The plant from which the Chinese Rice papier is made, has long been unknown, and many conjectures have been hazarded regarding it.There can be no doubt that the paper is composed of cellular tissue, and is prepared from the plant without any process of maceration. In the East Indies it would appear that a kind of Rice-paper is procured from the stem of aeschynomene palvdota, and it is probable that many plants with abundant pith might be employed in a similar manner, in the same way as the Papyrus was employed in ancient times. Stems of the Indian aeschyno-mcne are to be seen in the Museum of the Edinburgh Botanic Garden. Chinese Rice-paper, however, comes from a totally different plant. M. Berthold Seeman, who accompanied Her Majesty's ship Herald, gives, in the Kew Miscellany, the following account of his attempt to find the plant in China. He says: -

"It was my particular desire to obtain the plant of which the Rice-paper is made. On my arrival all I could learn was, that the paper was manufactured from vegetable pith; respecting the name of the plant, its vegetation, and native province, the most contradictory statements prevailed. My first aim was to discover the vernacular name of the plant;after I had succeeded in obtaining this, through the aid of an intelligent missionary, Mr. Vogel. I experienced no further difficulty in collecting information, and in finding a Chinaman willing to procure specimens. The plant grows abundantly in the province of Yunnan, and in the work of Li-sin-chin there is a figure and description of it. Mr. Williams, the well-known author of " The Mid-die Kingdom," has kindly rendered that account into English for me, and the following is a transcript of his version: - 'The Tung-toh-muh, or as it is sometimes called. Tung-tsau (i.e. hollow plant,) grows on the sides of hills. Its leaves resemble the Castor-oil plant (Rici-nua communis.

Linn.;) the stem is hollow, and has in its heart a white pith, which is prized for its lightness and whiteness, and collected in order to make ornaments for women.' Kuoh-poh says: 'It grows in Kiang-nan, is about 12 or 14 feet high, and has leaves which are large and fleshy like those of the Nelumbium. In the stem is a very white pith. Gardeners now sow the seed, and also transplant the plant. If the stem is cooked with honey,, and mixed with preserved fruit, the taste is sweet and pleasant." Li-shi-chin says: ' The stalks of those plants which grow in the hills are large, several inches in circumference. The taste and virtues of this plant are sweet, cooling, and innocuous. It aids the secretions, it stops diarrhoea and excess of urine, and lielps the expectorations. A tincture of the burnt stalks reduced to power is good for lock jaw".

M. Seemann, from the description given, and the wood cut annexed to it. thought that it was a Malvaceous plant. But it now appears that the plant belongs to Araliacese, and it has been called by Sir William Hooker, Aralia paprcifera. A figure is given in the Kew Miscellany, for Jan. 1862. The leaves of the plant are large and radiating, lobed at the margin, and some what resembling the leaf of a large Sycamore, the pulp is in large quantities, and seems to be hollow and to descend in the center. - J. of H.