Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 10.djvu/642

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suck fancies. Lay eggs or pur, and you'll forget them.'

" 'But it is so delightful to swim on the water,' said the duck; 'so delightful when it dashes over one's head, and one dives down to the very bottom.'

" 'Well, that must be a fine pleasure,' said the hen. 'You are crazy, I think: ask the cat, who is the cleverest man I know, if he would like to swim on the water, and perhaps to dive, to say nothing of myself. Ask our mistress, the old lady, and there is no one in the world cleverer than she is: do you think that she would like to swim on the water, and for the water to dash over her head?'

" 'You don't understand me,' said the duck."

Twelve Idioms spoken in the Southwest of the United States: Pueblo and Apache Dialects, Tonto, Tonkawa, Digger, Utah. Vocabularies, published and commented upon by Prof. Albert S. Gatschet. Weimar, 1876. 8vo, pp. 150. (In the German language.) Westermann & Co.

In this volume a series of vocabularies and phraseology, collected by members of Lieutenant George M. Wheeler's survey parties, were made the object of a comparative investigation by the author, a resident of New York City, who is already known to the scientific world by various treatises on Indian languages, and on European dialects found in the Alpine valleys. Oscar Loew, chemist of one of Lieutenant Wheeler's parties, collected the main portion of these vocabularies, adopting for them the alphabetical notation recommended by the Smithsonian Institution. To solve the long-standing problem of the primordial habitat of the Aztec tribe, which forms a portion of the far-stretching Nahua race of natives, the author has united all the linguistic information which can at the present time be derived from the study of the Pueblo languages, and has also illustrated the radical affinities of the other language-stocks, which form the object of the publication. In addition to this, the volume contains one of the most exhaustive enumerations of American language-stocks and dialects ever attempted from the genealogical standpoint, embracing North, Central, and South America, and gives a transparent synopsis of the plan of thought and the morphological processes observed in various idioms of the Western Hemisphere. From a separate chapter, the contents of which are novel to science, and of the highest linguistic interest, we become enabled to follow Indian thought and Indian combinatory powers to the very abysses and mysteries of primeval word-formation and word-composition.

A short appendix compares and analyzes numerous terms embodied in the large word-table on pages 97 to 117, and classifies the numeral adjectives according to the various systems of numeration in use all over the divers parts of the globe (binary, quinary, etc.). On the last pages two curious Southern rock-inscriptions are figured and their interpretation attempted.

The Land-Birds and Game-Birds of New England, with Descriptions of their Habits, and Notes. By H. D. Minot. Salem: Naturalists' Agency, 1876. Pp. 350. Price, $3.

This book is likely to attract the attention of ornithologists on account of both its good and bad qualities. It is restricted in its scope to New England, and intended chiefly to report what the author has himself observed in the neighborhood of Boston, but the biographies are extended by copious quotations. Mr. Minot seems to regard the subject from the standpoint of an oologist, and makes the breeding habits of birds the most prominent feature of his history. The long introduction is especially addressed to egg-collectors or students, and contains minute information upon forming oölogical cabinets. This portion of the book should have been revised by the author, and cut down at least one-third. As to the long appendix, embracing keys by which to identify the eggs of the birds, and the birds themselves mentioned in the volume, it is practically useless; while the construction of the two indexes is foolish. This misfortune arises from the method of the book, which—its character and object considered—is altogether bad. The arrangement of his subject-matter, under various signs and paragraph-marks, is only an obstruction, and we are sure the really great value of the work, as a whole, would