This book outlines all the important discoveries that had been made in natural philosophy up to the end of 1853 near when it was published. It conveys an assurance that every truth, however abstract it may appear, has a large popular value if studied in its relation to those generalities that embrace great natural phenomena. The True is the Beautiful. Whenever this becomes evident to our senses, its influences are of a soul-elevating character. The beautiful, whether it is perceived in the external forms of matter, associated in the harmonies of light and colour, appreciated in the modulations of sweet sounds, or mingled with those influences which are, as the inner life of creation, ever appealing to the soul through the vesture which covers all things, is the natural theme of the poet, and the chosen study of the philosopher.