31 JANUARY 1880, Page 3

A meeting was held at the Mansion House on Wednesday

in support of Commander Cheyne's proposed expedition to the North Pole, in the prosecution of which he intends to avail -himself of the aid of balloons,—partly for investigating the -currents of air and the obstacles to be overcome, partly for travelling over the last two or three degrees. Dr. Samuel Winne made an interesting speech on the scientific objects -of the expedition,—on the probability of determining by the pendulum itself whether the centre of the earth is twenty- six miles nearer to the Pole than to the Equator, as -astronomers have calculated it to be. As the day lasts six months attire Pole, and the night six mouths, the observations on the sun and on the solar time, as determined by the "solar chrono- meter,"—a.sun-dial which determines the time to seconds,—would be of great interest And to determine the fossil flora and fauna of tie Pole,—which must be very different from its present fauna and flora,—would be in itself a considerable achievement. Commander Cheyne hopes to leave the ship in good quarters, to reach the North Pole by the help of the balloons, then to avail himself of the same means of returning to some different point of longitude in the latitude of the ship, and then by sledge to rejoin his ship. The estimated cost is £30000, which is to be raised by voluntary contributions, Lord Derby having already promised £100. If anything approaching to success -were achieved at that cost, it would be cheap indeed. To win

new frontier for science, would be to secure a far better prestige, than any military conquest of a scientific frontier for -empire can either obtain or deserve.