Popular Science Monthly/Volume 32/January 1888/Literary Notices

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search


Our Heredity from God: Consisting of Lectures on Evolution. By E. P. Powell. New York: D. Appleton & Co. Pp. 416. Price, $1.75.

The author of this book is pastor, we presume, of a society in Utica, who, having been born and bred in Calvinism, experienced a shock, as he phrases it, "in the face of its dire failure to explain the universe, to apologize for God, or to save mankind." Having lost faith in authoritative revelation, he sought in the study of evolution deliverance from the chaotic condition in which his mind was left. The outcome of his struggles and the purpose of his book are expressed in his declarations that "earnest and honest men can not too soon comprehend that our only salvation is in that evolution which has led from the primordial cell to Jesus and Plato, and has lifted life from the hunger for protoplasm to the hunger for righteousness. No religion but that of evolution can end anywhere but where it begins, in a chaos of creative purposes thwarted and disrupted, and in an eternal struggle to amend a shattered divine plan "; and " there is one—and that the simplest— explanation of the universe, which, while showing sustained progress in the past, pledges eternal betterment in the future. This is the gospel of hope for all those who choose to go forward with the supreme moral purpose; it is the gospel of degen- eration to every one who, declining obe- dience to the laws of ethical living, contents himself with animal functioning." The charms of the author's poetic mode of thought and warm style are indisputable. The treatise is divided into three parts, the first two of which are introductory to the main argument, which is developed in the third. In the first part are summed up the leading arguments in favor of evolution, as accounting for structural variety, and as able to explain the actual condition of living creatures. These argmnents are given in harmony with the expositions of Spencer, Darwin, and Wallace, as the arguments from the Unity of Nature, from Geography, Geology and Anatomy, Development and Reversion, the Power of Mimicry, and De- generation. In the second part are shown the commonalty of life between all creat- ures, and how definitely the links in a con- secutive development of life have been established, from the jolly-fishes of the pri- meval seas to man. In the chapter, "Ani- mals on the Road," in this part, numerous incidents are related showing how nearly many animals have approached to human reason, and how closely they have come to sympathy with man and understanding of him. In the third part, evolution is followed after man is reached, to show that there is not only one evolution of all life, including man and animals, interlinked in origin and in their progressive changes, but that hu- man history, its religions, morals, arts, cul- minating in universal ethical laws, is also a subject of evolution. The chapter, "Co- operation in Evolution," showing how the vegetable and animal world, from the re- mote past as now, and man co-operate for development, points out, "that from the very outset, evolution has implied some- thing besides a mere brute struggle for ex-

istence; that it involved a mutual helpful- ness and co-operation for a common good, and that Nature stood pledged in the cell to create a moral intelligence, and in every cataclysm to establish as the ultimate law, ' On earth peace, good-will to men.' " The first men are believed to have appeared while gigantic saurians still prevailed on the earth, and had to contend with them; hence the serpents as powers of evil in the mythologies. The succession in develop- ment was kept up with the drift men, cave men, Iberians, Turanians, and Aryans, each race having advantages over the race that preceded it, and marking a step or steps in civilization. Human life, the family, the state, and the Church, underwent a continu- ous progress under the combined influence of the laws of heredity; of the spontaneity of evolution or the begetting of ideas one from another; of periodicity, or the running of the courses of ideas and lines of thought in given periods; of irritability, of which the stimulus, antagonism, has been the lever of advance; and of slow achievement. The gen- eral course of progressive thought began with the knowledge of natural phenomena and attempts to refer them to adequate causes; whence have sprung, in succession, an ag- glomeration of myth and science, as the- ology; a code of arbitrary morals, based on existing knowledge and mythology; attacks on established ritualism and belief, end- ing after bitter strife in a Reformation; and the establishment of the new heresy as orthodoxy, to be in its turn attacked and superseded. Successive steps in the evolu- tion of mankind were marked by the growth of commerce; tribal life; writing; Greek philosophy; philosophy and oratory; Bud- dha and Confucius; and, finally, Jesus, who from the stand-point of evolution "does not appear as the incarnation of God, but far more than that, as the incarnation of one hundred thousand years of man. Yes, more, as the incarnation of all life, from its dawn on the earth." "Xo man," the author de- clares, "can live in the light and the life of the nobler era of brain, of science, of phi- losophy, of moral truth, and not behold the face of Jesus of Nazareth as the prophet, the foreseer of the later evolution"; and, "it is impossible that those who are not students of evolution, those who suppose men are failures and not a success, and that they were created but a few years ago, should comprehend the character and place of Jesus in history." In the next chapter the workability of the golden rule is in- quired into, with the conclusion that it is sure to be approximated, but never abso- lutely attained; in the next, is considered the future of evolution, which "has to do with a fact larger than man, even with life itself"; in the next, ethics is presented as the aim of evolution. The author next looks for "the self that is higher than our- selves," and finds, not a final cause or God outside of and apart from Xaturc, but that "the magnificent reign of life and law that is unfolding year by year and age by age is but the pulsating presence of Him who is over all, through all, interpenetrating all." The final chapter relates to that last ene- my, death," and the question of imnv)rtality.

Three Good Giants, whose Famous Deeds are recorded in the ancient chroni- CLES OF FKANyois Rabelais. By John DiMiTRY. Boston: Ticknor & Co. Pp. 246. Price, $1.50.

Unclean as Rabelais is, and wandering seemingly without method around the sphere of thought and coarse wit, the world has agreed that there abound in him gems of thought worth the having—if some one else will dig them out. Mr. Dimitry finds in his great work, too, three admirable characters, whose lives and adventures constitute a wondrous story; and this he has dug out, and presents to young readers free from all that is gross, and untrammeled by philo- sophical and other disquisitions that do not help it along; or, as he himself expresses it, has placed the famous trio, Grandgousier, Gargantua, and Pantagruel, "high and dry above the scum which had so long clogged their rare good-fellowship, and which had made men of judgment blind to the genuine worth that was in them." He finds a kind of evolutionary development going on in his heroes as the generation proceeds from grandfather to grandson. To these colossal creatures, he says, « fashioned in ridicule of the old fantastico-chivalric deeds of their age, as they come down more and more from the clouds, are more and more given the feelings common to this earth's creatures. All three bear, from their birth, a sturdy

human sympathy not natural to their kind, as medieval superstition classed it. Two of them, in being brought to the level of humanity, join with this a simple Christian manliness and a childlike faith under all emergencies, not set on their own massive strength, but fixed on God. . . . From Grandgousier, the good-hearted guzzler, through Gargantua, through his heady youth and wise old age, to ' the noble Pantagruel,' the gain in purity and Christian manhood is steady." The justification of this conclu- sion may be sought in the story as the au- thor has picked it out and arranged it. The presentation is most attractive, in bright pages and clear type, with illustrations by Gustave Dore and A. Robida,

The Relative Proportions of the Steam- Engine. By William Dennis Marks, C. E. Third edition, revised and en- larged. Philadelphia: J. B. Lippiucott Company. Pp. 295. Price, $3.

In the first edition of this book the au- thor expressed regret at the failure of all writers upon mechanics or the steam-engine to give, in a simple and practical form, rules and formulas for the determination of the relative proportions of the component parts of the engine. In this was the reason for his own effort, the lectures which comprise it having been written with the feeling that a rational and practical method of deter- mination was yet a desideratum in the Eng- lish literature of the subject. In preparing the lectures, he omitted the consideration of such topics as had already been overwrit- ten, and considered only those which seemed not to have received the attention which their importance demanded. The additions made in the third edition are principally concerning the limitations of the expansion of steam. The importance of taking into account the condensation of steam by the walls of the cylinder is insisted upon. Keep- ing this point in view, the author has en- deavored to formulate the hitherto unknown law of condensation inside of the cylinder. He claims to have shown that the wide dif- ferences in experimental results of tests of different types and sizes of engines are not irreconcilable; and it has been sought by quantitative weighing of results to define the limitations of the various expedients which engineers have made in the effort to realize tlie most from their steam, and to enable others to see where and how they should be used. The whole book is inter- paged with blank leaves, on which students can record their notes as they go along.

Johns Hopkins University Studies in His- torical AND Political Science. Fifth Series. No. VII. The Effect of the War of 1812 upon the Consolidation OF the Union. By N. il. Butler. 25 cents. No. VIII. Notes on the Lit- erature op Charities. By H. B. Ad- ams. 25 cents. No. IX. The Predic- tions OF Hamilton and De Tocque- viLLE. By Jakes Bryce. 25 cents. Baltimore: The University. 1887.

These latest issues of this interesting series treat a variety of topics. Professor Butler's work is designed to show how the War of 1812, by uniting the people for the purpose of the common defense, and by stimulating the sentiment of national pride, contributed to produce a more truly na- tional spirit than had prevailed in the coun- try before. He shows how strong the sec- tional spirit had been before that time, and even during the war itself; and makes it clear that the war was one of the most po- tent agencies in creating a better public opinion.

The pamphlet by Mr. Bryce is on a more difBcult theme, being a review of the ' opinions expressed by Hamilton and De \ Tocqueville, respectively, in regard to our national Government and the perils attend- ing its future. The chief dangers, in the view of both writers, were the tendency ] to sectionalism and disunion, and the ap- prehended tyranny of the majority. That there was ground for fearing the disruption i of the Union, we now know; yet neither the American nor the Frenchman saw that slav- | ery was the prime source of danger. Some of their predictions have proved very far from true; but Mr. Bryce shows that they were much wiser than the opponents of the Constitution in 1788, whose objections have all turned out to be groundless. On the other hand, some of the evils that have actually developed in our politics, and are most observable to-day, such as the abuse of party machinery, the spoils doctrine, and the corrupting influence of wealth, were not foreseen by any one. Mr. Bryce himself carefully abstains from prophesying, be-

lieving that predictions in morals and poli- tics are of little value.

The little work by Professor Adams, on the Uterature relating to charity will doubt- less be useful to special students of that subject. It describes the publications of a large number of charitable organizations, together with many works in general litera- ture bearing upon benevolence.

On the Warrior Coal-Field. By Henry McCalley. Montgomerv, Ala.: Barrett & Co., State Printers. Pp. 571.

This volume is one of the reports of the Geological Survey of Alabama, which is con- ducted under the superintendency of Mr. Eugene Allen Smith, State Geologist. It contains descriptions, by counties, of all that has yet been made visible to the sur- I veyor and miner of one of the thickest and j fullest coal-fields in the world, the quality of the product of which is, moreover, not excelled by that of any other. The coal lands of Alabama, which belong to the great Appalachian coal-field, comprise, altogether, an area of 8,660 square miles, but are divided up by anticlinal ridges into three parts—the Warrior, the Cahaba, and the Coosa coal-fields. Of these, the War- rier field is very much the largest, for it embraces an area of 7,810 square miles. It is a broad, shallow, tray-shaped depres. sion, sloping toward the southwest, with its southwest end covered by a newer for. mation, and its southeast side complicated by folds and fractures. It has been con- veniently divided into a plateau and basin area, which gi-adually merge without any distinct line of demarcation. The coal- seams range in thickness from a few inches to about fourteen feet, the thicker seams always containing more or less slate or clay as partings. There appear to be about thirty-five of these seams eighteen inches and more in thickness, of which fifteen are of two feet six inches and over, and six are four feet and over; but they thin out toward the northeast. The quantity of coal is estimated at 113,119,000,000 tons, of which 108,394,000,000 tons would be available coal or contained in the seams of eighteen inches or more in thickness—or about three times as much as the estimated available bituminous and semi-bituminous coals of Pennsylvania. The coals, though all bituminous, are of many kinds and qualities. The amount mined during the past fifteen years had increased in a very rapid ratio from 11,000 tons in 1870 to 2,225,000 tons in 1885; and the amount of coke manufactured from 60,781 tons in ISSO to 304,509 tons in 1885. The Warrior coal-field has besides its coal three or four seams of blackband iron-ore, considerable clay ironstone, great quarries of the best of building and paving stones, and forests of most excellent timber.

A Dictionary of Music and Musicians. Edited by Sir George Grovk. London and New York, Part XXII: Macmillan & Co. Pp. 134. Price, $1.

The present part completes the text of this important and comprehensive vrork, although an appendix and a full index are announced as in preparation. The "Dic- tionary" as a whole bears ample evidence of the scuolarship and careful research of its editor and contributors. It is worthy of a place among the best cyclopaedias, while it is also of great account as a literary work and has a very high value as a book of ref- erence. A course of musical instruction might be gathered from the articles in it. It gives accounts of all the diiferent kinds and styles of music; those of the different nations, of different epochs, of the different schools, those which mark the individual traits of composers, those which respond to peculiarities of the people, and those which illustrate or are illustrated bypassing events. The several kinds of compositions are de- scribed, defined, and distinguished. The various instruments have places among the articles. Biographies are given of all musicians, including composers and per- formers, who have made their names known, which are full according to the importance of the subject. In short, whatever pertains to the history, character, and accessories of music, is treated, or intended to be treated, in its alphabetical order, in the four volumes. The literary merits of the longer articles make the book desirable from that point of view. The present part contains the articles from "Waltz" to "Zwischenspiel," or the end of the list. The fullest and most interesting among them is Dr. Philipp Spitta's account VOL. xxxn.—27

of Carl Maria von Weber and his works, which occupies more than forty pages, and is bright with the warmth of the writer's appreciation of the brilliant composer and his inspiring music.

Rkport of Spencer F. Baird, Secretary of THE Smithsonian Institution, for the Year lS85-'86. Washington: Govern- ment Printing-Office. Pp. 83.

Among the interesting features of this report is the account of the growth of the National Museum, which included, at the time of reporting, 2,420,934 "lots" of speci- mens. Among the special collections are to be noted that of scientific instruments, to many of which rare historical associations are attached; the baskets, throw-sticks, and sinew-backbones; the aboriginal American pottery; the department of invertebrate fossils, which contains more than 81,000 specimens; and the department of fossil and recent botany, which has been consider- ably enriched. In field-work, accounts are given of explorations of stone-villages in Arizona and New Mexico—which are de- cided to be the work of still-existing tribes—and of studies among living Indians.

Twentieth Annual Report op the Trus- tees OF THE PeABODY MuSEUM OF AMER- ICAN Aucn^EOLOGy and Ethnology. Professor F. W. Putnam, Curator. Cam- bridge, Mass. Pp. 74.

The museum has now become a depart- ment of Harvard University through the recognition of Dr. Putnam, its curator, as Peabody Professor of American Archaeology and Ethnology in that institution. The col- lections have already outgrown the capacity of the new building to fitly accommodate them, and enlargement is called for. The accessions include the Bucklin collection from ancient graves in Peru, a collection of pottery from Piura, Peru; and pottery ves- sels, whistles and other objects made of pottery, stone implements and carved stones, some circular and others resembling ani- mals, from Chiriqui. The field-work in- cluded the watching of operations at the Damariscotta shell-heap, Maine, which is being removed, for human-made objects; Dr. Abbott's explorations in the Trenton gravels; mound and grave explorations in the Little Miami Valley, Ohio, where evidences of the association of cremation and j inliumation have been observed; Miss I Fletcher's studies of living Indians and \ their social and religious customs; and Miss | Zelia Nuttall's readings of ancient Mexican | inscriptions. The present report completes | the third volume, iucluding seven years, of ' the series of reports. The three volumes together furnish a complete history of the i institution for twenty years, and represent j a great deal of archaeological research. I

I Explorations on the Wkst Coast of Flor- , ida and in the okeechobee wilder- j NESS. By Angelo Ueilprin. Published by the Wagner Free Institute of Science; of Philadelphia. Pp. 134, with Nineteen i Plates.

The Wagner Free Institute of Science, I of whose transactions this memoir consti- tutes the first volume, was founded by the late William Wagner, who, after having j accumulated a museum, library, and col- > lections of apparatus, and sustained pub- lic scientific lectures for thirty years, be- ] queathcd his property to a Board of Trus- tees. The Institute was incorporated in 1885, and organized a faculty of four pro- fessors, who are to give free lectures, and teach the method of, and make, research. Provision is also contemplated, when re- sources shall admit of them, in aid of origi- nal research, and the publication of its results. The expedition of which the pres- ent work records the results was dispatched under its auspices, with the personal co-op- eration of Mr. Joseph Wilcox, one of its trustees. At the time of Mr. Heilprin's visit, Florida was, in respect to geographi- cal, zoological, and geological features, very nearly the least known portion of the na- tional domain. Not even its broader geo- logical aspects had been determined, and nearly every one believed that it was a structure of coral. Observations were con- ducted on the west coast as far south as the mouth of the Caloosahatchie, and thence eastward into the wilderness of Lake Okee- chobee. The zoological researches com- prised an examination of the littoral oceanic fauna and the fauna of the Okeechobee lake- region, which, in the author's belief, had not hitherto been systematically investi- gated. Respecting the geological character of Florida, the author concludes that the

whole State belongs exclusively to the Ter- tiary and Post-Tertiary periods, and conse- quently represents the youngest portion of the United States; that there is not a par- ticle of evidence sustaining the coral theory of the growth of the peninsula, but all the evidence points against it, and indicates that the land has been formed by the usual methods of sedimentation and upheaval; while the coral tract is limited to a border region of the south and southeast, Man's gi'cat antiquity on the peninsula is regarded as established beyond a doubt, "and not improbably the fossilized remains found on Sarasota Bay, now wholly converted into limonite, represent the most ancient belong- ings of man that have ever been discov- ered."

An Abstract of the Oleomarg/rine QrES- tion. Presented by the Garden City Dairy Company of Chicago. Chicago: Knight & Leonard Company. Pp. 18, legal cap.

The object of this presentation is to point out the existing errors in national legislation on the subject, with the expecta- tion of procuring their correction. The au- thors admit that legislation to regulate the manufacture of oleomargarine and guard its purity, and taxation commensurate with the taxation of other articles of trade, are prop- er, but contend that the present acts, being new and on a new subject, need revision; and insist that wrong motives have entered into their construction. There were three motives, they hold, that led to the adoption of the oleomargarine law: to prevent the sale or use of any poisonous or unwhole- some article in the guise of butter; to re- quire the new food-product, oleomargarine or butterine (when absolutely wholesome), to be sold honestly under its own proper name, that the consumer might know when he bought oleomargarine that he was not buying butter; and to protect "butter" by taxing oleomargarine and oleomargarine- dealers to such an extent that the business of manufacturing this new food-product might be destroyed. Concerning the first motive, they allege that "the facts show plainly that there was no occasion whatever for the enactment of the law"—there was no impure or unwholesome oleomargarine. As to the second motive, "All thinking and reasoning men admit that the action of tlie law is a step in the right direction." It is to the advantage of the oleomargarine-man, for his good oleomargarine gets the credit for being what it is; while the buyer of bad butter is informed by the absence of the brand that it is not oleomargarine that he is nauseating himself with. The third motive is altogether bad; and not its least mischievous tendency is to the building up of monopolies. On account of it, the pres- ent law should be repealed, to pave the way for a consistent, comprehensive, and whole- some enactment; for its unconditional re- peal without any delay "might open the way for a national act concerning the adul- teration of food that would commend itself to every citizen, and meet a crying want of the times." Waiting this, the authors pro- pose certain suggestions for the alteration and amendment of the existing legislation.

Revue Internationale, scientlfique et ropulaire, des falsification's des dex- REES Alimentaires. (International Re- view, Scientific and Popular, of Falsifi- cations of Foods.) Dr. P. F. Van Hamel Roos, Editor. Vol. I, No. 1. Septem- ber 15, 1887. Amsterdam: Albert de Lange. Bimonthly. Pp. 32. Price, 8 francs a year.

This journal is established in pursuance of a suggestion which was emitted by the editor at the Internaticnal Pharmaceutical and Chemical Congress of 1885, that a jieri- odical should be published to warn people of all nations against detected adulterations, and to serve as an organ of communication among hygienists and chemists, and pro- mote uniformity of research. The idea was well received, and Dr. Van Hamel Roos, who was at the time conducting a Dutch journal of the same character, has since been preparing to begin the work. He has secured a large list of collaborators and cor- respondents from most of the important countries of the world, distinguished hy- gienists, chemists, etc., including Dr. "Willis G. Tucker, of Albany, from the United States. The present number is published in French, with a few articles in German or English also; but it is contemplated, if the clientage demands it, ultimately to publish the whole in three languages—French, Ger- man, and English. The contents of the number include papers on the measures

against adulteration in force in Spain; mu- nicipal inspection of provisions at Amster- dam; international measures against adul- terations (reports of the Vienna Congress on the subject); analyses of the peptones of commerce; substitutions for spices; adul- teration of flour with alum; "Definition of Falsification"; and supplementary articles devoted to hygiene and industry.

Bulletin of the United States Geological Survey, Nos. 30 to 39. Washington: Government Printing Office.

No. 30. Second Contribution to the Studies on the Cambrian Faunas of North America. By Charles D. Walcott. Pp. 369. Price, 25 cents.—This monograph embraces what the author designates as the "Middle Cambrian Fauna," or that which is referable to the Georgia Horizon, but in- cluding also formations in the St. Lawrence Valley, Labrador and Newfoundland; Troy, New York; and districts in the Western surveys.

No. 31. Systematic Review of our Present Knowledge of Fossil IhSEcrs, in- cluding Myriapods and Arachnids. By Samuel H. Scudder. Pp. 128. Price, 15 cents.—This paper is the original form and the authorized English edition of the arti- cle which was furnished by Mr. Scudder— who is the most thorough-going of the American students in this branch of pale- ontology—to Dr. Zittcl, for his "Handbuch der Paliiontologie," and is furnished, with the concurrence of the author and publisher of that work, for the convenience of Eng- lish readers.

No. 32. Mineral Springs of the United States. By Albert C. Peale, M. D. Pp. 235. Price, 20 cents.—This book was no- ticed in the "Monthly" for March, 1887.

No. 33. Notes on the Geology- of North- ern California. By J. S. Diller. Pp. 23. Price, 5 cents.—This report embraces recon- naissances of the Cascade Range, Mount Shasta, and the Coast and Sierra Nevada Ranges in Northern California and Oregon. The surface features are grouped into two valleys—the Willamette and Sacramento— and three mountain-ranges. The limestone among the metamorphic rocks of the Coast and Sierra Nevada Ranges is referred to the Carboniferous age. No. 34. On thk relation of tue Lara- mie MOLLUSCAN FaI^A TO THAT OF THE ScC-

ciiEDiNG Fresh-Water Eocene and other Groups. By Charles A. White. Pp. 32, with Plates. Price, 10 cents.—A concep- tion of the importance of the subject of this treatise is given by the conclusion which the author expresses, that there is a com- plete and unbroken stratigraphical series in the region of his exploration, extending from the Middle Cretaceous to the Upper Eocene, and aggregating nearly or quite two miles in thickness. Yet, while sedimenta- tion was not materially interrupted in a large part of the area, the aqueous life was changed, first from that of a purely marine character to that of alternating brackish and fresh waters, and finally to that of a purely fresh-water character, implying great physical changes without materially inter- rupting sedimentation. The author also observes that in Western North America the fresh-water deposits rival in extent and thickness the great marine formations. Each of the great lacustrine formations described by him has its own distinguishing fauna, the uniform character of which over great areas is quite remarkable.

Xo. 35. Physical Properties of the Iron Carburets. By Carl Barus and Vin- cent Strouhal. Pp. 62. Price, 10 cents.—This paper embodies reports of studies of the internal structure of tempered steel, and of the color-effects produced by slow oxida- tion of iron carburets.

No. 36. Subsidence of Fine Solid Par- ticles IN Liquids. By Carl Barus. Pp. 54. Price, 10 cents.—The author considers the dependence of the rate of descent upon the figure and physical constants of a single particle, or upon the constants of a stated group of particles; tries to find some ex- pression for the dependence of subsidence on the molecular conditions of the liquid; and calls to mind the probability of certain permanent chemical effects of the liquid on the subsiding solid. A second chapter is devoted to the results of experiments upon the dependence of the rate of subsidence on the order of surface, concentration, and tur- bidity.

No. 37. Types of the Laramie Flora. By Lester F. Ward. Pp. 115, with Fifty- seven Plates. Price, 25 cents.—This is an

enlargement of the author's "Synopsis of the Flora of the Laramie Group." The plants described and illustrated in it were collected by himself in the seasons of 1881 and 1883. The principal additions to the original work consist of descriptions of spe- cies regarded as new, and critical discus- sions contributing to the proper understand- ing of the figures and of the nature of the flora under treatment.

No. 38. Peridotite of Elliott County, Kentucky. By J. S. Diller. Pp. ,31. Price, 5 cents.—This memoir concerns dikes of eruptive rock, determined as peridotite, which have been observed in Elliott County, and which the author has studied in co-op- eration with Professor Crandall, of the Ken- tucky State Geological Survey. It contains a large proportion of olivine, some of it in well-defined crystals, with proportions of pyrope and ilmenite; is associated with nearly horizontal carboniferous sandstones and shales, from which it differs widely in chemical and reineralogical constitution; and is of special interest, because it affords an instance that is rare of peridotite being found under such circumstances that its eruptive character can be fully established.

No. 39. The Upper Beaches and Deltas OF THE Glacial Lake Agassiz. By War- ren Upham. Pp. 84. Price, 10 cents.— The name of Lake Agassiz is given to the extinct body of water which in Glacial times occupied the basin of the Red River of the North. It is assigned to the closing epoch of the Ice age. The exploration of it was begun by the author in 1879 and continued in 1881 and 1885, first under the State Geo- lo^cal Survey, and in the latter year under the United States Survey. The present re- port covers what was observed in these explorations, which were limited to the prairie regions in Minnesota and Dakota.

Aper^u de quelques Difficultes .\ vaincre dans la Construction du Canal de Pan- ama. (A Tiew of Some Difiiculties to be Overcome in the Construction of the Pan- ama Canal.) By Dr. Wolfred Nelson, of Montreal. Paris. Pp. 71. Price, 1 franc.

The author resided five years on the Isthmus of Panama, engaged in the prac- tice of medicine, and corresponded with sev- eral newspapers, besides contributing memoirs to scientific societies. He once believed in the canal, but tlie illusion, he says, "has fled, never to return, leaving behind a feel- ing of ' bitter deception.' " He expresses the firm conviction that the construction of the canal on a level, on M. de Lesseps's line, is a chimerical attempt, if not absolutely impossible. Some of bis reasons for believ- ing thus are given in this pamphlet.

Synopsis of the Flora of the Laramie Group. Cy Lester F. Ward. Washing- ton: Government Printing-Office. Pp. 160, with Thirty-four Plates.

Besides the object suggested in the title of this volume, the author has sought to give a few illustrations of the flora from new material, or from material more ample and abundant than has heretofore existed. The Laramie group, as described by Mr. Ward, is an extensive brackish-water de- posit, situated on both sides of the Rocky Mountains, and extending from Mexico far into the British North American territory, having a breadth of hundreds of miles, and representing some four thousand feet in thickness of strata. The immense inland sea of which it is the record, and which occupied the territory now covered by the Rocky Mountains, was partially cut off from the ocean by intervening land-areas, but had one or more outlets through them communicating with the open sea which at that time occupied the territory of the low- er Mississippi and lower Rio Grande Val- leys. This Laramie sea existed during an immense period of time, and was finally, but very gradually, drained by the elevation of its bed, through the middle of which longitudinally the Rocky Mountains and Black Hills now run. The exact geological age in which it existed is still under discus- sion.

Journal of the College of Science, Im- perial University, Japan. Vol. I, Part in. Published by the University, To- kyo, Japan. Pp. 124, with Nine Plates.

The publication of such a journal as this, with communications of the character of those which it contains, largely by native Japanese scholars, is a strong testimony to the progress which European studies are making in Japan. The present part of the "Journal" contains papers on the forma- tion of the germinal layers in Chelonia, by Professors Mitsukuri and Ishikarra; "The Caudal and Anal Fins of Goldfishes," by S. Watase; "The Giant Salamander of Japan," by Professor C. Sasaki; "A Pocket Galva- nometer" and "The Constants of a Lens," by Professor A. Tanakadate; "Some Occur- rences of Piedmontite in Japan," by Pro- fessor B. Koto; "The Severe Japan Earth- quake of the 15th of January, 1887," by Professor Sekiya; and "Notes on the Elec- tric Properties of Nickel and Platinum," by Professor C. G. Knott.


FiCADOs. (The Question of Wines—Fal- sified Wines.) By Dr. Campos da Paz. Rio de Janeiro. Pp. 373. The author was formerly an effective member of the Central Junta of Public Hy- giene, and is adjunct to the Chair of Organic and Biological Chemistry in the Faculty of Medicine at Rio Janeiro. In the present volume, he subjects the whole question of the adulteration of wines to a careful exam- ination, with many results of analyses and experiments.

The Microbes of Nitrification. By Manly

Miles. Pp. 4.

Accepting the agency of an organized ferment in the nitrification of plant-food, the author, forecasting the future advantages to arise from the methodical study of it, recommends that provisions be made for such study at agricultural colleges, and ex- periment stations, and suggests outlines of directions and methods for the studies. Further, as the roots, particularly of legu- minous plants, appear to exert influence over the microbes, investigation may also be profitably pursued in that direction.

Proceedings of the Seventh Annual Meeting of the Society for the Pro- motion OF Agricultural Science. 1886. William R. Lazenhy, Columbus, Ohio, Secretary. Pp. 88.

The meeting was held in Buffalo in August, 1886. The society has so far got along without a constitution, expecting to develop one out of its experiences. In the mean time, so long as it works truly to its name, a constitution will be quite dispensa- ble. Among the papers read at the meeting were two on the subject of dew and its deposition, one on "Parasitic Fungi as Af- fecting Plant Distribution," one on "The Effects of Lime in the Soil in the Develop- ment of Plants," a list of the "Weedy Plants of Ohio," and an account of "A Contagious Disease of the European Cab- bage-Worm, and its Economic Application."

The Meeidioxal Deflection of Ice Stkeams. By W. J. McGee. Pp. 16.

The moraines of certain Quaternary glaciers in the Sierras of Eastern California, •show curvature or deflection in particular directions which appear independent of topographical conditions. The author's study was to find the causes of deflection. He concludes that the relation of the factors is such as to indicate the general law that ice- streams flowing upon plains are deflected toward the sides upon which effective solar accession is least; a law which appears adequate to explain the common curvature of the moraines of the Sierras.


Gilbert G. K. The work of the International Congress of Geologists. Salem, Mass.: The Salem Press. I'p. 26.

Thompson, John. Comments on Currency. Pp. 4.

Shelley, W. IT.. Editor and Proprietor. The Fountalnl November, IssT. Monthly. York, Pa. I'p. 50. $1 a year.

Hitchcork, Henry. General Corporation T.aw8. Philadelphia: T. and J. W. Johnson & Co. Pp. 30.

Hitchcock. Dr. E.. and Seelye. Dr. H. H. The Anthropometric Manual of Amherst College. 1867. Pp. 27.

The New Age. "Weekly. London. Pp. 12. One penny.

Fre lerirq. Pawl. The Study of History in Eng- and and Scotland. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins ITniversity. Pp. 54. 25 cents.

Guy, George L. Annual Presidential Address of the Southern Illinois Teachers' Association. Mount Carmel, III. Pp. 23.

Massachusetts Agricultural College, 1862-1SS7. Amherst, Mass. Pp.61.

Tuckerman. Frederick. The Tongue and Gus- fcitory Orsrans of Mephitiis Mephitica. London: Adiafd & Son. Pp. 51, with Plates.

Donaldson, William M., & Co., Chicago. Calen- dars. 1-!S3.

Ha^ne, Arnold. Notes on the Deposition of Scorodite and on Arsenical Waters in the Yellow- stone National Park. Pp. 5

New York Association for Improving the Con dition of the Poor. Forty-fourth Annual Eeport, 1S87. Pp. 46.

Eemsen, Ira. The Principles of Theoretic.il Chemistry, with Special Reference to the Constitu tion of Chemical Compounds. Third edition. Phila delphia • Lea Brothers & Co. Pp. 31 S. $2.

Crasin. F. W. Bulletin of the Washburn Co! lege Laboratory of Nat-ral History, October, 1387 Topeka, Kansas. Pp. 32.

The Watch Dial. Monthly. Cincinnati, 0., No- vember, liS7. Pp. 2S.

Wood, Henrj*. Natural Law in the Business World. Pamphlet edition. Boston: Lee <t Shep- ard; New York: Charles T. Dillingham. I^. 222. 80 cents.

Potts, Edward. Fresh- Water Sponges. Phila- delphia: Academy of Natural Sciences. Pp. 124, with Plates.

Hogg, Professor Alexander. The Railroad as an Element in Education. Edition of list, with Ad- denda. Lcuisville, Ky. Pp. 52.

Knox, Hon. John J. The Surplus and the Pub- lic Debt. New York: Bankers' Publishing Asso- ciation. Pp. 20.

Job, Thomas. Goshen. Utah. The Cause of the Secular Variations of the Magnetic Needle. Pp. 4.

Guthrie, O. Memoirs of Dr. San)uel Guthrie, and the History of the Discovery ol Chloroform. Chicago: George K. Hazlitt it Co. Pp. 35.

Ilenshaw. Samuel. The Entomological Writirps of Dr. Alpheus Spring Packard. Washingfton: Government Printing-OflBce. Pp. 49.

Fish, E.x-Govemor Hamilton, and Evarts, W. M. Letter on the State's Canal Pohcy, etc. New York: 55 Liberty Street. Pp. 4.

MilKr. J. Blcecker. Ifational Support of the Erie Canal. New York: Cherouny Printing and Publishing Company. Pp. 15.

Tolstoy, Count Leo. The Cossacks. Translated by Eugene Schuyler. New York: W. S. Gotts- berger. Pp. 313.

Schurman, Jacob Gould. The Ethical Import of Darwinism. New York: Charles Scribners Sons. Pp. 264. 11.50.

Fairchild. Herman Le Roy. A History of the New York Academy of Science. New YorK: Pul)- lishcd by the Author. Pp. lO'J.

Ashley, W. J. Edward III and hl^ Son."!, 1327- 1360. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. Pp. 196, with Plates.

Ilntton, Rev. W. H. The Misrule of Henry III. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. Pp. 156, with Table.

Laughlin. J. Laurence. The Elements of Polit- ical Economy, with some Applications to Questions of the Day. New York: D. Appleton & Co. Pp. 863.

Andrews. E. Benjamin. Brief Institutes of General History. Boston: Silver, Itogers & Co. Pp. 440.

Eoos, Dr. P. F. Tan Hamel. Eevne Interna- tional Scientifique et Populaire des Falsifications des Denrees Alimentaires (International Review, Scientific and Popular, of Falsifications of Foods). Vol. I. No. 1. Am.'-terdam (Netherlands): Allert de Large. Bimonthly. Pp. V2. 8 francs a year.

D.akota (A Comparative Advertising Chart). Published by P. F. McClure. Commissioner of Im- migration, Pierre, Dakota. P. 1.

Danmar. William. Station E. Brooklyn, N. T The Location and Condition of the cpiiit World. Pp. 59. 25 cents.

Smith College. OfBcial Circular, October, 18S7. Northampton, Mass. Pp. 56.

Crocker. Uriel H. Over-production and Com- mercial Distress. Boston: Clarke and Carruth. Pp. 37.

.Aitken. Sir Willinm. On the Animal Alkaloids. Philadelphia: P. Blakiston, Son A. Co. Pp. 61. $1.

Proctor. Richard -A. Easy Lessons in the Dif- ferential Calculus. Pp. 114. First Steps in Geom- etrv. Pp.179. Ixindon and New York: Longmans. Green .V: Co.. Half-Hours with the Stars. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. Pp. 3S, with Plates. $2.

Miner. .Joel A.. Am Arbor, Mich. Miner's Kaw Index Review. Pocket size. $1.25.

Ebers, Georg, Eichard Lepsius: A Biography. Translated from the German by Zoe Dana Underhill. New York: William S. Gottsberger. Pp. 347.

Abercromby, Hon. Ralph. Weather: A Popular Exposition of the Nature of Weather Changes from Day to Bay. New York: D. Appleton & Co. Pp. 472. $1.75.

Jones. Lynds E. The Best Reading. Third series. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. Pp. 108. $1.

Kedzie, J. H. Speculations: Solar Heat, Gravitation, and Sun Spots. Chicago: S. C. Griggs & Co. Pp 319.

Jacobson, Augustus. Higher Ground: Hints toward settling the Labor Troubles. Chicago: A. C. McClurg &. Co, Pp. 251.

Froebel, Friedrich. The Education of Man. Translated and Annotated by W. N. Hailmann. New York: D. Appleton & Co. Pp. 322. $1.50.

Thoreau, Henry D. Winter. Boston and New York: Houghton, Mifflin & Co. Pp. 439. $1.50.

Johonnot, James. Stories of Our Country. New York: D. Appleton & Co. Pp. 207. 47 cents.

Jordan, David Starr. Science Sketches. Chicago: A. C. McClurg & Co. Pp. 276. $1.50.

Muter, John. A Manual of Analytical Chemistry. Third edition. Philadelphia: P. Blakiston, Son & Co. Pp. 200, with Plates. $2.

Anders. J. M. A History of the Medical Class of '77. University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia. Pp. 101.

Baird, Spencer F. Report of the Commissioner of Fisheries for 1885. Washington: Government Printing-Office. Pp. 1108, with 150 Plates.