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Mr. Bubs, as I said before, is a bold man at
a theory; so he fancies that the man's legs
grow longer and shorter at different intervals,
and that through one half of his path he
actually walks upside down on the under
surface of the plane: of course there is no
accounting for what solar policemen do.

Nor is this all; for he is so disgusted with
his frequent disappointments, that he determines
not to be in too great hurry to conclude
that he has found all the curious freaks of
this whimsical Superintendant; so he watches
him round and round several times, and he
finds that, as if imbued with the very essence
of perversity, the man actually passes from
one side of the plane to the other (namely,
the Motion of the Line of Nodes) at different
points, but that in any one round the two
points are exactly opposite each other; just
as the points of greatest and least speed are
always shifting, but are always, in any one
round, exactly opposite.

It has been a long weary watch, and Mr.
Bubs is quite tired out, and drops off to sleep
before he is quite aware of itand a long
sleep he has. "Now," says he on waking,
"let me see; I am to allow for his moving in
an ellipsefor his altering his speedfor his
changing the places where he alters itfor
his lengthening and shortening his legsfor
his walking upside down; for his changing
the points where he passes from one side of
the plane to the other. Well then, there he MUST
be." Alas! poor Mr. Bubs! there he is not.

An ordinary man would have given up the
whole thing in a pet; but Bubs's delight in
it rises with its difficulty; and he watches
patiently and keenly, till he at last discovers
(what had at first escaped him) that all the
other policemen have their five wires attached
to Mars, by means of the attraction of gravity,
and are perpetually tugging him about in all
directions; never any very great way from
where he would be if let alone, but still
enough to make Bubs's calculations wrong: for
when some half-dozen of them get near one
another, and have a long pull, and a strong
pull, and a pull altogether, they make Mars
go perceptibly quicker at one time than

Nor does the mischief end here; each one
has wires fastened to all the others, and Bubs
to his horror discovers that they are all
moving in the same eccentric way as Mars,
and that consequently, they are pulling each
other about in the most inexplicable manner,
and so he can never tell at any precise moment
in what direction they are pulling Mars.
Worse than all, too, he finds that they do not
all pull alike; not only do the biggest men pull
hardest, as might be expected, but the nearer
they are, the harder they tug: since Gravity
varies directly as the mass, and inversely as
the square of the distance.

One thing, however, comforts him, namely,
the fact previously mentioned, that Mars is
never pushed any great distance from the place
where he would be, if not interfered with; and
so Bubs hits upon the plan of considering each
wire by itself, (the principle in fact of the
super-position of small motions), and finding
how far Mars is pulled out of its place by it,
supposing all the others not to exist; then he
takes another, and does the same for that:
and then a third, and does the same for that:
and so on,—every time supposing the one
considered to be the only wire existing. Then
he adds all these little changes, at any given
time, together, and considers this the whole
change that the wires produce in Mars'

Of course this is not a strictly accurate
method; but Bubs finds it answers tolerably
well, and he at last has the satisfactionafter
the weary toil of many centuriesto find
that he can always look for Mars in pretty
nearly the exact spot where he ought to be.

May we all be as persevering as Mr. Bubs!

Note.—Had we put Bubs on the Earth
instead of the Sun, his difficulties would
have been greatly increased; for he would
then have been in one of the moving lights
themselves; and its eccentric motion,
combined with those of the others, would have
made them appear to go backwards and
forwards, and even to stand still. The
Earth's atmosphere would, by the Error of
Refraction, have twisted the rays of light from
the lanterns out of their true direction, and
in degrees varying most provokingly with
the state of the weather. If he got anyone
on some other part of the earth to help him,
his assistant (from looking at the lights from
a different point of view) would see them in
different positions to those in which Bubs
did, so that their accounts of them would
not agree, on account of the Error of Parallax.
Also the motion of the earth, and the velocity
of light combined, would thrust the lights
out of their right places, and thus introduce
another important errorthe Error of


'TWAS mirror'd in a bright poetic dream,
That fell upon my spirit, deeply musing;
As down it swept on Time's far-rolling stream,
'Mid phantom shapes of England's Future,

Methought that Faction slumber'd in a grave
Dug by the hands of an united people;
While thousands hymn'd a gay triumphant stave,
And merry peals rang forth from every steeple.

Long had he ruled them with an iron sway,
And bow'd their hearts to worship at his altar;
Had arm'd their tongues for never-ceasing fray,
And spurr'd to conflict those who sought to palter.

Then Love was exiled from the troubled land,
Or lurk'd unseen in some forgotten corner;
Whence stealthily she crept to fill the hand
Of fainting Famine, or to cheer the mourner.