The important and different results to which we have cursorily referred, are in most cases greatly, and in others exclusively indebted for their formation, to an instrument based upon the law of rotary motion, (one of the most simple though perfect yet discovered,) the turning lathe, to which and its numerous accessories and subordinates, we must largely attribute the extension of the arts, by which our comfort and well-being have been materially augmented: whilst their abstraction from our hands would deprive us of numerous sources of industrious employment, and the constructive and mechanical arts would, in all probability, eventually degenerate nearly to the low condition in which they may be still observed to be, amongst the few primitive aboriginal races yet remaining at the present day.

It will not therefore be taking too high a ground to call the lathe, - that primary machine which has conferred all these benefits upon us, - an engine of civilisation, and it may also be further asserted, that the extension of its employment in the higher and more important branches of manufactures and arts, especially in Great Britain, coupled with the talent, perseverance and industry of those who have developed its powers, have aided in elevating our country to its eminence among nations, by administering to its productive means, and its knowledge, and consequently, to its wealth and dominions.

I will now advert to the works that have been published on the art of turning, the honour attached to priority in which, belongs to France, the first treatise written exclusively upon the subject, being a folio volume entitled, " L' Art de Tourner en Perfection," by "lePere Charles Plumier,(ReligieuxMinime") and printed at Lyons in 1701. The author herein goes so far back as to refer the practice of the art to Tubal Cain, who is recorded in Sacred Writ to have been the first worker in metal; whilst others attribute to him the invention of wind instruments, the organ, and various machines. Plumier considered it impossible that the circular parts of such works could have been made otherwise than by the process of turning, which therefore he presumes to have been known to mankind at an extremely latin and french treatises.

remote period; he also considers that the numerous circular works and object recorded to have existed in Solomon's Temple,

Including the lamps and musical instruments used therein, could not have been produced otherwise than by the use of the lathe.

That account of the origin of the art winch ascribes it to Daedalus, and which is quoted by Plunder and the various Encyclopaedists, appears to be derived from Felibien, (who wrote in 1690,) as will be seen by this literal extract from his pages. "L' invention du Tour est (res ancienne; Diodore de Sicile dit que le premier qui le ,mit en usage estoit un neveu de Dedale nomme Talus. Pline rent que ce soil un Theodore de Samoa; et il parle d'un Thericles qui se rendit celebre dans ces sortes d'ouvrages.

"Cestoit avec cette machine qu'ils tournoient toutes sortes de vases, dont quelques-uns estoient enrichis de figures, et d'ornemens en demy-bosse. Les Auteurs Grecs et Latins en parlent souvent, 'et Ciceron appelle ceux qui les formoient au Tour, Vascularis Cestoit un proverbe parmy les Anciens, de dire que les choses estoient faites au tour, pour en exprimer la justesse, et la delicatesse."*

In conclusion the writer adverts to the great extent to which the art of turning had been practised by various persons, (gens, libres,) as a source of amusing occupation. Without pursuing these researches it may suffice to observe, that sufficient evidence exists that the art of turning has been successfully practised during a period of not less than two thousand years, although until a comparatively recent date, no description has been given of the methods pursued.

Plumier adverts to the following old authors on various sub-jects, in which, amongst other matters, some brief allusions to the art are made, and which in point of date stand as follows:

1582. Besson's work, "Theatrum Instrumentorum et Machina-rum," has three engravings of complex lathes for screw-cutting, and oblique turning, with very slight descriptions.

1624 . De Caus, "Les Raisons des Forces Mourantes," contains one engraving, and a few lines explanatory of a mode of turning the oval and of screw-cutting.

1677-83. "Moron's Mechanick Exercises, or the Doctrine of

Liv.7 c. 56. Liv 16, c. 40.

Lenta quibus torno facilis super addits vitis.

Virg. Egl 3.

Vascularious comtrocari jubet.

Oic. Orat. in Ver.

* Pages 3767

Handy-works," published in London, in monthly parts. Vol. I. contains, "Smithing, Joinery, Carpentry, Turning,Bricklayery,and Mechanick Dyalling," with a good description of the apparatus for turning. Vol. II., "Handy-works applied to the Art of Printing"

1690. Felibien, "Des Principes de l'Architecture, de la Sculpture, de la Peinture, et des autres Arts qui en dependent:" Paris. This author has devoted twelve pages to his remarks on the lathe, with a few words relative to the modes of oval turning, and to rose-engine work.

In 1719, (that is, eighteen years after Plumier's book,) a quarto volume was published at Lyons, styled "Recueil d' Outrages curieua;, de Mathematique et de Mecanique; ou description du Cabinet de M. Grollier de Serviere, par son petit-fils." This work contains eighty plates, with etchings of his grandfather's designs for time-pieces, hydraulic machines, various bridges, military and other works, preceded by twelve plates of several of his highly-ornamental works executed in the lathe.

And lastly, in 1724-7, Leupold published at Leipzic eight folio volumes, entitled "Theatrum Machinarum," etc, which include a vast store of curious and useful matter, containing the germs and principles of many contrivances that are now commonly and abundantly used.