir et Cher it, miraculously delivered in consequence of a vow which under the constitution of Civilé du Clergé, 1791; but as the they made to the Virgin. (Expilly, Dictionnaire des church has always protested against that act, he is not Gaules, &c.)
counted in the succession of bishops. On the side of the Loire opposite to Blois is the populous Among the more eminent natives of Blois may be mensuburb of Vienne. As it is not mentioned separately in tioned the good king Louis XII., under whom, as already the returns of the population for 1832, we presume its noticed, the county of Blois was united to the crown ; Father population was included in that of Blois, which at that Jean Morin (Morinus), a learned orientalist and biblical time amounted to 11,002 for the town and 13,138 for the scholar; and the Marquis de Favras, who was executed whole commune. The people of this town have the repu- at Paris in the year 1790 upon a charge (whether true tation of speaking French with great purity, free from any or false) of having formed the project of a counter-revoprovincialism; but the justness of the eulogy has been dis-lution. puted by some, who consider it to have been a mere com The county of Blois (commonly called in maps Le Blaisois plimentary inference from the frequent residence of the but written by some Le Blésois) is bounded on the north court here. There are at Blois a Collège or high school, by Le Dunois and L'Orléanais, properly so called, on the which however is not of any great importance or repute, two east and south by Berri, from which it is separated in one hospitals, a cabinet of natural history, an agricultural so- part by the Cher, and on the west by Touraine and Le ciety, a public library (already noticed), and a theatre. (M. Vendômois. It is divided into two parts by the Loire ; Robert, Dictionnaire Géographique ; Reichard, Descriptive the part to the south of that river comprehends part of the Road Book of France.) Near Blois are the schools of district of Sologne, one of the most barren tracts in France. Menars, established by the Prince of Chimay, of which an The Loire is the only river of any importance which flows account is given in No: XIII. of the Journal of Education, through it ; the Beuvron and the Cosson, which fall into and of which we subjoin the following particulars transmitted that river on the south side, are of minor importance, as to us (1835) from Blois.
also the Cisse, which falls into the Loire on the north bank. Menars is a village five miles N.E. from Blois on the The Sauldre, a tributary of the Cher, waters the southern bank of the Loire, containing in the midst of a large park a part. The chief towns in the Blésois, beside Blois, already very fine châtean, which was for some time the residence of described, were Romorantin, St. Dié, and Mer. Romorantin Madame de Pompadour. A new and more powerful inte had, in 1832, 6537 inhabitants, or 6985 for the whole comrest now attaches to this beautiful residence : Prince Joseph mune; and Mer, 1717 for the town, or 3733 for the whole de Chimay, the owner of the Château de Menars,' has commune; the others are probably of less importance. The formed, under the title of the ‘Prytaneum,' extensive esta- Blésois was reputed one of the finest districts in France, blishments for instruction, rational in its character, and abounding in game, poultry, and fish. It is now included designed for special purposes,-instruction which corresponds in the department of Loir et Cher. The changes which to the varied wants of the different classes of which society this county passed through in the middle and later ages is composed. Thus the first division of the Prytaneum, have been already noticed in speaking of the town of Blois. called the 'Institute of Commerce and the Belles Lettres,' This country, in the time of the Romans, formed part of the embraces on the one hand a complete course of scientific territory of the Carnutes. (Malte-Brun; Expilly; Millin; and literary instruction, and on the other a complete com- Communication from Blois.) mercial education. The second division is the School of BLOMEFIELD, FRANCIS, A.M., F.S.A., rector of Arts and Trades.' There are seven workshops in this de- Fresfield in Norfolk, and author of a very excellent history partment; those of the wheelwright, joiner and cabinet- of that county, was born at Fresfield on July 23rd, 1705. maker, blacksmith, polisher and finisher of hardwares, He was first educated at Diss, and then at Thetford, from turner in wood, saddler, and cutler. Theoretical and prac- whence he was sent to Gonville and Caius College, Camtical instruction are combined in the School of Arts and bridge, in 1724. He took his degree of B.A. in 1727, and Trades. Lastly, the third division, called the “School of in the same year was ordained deacon of the church of St. Pioneers' (Ecole des Pionniers), a term employed in an Giles's in the Fields, London; and in the following year enlarged sense, comprehends the trades of tailor, shoe- was made a licensed preacher by Dr. Tanner, then chanmaker, bricklayer (maçon), sawyer, gardener, &c. Dif-cellor of Norwich. In 1729 he was instituted rector of ferent localities are assigned to each division of the Pry- Hargham in Norfolk, on the presentation of Thomas Hare, taneum.
Esq. ; and in September of the same year he was instituted The success of the Prytaneum, which was founded on.y rector of Fresfield, on the presentation of his own father, three years ago, has settled the question of education for Henry Blomefield, Gent. He continued to hold boti recspecial purposes which has so long occupied attention, and tories till 1730, when he relinquished Hargham. The wbicn some men of liberal minds have at different times above particulars are derived from the genealogical table sought to bring to the test of experience, but which has which he has given of his family in the History.' Wa never yet been solved as it now is by the ‘Prytaneum de lave found it difficult to get any further information conMenars. This work of civilization and of moral improve- cerning him, as the continuator of his work and the editor ment kas inscribed in the list of benefactors to their country l of the new edition do not furnish any additional facts. The
publishers of the last edition, in eleven vols. 8vo., com- | is a solid substance. It is the most complex substance o! menced in 1805, exerted themselves to procure a likeness of the animal body. It is composed of several distinct conBlomefield, and having ascertained that there was none in stituents, each of which is endowed with specific properties, existence, had recourse to the rather curious expedient of and the combination of the wno.e is so peculiar that there is furnishing a portrait intended for another person, but which nothing perfectly analogous to it. was considered a striking likeness of the historian of On first flowing from its vessel the blood is a thick, viscid, Norfolk.
and tenacious fluid. In all the more highly-organized aniBlomefield's death must have taken place in or subse- mals it is of a red colour; but redness is not an essential quently to 1751, as his last work, printed in his own house property of it. In several tribes of animals which possess at Norwich, is dated in that year. Mr. Gough intimates true and proper blood, this fluid is not of a red colour, and that he died in bad circumstances. His great work, which there is no animal whose blood is red in all the parts of the in its completed form constitutes one of the best county his- body. In the transparent cornea of the human eye there is tories we possess, was published under the modest title of abundance of blood, but the blood contained in the minute
An Essay towards the Topographical History of the County vessels of this delicate membrane is not red. The blood of of Norfolk. It was printed in his own house at Fresfield, the insect is colourless and transparent; that of the reptile and the publication began in numbers in 1739. It was left is of a yellowish colour; in the main part of the body of the unfinished at his death, when he had carried it to nearly the fish, that is, in the whole of its muscular system, the blood end of the third (folio) volume, and the completion was is without colour; hence the whiteness of the general subultimately undertaken by the Rev. C. Parkin, rector of stance of the body of the fish : but in the more important Oxburgh, who had rendered some assistance to Blomefield organs, and especially in those which constitute the circle in the previous portion, and had himself formed consider- of nutrition, called the organic organs, the blood is of a red abie collections. This gentieman finished the third volume, colour, as in the heart, the branchiæ or gills, and so on. In and added two more, which are considered inferior to those the bird the blood is of a deep red; but it is the deepest of by Blomefield. However, no part of Mr. Parkin's conti- all in the quadruped. In some species of quadrupeds it is nuation was published until after his death, when it was deeper than in others; in the hare, for example, it is much issued by the bookseller who had purchased his library, deeper than in the rabbit. It is deeper in some varieties of which included that of Blomefield. The second volume was the same species than in others, and inore especially in difpublished in 1743, the third, completed by Parkin, not till ferent varieties of the human family. Nay, it is deeper in 1769, and the fifth and final volume appeared in 1775. some individuals of the same race than in others, and even Blomefield was greatly assisted in his work by the collec- in the same individual it is different at different periods, actions which had been formed by Peter Le Neve, norroy cording to age, to the states of health and of disease, and to king-at-arms, who spent above forty years in amassing at different species of disease. great expense and trouble the greatest collection of facts for In man and all the higher animals the body contains two the history of Norfolk that was ever formed for any county kinds of blood, each of which is distinguished by a striking in the kingdom. He was also greatly aided by Bishop difference of colour. Each kind of blood is contained in its Tanner, who, having been chancellor of the diocese, was ac- own peculiar set of vessels: the one in the vessel called a quainted with a vast number of records relative to the county. vein, hence called venous blood; the other in the vessel Parkin also had the benefit of Le Neve's collections, as called an artery, arterial blood. Venous blood is of a dark well as of those whici had been formed by Blomefield him- or Modena-red colour; arterial blood is of a bright scarlet self. Blomefield's own last-printed work was the · Col- colour. Venous differs from arterial blood in its most eslectanea Cantabrigiensia,' a collection relating to Cambridge sential properties no less than in its colour: venous blood University, town, and county. Although printed so late, is incapable of nourishing the body and of stimulating the the materials seem to have been collected before he began organs; arterial blood is the proper nutrient and stimulant the History of Norfolk,' that is, between the years 1724 of the system. and 1734, including the period of his residence at the uni- The specific gravity of human blood (water being 1000) versity.
may be stated to be about 1050, from which standard it is (History of Norfolk, folio and 8v0. editions; Gough's capable of increasing to 1120, and of sinking to 1026, this British Topography.)
being the extreme range of variation hitherto observed. BLONDEL, or "BLONDIAUX, a French minstrel of Venous is heavier than arterial blood, the former being the twelfth century, and the friend of Richard I. of Eng: commonly estimated at 1052, and the latter at 1049: the land, whom he accompanied to Palestine. He is also called difference in weight depends, as will be seen immediately, Blondel de Nesles, from the name of his native town; but on the excess in venous blood of carbonaceous matter. The Fauchet (Origine de la Langue et Poesie Françoise, higher the organization of the blood the greater is its specific Paris, 1581), in his series of French poets anterior to 1300, gravity: hence the specific gravity of the blood of the higher expresses doubts whether the Blondel de Nesles was iden- is greater than that of the lower animals, and the change tical with Richard's minstrel. Accordingly, he bestows a produced in the human blood by disease is generally atseparate article on each, giving under the head of Blondel tended with a diminution of its weight. In one instance on de Nesles extraets from some of his songs, written in the record the specific gravity is stated to have been as low Norman French, or ‘Langue d'oui;' while under the head as 1022. of Blondel, Richard's favourite, he relates the story of his There is a remarkable difference in different classes of wandering through Germany in 1193 in search of his animals in the temperature of the blood. In some it is only master, who, on his return from Palestine, had been made a degree or two above that of the surrounding medium. a prisoner by Leopold duke of Austria, and confined in Creatures with blood of this low temperature are called coldsome unknown fortress. On arriving under the walls of blooded, in contradistinction to warm blooded animals, whose the castle of Löwenstein, Blondel, who, from some intelli- temperature is maintained, under whatever variety of cirgence he had obtained, suspected that to be Richard's cumstances they may be placed, considerably above that of prison, began singing an air which they had composed the surrounding air. The temperature of the blood of the together, when to his joy he heard Richard's voice re- bird is bigher than that of any other creature. In the duck sponding and concluding the song. The discovery led to it is as high as 107°. In many quadrupeds it is considerRichard's release. This tale, which Fauchet gives on the ably higher than in man: as in the sheep, in which it ranges authority of some old French chronicle, has furnished the from 102° to 103°. In man it is 98°. Arterial is warmer subject of a well-known opera by Gretry. The truth of the by one degree than venous blood. story however is doubted. (See Berington's History of Disease is capable of effecting a considerable change in Richard I., and the article Blondel, in the Biographie the temperature of the blood. In almost every case of sever Universelle.) This last styles Richard's Blondel Blondel the temperature of the blood differs from the natural stande Nesles,' considering them as one person, and it states that dard. In the cold fit of intermittent fever (ague) it somethere are twenty-nine of his songs in MS. in the National times sinks as low as 94°; in some types of continued fever or Royal Library, and in the library of the Arsenal at it rises as high as 102°. In inflammation of moderate seParis.
verity it exceeds the natural standard by 4°; in intense inBLOOD, the animal fluid contained in the tubes called tlammation it is capable of rising above it as high as 7o. from their office blood-vessels. As long as it is retained in The chemical properties of the blood are highly curious its proper vessel, and as long as the vessel remains alive, When blood is taken from its blood-vessel, and allowed ev oks hinnd is always found in a tluid state, but essentially it I remain at rest, it soon separates spontaneously into two dis