Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 14.djvu/410

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396
THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

way how many new subjects and questions there are upon which women require to be trained in order to make them competent and skillful administrators of home affairs. Mrs. Bate shows conclusively that science has exactly the same office to perform in guiding domestic art that it has had to perform in giving efficiency to all the other arts, and that it will confer the same interest and dignity upon household affairs that it has already conferred upon other departments of activity. She well observes that in gaining the knowledge necessary to make the home a sanitarium—the house of health—educated housekeepers would do more to emancipate the world from fleshly ills than doctors have ever done or ever can do.

Mrs. Bate makes an important point in showing that the ignorance of women is a fatal hindrance to the introduction of many improvements by which domestic operations could be greatly facilitated, if only housekeepers knew enough to make them available. An illustration of this is just now at hand. The use of gas-stoves for cooking is one of the most important ameliorations that have been conferred upon the kitchen in a long time; but, as that realm is given over to tradition and blind habit, but little advantage has been taken of the improvement. Gas-stock holders are losing their sleep for fear Edison is going to destroy their business, but, if the benefits to be gained by the consumption of gas in cooking were generally understood, there would be but little occasion to fear from a diminished consumption of the article. A lady trained in the South Kensington Cooking-School, and who has taught in the Culinary College of Edinburgh, has recently come to this country and given a course of demonstrative lessons in cookery in New York. Her mode of working has been a sort of new revelation to the large class of ladies which has attended her instructions. Cooking has hitherto been associated with dingy kitchens and fiery ranges that evoked the free perspiration of the attendant; but Miss Dods uses a gas-stove, and does her work so neatly that it might be carried on in a parlor. In the dozen lessons she gave, scores of dishes of all kinds were prepared rapidly by the use of gas, and that they were well made was sufficiently evinced by the eagerness of the ladies to purchase them at the close of each lecture. To a curious inquirer she said, that in her practical demonstrations she had cooked by gas alone for years in preparing hundreds of dishes of a great variety in teaching. This is but one example, of which many might be cited, showing how people suffer in their domestic life because women are not properly instructed in the principles of practical household art, and in the resources that might be commanded for its improvement.

 


LITERARY NOTICES.

The Bible of To-day: A Course of Lectures by Rev. John W. Chadwick. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. Pp. 304. Price, $1.50.

On a subject of profound interest throughout Christendom, and upon which there is great discordance of opinion, coupled with intense feeling, Mr. Chadwick has produced an independent and instructive work, which is at the same time both reverent and rational.

The more liberal and catholic spirit of modern inquiry is undoubtedly due to the influence of science, which reaches far beyond the field of physical experiment. The attacks upon the Bible by the skeptics of the last century were made in the spirit of the age, which was polemical and disputatious, as it had been from the middle ages. Discussion was filled with the irritations, acerbities, bitterness, and the rancors of personal controversy. The Bible was argued over much like a party at the bar of our courts by the lawyers, one of whom wishes to set him free and the other to get him hanged. The Bible was attacked, as it was