THE WEATHER AND EARTHQUAKES
FEW persons realise perhaps how absolutely dependent are all forms of life upon the incidence of weather. Give us too much air and we experience raging
storms and hurricanes which destroy the crops and cause misery and destitution to millions. Give us too little air and animals and plants languish or die,
drought is experienced with its attendant ills, and unless fresh air cleanses the foetid atmosphere there results suffocation and loss of life. Therefore the
problem of the cause of our atmosphere, its eccentricities and peculiarities, the production of great or blazing heat waves and the apparent lack of any
systematic explanation of the reason of depressions or anti-cyclones is one of paramount importance.
We know that air is composed of various gases, mainly nitrogen and oxygen, and that if we are taken out of our element we die. What we do not know is where
this air comes from, forming as it does a sort of cushion between the world and outer space. It must be evident that our air or atmosphere requires frequent
renovation and recruitment. We cannot suppose that during the myriads of years before and since individual existence first began on this earth the atmosphere
has remained a stable force, for the merest reflection must show it to be an impossibility, and it must be renewed on many occasions. Indeed, everybody who
gives the question any thought must recognise that the incidence of great gales and tempests, when the elements wage furious war together, presupposes the
introduction of new atmospheric forces in some manner as yet unaccounted for by any method of scientific research.
The idea that rain is caused by the absorption of moisture drawn from the oceans and seas attracted by the sun's rays is one lacking scientific proof. If such
were the case the natural inference would be that rain clouds would be regularly formed and would fall incessantly like a waterfall, and on such a theory the
tropics, where the heat and consequently any attraction is greatest, should experience the most consistent and continuous rainfall, whereas we know that
except for the rainy season the tropical and sub-tropical belts of the earth are rainless as a general rule and in some parts, as in Egypt and Peru, without rain
always. It is evident that another reason must be sought to explain the incidence of weather conditions. Meteorologists teach that solar radiation is directly or
indirectly responsible for most of our weather variations, because they assume that this radiation, together with the earth's rotation, is the cause of practically
the whole of our atmospheric circulation and the phenomena of cyclones and anti-cyclones, winds and storms, resulting therefrom. It does not explain the facts
at all, for the sun's rays are constant and unvarying except in so far as big sunspots may temporarily affect radiation, but there are periods when during a
maximum of sunspots the weather is steady and settled, and there are other occasions when sunspots are at a minimum and the weather has been marked by a
succession of great storms. Whatever effect sunspots may or may not exert upon the sun's radiation it cannot justly be said that they go the first step towards
solving the problem.
It must appear, with due respect, that meteorologists are chasing a chimera. The weather, reflecting atmospheric conditions, is, it can be shown, only a part of
meteorology closely interconnected with earthquakes and volcanic eruptions. That is to say, when we have solved the true causes of both earthquakes and
volcanic eruptions, which are in their turn the effect of certain unknown causes, the mystery of the earth's atmosphere, storms, rain and depressions will be
A comet, full of mystery as it passes a beautiful vision across the heavens, I shall show, is no other than a planet hurtling to destruction. It is a world which for
one reason or another has been thrown out of the system to which it belonged, and when falling is captured or attracted by a sun, which sun eventually draws it
in and devours it for the augmentation of his own power and sustenance. The tremendous laws of the universe vary in expanse from the clash of suns and the
creation of planets, down to the residue of a comet, destined to stoke the fires of, say, our solar orb, the comet disintegrating into meteors through the terrific
heat and magnetic power of the sun, until the last movement of what was once a world in another solar system, a world containing mountains and seas, forests
and ocean depths, living creatures in all three elements including doubtless mankind, bursts up on our vision as a brilliant momentary flash of fire, a meteor,
and very probably completes its epitaph as a mere shower of rain or a thunderstorm. Thus do we pass through the gamut of celestial action.
I do not claim that in what I have to tell there is any new revelation, because, as has been hinted in this foreword, the ancients were well aware of such matters.
It is only new to the modern world because it has been utterly misled by wrong principles for the last twenty centuries or thereabouts. The principle I have to
enunciate is in essence quite simple. It is that this world (like all other planets) depends throughout for its sustenance, accretion and continuance upon
constant contact with forces outside the earth itself. The laws which govern the distribution of cometary bodies, those wonderful messengers of the Almighty,
are obscure, but they most certainly must exist. The effect of the principle I attempt in this work to establish is that our world has developed from small
beginnings to its present size by direct contact with cometary bodies or their residue, either as vast appulsions, destroying much of what formerly existed and
bringing in a new epoch, with new creations and conditions, down to the passing meteor which may not even strike our planet and yet leave behind as it passes
through our atmosphere certain gases, which condense and cause a thunder-storm or perhaps a hurricane and therefore augment our atmosphere and watery
When this principle of meteorism is established it will no longer be possible to regard earthquakes, tidal waves, volcanic eruptions, or even, perhaps, epidemics
as caused by movements within the earth, and
METEORS AND ATMOSPHERIC DISTURBANCES
The particular characteristics of this earthquake (the Tokio earthquake of 1923) are that it signalised its advent by a sultriness, created a vacuum, was
accompanied by fire and electrical or magnetic disturbances, produced an enormous quantity of rain and also a tidal wave. In a word, it displaced both the
atmosphere and the sea. It will be seen again that in its main phenomena corresponds with the "revolving storm" of the Atlantic Hurricane which occurred
almost exactly one year later. The main difference, it may be premised, was not in its character but in the locality, the missile in the one case falling in the sea of
Japan in proximity to a densely-populated country, in the other falling in mid-ocean where only its after-effects were felt, unless there happened to be a ship or
ships at the actual point of contact, when such ships would be added to the missing vessels reported at Lloyd's of which trace is ever found. The meteor as the
originating cause of the Atlantic Hurricane—if such it were—also seems to have followed a track north to south, and to have actually fallen at some point north
of the Leeward Islands.
The Amalfi landslide, comparatively insignificant as it was, belonged undoubtedly to the same genus of phenomena, and the tidal wave infers its impact with the
sea. Had it been witnessed from the bridge of a passing ship it would probably have been entered in the ship's log as a waterspout.
15. As it may be objected by the reader that had these various catastrophes been caused by falling meteors they would have been seen, it should be said that
they fall so swiftly the eye cannot fix them except at night at a distance away when they show as a long and brilliant stream of light. In the daylight they are
invisible to the naked eye and are only heralded by vapours in advance. They fall as a rule tangentially, and in their passage, nearing the earth, are the cause of
earthquakes. They appear to follow along certain lines of longitude and are apparently attracted to the volcanic belts of the earth. There is a very close
relationship between earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, and the best way to arrive at some understanding of these terrible and threatening visitations is to
examine the locale, structure, actions and produce of volcanoes.
In all the cases cited, and as will be seen in all records of earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, atmospheric conditions have been considerably affected. A
disturbance, whether it be termed an earthquake, a landslide, a tornado or a hurricane, bears a close family resemblance differing only in regard to the
magnitude of the event or to the locality wherein it may occur. The result in any case is a displacement of the atmosphere, which seeks to readjust itself and so
causes depressions of varying magnitude that may affect the weather over enormous areas and prolonged periods.
BELTS OF LONGITUDE
Professor Hale, the American meteorologist, has drawn attention to the fact that earthquakes, which he attributes to meteor collisions with the earth, usually
occur within certain defined areas and along lines of longitude rather than latitude. He says:—
The fall of the bodies seems to be governed by certain isodynamic lines of magnetism . . . these bodies fall upon certain belts of the earth as they do upon the
Sun and Jupiter . . . and the belts do not appear to follow lines of latitude but seem to be governed by polar or magnetic conditions.
When they strike the earth, continues Hale, they fall tangentially (slantwise) and generally from the direction of the Magnetic Pole. This tangential direction is
evinced, if the connection were established, in a meteor drawn to Kattlagia in Iceland, failing to strike it and falling, partly in Lisbon Harbour and partly in the
Atlas Mountains almost along the same meridian of longitude due north to south. Great although the distance be in point of mileage, some 40 degrees or 2,400
miles, the time occupied in passing from Iceland to the Atlas Mountains would only be a few moments.
The particular lines of longitude embracing this earthquake or volcanic belt can be partially defined by certain strings or lines of volcanic centres from north to
south, but into this system Malayan cones only enter for another reason to be presently defined. These linear ranges are as follows:—
(a) Jan Mayen Island, Hebrides, West Ireland, Lisbon, Atlas Mountains.
(b) Jan Mayen Island, Iceland, Madeira and Canary Islands.
(c) Greenland (East), Iceland (Hecla), Azores and Cape Verde Islands.
(d) Greenland, the Outer Antilles, Venezuela, Bolivia and Chile.
(e) Florida, the Bahama Islands, Jamaica, Ecuador and Peru.
(f) Texas and Mexico.
(h) Alaska, Honolulu (Hawaii) and perhaps North Island, New Zealand.
(i) Aleutian Islands, Marshall Islands, New Hebrides.
(j) Kurile Islands, Japan, Philippines and Molucca Group.
(k) Hainan, Saigon (Cochin-China), Sumatra and Java.
(l) Calcutta, Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
(m) Nova Zembla, Turkestan, Caspian and Caucasus.
(n) Black Sea, Turkey and the Ægean Sea.
(o) Spitzbergen, Bohemia, Vesuvius, Stromboli and Etna.
19C. The above are the main lines of longitude along which earthquakes seem to proceed in the Northern Hemisphere, although there is a pre-disposition often
seen of an earthquake disturbance to move rather from north-east towards the south-west than from due north to due south, which supports Hale's contention
of a polar or magnetic source. This system, if it may be so termed, applies in so far as polar conditions go to the Northern Hemisphere, where, on Hale's theory,
we should find not only considerable land surfaces, the residue of meteor deposits, but also evidence of great seismic and volcanic force. And so we do.
Spitzbergen, Nova Zembla, and the islands between them towards the North Pole show torn and tattered lands; the north and north-west coasts of Scandinavia
with their deep rocky fiords, like the east coast of Greenland, have been shattered by some tremendous agency in the past, while Jan Mayen Island, between
them, has a big volcano; Finland has been battered by another great disturbance; further south the Shetland and Orkney Islands, the Outer and Inner Hebrides,
and the north and western coasts of Scotland and Ireland reveal similar conditions of a terrible series of volcanic bombardments at some distant period.
Iceland possesses at least eleven or twelve great volcanoes which are intermittently active, and in fact this remarkable island with its huge cones is entirely of
volcanic formation with every mountain a volcano. Jan Mayen Island was in eruption in April, 1818, and periodically since, and the coast of Greenland possesses
two, three, and some reports say four, considerable volcanoes.
ECCENTRICITY IN NORTHERN TEMPERATURES
This extraordinary dispersion of volcanic energy is not only wholly absent in the South Polar regions, but the atmospheric and climatic conditions are there
much more equable. The Southern Temperate Zone completes an almost exact and regular circuit along the latitude of 60 degrees south, but the northern is
extremely eccentric. It rises and falls in waves, descending in the region of James Bay (Canada) to 7 degrees below the mean, whereas by a then steady incline
it includes Iceland and onwards to a place north of the North Cape, some 15 degrees above the mean level, stretching nearly 10 degrees into the Arctic regions.
Thus in the north there are extremes of variation amounting to 22 degrees.
The variation from the level of 60 degrees to 75 degrees north is explained by the Gulf Stream, of which there is no equivalent in the south. How and why the
Gulf Stream takes the course it does from the Gulf of Mexico is a problem which science has not yet resolved, but it flows steadily, with branches or canals
flowing from it, towards the magnetic north. It is not surprising, however, in view of this contest between two climatic zones, that the conditions do not make for
atmospheric calm, and that when the atmosphere is continually disturbed by the phenomena termed earthquakes the regions washed by the Gulf Stream
become the vortex of the conflicting elements.
Put very simply, the circumstances suggest that any major disturbance of the atmosphere within the North Atlantic region and probably even in the Northern
Pacific usually leads to cold, wet weather sooner or later in the British Isles. If no earthquakes were reported over a period the probability is that the British
Isles and the Atlantic would enjoy warm and fine weather. Every disturbance which takes place is or should be a sign to meteorologists to prepare for
One of the greatest and most reliable signs of all are volcanic eruptions, for reasons which I shall proceed to outline.
THE VOLCANIC KEY TO GEOLOGICAL AGES
At the same time there are indications of a change in system in some comparatively late period of geological time. The earlier system seems to have taken a
direction from east to west, and from south-east to north-west (a system earlier yet), laying down regions once extremely volcanic but now long since for the
most part disintegrated and denuded. One may trace the outline of this ancient system in Southern Europe from the Caucasus to the Carpathians, the Styrian
Mountains and Tyrol, the Pennine Alps (where in Valais and Vivarais are a line of over 200 extinct cones), all in alignment with the Pyrenees and Cantabrians in
Spain. There were once no fewer than fifteen volcanoes in Catalonia alone, and in the Auvergne, a considerable range of mainly trachyte mountains, from north
to south, cutting across an earlier range from Lozére to the Limousin Mountains, covering 156 square miles, is a chain of over seventy volcanic cones on an
earlier strata mainly of granite. This difference in linear direction presupposes a subsequent alteration in the direction of the Pole and overlapping by later
It is possible, indeed, that with further knowledge of the causes of the laying-down of volcanoes we may be enabled to reconstruct the earth much more
correctly in its various geological ages than Suess and others have hitherto been successful in accomplishing. If it should be established that great accretions
of land surfaces have been deposited by various vast appulsions of cometary bodies as Sir Isaac Newton premised as possible, and if such bodies approach the
earth from the direction of the Magnetic Pole, the linear arrangements of mountain ranges would follow the north-to-south direction from that portion of the
earth's surface at that time forming the North Pole.
Astronomers are well aware that the Poles have shifted very considerably, and have been inverted from geological age to geological age, and I venture the
suggestion tentatively that almost its earliest or initial stage lay probably in the Pacific Ocean some way south of Easter Island. If this were the case the
Polynesian islands, laid down almost invariably in a direction pointing from the south-east to the north-west, mark the earliest lands on the earth's surface,* and
coincident with these were the New Zealand Ridge, New Hebrides, Solomon Islands, New Guinea, Sumatra, and the western coast of North America from the
Sierra Madre to Alaska. In such a division the Himalayas, the Persian Mountains, the Caucasus, Carpathians and Italian Apennines should be included as part of
the original scheme. But when this occurred the southern parts of the Pacific lay within the region of the then North Pole, and of course Europe lay in the
Southern Hemisphere, assuming always that these vast impacts of meteors came from the direction of the present Magnetic Pole. The earth's axis adjusted
itself to the resultant changes.
Again, we may conjecture a further change, dependent upon the fresh masses of land surfaces projected in divers latitudes. The earth's axis swung further
round, and in consequence a new linear formation was deposited, and we discover among others the Caroline Islands, Java, some of the Tibetan Mountains, the
Eastern parts of the Hindu Kush and Pamirs, the Kohi-Baba of Afghanistan, the Styrian Alps and the Tyrol, the Pennine Alps and some of the Iberian ranges; as
well as the Venezuelan Mountains and the Mexican volcanoes. Once more it shifted, the Pole moving towards the north-west to a spot beyond perhaps the Gobi
Desert, along the line of Khuigan and Stanovoi Mountains, with Kamchatka very near the then Pole. A great many ranges were laid down in this alignment and
lands created of considerable importance, including the Chilian Andes, Scandinavia, the Vosges, Taurus Mountains in Asiatic Turkey, the Erz-Gebirge in Saxony,
the Atlas Range in North-West Africa, many of the mountains stretching down the cast coast of Africa, the Alleghany Mountains of North America, the Cambrians
and many of the Highlands of Scotland, Wales, Cornwall, and South-west Ireland. It should be understood that this is but indicative and not in any sense a
complete or comprehensive list.
THE PRESENT METEORIC SYSTEM
We now reach the present meteoric system, which in its general features appears to be directed from north or north-east to south or south-west. The Pennines
of England appear to be related to it, the Ecuador and Peruvian Andes, the Auvergne Mountains of France straddling an earlier range, and in Italy we discover a
line bisecting the Apennines, from Mount Amiata, viâ Monte Cimini, the Campagna, Phlegrean Fields, thence with Ischia on the one side and Vesuvius on the
other the line descends to the several volcanic Lipari Islands with the giant Etna and her children at the base. The other lines related to this active section have
been described previously, including all the Atlantic islands and those in the Caribbean Sea.
A century ago Moreau de Jonnés, a geologist of standing, pointed out that these volcanic chains usually follow the meridians from north to south. We have the
visual evidence of this before our eyes and records prove what physical geography confirms that for a considerable age the volcanic or seismic belt has
followed the linears from the direction of the present Magnetic or the Ecliptic North Poles. It accounts for the prevalence of meteoric falls within the regions
north of the Equator.
These are matters to which students of meteorology should direct their careful attention, for they have a vital bearing upon the world at the present time and in
the near future. The effect of it is that the Northern Hemisphere lying within the volcanic belt remains pre-eminently in the danger zone and in the event of any
great catastrophe may be expected to feel its full and awful effects until such time as by a transfer of weight, due to some vast and tremendous accretion of
materia, the earth's axis will shift to a fresh direction and once again, as has occurred during the great geological changes, another part of the earth's surface
will be enveloped within the regions of the Poles.
UNKNOWN FORMATIONS SOMETIMES EJECTED
Another feature observed in regard to volcanic eruptions is that some conglomerates expelled from the crater contain rock fragments differing entirely from
any yet discovered in situ on the surface of the earth, and containing many minerals never observed elsewhere. This phenomenon has been observed in
places like Somma (the oldest and now decayed crater of Vesuvius), Mt. Albano, Monte Cimini, the Lake of Laach, and the present Vesuvius. It has puzzled
geologists because, owing to their wholly unjustifiable belief that eruptions owe their inception solely to causes below the earth's alleged crust, unknown
minerals produced by an eruption must have been either existent strata broken through by a fissure although different from any shown in situ on the surface of
the earth, or, these strata producing this anomaly are of the recognised genus, such as primary and secondary limestones, gneiss, granite, etc., but are altered
by long exposure to subterranean heats to a totally different character.
These alternative theories may both be dismissed, the first in that if there were any uniform strata of unknown minerals we should expect to discover such
elsewhere, and also that these unknown minerals appear only rarely not as regular conglomerates in the various eruptions of such mountains but only on
special occasions. Such, for example, was experienced in the eruption of Vesuvius in 1822. The crater ejected a great number of fragments of augitic basalt
similar to those which compose the greater part of the mountain, and in so far Vesuvius was true to herself, but some of these rocks were fused into a basaltic
obsidian; on some points the leucites alone were fused; in others they were rendered carious or had entirely disappeared, their cavities being occupied or
coated with numerous beautiful crystals of melanite and by delicate acicular crystals of an unknown material. This product clearly enough had been subjected to
a very exceptional degree of torrefaction, and it is significant to note that the electrical phenomena of this particular eruption was highly charged.
From every part of the immense cloud of ashes hanging suspended over the mountain alarming flashes of forked lightning darted continually from the edges of
the cloud. They did not consist of a single zig-zag streak of light, but coruscations appeared to dart suddenly in every direction from a central point forming a
group of brilliant rays resembling the thunderbolts conceived by the ancients as reposing in the ægis of cloud-compelling Jove.
38B. The second hypothesis is also unsatisfactory, for there is no reason to accept the assertion that a volcanic eruption is an exception to the laws of nature
whereby like can only produce like. The fusing of certain augitic rocks could not therefore create an entirely new material otherwise quite unaccounted for.
An analogy has been sought in the change of secondary limestone into crystalline dolomite such as observed in Scotland and Ireland, the Tyrol and other
places, but the ingredients in such a composition are known. It is a truism to state that the liquefaction of certain rocks may produce such and such a composite,
but the liquefaction of known rocks cannot introduce some entirely new substance hitherto unknown which cannot be accounted for by any chemical analysis.
The inference is, therefore, that the presence of foreign minerals in the ejections of a volcano which do not either appear in other previous or subsequent
eruptions are due to their having been introduced by some other agency.
The very small quantity of heat radiated by lava indicates that it must owe its liquidity to some other agent than heat (caloric) alone. The lighter lavas are
composed mainly of felspar or of an aggregation of crystals, and even scoriform dust is crystallised, which is an indication that although liquefied it has not
been completely fused, for if a portion of such a lava is reduced to complete fusion by artificial heat it hardens into a glass without traces of lithoidal or
crystalline structure. A certain element or elements must therefore play a part in the construction of lava rocks, and this peculiarity is an argument against the
theory of geologists that the vast internal heat of the earth seeks an outlet and expels certain rocks in lava form, as in such case the lava might be expected to
reveal complete fusion and hence no lithoidal or crystalline structure.
As the heat in the interior of a volcano in eruption is far beyond any artificial caloric the inference must be that some of the rocks expelled in lava form have not
been completely fused, and that therefore so far from being in a liquid state in the bowels of the earth they were subjected to sudden and violent treatment,
liquefied by explosive and other gases, and rapidly expelled through the orifice of the volcano without having remained there sufficiently long to be thoroughly
This is a very important factor in determining the origin of an eruption, for there are two classes of lava recognised (with several sub-divisions), the one
felspathic and the other basaltic. The same volcano in the same eruption sometimes expels both classes of lava rock, and it will be seen in due course that the
violence of the eruption, which in turn depends upon the extraneous gases introduced, is the main determining factor.
In the summer of 1898, a cable-laying ship was trying to fish up a broken strand at a point above 500 miles north of the Azores, at a depth of about 1,700 fathoms.
The grappling-irons drew up soil and broken pieces of rock, which established the fact, it is said, that the bottom of the sea at this latitude presents the
characteristics of a mountainous country with deep valleys. The grappling irons also drew up coarse striæ and small mineral splinters, and a vitreous lava or
trachyte. M. Termier* contended that lava could only remain vitreous when it congealed in the open air and became crystallised when cooled under a mass of
previously solidified rocks, and if formed under 3,000 metres of water it would have become crystallised. As it was vitreous he contended that proof was
afforded of a former continent or land which had subsided by earthquakes. M. Termier may be perfectly correct in assuming that the Dolphin Ridge, north of the
Azores, was once land, but his deductions from the discovery of vitreous lava seem to be based on false premises. Lava assumes vitreous or crystalline form by
a variety of circumstances already discussed which have nothing to do with the pressure of water.
The same objection applies to the assumption that because volcanic particles are discovered in the ocean there must have been volcanoes in eruption to
produce them, for often volcanic phenomena are produced without any volcano. The same cause that creates these islands in the ocean and Mt. Jorullo, with its
astonishing accompaniments on land, may and undoubtedly does disperse its residue along the bed of the ocean.
A change in the world's climate would necessarily be one of the lasting effects of such a period of activity as these strings of volcanoes indicate. We cannot
begin to estimate how great a quantity of solid land was added to the earth over those 240 degrees, for, while we may trace some of the chains of longitude they
can only exist, or their vestiges, where the land still defies the ocean. Of the vast deposits which fell into the oceans and seas without establishing new land
areas we can know little, but the effect of such an addition to the earth's weight, and that mainly in one hemisphere and over a portion of that hemisphere,
would operate in three ways. In the first place it would shift the earth's axis, and consequently the Poles would move to the new points to correspond with the
readjustment of the additional burden; secondly, so unequal a distribution would require to adjust itself in regard to the inclination of the earth in relation to its
axis so that its obliquity would be increased in proportion to its inequality of balance like an ill-weighted peg-top, and as every schoolboy knows, the earth to-
day is inclined away 23° 27' 14" from the Pole of the Ecliptic, so that its Poles stretch down 23° 27' 14" accordingly; and, thirdly, the law of gravity would demand
that its annual rotation round the sun should compensate for this added weight. As to the first the Poles have shifted from a direction which I fancy lay before
somewhere about the neighbourhood of Kamchatka; the Arctic circles have increased their areas considerably as a result of the added obliquity as we know
from many indications; and as to the earth's orbit we have, since civilised man lived on the earth and possessed the calendar, added five days to the year.
Formerly the year consisted of 360 days, now it is 365 days odd, and if any one estimating the total weight of our globe takes one-seventy-third of it he will be
perhaps able to ascertain the added weight of this enormous series of deposits belonging to the last or Tertiary Stage of the world's existence.
These events in the world's history were the logical and inevitable outcome of a collision with a heavenly body or collection of bodies at a given period, say, in
the closing moments of the Tertiary Age, or, as some say, Quaternary, when the mammoth yet roamed the wilds of Siberia and was engulfed in the vast area of
snow and ice that resulted in places formerly moist and warm. This possibility of an appulsion is one to be considered more closely presently in an examination
of the composition and movements of cometary bodies, but assuming for the present that such were the media we can obtain a most important clue from
volcanoes. We see them following definite directions evidently of longitude from the region of the Magnetic Pole, or from the Pole of the Ecliptic. We see
mountain ranges obeying a great predetermined law. We see that meteors, except for a few stragglers perhaps, pass us from this same direction, north or north-
east. And whilst everything changes, the Poles, climate, earth's orbit, and whilst volcanoes undergo their birth, existence and extinction, only One remains
constant and unchanging, as far as the finite mind of man can conceive, that Centre of the Universe, the point we express as the Pole of the Ecliptic, the North
Pole of the sun. As Schiller nobly expresses it,
While man's will wavers,
And in eternal movement all things circle round,
One Tranquil Spirit remains firm in the midst.
The loftiest Living Mind,
Soaring high o'er time and space,
One God, one Holy Living Will.
DANGERS OF APPULSION
WE are gradually coming to bigger things—or considerations. I could, if it were needed, fill this work with meteorological episodes to show how the weather is
affected over wide and
distant areas by new causes ; that, unless it were replenished from reservoirs somewhere else, this world of ours would go dry, and that, therefore, we must
visualise a frequent transmission of new atmospherics injected or projected, by what, for want of a better term, we must call Divine Intervention, into this
sphere. I might term it the fruits of celestial intercourse.
Much of it may seem an indiscriminate, fluky, promiscuous intercourse. A tree or plant,
flowers, beans, seeds, some fall upon fertile soil but most do not, yet in the end the tree or plant fulfils its destiny. So presumably a world. Once a world is
created, and Nature is sufficiently lavish with meteors or cometary bodies, it will gradually pursue its function by means of profusion, although where it all ends
as to its purpose is beyond human knowledge. It may all be devised for spiritual perfection, as the churches teach, or it may not. At all events humanity on this
earth seems to be merely a pawn in the scheme of the Infinite and human life in the bulk a matter which does not bear on the subject of the evolution of worlds
at all. Hence it remains for intelligent human beings to understand as far as possible the principle of meteorism and to avoid building towns, or clustering in too
great numbers in regions where at any moment destruction upon a colossal scale may fall. The city of Messina, lying north-east of Etna, is a case in point. It is
like a man standing in front of a target at which marksmen are aiming. It has suffered often and will again, but if it were removed to a site, say 10 miles west, it
would be relatively safe.
We are coming now mainly to two somewhat significant events in the years 1927 and 1928. The first is the Jugoslavia Earthquake of February 14, 1927, and the
other is the Bulgarian Earthquake of April 18, and following days, 1928. I will tabulate the events in numbered paragraphs for purposes of simplification:
JUGOSLAVIA EARTHQUAKE, FEBRUARY 14, 1927
(a) On February 14, at night-time, a severe earthquake shook Dalmatia and Herzegovina, along the coast of the Adriatic Sea. At least 600 persons were killed and
material damage was tremendous. The roof of the town hall at Ragusa collapsed ; at Popovopolje a street of houses fell into the river, where a lake was formed ;
many other dwellings were suddenly and completely engulfed in abysses of unknown depth ; Ragusa, Stolatz, Mostar, and Metkovitch suffered most. In
numerous villages church towers fell and some churches were merely heaps of ruins.
(b) Immense blocks of stone or rocks fell upon villages in the valleys, though where they came from remained a mystery.
(c) A violent "electric storm" swept the region at the same time. "Flashes and weird lights" filled the heavens during the ominous rocking of the earth, which it
was said scientists would investigate into later. This lightning and thunder out of a clear moonlight night further terrified the people.
(d) In addition to the masses of rock or stone blocking roads and railways, a number of small rivers disappeared in districts where water was always scarce.
(e) The line of the earthquake was from N.E. to S.W., i.e. from Mostar, via Stolatz, Metkovitch, Ragusa on the coast, to Baie in Apulia, Italy, on the opposite shore.
(f) Great tidal waves swept the Dalmatian coast and drove back the refugees who rushed to the seashore when their houses collapsed.
(g) Immediately after the earthquake the weather turned icy cold and enormous quantities of rain fell, rendering the roads impassable.
Subsequent tremors shook the afflicted district the next day, secondary tremors which sometimes continue for days or even weeks, the reason being the
amount of magnetic or electric current which makes such a region very responsive to the slightest influences. The Seismographic Institute of Belgrade
announced that the shocks would recur for many months, but in point of fact they ceased immediately, only twenty minor tremors being recorded in the
following three days. I never know which to admire the most—the official seismologists, geologists or meteorologists who continue to prophesy with a
hopefulness on all occasions that knows no discouragement despite the refutation they almost always experience in the causation, continuance, and general
effect of earthquakes.
The Jugoslavia Earthquake was unquestionably a meteor, which seems to have been following a direction towards Mount Etna, and fell a few moments too soon
on the Dalmatian coast. Some portion of this elongated body—as all such are—fell as rocks and stones along the land, crushing buildings and slaughtering
people, but the main mass fell in the Adriatic Sea, whence it set up the tidal wave or waves. If the hydrographic authorities along the coasts of Italy, Greece, and
elsewhere, after an earthquake in a definite zone, would take fresh soundings and check them with existing charts they would quickly discover a remarkable
difference in sea depths.
The meteor that struck Dalmatia was no isolated specimen. On February 15, a few hours later, an earthquake was recorded by the seismograph of California
University of such dimensions that they located it at Tornales Bay, north of San Francisco. It was nowhere near there, but simultaneously tremendous blizzards
from the N.E. swept the Western United States in which many persons lost their lives. The Daily Express correspondent wired that the storm area in the Pacific
extended from the Aleutian Islands to Hawaii and Lower California. San Diego was isolated by floods and snowdrifts, along a parallel of latitude equal to Central
Morocco, further south, continuous rain fell and rivers overflowed their banks. I do not know if the officials of the Weather Bureau at Washington attributed the
origin of this tremendous blizzard with its millions of tons of snow and rain to solar radiation or what they really thought about it.
On the same day as the American blizzard Tokio reported a 41 hour earthquake in Kamchatka, Siberia, which was described by Reuter as of equal intensity to the
Tokio shocks of September 1923. At or about the same time (February 15-16) the volcano Sogoris, in the Black Sea region, long supposed to be extinct and done
for, burst into violent eruption and many people were killed, while hundreds of houses were destroyed. Volcanoes are very difficult to kill. Popocatepetl lay
quiescent for four hundred years and flared up again. Vesuvius has been dormant for periods of two hundred years and burst forth worse than ever. Cities like
Bath, Somerset, built in the crater of an extinct volcano, with waters still heated indicate somnolence or a state of solfatara and might again draw in a meteor.
There is no more trusting a volcano than a rhinoceros.
On February 17, Jersey, Guernsey, and Weymouth (Dorset) felt severe shocks. In Brittany a large district from Cherbourg to St. Malo, with Caen, Granville, and
other places on the west coast were rocked with tremors. The meridian N.E. to S.W. is from Weymouth to the Channel Isles, on to Cherbourg, Granville, St. Malo,
and Rennes, where severe shocks were felt. There is no real security in these ancient volcanic areas as the Channel Isles and Brittany were once, despite the
geologists' explanation of earthquake zones and geological "faults."
All these events so closely wedded together indicate, like others quoted, passing meteors, which strike or sometimes pass onwards, all intensely charged with
electricity and explosive gases, and all capable of wrecking incalculable mischief if they strike in a greatly populated district. They may have been precursors or
stragglers from a cometary body, a possibility we will examine into subsequently, for comets are frequently missed or confused with stars by our astronomers. At
all events, ten or eleven days later a large celestial body passed close to the earth.
Early on Saturday morning, February 26, a "large meteor" was observed by the Hereford police, moving south-west, of yellowish incandescent colour. An
observer at Sunbury (Middlesex) described it as a passing meteor or as a collection of brilliant shooting stars. "It looked as if the moon were falling out of the
skies," said an eye-witness in Hereford. Some Bath residents said "the heavens suddenly illuminated with wondrous brilliance and a huge ball of fire shot
westwards across the sky, leaving in its train a series of constellations." (Weekly Dispatch, February 27, 1927.) There were several witnesses of this apparition
in the heavens and they agreed in thinking it to be of considerable size and of great brilliance.
What happened to it?
Evidently it passed on.
There was no report of an earthquake. No newspaper story of a tidal wave. On the other hand, simultaneously with this "ball of fire" the weather in Great Britain
veered from fine to wet. Friday, on which night the meteor was seen, was very fine. An anticyclone held sway. The wind suddenly shifted round on Saturday and
Sunday, while a great gale at 60 miles an hour prevented liners from entering Queenstown Harbour. A deluge swept the land. The Thames rose 7 feet above
normal and flooded a great area, and it was stated that 27 million tons of water were dumped on London alone. Was this a mere coincidence?
The earlier period of September 1927 saw some strange occurrences in the Pacific Ocean, including earthquakes, tidal waves, and a blazing island. The dates of
some of these visitations were carelessly reported—newspaper correspondents would assist enormously in these investigations if they would give the date
and the hour when they can—but the events in question had the merit of being theorised upon by the famous scientist, Sir Oliver Lodge.
Once again I will enumerate the sequence of events:
PACIFIC OCEAN OUTBREAK, SEPTEMBER 1927
(a) A tidal wave of magnitude flung itself on the western shores of Mexico, with heavy resultant destruction along the coast towns and more especially in the
Gulf of Tehuantepec. The tidal wave was accompanied by a tempest extending over an area of more than 1000 miles. At Selina Crux, Oaxara, a great part of the
town was inundated by the waves. This was on Wednesday, September 7.
(b) Monday, September 12. New York reported, from steamship information at Dutch Harbour, Alaska, that the volcanic island of Bogoslov, Behring Sea, was
ablaze. Smoke and steam issued frequently from every part of the island, and numerous large red-flame cracks were seen by ship. The air smelt sulphurous.
Countless sea-lions and sea-birds were swarming about in the surrounding discoloured water, the sea-lions barking wildly. The steamer was unable to approach
closer than 3 miles. Bogoslov is a volcanic island which rose suddenly from the sea in 1796. Some years ago it disappeared and then reappeared above the
waves with an active volcano. Since 1910, when this happened, it had been gradually "cooling off" until this event.
(c) Tuesday, September 13. The island of Kyushu, Japan, the southernmost of the four main islands, was devastated by a huge tidal wave and a typhoon, in which
over 1000 persons were drowned, houses flooded, and cattle washed away when it came inland. Reuter said that the tidal wave succeeded deep rumblings,
indicating a submarine earthquake. The towns of Kojima and Nakamura were covered temporarily by a wall of water 10 feet in height, which carried everything
before it and swept some houses 2 miles inland. Districts along the west coast of Kyushu and Korea on the opposite side of the Straits, were destroyed by a
terrific typhoon from N.E. to S.W., and the ocean cables across the Straits were interrupted and damaged. Kabashima, an island west of Nagasaki, on the west
coast of Kyushu, suffered very severely by the tidal wave and typhoon, and here 1000 persons were missing or killed.
Hundreds of fishing vessels were swamped and lost with their crews. Nagasaki and Kumamoto were severely shaken by the quake and many houses collapsed.
These three events, close together in point of time and all separate, were probably inter-connected, and it is a reasonable hypothesis that the phenomena
associated with Bogoslov Island reacted upon the later earthquake in Kyushu and probably that off the Pacific coast of Mexico. An event like the Bogoslov
incident emits magnetic waves or coils which act as a conductor to passing meteors liable otherwise to pass along into space. This magnetic attraction, first
advanced, I believe, by Professor G. E. Hale, is one to be examined at greater length when the whole question of cometary bodies and their objects is reviewed.
Sir Oliver Lodge, interviewed by the Daily Express (September 15, 1927) on this succession of earthquakes, tidal waves, typhoons, burning island, rainstorms,
and floods, which all took place at this time, had no better solution to offer than the old cliche that "there is no doubt that the earth's crust is settling down," an
explanation which could have been offered of Noah's Flood, the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, and other incidents in the past in the world's history, not
forgetting the large numbers of extinct volcanic ranges belonging sometimes even to the Primary or Secondary Ages according to geologists, and relating to
periods of more than a million years ago. How long is the "world's crust" going to take to "settle down," one may well inquire?
On Monday–Tuesday, March 5-6, 1928, a severe earthquake was felt in Southern Italy and Sicily, and the weather in England was almost immediately affected. Up
to the 6th the north of Europe had enjoyed an unusual anticyclone, it being almost summer-like with the sun and warmth. On Tuesday night, some 20 hours after
the Italian quake, the weather changed completely. The wind abruptly changed from S.W. to N.E., heavy rain fell, and it became extremely cold. On Friday, 9th,
Kew recorded a "very large earthquake" at 6.18 p.m., Bombay reported a shock about 1880 miles distant, and later, messages from Colombo, Ceylon, where
some windows were shattered, confirmed an earthquake. Seismologists guessed various places, Sumatra being the most popular guess, as its epicentre, but it
later transpired to have been in the vicinity of the Persian Gulf, telegrams from Seistan notifying two shocks on the night of the 9th, when a village was
devastated, 1000 houses were destroyed and some lives were lost.
If this were caused by a meteor the resultant weather conditions may be explained, for it would have passed over via Siberia. On the 10th and 11th an icy gale
smote Eastern and Northern Europe. The Weekly Dispatch reported 600 miles of snowstorms in Britain, on "the year's coldest day," with mountain roads blocked
with snowdrifts. Germany suffered from a severe blizzard, and the Rhineland as well as large parts of Northern France were under snow.
But now we are coming on a bigger theme, or, rather, one which suggests possibilities of a nature that can only be described as staggering.
We are still, in March 1928, only at the tail end of it. On March 31 there was a severe earthquake in Smyrna at 2.30 a.m., which continued intermittently for 60
minutes. Every factory chimney collapsed, numbers of houses lay in ruins, and a number of lives were lost. That was merely a forerunner of what was going to
happen in the ensuing days.
A few days before (Daily Telegraph, March 28, 1928) Reuter announced from Cape Town that the star Nova Pictoris, only discovered in South Africa in 1925, had
split in two. A few days before La Plata Observatory, Argentina, had reported that the star "was presenting a very strange appearance." Mr. Walter G. Bell, F.R.A.
S., in the Daily Telegraph said that "the splitting into two of a New Star unquestionably is a novelty." He also said, "we are in the presence of something new, for
no precedent can be recalled." Sir Frank Dyson, the Astronomer Royal, said, "The event is most unusual." Sir James Jeans, whose speculations on stellar space
have made him world famous—few dare controvert our astronomical Ariel's flights of aery fancy—expressed doubts if the news could be true. It was not only
true, but within a month, on April 27, it broke into four pieces like certain comets, especially De Biela's Comet.
Was this alleged Nova Pictoris a star, that is, a sun in the heavens, the centre of a solar system, or was it a comet that seemed to be in the constellation of
Pictor? It was, at the best, a very faint star, tabulated in the 11th magnitude, which means the object is very faint indeed. We see astronomers were utterly
sceptical over the announcement that the "star" had broken in two, before it broke into four, even yet more unprecedented in a star but not unusual in a comet.
It must also be recognised that astronomers are for the most part mainly geometrists and mathematicians to whom as a rule anything new or unexpected is
regarded with dislike and inertia because the mathematical mind concentrates, not on speculations but on the expected and inevitable proved by logic—as
figures go. There have been a great many other "nova" stars within the last few years and they have mostly vanished. And astronomers do not like comets. They
cannot decide their careers with certainty. They continually prove them wrong. So they dismiss them as a sort of stellar wraith.
However, towards the end of March 1928 here was this eccentric Nova Pictoris breaking in two like a jelly fish and then again subdividing itself into four pieces!
A star, as the astronomers assumed? or a comet dimly seen in the direction of Pictor and actually approaching our earth? These distances are very deceptive.
We have seen a lot of trouble happening in March with Italy, Colombo, and Persia prominent in earthquake news, and resultant phenomenal weather in Europe.
We see the further Smyrna example of seismic unrest. Across on the other side of the earth in Mexico, in Oaxaca State, came a report of violent convulsions
which had devastated the towns of Plumas, Hidalgo, and Xodani on La Sirena mountain. "Rocks rolling down the hill slope completed the destruction of the
hamlets in their path. Fissures of from 1 to 3 feet opened up in the mountain side." (Reuter's, in Daily Telegraph, March 28.) According to Reuter, these
earthquakes had continued for six days. Back to Europe once more. On 27th there was a strong shock at 9.40 a.m. in Udine, near Venice, felt as far north as in
Munich and Southern Austria. In Venetia "great havoc was wrought by the earthquake yesterday" (Daily Express, March 29), and many towns and villages
suffered severely; also Tolmezzo—"a terrible panic broke out at Tolmezzo, where great masses of rock fell from the mountains and increased the destruction."
Curious, indeed, the way these rocks on so many occasions fall from the hills! If rocks or stones fall in valleys it is the only apparent explanation! Meanwhile the
sequence of phenomena continued. On April 9 a typhoon in Honduras caused the greatest rain experienced even there for fifty years. In Peru an earthquake
added to the chain, and besides this, in Chile, was such a snowfall that two hundred people and thousands of animals were buried in drifts, this in a latitude
corresponding from Spain and Portugal to Morocco in the Old World. It was something exceptional.
Then on Saturday, April 14, there started the devastating series of earthquakes in Bulgaria and Greece, also including the Black Sea, Southern Austria, and Italy,
which we will term
THE BULGARIAN SERIES OF EARTHQUAKES, APRIL 1928
(a) Saturday, April 14. Shocks were felt in Philippopolis, the second city of Bulgaria, which persisted in tremors and rumblings on the next few days.
(b) Wednesday, April 18. At 9.20 p.m. buildings in Philippopolis began to quake and crash. There was a strange subterranean thunder and a "rustling whistling
sound" overhead. This broke out on every side and devoured the buildings, 5000 homes being ruined and 80,000 persons rendered homeless. In many places
"vast chasms" opened in fields, in some cases slowly closing again. Jets of water 6 feet high sprang from others flooding villages and fields. All through the
night there were vertical "swaying movements" of the earth, alternated with "sharp shakes" of the ground directly underfoot. The road between Philippopolis
and Papzly was marked with innumerable crevices and traffic was impossible.
(c) Friday, April 20. In the early hours fifty new shocks completed the destruction of Philippopolis, whose inhabitants became panic-stricken. The "greater part of
a small mountain" descended in the form of a "landslide" on the villages of Statovo and Scovello.
(d) With these shocks followed immediately heavy storms and intense cold.
(e) Mr. C. J. Ketchum, the Daily Express Special Correspondent, a little later (May 3) on the spot said that 39 villages in Philippopolis had been completely wiped
out, while in the neighbouring province of Cheribon no fewer than 48 towns and villages had been demolished.
(f) Great lakes were created. Mr. Ketchum said that ruins in some cases had almost disappeared under great lakes caused by the earthquake.
(g) April 20. Same day as (c) ante. Shocks were felt in Adrianople, Constantinople, Smyrna, and the Dardanelles, but no damage was reported. (Daily Express,
April 21, 1928.)
(h) Tuesday, April 24. Greece from Cape Matapan to Epirus shaken by earthquake, 13 shocks recorded. Particularly severe in Sparta, at Mount Olympus, and
above all in Corinth, where walls of buildings crashed to ground. Lake Ætoliko, near Missolongli (north of the Gulf of Corinth) presented a remarkable spectacle.
The water appeared to boil, there were continual subterranean explosions, and jets of steam and mud were hurled into the air. A crevasse 0.25 mile long
opened at Coconi, near Corinth, and a stream of black water gushed forth. (Daily Express, April 25, 1928.) Terror reigned through Peloponnese. The shocks at
Corinth were accompanied by a violent storm of rain, and hail which fell in hailstones as large as almonds. The first shock was felt half an hour after midnight,
and a still more violent shock was felt at 2.30 a.m. and brought the tottering walls crashing down.
(i) An exceptionally strong tide was felt in the Piræus where usually the tide is negligible. It came in with extreme swiftness, and the water rose 19 inches above
(j) Wednesday, April 25. The British United Press announced that the volcano near Corinth burst into violent eruption. The islands of Syra and Mitylene in the
Ægean Sea were damaged by earthquake shocks.
(k) Wednesday, April 25. Fresh shocks in Bulgaria and great damage at Burgas. Further damage was done at Harmanly and Stara Zagora.
(l) Wednesday, May 1. Violent cyclone over Stara Zagora (north of Philippopolis) and surrounding district, moving from north to south, and sweeping Northern
Bulgaria from Russe to Gorna-Drechovitza. It carried away roofs from houses, destroyed a mosque, and swept away buildings.
That completes what might be described as the official category. The story of refugees and their belongings, of people crushed to death, of others swallowed
up, of looters and ruffians who trade on misery—these are not the concern of the inquiry except to lament the tragedy. Perhaps I might add that the New York
Sun (April 27) reported that a "5-hour rain of mud filled streets ankle-high, causing terror at Lemburg and Cernowitz to-day." Where did the mud come from?
They could not say of the mud as they had of the rocks that it fell off the mountains.
We will briefly recapitulate the chief phenomena of these shocks. Philippopolis, a strange subterranean thunder and a rustling whistling sound in the air. Fires
broke out and demolished the city. Vast chasms about Philippopolis in the fields, innumerable crevices in the road. Jets of water spring from these chasms
about the Bulgarian city, a lake in Greece appears to boil and ejects mud and steam, great lakes are created in Bulgaria and swallow up ruins, a crevasse near
Corinth opens up and expels black water. What does it signify? Part of a mountain falls as a landslide on Bulgarian villages as masses of rock fell on Tolmezzo a
few days earlier. Tremendous storms at Philippopolis with severe cold. Violent storms of rain and great hailstones in Corinth. A violent cyclone at Stara Zagora
of the meteoric order, and a rain of mud in Lemburg and Cernowitz. And with all this, and other earthquakes elsewhere, a supposedly extinct volcano near
Corinth proves to be very much alive.
What is it all caused by? The answer is meteors. It is so evident these new materia such as the rocks and the mud came from somewhere, and they were
certainly not thrown up from the bowels of the earth. When meteors strike an alluvial region they open up crevasses or chasms, which usually close up again,
sometimes remaining as lakes containing water, mud, or petroleum. In the Charleston Earthquake of 1886, which produced many of the effects of the Græco-
Bulgarian Series, there were left behind as a legacy lakes of petroleum, spouting geyzers, and sulphurous emissions.
I ask again if Nova Pictoris which broke into two and then into four parts was a star or a comet in the direction of the sign Pictor. These astronomers are so
unreliable. If it were a cometary body on passage which approached fairly close to our earth coming directly towards us but in fact crossing behind or rather
beneath the earth it would according to my records be affected by the magnetism of the earth, and whilst, fortunately, not sufficient to draw it in, it might
occasion the perturbations which broke it into four parts. It also would explain why certain minor portions of the whole, in a body rapidly undergoing
disintegration, would be attracted away and produce on the earth the identical form of phenomena which took place in so many parts of the world, on this
occasion more in the southern or semi-southern hemisphere than in the northern. The only exception I would make to the series as related to the near
presence of Nova Pictoris is the cyclone at Stara Zagora on May 1.
Let us revert to 1924 for a somewhat similar analogy.
The tail end of 1924 was noteworthy for the enormous quantities of rain that fell over almost all the Northern Hemisphere. The year went out on an astonishing
series of gales and floods which began with no premonitory warnings on December 26 and continued until January 3, 1925. It was apparent to any student of
meteorology that something unprecedented could alone account for this vast quantity of new atmospherics suddenly flung into the world. Nevertheless no
earthquakes or seismic disturbances were reported although millions of tons of water had been thrown down by north-east gales upon the shores of Britain and
Then there came the clue!
On December 25-26 a great meteor was observed in Rome flashing past the earth. It was estimated to have been as big as the moon, and it passed by close
enough to use the word "shave," as celestial objects go. The authorities of Greenwich Observatory when interviewed as to the potentialities of this unknown
visitor preserved their equanimity despite the awful menace which had threatened the whole earth on that Christmas Day. The American Press, far more alert in
such matters, evinced a lively interest in the event, and were by no means reconciled to the harmlessness of the apparition. The most astonishing explanation
of it was offered by Dr. Crommelin, of Greenwich Observatory. He thought it was probably a "celestial object" discovered by Dr. Baade, of Bergedorf, at the end
of the previous October, when it was then two months' distance away. Greenwich then pronounced it a "minor planet," and, according to Dr. Crommelin, it had
an orbit which brought it nearer to the earth than any except perhaps Eros. (Morning Post, October 31, 1924.)
I say it was an astonishing explanation in more senses than one. Why had the world of astronomy never heard before of this "minor planet" which approached
so close to the earth, closer even than Eros? How can astronomical science support the view that a planetary body was appearing merely as a "celestial object"
in October for the first time as known to science and shooting past the earth at such close quarters that it looked as big as a moon? If so, where has it gone? If
it had been a minor planet, if the orbits of planetary bodies are based on the law of gravity, whereby the weight of a planet determines the orbit it performs, how
could a minor planet be careering along upon an orbit presumably equal to or greater than the earth's? It is astonishing, indeed, that any astronomer, let alone a
man who holds the highest official position in Great Britain in the realms of astronomy, could offer so fatuous an explanation of the "celestial object."
The only intelligible explanation of the celestial object seen on December 24, 1924, is that it was a very considerable meteor or a comet, circular in appearance
because it was heading towards the earth, either above or below, and showed therefore its head as a motor-car coming towards one straight shows its radiator.
If it were of the immensity described and had struck our earth it would undoubtedly have occasioned the most profound changes apart from the series of
devastating earthquakes and other prodigies it would have caused. It would have ended the present epoch and another would have evolved, while probably
not the least of its effects would have been a change in the direction of the Poles. It missed the earth, according to the Rome report, by very little. One day, as
all philosophy teaches and science supports, such a "celestial object" will plunge us all into eternity, but it does not seem as though astronomers will give us as
much warning as, according to ancient tradition, Father Prometheus gave to Deucalion. It is quite possible that the celestial object of December 24, 1924, was
the same as Nova Pictoris seen receding in 1925, and that it returned some three years and a few months later in 1928.
The science of meteorism is of the utmost importance to the world. It is in fact the only philosophical science of real importance because modern astronomy
largely reduces itself to mathematical calculations as to the relative distances of celestial bodies, and these seem to have little practical value to anyone. It uses
geology where geology is useful and discovers its weak spots as it does vulcanism and seismology. It explains much of the past which archæologists and
biologists cannot do, and reveals a great deal of the future.
It enables us to understand that it is possible the steady shower of warm and fertilising rain on a parched and hungry soil may denote the expiring activities of a
movement which began æons ago in another planet and in another solar system, a planet that passed through all the ages of burning youth, adolescence, old
age, until at last a giant far from its sun it lost its place in the heavens, and plunged, like Lucifer, into the immensity of space, a lost planet, a dead world, yet
destined to replenish another sun and seek rebirth by contact with other planets.
Meteorism will teach the origin of worlds and the evolutions of planets. Meteor impact explains the existence of mountain ranges not internal "crinklings," the
existence of volcanoes, earthquakes, the land surfaces, the seas, and the very air we breathe. Nothing else does. Meteorism explains the creation of species,
of great saurians, reptiles, mammals, fish, birds, and insects, as well as the origin of the human species. It may astonish my reader if I assert that species are still
brought periodically by meteor agency into our world, and that also plagues and pestilences come from a similar source. But I will produce the evidence to such
In spite of the vast importance of the subject meteorism is scarcely recognised as yet as a science. No encouragement is given to the student to prosecute a
subject which if it did no more for humanity would doubtless save many thousands of lives by the mere establishment of principles of meteorism. Its only
recognition is in the form of commercialised meteorology, based on false premises, and only useful in so far as stations or observatories can collect information
as to movements of wind or rain or both. Even then so often is the weather forecast hopelessly wrong that the meteorological authorities have become a
standard joke for inaccuracy.
Copyright RESONANCE BookWorks with The Estate of Comyns Beaumont 2012