Volltext: Planchette: Or, The Despair of Science

“ Professor Peirce then took his place in the cabinet between 
the two brothers, who could scarcely breathe, so tightly were 
they secured. As he entered, Prolessor Agassiz was seen to put 
something in his hand. The side doors were closed and fastened. 
The centre door was no sooner shut than the bolt was shot on 
them inside, and Professor Peirce stretched out both hands to 
see which of the two firmly bound boys had done it. The phan¬ 
tom hand was shown, the instruments were rattled : the profes¬ 
sor felt them about his head and face, and at every movement 
kept pawing on each side with his hands, to find the boys both 
bound as firm as ever. Then the mysterious present of Pro¬ 
fessor Agassiz became apparent. The professor ignited some 
phosphorus by rubbing it between his hands, and half-suffocated 
himself and the boys with its fumes in trying to see the trick or 
the confederate. 
uAt last, both boys were untied from all the complicated 
fastenings without and weithin the cabinet; and the ropes were 
found twisted around the neck of the watchful Professor Peirce ! 
Well, and what came of it all? Did the professors of Harvard 
tell what they had seen? Not in the least. To this day they 
have made no report whatever of the result of their investiga¬ 
tion, and are probably, to this day, denouncing it all as humbug, 
imposture, delusion, &c. What can a man of science do with a 
fact he cannot account for, except deny it? It is the simplest 
way of overcoming a difficulty, and avoiding the confession that 
there is something in the world which he does not understand. 
Of all men in the world, men of science, and especially scien¬ 
tific professors, are the last to acknowledge that i there are more 
things in heaven and earth, than are dreamt of in their phi¬ 
Thus ended the famous investigation into the phenomena by 
the Cambridge professors. As appropriate to the subject, we 
quote the following remarks from a letter by the late Dr. William 
Gregory, of Edinburgh, a well-known writer and physician: — 
u The rational inquirer will soon find that there are innumera¬ 
ble causes of failure,—such as the state of health of the sub-


Sehr geehrte Benutzerin, sehr geehrter Benutzer,

aufgrund der aktuellen Entwicklungen in der Webtechnologie, die im Goobi viewer verwendet wird, unterstützt die Software den von Ihnen verwendeten Browser nicht mehr.

Bitte benutzen Sie einen der folgenden Browser, um diese Seite korrekt darstellen zu können.

Vielen Dank für Ihr Verständnis.