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Da Vinci and Veranzio appear to have been the first exponents, the first in the theory and the latter in the practice of parachuting. Montgolfier experimented at Annonay before he constructed his first hot air-balloon, and in 1783 a certain Lenormand dropped from a tree in a parachute.

Where then should be the spot to which coming generations would point and say, "Here, at this place, was perfected De Plonville's celebrated parachute-tent- bateau invention." No, not parachute. Hang the parachute! That was the scoffing lieutenant's word. De Plonville paused for a moment to revile his folly in making a confidant of any army man.

Nothing daunted, however, Mr. Spencer at once endeavoured to retrieve his fortunes, and started straightway for the gold-mining districts of Ballarat and Bendigo with a hot-air balloon, with which he successfully gave a series of popular exhibitions of parachute descents. Few aeronauts are more consistently reliable than Mr. Arthur Spencer.

The earth seemed coming up to him rapidly; the Parachute indicated its approach to terra, firma by a slight oscillation, and he presently struck the ground in the centre of a field, where he was first welcomed by a sheep, which stared at this visitor from the clouds in utter amazement. Mr.

He read it over: "BALLOON ASCENSION FROM PALISADES "Signor Panatella, the famous Italian Aeronaut, will make parachute drop from height never before attempted." The ascension was to be made that afternoon from one of the amusement parks on the New Jersey shore of the Hudson. "This is Providence," he muttered to himself, catching up the dodger.

Here are you and I, Dad, upon a mountaintop, watching it tear oh! tear away." He laughed again at the two stiff, woodeny figures, the comet-like streak of fire above them. "And this the quill fluttering down attached to a kite! Humph! That stands for the Thunder Bird's diary, I suppose, otherwise the golden egg the little recording apparatus coming down on the wing of its black parachute."

By September he is in Dublin, and makes the first parachute descent ever witnessed in Ireland; but by November he is in Bombay again, whence, proceeding to Calcutta, he repeats his success of the year before. Next he visits Allahabad, where the same fortune attends him, though his balloon flies away in a temporary escape into the Jumna.

Suddenly, over the desolate ground to the west, we see a man hovering in mid-air, descending on a parachute from a captive balloon that seems to have suffered mishap. The small wavering object comes slowly down; we cannot see the landing; but it is probably a safe one.

The bottle saw everything, from a basket in which it lay next to a live rabbit, which latter was quite bewildered because he knew he was to be taken up into the air, and let down again in a parachute; but the bottle knew nothing of the "up" or the "down;" it only saw the balloon swelling up bigger and bigger, and at last, when it could swell no more, beginning to rise, and to grow more and more restless.

Five minutes later his orderly came to the group of which Zeiglemann was the center and handed him a small linen parachute and a weighted bag. The squadron-leader was cutting the string which bound the mouth of the bag when a shrill voice said: "Herr Captain, do be careful; there might be a bomb."

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