Untitled however, the knowledge of recent discoveries, which have resulted in this estimate being very greatly increased.] [Illustration: _Photo: Lick Observatory._ A GIANT SPIRAL NEBULA Laplace's famous theory was that the planets and the earth were formed from great whirling nebul±.] [Illustration: _Photo: Natural History Museum._ METEORITE WHICH FELL NEAR SCARBOROUGH, AND IS NOW TO BE SEEN IN THE NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM It weighs about 56 lb., and is a "stony" meteorite, i.e., an aerolite.] § 2 The Beginning of the Earth When we speak the language of science we cannot say "In the beginning," for we do not know of and cannot think of any condition of things that did not arise from something that went before. But we may qualify the phrase, and legitimately inquire into the beginning of the earth within the solar system. If the result of this inquiry is to trace the sun and the planets back to a nebula we reach only a relative beginning. The nebula has to be accounted for. And even before matter there may have
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