Popular Science Monthly/Volume 47/May 1895/Literary Notices
|←Editor's Table||Popular Science Monthly Volume 47 May 1895 (1895)
The Great Ice Age and its Relation to the Antiquity of Man. By James Geikie. Third edition. Largely rewritten. New York: D. Appleton & Co. Pp. 850. With Maps and Illustrations. Price, $7.50.
Geikie's Great Ice Age, when it appeared in 187*7, took a position at once as one of the standard treatises in geological science. It has held that place ever since, although the department of geology with which it is concerned has been more actively and scrutinizingly studied, perhaps, than any other. With so much research as has been bestowed upon glacial phenomena, much knowledge has been accumulated that was not within the author's reach eighteen years ago, and some new views have prevailed; yet Prof. Geikie's arguments so ably set forth in the first edition of his work have not lost their force, and his main conclusions have not been successfully assailed in their essentials. A revision of the book had, however, become necessary, in order that it might enjoy the benefit of the acquired knowledge, and that the new views might receive just discussion and the old ones be re-examined in the light of them. Yet in the immense bulk of the literature that has accumulated, and its scattered condition among many nationalities and in multitudes of periodicals and monographs, the author has not attempted to discuss all the interesting questions mooted and canvassed in it, but, to keep his sketch within reasonable limits, has been compelled to follow more or less strictly the lines laid down in the first edition, in which his endeavor was represented to be to give a systematic account of the Glacial period, with special reference to its climatic conditions. All the more important features of the evidence, however, have been considered, and few references are given to original sources of information. The chapters dealing with the phenomena of existing glacial action in Alpine and arctic regions have been touched up, and the glacial geology of Scotland has been thoroughly revised. Some rearrangements of other matter have been made; but nearly three fourths of the volume have been entirely rewritten. The glacial and interglacial deposits of the European continent are treated more fully than was possible ten or fifteen years ago. The purpose of the book being to sketch the present position of glacial geology rather than to write the history of its rise and progress, no great notice has been taken of the opinions held by its pioneers. In dealing with questions still under discussion the author has endeavored to avoid a controversial tone, preferring as a rule to set forth the evidence as clearly and impartially as he could, and then to point out what seemed the most reasonable interpretation. To avail himself as fully as possible of the results of LITERARY NOTICES.
��glacial investigation in America, where some of the fullest researches have been made, the author engaged Prof. T. C. Chamberlin to prepare a summary of the American evi- dence, which is presented in the forty-first and forty-second chapters of the book. An in- teresting confirmation of the author's con- clusions, drawn most largely from observa- tions of British geology, is afforded by those of Prof. Peunck, of Vienna, which are similar, though derived from the study of a different field the Alpine lands.
Geological Survey of New Jersey. An- nual Report of the State Geologist for the Year 1893. By John C. Smock, State Geologist. Trenton: John L. Mur- phy Publishing Company. Pp. 45*7.
The survey for 1893 was engaged in the continuation of the work on the surface formations of the State, on the greensand marl beds and the associated bed of the Cretaceous and Tertiary ages, on the study of stream flow and the general questions of water supply and water power, and on the examination of the clays of the State ; and the collection of artesian or deep-bored well records was continued. The study of the surface geology by Prof. Rollin D. Salisbury was carried on mostly in the northern and central parts of the State. One of its fruits is the preparation of maps of the surface formations, separate from that of the under- lying strata, in the beginning of the publi- cation of which New Jersey leads. These maps may be said to make a new series, dis- tinct from the topographic maps by their geology, and from the older geological maps in the absence of any representation of the older and underlying rock formations, except where they crop out and make the surface. They show the nature of the soils and sub- soils in general, and the deposits of sands, gravel, peat, shell marls, and other earthy beds, and also the bowlder-covered areas of the glacial drift. The work in the green- sand marl belt and in the newer formations of the Tertiary age overlying the marl beds was continued, in co-operation with the United States Geological Survey, under the charge of Prof. William B. Clark. The sur- vey of the crystalline rocks of the Highlands was carried on by the United States Survey, and was in charge of Dr. J. E. Wolff. The
��subjects of water supply and water power were further investigated and studied by Mr. C. C. Vermeule, and the collection and tabu- lation of data for the volume of water supply were carried forward. Mr. Vermeule has prepared a map of the State showing the water sheds which are utilized for public water systems and those which are still available. Mr. Lewis Woolman has con- tinued to collect the records of artesian wells put down in the southern part of the State ; and his report contains, in addition, historical notes of wells and important generalizations on the water-bearing beds or horizons. Progress is reported in drainage surveys, and surveys for the reclamation of tide- marsh lands. Attention has been given to the adaptation of the trap ridges and high- land regions to the purpose of natural parks and forest reservations. The last part of the report is devoted to a list of the useful minerals and mineral subtances which occur naturally in the State, and to notes on the localities and modes of occurrence. The vol- ume contains the map showing water sheds, and is accompanied by a tube containing maps illustrating the distribution of intra- morainic and extra-morainic drift ; of the extinct Lake Passaic ; showing glacial striae on the Palisade range ; and of the vicinity of Hibernia, in the ore district.
General Hancock. By General Francis A. Walker. Great Commanders Series. New York : D. Appleton & Co. Pp. 332. Price, $1.50.
In telling the story of Hancock's life and military career General Walker draws atten- tion to the fact that Hancock never command- ed a separate army, and hence was never re- sponsible for the plan, but only for the exe- cution of the part intrusted to him, in the operations of the army with which he was connected. Hence he is to be estimated as an executive officer and not as a strategist: In two chapters his life is brought down to the great rebellion. Winfield Scott Han- cock was the son of a lawyer who prac- ticed a few miles out of Philadelphia. He went through West Point with the class of 1844, and served in the Mexican War, which began a couple of years after he graduated. From the evacuation of the city of Mexico until the civil war Hancock served much of
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��the time as a quartermaster, the last two years being chief quartermaster on the Pacific coast. In this service he won distinction for his care, foresight, and good management. General Walker represents him as having the almost incompatible qualities of loving " pa- pers," rejoicing in forms and regulations and requisitions, while at the same time he had the temperament that enjoys the clash of battle with its excitement and danger. His experience had prepared him most admirably to cope with material obstacles, and very of- ten it is material obstacles quite as much as the efforts of the enemy that defeat armies. In his first battle, Williamsburg, he was sent with five regiments to execute a movement, which he accomplished with consummate skill. His conduct led McClellan to say in his telegraphic report, "Hancock was su- perb," and the adjective clung to him. By what the author calls " one of those curious fortunes which mark the course of war," the brigade and its commander that had acted so brilliantly and steadily at Williamsburg were given scarcely anything to do in the seven days' battles and other fighting that followed on the peninsula, nor were they more actively employed at Antietam. But when Richardson fell on the last-named field, Hancock was advanced to the command of his division.
The account follows Hancock through Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, and the three days of Gettysburg, setting forth the tactics employed by the Union army on each day and freely criticising them. The severe wound received by Hancock on the third day at Gettysburg took him away from the Sec- ond Corps, which he then commanded, for six months. After his return came the se- vere campaign of 1864, in which Hancock bore a prominent part, Grant being now his chief. In the spring of 1865, after a winter of recruiting service, Hancock was placed in command of the Middle Military Division whose operations were to begin from Win- chester. The final crash at Petersburg came earlier than Grant expected, so that Hancock had no share in the operations which brought it about. A single chapter is given to the events of Hancock's life after the war. The position that General Walker occupied on Hancock's staff, of assistant adjutant general, makes him exceptionally well qualified for the
��work he has here performed. It is no eulogy that he has produced, for he does not conceal the deficiencies nor the specific mistakes of his subject. His incidental criticism of other generals is equally outspoken, and adds much to the interest of the volume.
Meteorology. Weather, and Methods of Forecasting, Descriptions of Meteorologi- cal Instruments, and River Flood Predic- tions in the United States. By Thomas Russell. New York: Macmillan & Co. Pp. 277, with Plates. Price, $4.
The main object of this book is to explain the use of the weather map, where it can be of service for the purpose of making predic- tions ; but the authois expressions as to the feasibility of making successful predictions, even w ith the use of the weather map, are not hopeful. There are not more than from six to twelve occasions in the year when they can be made, and for some places they are never possible. The kinds of .weather that can be foretold are the great changes. A fall of temperature as great as forty degrees can be foreseen to a certainty for most parts of the country east of the Mississippi River. The northeast rainstorms along the Atlantic coast can be successfully predicted in most cases. Floods along the lower Ohio and Mississippi Rivers can be foreseen from one to three weeks in advance of their occurrence, and the height the water will reach can be assigned within a foot or two. The course of rains, which agrees as a rule with that of the areas of low pressure that cross the country from west to east and from southwest to northeast, can be inferred in a general way, but is subject to many irregularities. The reader being thus warned of the uncertain- ties connected with the matter, a summary of what is known about the weather, its ap- parent laws, and its somewhat erratic move- ments, is given in a series of chapters which are broken up into crisp, pertinent, and in- telligible paragraphs distinguished by their conspicuous headings. First, the influence of the moon, sun spots, and periodicity are dis- cussed ; we have no satisfactory knowledge on either point. Next, the properties and functions of the air are described, with more definite conclusions. Then meteorological in- struments are enumerated, and the principles involved in their construction and their uses are explained. The succeeding chapters are
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��devoted, with numerous subheadings, to the discussion of temperature and pressure and their variations, evaporation, clouds, rain, and snow ; winds, thunderstorms, and tornadoes, and optical appearances. A full chapter is given to the exposition of the construction and meaning of weather maps, and another chapter to the consideration of the import of weather predictions. A short account of river floods is given, and the method of predicting river heights for a number of points along the lower Mississippi River and its tributaries. In all this a general view is taken of meteorology, while climatology is treated of only in its broad, general features. The principal weather changes are described as they occur in various parts of the world in different seasons on land and sea, and their causes are narrated as far as is known. A collection of facts is given useful in form- ing a conception of the phenomena of the atmosphere as a whole, so as to enable those with little time for consulting a multitude of books to form a notion of the science of meteorology as it is at present.
The Birds of Eastern Pennsylvania and New Jersey. With Introductory Chap- ters on Geographical Distribution and Migration. Prepared under the Direction of the Delaware Valley Ornithological Club. By Witmer Stone. Philadelphia : Delaware Valley Ornithological Club. Pp. 185, with Two Maps.
The object of this volume which has been prepared by a special committee ap- pointed to collate the field notes of members of the club is to provide these members and ornithologists with a summary of our present knowledge of the birds of the dis- trict included, with regard to their abun- dance, distribution, and time of occurrence. Description of the birds and their habits does not come within the scope of the work. In the preliminary pages are given notes on the geographical distribution of birds ; the faunal areas of the region ; their physical features and characteristic birds ; the dis- tribution of winter birds ; a general discus- sion of bird migration ; migration in the vi- cinity of Philadelphia ; and birds found within ten miles of Philadelphia conveying copious information. The region is crossed by the three faunal zones : the Carolinian, oc- cupying the southeastern corner of Pennsyl-
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��vania and the whole of southern New Jersey, to the Hudson and beyond, with a bay up the Susquehanna Valley ; the Alleghanian, occu- ing the rest of the region, except the tops of the higher mountain ranges and portions of the elevated table land in the north cen- tral part of Pennsylvania, where the Cana- dian zone is represented. The passage from the Alleghanian to the Canadian zone is, as a rule, remarkably distinct, as the more northern birds keep strictly to the virgin forest. Where the forest has been removed, the Canadian species for the most part dis- appear. These three faunal zones are di- vided into several well-defined regions which differ more or less in their physical features, and consequently in the character of their bird life ; and these are described.
Proceedings of the International Confer- ence on Aerial Navigation, held in Chicago, August 1, 2, and 3, 1893. New York : The American Engineer and Rail- road Journal. Pp. 429.
The proposal to hold the conference of which the proceedings are recorded in this book originated with Prof. A. F. Zahm, of Notre Dame University, who communicated with Mr. C. C. Bonney, President of the World's Congress Auxiliary, and interested several other persons in the project. The principal objects of the conference were to bring about the discussion of some of the scientific principles involved in the scheme of aerial navigation ; to collate the results of the latest researches ; to procure an inter- change of ideas ; and to promote concert of action among the students of this inchoate subject. The programme involved, first, a discussion of the general principles of the subject, and more special discussions in Sec- tions A and B, under the heads of Aviation and Ballooning. Letters of co-operation were received from experts or students of the subject, and from the British Aeronautical Society, the Aerial Navigation Society of France, the Aviation Society of Munich, the Imperial Aeronautical Society of Russia, and the Aviation Society of Vienna. The ses- sions were attended by about one hundred persons, who seemed to take great interest in the proceedings, and the discussions brought out several investigators who had been studying the subject or trying interest-
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��ing experiments without making it publicly known. The opening address was by Mr. 0. Chanute, and it is followed in the book by thirty-six other papers, on the work of the wind, propelling devices, sailing flight, soar- ing flight, the machines of flight and aspira- tion, forms of flying machines, aeroplanes, kites, balloons, explorations of the upper air, and discussions.
The Ills of the South. By Charles H. Atken, LL. D. New York : G. P. Put- nam's Sons. Pp. 2*7*7.
Demoralized labor, lost fortunes, a ruin- ous credit system, and the indirect conse- quences of Southern lien laws, are the chief subjects dealt with in this volume.
The book is penned in no hostile spirit to any one State or class of people, while to the student of modern history it forms a valuable adjunct to his historic knowledge of the Southern States. In all, the work contains fourteen chapters, each imparting a succinct view of the various needs of the Southern people from 1865 to the present time.
Psychologie des Grands Calculateurs et Jouecrs d'Echecs. Par Alfred Binet. (Psychology of Great Calculators and Chess-players. By Alfred Binet.) Paris : Librairie Hachette et Cie. 1894.
The author of this work has made his investigations in these unusual forms of memory with the fundamental desire to dis- cover something that might be utilized in pedagogics. The investigation of the men- tal processes of mathematical prodigies was made at the suggestion of the late Prof. Charcot. The investigation of chess-players' memories was made at the suggestion of M. Taine.
Mathematical prodigies form a natural class, and their ability is independent of heredity or environment. They manifest their talents precociously, and the familiar- ity with figures is at the expense of general intelligence. Furthermore, their aptitude is developed by exercise and is decreased by non-usage. It is largely a matter of audi- tory and visual mnemonics.
In blindfold chess the ability depends upon knowledge, memory, and imagination. The ability to recall so complex a mental image as one or more chessboards contain-
��ing thirty-two or less pieces, in a variety of positions, constitutes what Binet designates as a visual geometrical memory, associated with which is a memory of recapitulation or faculty of repeating all the moves in the order in which they were played.
The work is an interesting study of curi- ous phases of mentality.
The Pygmies. By A. de Quatrefages. New York : D. Appleton & Co. (The Anthro- pological Series.) Pp.255. Price, $1.*75.
This work of one of the most eminent anthropologists of the century, translated by Prof. Frederick Starr expressly for the An- thropological Series, relates to a race, or rather a group of races, of meD, concerning which speculation and tradition were rife for many centuries, but of which little or nothing was definitely known till very recently. They were mentioned by Homer, they were de- scribed by Aristotle, and were referred to as a historical fact by Herodotus. These authors placed them in Africa. Pliny, a more recent writer than they, speaks of them as living in different countries. The African pygmies re- mained substantially unknown, except from these ancient references, until a few years ago explorers of the heart of Africa brought home accounts given of them by neighboring tribes. Schweinfurth saw them and obtained an in- dividual Akka, and specimens were brought to Europe ; since then acquaintance has been direct. Besides these, M. de Quatrefages classified with the pygmies other " small black races " which had attracted his atten- tion and interest in a special manner, and made frequent references to them in his writings. "These little blacks," he says, " are to-day almost everywhere scattered, separated, and often hunted by races larger and stronger ; nevertheless, they have had in the past their time of prosperity," and have played a very real ethnological part. The principal purpose of this book is to make known the scientific truth in regard to the ancient fables, and to show what the pygmies of antiquity really were. He finds that the ancients had information " more or less in- exact, more or less incomplete, but also more or less true," concerning five populations of little stature from whom they made their pygmies. Two were located in Asia ; a third to the south, toward the sources of the Nile ;
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��a fourth to the east, not far from these ; and the fifth in Africa, to the southwest. Two of these groups, more or less modified by crossing, are still located in Asia. The Afri- can groups are farther away than the tradi- tions represent, but nearly in the same direc- tion. All of them are fragments of two human races well characterized as blacks, occupying considerable areas in Africa and in Asia respectively, and both including tribes, distinct peoples, and subraces. The name of Negritos is suggested for the dwarf black populations of Asia, Malaysia, and Me- lanesia, as distinguished from the larger ne- groes, or Papuans, and Negrillos for the dwarf African tribes, taken collectively. These definitions and distinctions having been made clear, the author proceeds to de- tail the general history of the eastern pyg- mies, of whom the Mincopies of the Anda- man Islands appear a conspicuous type, their physical and special characteristics, and of other negroes than the Mincopies ; and next of the Negrillos, or pygmies of Africa ; clos- ing with a discussion of the religion of the Hottentots and Bushmen. The conclusion is drawn from the study of the Negritos, which have been regarded as very low in the scale of humanity, and by some as related to the " missing link," that " this is not so ; and that where they have lived most outside of movement and mixture which alone elevate societies the Negritos show themselves true men in all things and for all things."
Economic Geology of the United States. By Ralph S. Tarr, B. S., F. G. S. A. New York : Macmillan & Co. Pp. 509. Price, $4.
In the presentation of this text-book on economic geology the author has extended his primary plan from the issuance of printed notes to accompany a series of lectures de- livered before the Economic Geological Class at Cornell University. Hence, a far wider field is destined for a work which will neces- sarily take the place of books that treat too exclusively of those branches of the subject having little or least importance for more thorough students.
Throughout the volume the reader's at- tention is directed to the mineral products of the United States, while only those of special importance from foreign localities
��are dealt with. Apart from the ample re- ports of State and national geologic surveys, the author has consulted and employs with effect special articles and data selected from leading scientific journals of the day. Also Ore Deposits, by Phillips, the Reports of the Director of the Mint, Day's Mineral Resources of the United States, the Census Reports, Mineral Industries, etc. Tables and illustra- tions add to the usefulness of the work.
Arout Mushrooms. The Study of Escu- lent and Poisonous Fungi. By Julius A. Palmer, Jr. Boston : Lee & Shep- ard. Pp. 100. Price, $2.
This is a pleasant little book, that will interest both the amateur and the trained naturalist. The classification, or key to the principal forms of large and fleshy fungi, is original with the author, and promises to facilitate the work of those commencing the study of the subject.
Systematic Survey of the Organic Color- ing Matters. By Drs. G. Schultz and P. Julius. Translated and edited by Arthur G. Green, F. I. C, F. C. S. New York : Macmillan & Co. Pp. 205. Price, $5.
A thorough knowledge of the chemis- try and technology of coal-tar products has within recent years become a necessity with those engaged in the color industry.
The work before us is a technical one, and appears to be thoroughly well suited to the needs of the analyst, the dyer, patent agent, merchant, or others concerned with coal-tar colors.
The editor and translator has carried out the fundamental idea of the authors, and has given us, in as precise a form as possible, all the essential details, including items of the most recent knowledge. There have also been added full tables for the analysis and identi- fication of the various coloring materials.
The Report on the Mound Explorations of the Bureau of Ethnology, an extract from the twelfth annual report of the bureau, by Cyrus Thomas, is based almost exclusively upon the results of explorations carried on by the bureau since 1881. A thorough in- vestigation of all the mounds could not be made with the means at the disposal of the bureau ; a superficial examination was not to
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��be thought of. The problem was solved by making thorough examinations of single mounds and single groups, selecting such as were most typical, over the whole area ; so that, by a careful examination of these typical structures in the various districts, the end, it was thought, might be secured of collecting the data necessary to an understanding of the more general and more important prob- lems relating to the mounds and tbe mound- builders. The exhaustive examination of many single groups and the study of local problems are left to the future. Accurate and full descriptions and measurements are given of all the mounds and groups exam- ined. The collections made include pottery of most of the known varieties, and some that are new, showing most of the known types of textile impressions and some that are unusual ; polished and pecked celts from mounds ; stone pipes, which so supplement others that the whole evolution of forms may be traced from the earliest known ; copper articles, including two new types, " decidedly the most important yet discovered " ; en- graved shells ; specimens of textile fabrics and mattings ; and chipped flint implements, stone axes, discoidal stones, gorgets, etc. (Published at the Government Printing Office, Washington.)
In the preparation of his Elements of Me- chanical Drawing the author, Gardner C. Anthony, has aimed, as in the other num- bers of his Technical Drawing Series, to pro- vide a text-book rather than a copybook, a treatise in which principles should be estab- lished and methods suggested, but freedom permitted in their application. It is intended that the student should first thoroughly mas- ter the principles, and then, unaided, apply them to the solution of the problems, receiv- ing such instruction as his special case may demand. The system has been successfully applied by the author and others in teaching various classes. The present work concerns geometrical problems, conic sections, projec- tion, the development of surfaces, the inter- section of surfaces, screw threads and bolt heads, bolts, and isometric and oblique pro- jection. (Published by D. C. Heath & Co., Boston. Price, $1.50.)
In Tlie Natural History of Hell, a discus- sion of some of the relations of the Christian plan of salvation to modern science, including
��a chapter on miracles and a scientific exami- nation of the theory of endless punishment, John Phillipson undertakes a scientific dem- onstration of the natural necessity of endless punishment for wrongdoing, inevitable unless arrested by some agency outside of Nature. The argument is based upon the conception of the never-ending endurance and transmis- sion of the picture and the consequences of every action. Under this view there is a necessity for some plan of salvation outside of natural law. Here science stops. (Pub- lished by the Industrial Publication Compa- ny, New York. Price, 25 cents.)
Expositions of Buddhism have come to us in two works. Of The Gospel of Bnd- dha, according to the old records, by Dr. Paul Cams (Open Court Publishing Com- pany, Chicago), the bulk of the contents is derived from the old Buddhist canon. Many passages, including the most important ones, are literally copied from translations of the original texts, rendered rather freely in some cases to make them intelligible to the pres- ent generation ; others have been rearranged ; and still others are abbreviated. The few original additions embody ideas for which prototypes may be found somewhere among the traditions of Buddhism, and are giv.en as elucidations of the main principles of the doctrine. For those who want to trace the Buddhism of the book to its foundation a table of references is appended, directing to the sources of the various chapters and point- ing out parallelisms with western thought.
A Buddhist Catechism (G. P. Putnam's Sons) is an introduction to the teachings of the Buddha Gotamo, compiled from the holy writings of the southern Buddhists, with ex- planatory notes for the use of Europeans, by Subhadra Bhikshu. It is a concise repre- sentation of Buddhism, according to the Cey- lonese Pali manuscripts of the Tipitakam, which are regarded as the oldest and most authentic sources. It contains the funda- mental outlines of the doctrine, with the omission of the legendary, mystic, and occult accessories with which Buddha's teachings have been adorned or encumbered in the course of centuries.
The third part of the Elementary Treatise on Theoretical Mechanics of Alexander Ziwet (Macmillan & Co., $2.25) is on kinetics. About half of the volume is devoted to the
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��kinetics of a particle, and the remainder is given to the study of the kinetics of a rigid body and a brief discussion of the funda- mental principles of the kinetics of a system. In the discussion of the motion of a particle (impact, rectilinear motion) such fundamental ideas as momentum, impulse, kinetic energy, force, work, potential energy, and power are gradually introduced and illustrated in an elementary way. Then the general equations of motion of a particle are discussed ; and the principle of kinetic energy, that of angu- lar momentum, and the principle of d'Alem- bert are explained and applied first, to the motion of a free particle, then to constrained motion. In treating of the motion of a rigid body, after the discussion of the fundamental principles and of the theory of moments and ellipsoids of inertia, the action of impulses and the motion under continuous forces are taken up separately. The last chapter, on the motion of a system, is brief, but includes the theory of Lagrange's generalized co-or- dinates and of Hamilton's principle.
A suggestive and useful little book pre- pared by William C. Connell, and published by G. P. Putnam's Sons, is The Currency and the Banking Laws of the Dominion oj Canada, considered with Reference to Cur- rency Reform in the United States. It con- tains the substance of an address delivered at the American Bankers' Convention held at New Orleans in 1891, in which financial straits that have since occurred were pre- dicted ; followed by the Banking Act of Canada, given entire. This act is presented as completely filling all the requirements of the community in which it exists and flour- ishes, and worthy of consideration in recon- structing our own financial system.
The Dynamics of Life (Blakiston & Son, Philadelphia) presents the substance of an address delivered before the Medical Society of Manchester, England, in October, 1894, by W. R. Gowers, M. D. In it are explained, without the author assuming any claims for novelty in conception, the operations of La- tent Chemical Energy, the Dynamics of Mus- cle, the Dynamics of Nerve, and the Dynam- ics of Disease. Summing up the results of his inquiry, the author observes that, search as earnestly and thoroughly as we may, that which we call life eludes our search and resists our efforts. " We may, indeed, trace
��the relations to vitality of matter and of the energy it bears their entrance into the do- main of life, their exit, their effects." But we see them only as shadows in the mist.
In the Fifth Annual Report of the Mis- souri Botanical Garden, for 1893, mention is made of the destructive effects of drought and extreme alternations of winter tempera- ture on the lawns and the evergreens. The Norway spruce has particularly suffered, and it will be only a few years before all the older trees will have disappeared. The old red cedars and the arbor vitEes are also suc- cumbing, and are being gradually removed. A similar experience is recorded at the Har- vard Botanic Garden. The year's additions to the herbarium number 19,417 sheets. In addition to the " Shaw Premiums " already awarded annually, a gold medal has been in- stituted for the introduction of a plant of decided merit for cultivation not previously an article of North American commerce. The Garden and the School of Botany, en- dowed by Mr. Shaw in Washington Uni- versity, are working harmoniously together. The volume, including the report, containg the usual anniversary publications and sci- entific papers on the Venation of Salix, by Dr. N. M. Glatf elter ; the Tannoids, by J. C. Beny ; the Sugar Maples, by Dr. Trelease ; Gayophytum and Boisduvalla, by Dr. Tre- lease ; Pomological Notes for 1892 and 1893, by J. C. Whitten ; The Emergence of Pro- nuba from Yucca Capsules, by J. C. Whit- ten ; Plants collected in Southeastern Mis- souri, by B. F. Bush ; Notes and Observa- tions, by Dr. Trelease ; and more than forty plates.
The first of the two volumes of Lord RayleigKs work on The Theory of Sound, first issued in 1877, has come to a second edition (Macmillan, $4). The work is a mathematical presentation of the subject, aiming to include the more important of the advances made in modern times by mathe- maticians and physicists. The present vol- ume includes chapters on the vibrations of systems in general, followed by a more de- tailed consideration of special systems, such as stretched strings, bars, membranes, and plates. In the second edition are two new chapters, dealing respectively with curved plates or shells and with electrical vibrations. Minor changes and new sections are inserted
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��here and there. The author remarks that the mathematician will complain of deficient rigor in his method of treatment, but he feels that from the point of view of the physicist some slight relaxation is justifiable.
A text-book on Steam and the Marine Steam Enginehas been prepared by John Yeo, R. N., from notes of the lectures given by him as an instructor in steam engineering at the English Royal Naval College (Macmil- lan, $2.50). The scope of the book includes descriptions of the marine boilers and en- gines in common use, with their fittings, a statement of the properties of steam, and instruction concerning feed-water, the com- bustion of fuel, etc. Other matters treated are the construction of double and triple ex- pansion engines and the form of propeller screws. The author's language is notably clear and concise, and the volume is fully illustrated.
Under the title The Genesis of Water a speculation as to how the first combination of oxygen and hydrogen took place is pre- sented by P. W. Dooner. The pamphlet is printed at Los Angeles.
In the Report of 'the State Board of Health of South Dakota for 1892 we find, besides the usual accounts of the transactions of the board and the conditions of public health, articles for public information on Dangerous Contagious Diseases and Diphtheria, and more general articles on climate and the climatic cure for consumptives. The climate of South Dakota is presented as of special value, from the medical point of view, on account of the peculiar dryness of the atmosphere. " That it is as good as any during the summer is not to be doubted, and that in winter it is far better than the great majority is a fact." Cases of "taking cold" and of pneumonia are much rarer in proportion to the popula- tion than in the States farther east ; and with the clearness of the atmosphere of the country and its lack of clouds and cloudy weather the sunlight acts as an efficient tonic and destroyer of impurities. The claim is maintained that the climate fulfills to an excellent degree the conditions of one favor- able to consumptives.
A new educational journal, devoted to " manu-mental " training, has appeared under the title Art Education (J. C. Witter & Co., 853 Broadway, New York ; 75 cents a year).
��It is to be issued bimonthly for the present. Its field is the training of the mind through the use of the hand, and hence comprises drawing, manual training (so called), and writing. In the first number are articles by Francis W. Parker, on Acquiring Forms of Thought Expression; Stella Skinner, on Color Study ; Henry T. Bailey, on the Super- visor of Drawing; besides quite a number of biographical notices, with portraits of in- structors in drawing, manual training, etc. There is a colored supplement, which it is small praise to say is worth the price of the number. It consists of two lithographic fig- ures printed in several shades of brown, and " illustrates the fact that artistic effect does not depend so much upon an elaborate design as upon correct combination of color." The editors are James C. Witter, Charles P. Zaner, and Rose N. Yawger.
A Stable Money Standard is the title of the address by Henry Farquhar, Sectional Vice President, before the Section of Econom- ic Science and Statistics, of the recent Brook- lyn meeting of the American Association. The author concludes that while gold has been proved by the experience of the ages to be the best-fitted medium to meet the re- quirements of such a standard, all interfer- ence by Government in defining legal tender is needless and mischievous. Perfect free- dom in contracts for methods of payment and for the kind of money should be allowed, the terms of the contract to be interpreted and enforced according to prevalent usage ; the Government's part being only to certify to the weight and fineness of its coin.
The Twelfth Annual Report of the Board of Control of the New York Agricultural Experiment Station includes the report of the treasurer, showing the receipts and ex- penditures on the several accounts, and the reports of the director describing the addi- tions and improvements that have been made to the station and its appurtenances and the work done. Fifteen bulletins were published, containing six hundred and ninety-five pages in all, of each of which fifteen thousand copies were distributed ; besides circulars on the Leaf Spot of Chrysanthemums, Preserv- ing Eggs, and the Fertilizer Law of the State. The new experiments undertaken in- clude investigations with a view to determine the relative value of the different breeds of
�� � dairy cattle in the production of milk, butter, and cheese, and of the differences in composition and quality of the milk produced; experiments with poultry and in feeding swine; chemical experiments, mostly bearing on the manufacture and qualities of cheese; and experiments with vegetables, various fruits, diseases of fruits and fruit trees, celery diseases, and potato scab.