Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 25.djvu/141

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133
LITERARY NOTICES.

tion of no intermarriage of kinsfolk) less than one part in 16,000,000 to the constitution of a man of the present day." He deems three generations far enough to go back for hereditary information, except that any distinctly alien element of race or disease, which has been introduced earlier, should be noted. Mr. Galton holds that "the natural gifts of each individual being inherited from his ancestry, it is possible to foresee much of the latent capacities of a child in mind and body, of the probabilities of his future health and longevity, and of his tendencies to special forms of disease, by a knowledge of his ancestral precedents. When the science of heredity shall have become more advanced, the accuracy of such forecasts will doubtless improve; in the mean time we may rest assured that fewer blunders will be made in rearing and educating children, under the guidance of a knowledge of their family antecedents, than without it." As a stimulus to the making of these records, Mr. Galton has offered £500 in prizes "to those British subjects resident in the United Kingdom who shall furnish him before May 15, 1884, with the best extracts from their own family records."

 

The "Life-History Album" is arranged to contain the biological experience of one person, and is to be begun by the parents of a child and continued by the person himself from the time that he becomes old enough. It is expected to prove of service in the following ways: "1. It will show whether, and in what way, your health is affected by the changes that take place in your residence, occupation, diet, or habits. 2. It will afford early indication of any departure from health, and will thus draw attention to conditions which, if neglected, may lead to permanent disorder. . . . 3. A trustworthy record of past illnesses will enable your medical attendants to treat you more intelligently and successfully than they otherwise could, for it will give them a more complete knowledge of your 'constitution' than could be obtained in any other way. . . . 4. The record will further be of great value to your family and descendants; for mental and physical characteristics, as well as liabilities to disease, are all transmitted more or less by parents to their children, and are shared by members of the same family."

The first page of the "Album" is for a "Description of Child at Birth," and there is a leaf each for a "Record of Life History," "Record of Medical History," "Anthropometric Observations," and "Photographs" for each five years of life up to seventy-five. There are also charts on which to record the stature and weight—one for each five years up to twenty-five, another for a summary of these five; one for the years from twenty-five to fifty, and one for the years from fifty to seventy-five. On each chart except the last are printed curves showing the average stature and weight of the male and female population of the United Kingdom, so that the individual may compare the curves which he constructs for himself with these. The appendix contains tests of vision, notes on apparatus, etc.

Clatis Rerum (The Key of Things). Norwich: F. A. Robinson & Co. Pp. 142. Price, $1.

This book embodies the conclusions of its author in regard to the plan of the universe. He names six modes of being as elements in which the universe subsists, viz., matter, force, life, soul, spirit, and God, defining soul as "that mode of being which is characterized by intellect and will," and spirit as "that mode of being which is characterized by consciousness of God." In his closing chapter, "Consummation," he says: "Matter, force, life, soul, and spirit, came forth from God in order that, by the interior operation of their several laws, they might be fitted to return to him. . . . The return of the extrinsic universe, through human nature, into God, is accomplished by the incarnation of the Word, and by the personal union with him of all other perfect individual men."

Bleaching, Dyeing, and Calico-Printing. With Formulæ. Edited by John Gardner, F. I. C, F. C. S. Philadelphia: P. Blakiston, Son & Co. Pp. 203. Price, $1.75.

In the chapter on "Bleaching," after a brief historical review, cotton, linen, woolen goods, silk, feathers, paper materials and paper, straw, and wax, are successively