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By George Marsh

George Perkins Marsh's guy and Nature was once the 1st ebook to assault the yank fantasy of the superabundance and the inexhaustibility of the earth. It was once, as Lewis Mumford stated, "the fountainhead of the conservation movement," and few books when you consider that have had such a power at the method males view and use land. "It is worthy interpreting after 100 years," Mr. Lowenthal issues out, "not purely since it taught vital classes in its day, but additionally since it nonetheless teaches them so well...Historical perception and modern ardour make guy and Nature a permanent classic."

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Extra resources for Man and Nature: Or, Physical Geography as Modified by Human Action (Proceedings of the Harvard Celtic Colloquium)

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The Indians of Long. Island Sound are said to have carried on a trade in dried shell fish with tribes residing very far inland. From the earliest ages, the inhabitants of the Faroe and Orkney Islands, and of the opposite mainland coasts, have smoked wild fowl and other Hesh. Hence it is possible that the animal and the vegetable food, the remains of which are found in the ancient deposits I am speaking of, may sometimes have been brought from climates remote from that where it was consumed. The most important, as well as the most trustworthy conclusions with respect to the climate of ancient Europe and Asia, are those drawn from the accounts given by the classical writers of the growth of cultivated plants; but these are by no means free from uncertainty, because we can seldom be sure of an identity of species, almost never of an identity of race or variety, between vegetables known to the agriculturists of Greece and Rome and ment of quartz, with a simple piece of round bone, one end of which was semispherical, with a small crease in it (as if worn by a thread) the sixteenth of an inch in depth, an arrow head, which was very sharp and piercing, and such as they use on all their arrows.

In the Middle Ages, worn-out fields were depopulated, in many parts of the Continent, by civil and ecclesiastical tyrannies, which insisted on the surrender of the half of a loaf already too small to sustain its producer. Thus abandoned, these lands often relapsed into the forest state, and, some centuries later, were again brought under cultivation with renovated fertility. INTRODUCTORY' 13 pitious to all her organic offspring, of repaying to our great mother the debt which the prodigality and the thriftlessness of former generations have imposed upon their successors-thus fulfilling the command of religion and of practical wisdom, to use this world as not abusing it.

INTRODUCTORY 23 those of modem times which are thought most nearly to resemble them. Besides this, there is always room for doubt whether the habits of plants long grown in different countries may not have been so changed by domestication19 that the conditions of temperature and humidity which they required twenty centuries ago were different from those at present demanded for their advantageous cultivation. 20 Even if we suppose an ide11tity of species, of race, and of habit to be established between a given ancient and modern plant, the negative fact that the latter will not grow now where it flourished two thousand years ago does not in all cases prove a change of climate.

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