Popular Science Monthly/Volume 18/March 1881/Literary Notices
|←Editor's Table||Popular Science Monthly Volume 18 March 1881 (1881)
INTERNATIONAL SCIENTIFIC SERIES, NO. XXX.
Animal Life as affected by the Natural Conditions of Existence. By Carl Semper, Professor of the University of Würzburg. With Two Maps and One Hundred and Six Woodcuts. New York: D. Appleton & Co. Pp. 472
We have here a volume that will raise still further the already high character of the series to which it belongs. It is a fresh and original contribution to a most interesting branch of zoology, which will be indispensable to every naturalist, and will be prized by all readers who care for the progress of knowledge concerning the general phenomena of life. Professor Semper is a leading German biologist, and, being a master of English, he was invited to come to Boston and give a course of twelve lectures before the Lowell Institute. He availed himself of the occasion to bring forward, in a form as popular as the nature of the materials allows, the results of his studies in a special province, zoölogical science.
The author is, of course, an evolutionist, and recognizes that Darwin's views have revolutionized biological method. But he thinks one of the results has been to give too great an impulse to speculation. He says that enough has been done by Darwinists in the way of philosophizing, and that the task now before us is to apply the test of exact investigation to the hypotheses laid down. It is infinitely easy to form a fanciful idea as to how this or that fact may be hypothetically explained, and very little trouble is needed to imagine some process by which hypothetical fundamental causes, equally fanciful, may have led to the result which has been actually observed. But, when we try to prove by experiment that this imaginary process of development is indeed the true and inevitable one, much time and laborious research are indispen- sable. We have here the clew to Semper's position as a biologist. He thinks that the school of speculative system-makers, repre- sented by Haeckel, are given to an over-in- dulgence in hypotheses, and might better concentrate their efforts upon the work of observation and experiment, and the more rigorous investigation of facts.
Of the problems brought into promi- nence by the doctrine of evolution, none is more fundamental than that of variability in animal organisms. It has, of course, long been known that animals possess this property, but the critical and unsettled ques- tion is, To what extent and under what con- ditions is it manifested? Variability is prob- ably that trait of animate beings which may be first and most easily traced by exact in- vestigation, both to its limits and to its effi- cient causes. There is, however, at present much strife of opinion upon the subject, and this can be only harmonized by closer research. The present volume is devoted to this inquiry. It is a study in organic va- riation, and the author aims to present the general facts and hypotheses, which are either of universal significance or offer favorable subjects for experimental treat- ment.
But it is desirable to still further illus- trate the specialty of Dr. Semper's work. The general science of zoology has two great branches, morphology and physiology, which, although closely connected, are yet so wide- ly different, both as to their details and to the paths they have struck out for solving their respective problems, that it becomes necessary to keep them separate as two in- dependent divisions of science. Morphology, or the science of form and structure, aims to discover those affinities of relationship in animals which actually exist, and to found on them a natural system of the animal
kingdom. It is a statical inquiry that is, it delineates the conditions and relation- ships of organic structures, their differences and similarities, simply as existing facts, with no necessary reference to the manner in which they have been produced. Were all life suddenly destroyed upon the earth, and nothing left but dead organisms capable of dissection, there would still remain the material for morphological study.
Physiology, on the other hand, deals with the dynamics of life. It investigates the functions or activities of living parts, and elucidates the forces, causes, and con- ditions that have produced existing forms. Physiology explains what morphology de- scribes; and, in this large sense, it is the task of physiology to give account of the facts which morphology embraces in its nat- ural system.
But, from this point of view, physiology itself has two broad divisions. Simple phys- iology, as it is usually known, treats of the activities or the functions of the organs, such as the brain, stomach, heart, muscles, spinal cord, lungs, kidneys, etc., which may be considered as carrying on independent processes, or in their vitally coordinated, intimate, mutual relations. But, in contra- distinction to this conception of the physi- ology of organs, there is also a more com- prehensive physiology of animal organisms, which may be properly termed universal physiology. It treats of the general causes, conditions, and laws of the development of organisms, and of the transmutation of one form into others. Here we meet the ques- tion of the relation of organisms to their environing conditions, and of animals as acted upon and modified by the external forces of nature. The problem of the geo- graphical distribution of animals, of their extension into new habitats, of their ex- termination, the acquirement of divergent traits and new qualities, and of the origin of species, is here presented. We have a new order of dependences, analogous to the mutual dependence of organs in common physiology, but it is now a dependence upon the conditions of external nature. Professor Semper says: "If the American prairies were to cease to produce grass, the first re- sult would be the rapid .and utter extinction of the now numerous herds of buffaloes, and on their existence depends that of the sur- viving remnant of the ancient Indian popu- lation of America. If the various insectiv- orous birds of North America were exter- minated, within a very few years, beyond a doubt, all the produce of the rich agricul- tural districts of that continent would be destroyed. If we change the mode of life of any single animal, the change will instant- ly have an influence on all the other animals whose healthy existence was in any way de- pendent on its normal functions before it was altered. Although it is certainly true that the various animals inhabiting a country are not so intimately interdependent as the organs of the individual, the relations in the two cases may be very directly compared. The normal numerical proportion, mode of life, and distribution of animals would be altered or destroyed by the extermination of one single animal, just as the whole body suffers, with all its organs, if only one of them is destroyed or injured. And, in both cases. Nature has analogous remedies at her command. In the one case, the function of the incapacitated organ can be assumed, at any rate to a certain extent, by some other uninjured organ, exactly as, in the other case, the function of the exterminated animal may be fulfilled, with regard to the whole fauna of the country, by some other animal. But a perfect compensation for the loss sus- tained is impossible in either case."
In further illustration of this idea, Pro- fessor Semper says: "The fauna of a dis- trict thus takes the aspect of a vast organ- ism whose separate members the different species of animals are living parts of the body, and which has had too its embryol- ogy i. e., its development in time. These species as regards the laws of their local distribution may be regarded morphologi- cally as the limbs of a gigantic organism which throws one or other of them up into the air on the top of some mountain-peak, while others are flung into ocean-depths, subterranean caves, lakes, or rivers. But they may also be studied physiologically, and compared to organs which by their func- tions and importance influence the life of the whole mass, and are interdependent by the most various physiological relations like the organs of a healthy living body." The nature of the task undertaken bv the au-
thor is still further exemplified ia the fol- lowing passages:
Before going on to the particular inquiry, it seema desirable that the expression " external conditions of existence" Bhould be as accurate- ly defined as may be. I have already said that I wish to see as wide an application given to it as possible, 8o as lo include every influence, how- ever insignificant and difficult to detect, that can affect the "fitness for survival" of a species, and to investigate its mode of action. This ex- planation might suffice, but I prefer to illustrate my meaning by a few further considerations.
Everything which tends to hinder or to favor the continuance of the life of the Individual and the propagation of the species, as such, must be regarded as a condition of existence for that species. In this sense every organism existing on the face of the globe, as well as every in- organic constituent of the earth's surface and of the atmosphere, is a condition of existence for all animals. Their relations to those organic and inorganic elements difier only in degree, in being more or less remote. Heat or cold, light as well as nourishment, the density of the at- mosphere, the water or the soil in or on which animals pass their lives, electricity, and the chemical constituents of the media surrounding them, whether air or water, the plants or other animals with which they live, either in the closest connection or in mere association everything, in short may and must exercise a certain influence on animals, and may be harm- ful or prejudicial to them; and there is nothing on the face of the earth that may not be regarded as an essential condition of existence to some species of animal. It is self-evident that the in- fluences of these manifold conditions must be in the highest degree various. One animal re- quires a high temperature in order to live, an- other a low one; one form prefers a very damp atmosphere, another a dry one; many are des- tined to live always under water or in the soil, while quite as many disport themselves in the freer medium of the air. If we could suddenly reverse all the conditions of existence which are indicated by these modes of life, we should an- nihilate all the animal life on the earth; for no fish can swim in the air, no bird can live per- manently under water, a mole can not climb, a salamander can not exist in a desert, nor a desert-snail in the virgin forests of the tropics. If, on the contrary, we reverse the conditions slowly, but still at a perceptible rate, it is prob- able that most animals would perish while a few would survive. But, if we suppose that such changes in the atmosphere, for instance, in the constituents of water or of the soil, etc. were eflfected so slowly as to be perfectly inappre- ciable by man, it is highly probable that the number of surviving forms would be very con- siderable. The influence of the conditions of existence thus changed is sometimes very dififer- cnt on nearly allied forms; for instance, one species of Neritina can live equally well in fresh, brackish, and sea water, while others occur only in one or the other, and can not survive any diminution or increase of the salt- ness of the water they live in. The simple reason of this phenomenon is the fact that the life of an animal depends not merely on the in- fluence of the external conditions, but on the reaction of its own organizaiion. If we transfer a stickleback directly from fresh to salt water, and leave it there for days or weeks, it will not perish if it be supplied with sufficient food. But, if at the same time we place one of the common fresh-water mussels in sea-water, it will soon die, sometimes in a few hours. The remarkable diflference in the behavior of these two creatures is easily explained by the following hypothesis: In both animals the salt water is transmitted through the skin to the tissues of the body; but this takes place to a much greater extent in the mussel than in the flsh, and thus injures it, while the flsh can bear the same quantity of salt it has absorbed. If our migratory fishes, as the salmon, had as great an affinity for the salt of the sea-water as the mussels have, they would soon cease to exist, or would have to become adapted to live wholly in fresh water. Thus every change in the conditions of existence in- fluences diff'erent animals in different ways. The problem, then, is to investigate more accurately these different effects of changed conditions.
Professor Semper's twelve lectures be- fore the Lowell Institute form the twelve chapters of his book. The considerations here presented are put forward in the first or introductory chapter, in which he defines his point of view, and the plan of the dis- cussion. The work is divided into two parts, the first being devoted to " The Influence of Inanimate Surroundings," and the second to " The Influence of Living Surroundings." Chapter II takes up " The Influence of Food"; III, "The Influence of Light"; IV, "The Influence of Temperature"; V, "The Influence of Stagnant Water"; VI, "The Influence of Still Atmosphere"; VII and
VIII, "The Influence of Water in Motion";
IX, "Currents as a means of extending or hindering the Distribution of Species";
X, "A Few Remarks on the Influence of Other Conditions of Existence"; XI, "The Transforming Influence of Living Organ- isms on Animals"; XII, "The Selective In- fluence of Living Organisms on Animals." Appended to the volume are sixty pages of valuable notes, followed by a copious alpha- betical index.
Annual Report of the Chief of Engineers, United States Army. Pp. 264.
The report describes what was done dur- ing the year ending June 30, 1880, and what
was needed to be done for the seacoast and lake frontier defenses of the country, and for the improvement of the rivers and har- bors of the whole country; and records the progress of the special work and of the sur- veys assigned to the corps of engineers. Several maps of Pacific States and of the survey of the Mississippi River, and lake charts, have been published, and an outline map of the territory west of the Mississippi River, on a scale of ^Tju^triju, ia in prepara- tion.
Life and her Children; Glimpses of Ani- mal Life from the Am(Eba to the In- sects. By Arabella 13. Buckley, New York: D.'Appleton & Co. ISSO. Price, $1.50.
After light came life, and with that life there came its two great functions growth and development. With the simplest as with the most complex forms there is the same eager race to be run, to increase in size, to multiply, and, thus replenishing this earth, to die. Life and her Children " is a praiseworthy and admirable attempt to tell us something of the Children that Life sends forth, and of their history. Its main object is to acquaint young people with the structure and habits of the lower forms of life; but in our deliberate judgment it will do a great deal more. None will read its in- troductory chapter without advantage, and few will read the volume through without enjoyment. Within its narrow limits of three hundred small pages no candid reader would expect to find all the details that might be wished for, or all the illustrations that might be desired. What constitutes the book's chief charm is the marvelously simple yet quite scientific style which runs through it, the food for thought and future study which it affords, and the truly philo- sophic glow which lights up its every page. The volume gives a general account of Life's Simplest Children, the Protozoa. The word "slime " does not seem to us quite a happy term by which to designate the living pro- toplasm of these creatures; this word con- veys the idea of a something adhesive or glutinous, or of a something thrown off a living organism a something without a structure (sordies, eluvies) and there seems somewhat of a "contempt for nature," a thought certainly never present in the author's mind, in the use of such a word. Jelly would seem a more appropriate word, as convejing the idea of the consistency re- quisite for life, and would have the sanction of use. Thus the Noctilucaj, called in this vol- ume " tiny bags of slime," were described, if we mistake not, by their discoverer as "tiny spherical gelatinous bodies," and Pro- fessor Huxley says, "Noctiluca may be de- scribed as ' a gelatinous transparent body about the one sixtieth of an inch in diam- eter.' "
The chapter on " How Starfish walk and Sea-Urchins grow" is excellent. The story of how the five curious little oval jelly bodies, swimming about by their jelly lashes in the depths of the smooth water in some English bay ended in becoming respective- ly a lily-star, a brittle-star, a starfish, a sea- urchin, and a sea-cucumber, is well told, and woodcuts, though they make one see as in a glass darkly, help in their own way to make the meaning plain. In the " Outtasts of Animal Life " a difficult problem is treated of. It need not surprise one that it is not solved. The last four chapters tell of " the Snare-Weavers and their Hunting Rela- tions (spiders)"; the insects which change their coats but not their bodies, and those which remodel their bodies within cover of their coats; " the Intelligent Insects with Helpless Children, as illustrated by the Ants." This volume thus tells of the greater part of the living invertebrate animals as they are spread over the earth to fight the battle of life. "Though in many places the battle is fierce and each one must fight re- morselessly for himself and his little ones, yet the struggle consists chiefly in all the members of the various brigades doing their work in life to the best of their power, so that all while they live may lead a healthy, active existence. The little bird is fighting his battle when he builds his nest and seeks food for his mate and his little ones; and though in doing this he must kill the worm, and may perhaps by and by fall a victim himself to the hungry hawk, yet the worm heeds nothing of its danger till its life comes to an end; and the bird trills his merry song after his breakfast, and enjoys his life without thinking of perils to come. So Life sends her Children forth; and it remains for U3 to learn something of their history.
If we could but know it all, and the thou- sands of different ways in which the beings around us struggle and live, we should be overwhelmed with wonder. Even as it is, we may perhaps hope to gain such a glimpse of the labors of this great multitude as may lead us to wish to fight our own battle brave- ly and to work and strive and bear patiently, if only that we may be worthy to stand at the head of the vast family of Life's Chil- dren."
The work forms a charming introduction to the study of zoology the science of liv- ing things which we trust will find its way into many hands. Nature.
Transcendental Physics: An Account of Experimental Investigations from the Scientific Treatises of Johann Carl Friedrich Zollner, Professor of Phys- ical Astronomy at the University of Leipsie. Translated from the German, with a Preface and Appendices, by Charles Carleton Massey. With Il- lustrations. Boston: Colby & Rich. Pp. 217. Price, $1.50.
There was considerable excitement a year or two since over the spiritualistic demonstrations at Leipsie, Germany, in which the professors took up the claims of Henry Slade, the eminent American "me- dium." Zollner was prominent in the in- quiry, and published his results, which ar- rested attention chiefly from the novelty of some of the doctrines which he connected with the experiments. lie published a book of views and results under the title of "Transcendental Physics," which was the third volume of a course of scientific criti- cism. The substance of that work is re- produced in the present translation, together with numerous well-executed illustrations of the appliances used and the operations performed.
The book is a contribution to spiritual- ism, and treats of a portion of the experi- ences of Mr. Slade in his great mission over the world to establish, by slate-manipula- tions, etc., the immortality of the human soul. Poor old senile Dr. Hare, when cap- tured by the Philadelphia spiritualist sev- eral years ago, undertook to prove that the soul is immortal by inventing a wooden spiritoscope for public exhibitions. Believ- ing that this great question has been left in doubt quite long enough, our enterprising spiritualistic friends have decided that it must be solved. And as speculation seems to have failed to settle it satisfactorily, they are bound to do it in the clearest and coai- pletest possible manner by experiment, so that the conclusion shall have the same validity that is conceded to strict scientific investigations. It would seem that Profes- sor ZoUner had got tired of being shut into the common field of natural law as a thea- tre of research, and was determined to break out and get into a larger and more promis- ing field. Hence he properly terms his new results " Transcendental Physics," that is, physics beyond the sphere of the senses. We doubt if the time has quite come for so ambitious an adventure. Old-fashioned physics is still in its infancy, though its growth is vigorous, its accomplishments already vast, and its legitimate promises boundless. After thousands of years of groping to find the true method' of arriv- ing at the truth of nature, that method has at last been found and abundantly verified as opening the right path of future inquiry. Yet the method has been really but just mastered, and we think it would be wise if our physicists could content themselves to pursue it humbly and faithfully for say the next thousand years. Nor does Profes- sor Zollner's experience encourage us in the least to qualify this recommendation; for it looks as if he had not yet served half his apprenticeship to the existing and well-at- tested method. The proneness to indulge in wayward fancies, in groundless conjec- tures, in imaginary explanations and insane speculations, has always been the great ob- stacle to sober and cautious science, and we think it is the great oflSce of science to discipline and subdue this tendency. But Professor Zollner has hardly yet learned the rudiments of his scientific lesson. Nature, as disclosed to the common intellect of man, is not sufficient for him. He scorns its limi- tations, and is bound to know what is out- side. So at the very opening of his book he imakes a grand transcendental somer- sault, and comes down Heaven save us! in the fourth dimension of space. Zollner is free, but we poor worms of the dust can not follow him. We have all we can pos- sibly do in three dimensions of space, and
it will be a considerable period before this is exhausted. Let those who are inclined buy the " Transcendental Physics," and fol- low its author if they can. Yankee enter- prise is proverbial, and there will no doubt be many who hold to the inspiring motto of the daring Sam Patch, that " some things can be done as well as others."
Consumption, and how to Prevent it. By Thomas J. Mays, M. D. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. 18Y9. Pp. 89. Price, $1.
This little monograph is aimed at the prevention of the most destructive of all diseases. It offers an explanation of the nature of consumption, and then takes up the various hygienic agencies which are po- tent to protect the system from its invasion. The author epitomizes his book as follows: "In summing up the considerations in the preceding pages, I think it appears conclu- sive that consumption, or the tendency to it which exists in many individuals, is essen- tially a premature dissipation of the force and matter of the body, and that improper food, bad air, deprivation of sunlight, poor clothing, want of physical exercise, disease, imperfect digestion, all accelerate this pro- cess of waste. Therefore, in all our efforts at prevention, the path of duty lies straight before us, and consists in conserving these two elements of the body by laying a good foundation in infancy, by preserving the or- gans of digestion, by eating an abundance of rich and nutritious food, such as fat, but- ter, meat, milk, eggs, etc., by breathing pure air, by living on dry soil, by wearing warm and comfortable clothing, by taking plenty of physical exercise, and by avoiding disease and injurious occupation."
British Thought and Thinkers: Introduc- TOKY Studies, Critical, Biographical, and Philosophical. By George S. Morris, A. M., Lecturer on Philosophy in the Johns Hopkins University. Chi- cago: S. C. Griggs & Co. Pp. 388. Price, Sl.Yo.
This volume is founded on some lec- tures lately delivered before a mixed audi- ence of ladies and gentlemen at the Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore. It professes to be introductory rather than exhaustive an invitation to reflective and systematic study rather than a substitute for it. There is a considerable biographical clement in the treatment, and the author's aim seems to be to elaborate " correct views concern- ing the essential nature and value of the most conspicuous current of abstract thought in the English language." The author is a metaphysician and an ontologist, and, in so far as his work is doctrinal, it is a dry ag- nosticism. He does not believe that knowl- edge is bounded by phenomenal relations, and spurns the idea that any amount of generalized truth derived from the sciences can form a system of philosophy properly so called; but, independent of its specula- tion, there is much instruction to be gained from his work.
Elementary Projection-Drawing. By D. Edward Warren, C. E. New York: John Wiley & Sons. 1880. Pp. 162. Price, $1.50.
Practical Plane Geometry and Projec- tion. 2 vols. By Henry Angel. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. 1880. Price, $3.50.
The first of these text-books is the well- known manual of Professor Warren, which has now reached a fifth edition. It has un- dergone a thorough revision, and some parts of it have been rewritten, while it has been made more complete by the addition of a division devoted to a consideration of the elements of machines.
The work of Professor Angel is one in the " Advanced Science Series " of the pub-^ lisher, and forms a continuation of the more elementary one of the author in the same series. The chapters upon projection are prefaced by several upon plane geometry, while the main subject is fully presented and illustrated by numerous examples and problems. A volume of finely executed plates accompanies the text.
The subject of projection-drawing, be- sides being of large educational value, is also of great practical importance. It is concerned with representing upon a plane surface solid objects in such a way as to show their real dimensions, and is, there- fore, a necessary preparation for the arti- san who has to construct work from draw- ings of this kind. It is also of value to all those who desire to know how to represent their ideas of any construction, so that they
will be understood by mechanics. Any one desiring to pursue the study will find in either of these works all that he needs to a thorough comprehension of it.
The Publishers' Trade-List Annual, 1880. Eighth Year. New York: F. Leypoldt. Price, $1.50.
This massive volume embraces the latest catalogues of their books supplied by the publishers, preceded by an order list includ- ing all books issued from January to Au- gust, inclusive, by the publishers represented in the annual; a classified summary and al- phabetical reference list of books recorded in the "Publishers' Weekly" from July 1, 1879, to June 30, 1880, with additional titles, corrections, changes of price and publisher, etc. (foiming a provisional supplement to the American Catalogue); and the American Educational Catalogue for 1880. The work, the materials of which are received directly from the publishers themselves, gives the complete literary history of the year in the United States, and is indispensable to the book-buyer.
The Geology of Hudson County, New Jer- sey. By Israel C. Russell. (From the Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences.) Pp. 80, with Two Plates.
The geology of this county, which is im- mediately opposite the lower part of New York City, presents many interesting fea- tures, the most prominent of which is the great ridge of trap-rock, forming the south- ern end of the Palisades, which traverses it from north to south. It is nearly perpen- dicular on the eastern edge, but slopes back gently toward the west. Beds of triassic sandstone, slate, and shale lie on either side of it. Archaean rocks gneiss in a part of Jersey City, serpentine at Castle Point, Ho- bqken are found within its borders. Thje top of the trap ridge bears marks of the ac- tion of the great glacier, whose moraine is found on Long and Staten Islands and in the "Short Hills " of Plainfield. On the surface are sand-dunes along the Newark meadows and Newark Bay, and on Bergen Neck, and the swamp deposits of the salt meadows, still in process of accumulation. The de- tails of these features, their relations to each other, and their economical and sanitary as- pects, are clearly described in the essay. An Elementary Course of Geometrical Drawing: Containing Problems on the Right Line and Circle, Conic Sections and other Curves; the Projection Sec- tion and Intersection of Solids; the De- velopment of Surfaces and Isometric Per- spective. By George L. Vose, A. M., Professor of Civil Engineering in Bow- doin College. Illustrated by Thirty-eight Plates. Boston: Lee & Shepard.
This seems to be an excellent introduc- tion to the practice of geometrical drawing. Its method has been used for several years in classes with the most favorable results. It was prepared for the use of the lower classes in engineering schools, but parts of it may no doubt be made excellent use of in the high schools. The author claims that it is well adapted for those who desire to pur- sue this branch of study by themselves and without a teacher. But he strongly recom- mends pupils to commence with a master wherever practicable, as they will thus save time, and avoid the formation of bad habits, so easy to get and so hard to lose.
Among Machines. A Description of Various Mechanical Appliances used in the Man- ufacture of Wood, Jletal, and Other Sub- ' stances. A Book for Boys. Copiously \ illustrated by the author of " The Young j Mechanic." New York: G. P. Putnam's 1 Sons. Pp. 335. Price, $1.75.
On the extensive subject of machinery, which would fill cyclopaedias, this volume takes up only such parts as are assumed to have a general interest, and concerning which it is well that all active-minded boys should be instructed. It treats of those fundamental laws which underlie the sys- tem of machinery, and upon which are founded the various mechanical combina- tions which have contributed so much to the development of manufactures. The need of understanding these principles would be ap- parent, and we remember that hand process- es ai'e rapidly disappearing by the substi- tution of machinery, so that the mechanic who has been trained to a special manipula- tion hardly knows at what moment an un- expected invention may undermine and de- stroy his vocation. Each new victory and invention is, moreover, but a step toward others, and we are eveij day surprised to observe how triumphant ingenuity haa overcome difficulties hitherto supposed to
be insurmountable, and which makes an in- road upon the traditional handicraft labor, and cheapens a product of general utility. The author of this book, therefore, thinks it a fit time to instruct the younger portion of the community in the details of the more ordinary machines with which they may perhaps some day become closely and personally interested. Twenty chapters are devoted to the most important machines, pi'ocesses, and mechanical arrangements in the wide field of manufacturing industry.
Telegraphic Determination of Longitudes ON the East Coast ob' South America. By Lieutenant - Commanders F. M. Green, C. H. Davis, and Lieutenant J. A. NoRRis, U. S. N., in 1878 and 1879. Published bv order of Commodore Wil- liam D. Whiting, U. S. N., Chief of the Bureau of Navigation, Navy Department. Washington: Government Printing-Of- ficc. Pp. 87.
The longitude of points on the east coast of South America has been very uncertain until recently, for the results obtained by apparently trustworthy methods have dif- fered by almost incredibly large quantities. The extension of telegraphic cables gave the opportunity to make more accurate deter- minations from some well-determined point in Europe by way of Madeira and the Cape Verd Islands with the eastern South Ameri- can coast. The connection was made from Land's End by Carcavellos, at the mouth of the Tagus, and the Brazilian submarine tel- egraph. The determinations made by the commission, combined with the determina- tions of meridian distances made by Pro- fessor Gould at Cordova, furnish a valu- able system of longitudes embracing about twenty stations in the interior. A curious fact connected with this work is, that it has given the first correct determination of the longitude of Lisbon.
The Relations of Science to Modern Life. A Lecture delivered before the New York Academy of Sciences. By Henry C. Potter, D. D. Published by the Academy. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. Pp. 29.
The author presents, in the easy, flowing style of a popular lectui-e, a view of the ob- ligations we are under to science in the com- moner features of our domestic and social life. Leaknixg to Draw; or, tiik Story of a Young Designer. By Viollet-le-Duc. Translated from the French by Virginia Champion. Illustrated by the Author. New York: G. V. Putnam's Sons. Pp. 324.
This work was the last written by the illustrious French author who has done so much to rationalize art education. His method of instruction was logical, beginning always with the simplest elements and pro- ceeding slowly to more complex considera- tions, while the progress at every step is made pleasant and attractive. Le-Duc was always suggestive, and, instead of grinding students through a hard didactic course, he ever aims, by showing the connection be- tween one study and another, to make the work intellectually attractive. All special results must have the broadest possible foundation. And in every way the student is inspired with a love of excellence and an i ambition to attain the highest standard and accomplish the most thorough work. Of I the value of the author's method the trans-! lator thus speaks: "Teachers of art, both! general and technical, and, for that matter, teachers of any subject, will find this volume of Viollet-le-Duc of no little service in sug- gesting methods of instruction. It shows bow students, young or old, are to be inter- ested; how all the surroundings of daily life contain suggestions for the most inter- esting and important lines of investigation; how students are to be taught to think out processes for themselves, and to develop their powers of comparison and reasoning; how the study of art of necessity leads us back to the study of nature, which under- lies all art; and how, as before said, the basis of all education must be perception, so that learning to draw well and learning to do anything properly depend upon first learning to see correctly."
A Text-Book of Elementary Mechanics. By Edward S. Dana. New York: John Wiley & Sons. 1881. Pp. 291. Price,
Professor Dana has aimed in this work to present the subject of mechanics clearly and concisely, and develop its fundamental principles in their logical order. The book is restricted to the mechanics of solids, which is considered under the general heads
of kinematics, dynamics, and statics. Nu- merous problems, involving the principles elucidated in the various sections, are fur- nished for the pupil to work upon, answers to which are given at the close of the book. We can discover no reason why this latter feature should have been added, and think the space might have been much better de- voted to additional problems.
Summary of Substantialism; or. Philoso- phy OF Knowledge. By Jean Story. With Additional Illustrations. Boston: Franklin Press; Rand, Avery & Co. Pp. 113. Price, 35 cents.
The author starts with the assumption that all authority, "so called," not found- ed on what nature teaches through facts actually demonstrable or knowable through analogy, should be rejected. Nevertheless, he believes that the theory that what is non- I objective to the senses is immaterial antl unknowable is erroneous and deleterious, as is also the theory that knowledge is, either directly or indirectly, miraculously revealed. In harmony with these doctrines, he en- deavors to build up a new philosophy of the human organism. The present essay ap- pears to be introductory to a larger work on the same subject.
The Feeling of EJ^fort. By William James, M. D., Assistant Professor of Physiology in Harvard University. (An- niversary Memoirs of the Boston Society of Natural History.) Boston: Published by the Society. Pp. 32,
The author's purpose is to offer a scheme of the physiology and psychology of voli- tion, to inquire of what nervous processes the feelings of active energy are concomi- tants. He first considers muscular exertion as an afferent feeling, then examines into the power of the will over exertion, ana- lyzing the cases of acts in which no effort of either is required, in which the stress of effort is laid on the exertion while the will is lightly taxed, on the will when the mus- cular exertion required is insignificant, and cases in which the will etfort operates in all its vigor while the muscular function is not regarded. Lastly, he considers the question of a dynamic connection between the inner and outer worlds, answering it in the nega-tive.
Address in Medical Jurisprudence. Psychology, State Medicine, etc. By James F. Hibberd, M.D. Philadelphia. 1880. Pp. 17.
On the Action of Carbolic Acid upon Ciliated Cells and White-Blood Cells. By T. Mitchell Prudden, M.D. January, 1881. Pp. 17.
How to Live in Winter. By Amelia Lewis. New York: Food and Health Publishing Office. 1881. Pp. 84. 25 cents.
"The Chrysanthemum: A Monthly Magazine for Japan and the Far East." Yokohama: Kelley & Co. Vol. I, No. 1. January, 1881. Pp. 36. 25 cents each, or $2 a year.
"Quaker City Gazette: A Weekly Periodical devoted to Science, Literature, and Art." E. Ellsworth Wensley, Editor. Philadelphia: Quaker City Publishing Co. Vol. L No. 1. January, 1881. Pp. 16. $2 a year.
"The Illustrated Cosmos." Issued Monthly. Everett W. Fish, General Editor. Chicago. Vol. I, No. 1. January, 1881. Pp. 16. 15 cents a copy, $1.50 a year.
Principal Characters of American Jurassic Dinosaurs. By Professor O. C. Marsh. Part IV. Spinal Cord, Pelvis, and Limbs of Stegosaurus, with Three Plates. February, 1881.
On the Microscopic Crystals contained in Plants By W. K. Higby. Pp. 18.
Annual Report of the California State Mineralogist, from June to December, 1880. Sacramento. 1880. Pp. 43.
"The Floral World: A Monthly Journal devoted to Floriculture, Horticulture, etc." D. R. Woods, Editor. New Brighton, Pennsylvania. Vol. 1, No. 1. January, 1831. Pp. 21. $1 a year.
"The Religious Evolutionist: A Monthly Magazine devoted to a Scientific and Practical Religion." S. W. Davis, Editor. Topeka, Kansas. Vol. I, No. 1. January, 1881 Pp. 28. $1.00 a year.
Circulars of Information of the Bureau of Education. No. 4, Rural School Architecture. Illustrated. No. 5, English Rural Schools. Washington: Government Printing-Office. 1880.
The Geology of Central and Western Minnesota: A Preliminary Report. By Warren Upham. St. Paul: The Pioneer Press Co. 1880. Pp. 58.
Historical Sketch of the Erie Natural History Society. Erie, Pennsylvania. 1880. Pp. 28.
The Succession of Glacial Deposits in New England. By Warren Upham. Salem, Massachusetts. 1830. Pp. 14.
Illinois State Laboratory of Natural History at Normal. Bulletin No. 3. Peoria. November, 1880. Pp. 160.
Thirty-fifth Annual Report of the Director of the Astronomical Observatory of Harvard College. By Edward C. Pickering. Cambridge: University Press. 1881. Pp. 17.
Adam Smith. 1723-1790. By J. A. Farrar. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. 1881. Pp. 201. $1.25.
The Actor and his Art. By C. Coqnelin. Translated from the French by Abbey Lingdon Alger. Boston: Roberts Brothers. 1881. Pp. 63.
Sanskrit and its Kindred Literatures: Studies in Comparative Mythology. By Laura Elizabeth Poor. Boston: Roberts Brothers. 1880. Pp. 463. $2.
Guide to the Study of Political Economy.. By Dr. Luigi Cossa. Translated from the Italian, with a Preface, by W. Stanley Jevons, F.R.S. London: Macmillan & Co. 1880. Pp. 237. $1.25.
The Cause of Color among Races, and the Evolution of Physical Beauty. By William Sharpe, M.D. Revised and enlarged edition. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. 1881. Pp. 36. 75 cents.
Natural Theology. By John Bascom. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. 1880. Pp. 306. $1.50.
American Sanitary Engineering. By Edward S. Philbrick. New York: "The Sanitary Engineer." 1881. Pp. 129.
The Bacteria. By Dr. Antoine Magin. Translated by George M. Sternberg, M.D. Boston: Little, Brown & Co. 1880. Pp. 227. $2.50.
On Certain Conditions of Nervous Derangement. By William A. Hammond, M.D. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sous. 1881. Pp. 286. $1.75.
Fever: A Study in Morbid and Normal Physiology. By H. C. Wood, M.D. Philadelphia: J. B. Lippincott & Co. 1880. Pp. 258.
Electric Lighting by Incandescence. By William E. Sawyer. New York: D. Van Nostrand & Co. 1881. Pp. 189.