Page:Essays in librarianship and bibliography.djvu/76

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56
ESSAYS IN LIBRARIANSHIP

can be temporarily suspended upon the completion of any section. 4. The section of biography is classified already, merely requiring the cross-references from the subjects of biographies to be brought together; and several other extensive sections need not be classified at all. Nobody, at least nobody worth taking into account, wants catalogues of the titles of novels, plays, and sermons. Classified lists of some other subjects, on the other hand, would be of inestimable value, and there is one which, in the interests of the Museum itself, should be undertaken without delay. Among the inconveniences attending the ill-considered removal of the Natural History collections to South Kensington—a measure forced on by the Government against the wish of the working Trustees of the Museum—is the injury likely to be inflicted upon them from want of access to a library. Naturalists cannot study without books any more than without specimens; but the Government which gratuitously created the want seems in no hurry to supply it. The principle of a grant appears indeed to be admitted; but at the rate at which this grant seems likely to be doled out, English Natural Science will be placed at a serious disadvantage for many years. Something may possibly be done by transferring duplicates from Bloomsbury (a question, however, not to be decided in haste), and some anonymous writers in scientific journals have modestly suggested that all books on Natural History might go to Kensington; so that a student of the physiology of colour, for example, would have to read his Wallace at one