Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 31.djvu/731

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POPULAR MISCELLANY.

Laramie Group. Washington: Government Printing-Office. Pp. 160, with Thirty-five Plates.

Rutgers Scientific School, New Brunswick, N.J. Twenty-second Annual Report, for 1886. Pp. 84.

Hermann, Gustav. The Graphical Statics of Mechanism. New York: D. Van Nostrand. Pp. 153, with Plates.

Barrows, Charles M. Facts and Fictions of Mental Healing. Boston: H. H. Carter & Karrick. Pp. 248.

Spencer, Theodore C. The Struggle for Religious and Political Liberty. New York: The Truth-Seeker Company. Pp. 140. 75 cents.

Maverick National Bank Manual, July 1, 1887. Boston: Wright & Potter Printing Company. Pp. 200.

Board of Education, City of New York. Forty-fifth Annual Report. Pp. 271.

Atkinson, Edward. The Margin of Profits, how it is now divided, etc. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. Pp. 123. Paper, 40 cents; bound, 75 cents.

Johonnot, James. Ten Great Events in History. New York: D. Appleton & Co. Pp. 264. 63 cents.

Home Sanitation. A Manual for Housekeepers. Boston: Ticknor & Co. Pp. 80.

Gilman, Arthur. Gilman's Historical Readers. No. 1.—The Discovery and Exploration of America, Pp. 128. 36 cents. No. 2.—The Colonization of America. Pp. 160. 43 cents. No. 3.—The Making of the American Nation. Pp. 192. 60 cents. Chicago: Interstate Publishing Company.

Bancroft Hubert Howe. History of the Pacific States of North America, Vol. XXXI. Popular Tribunals, Vol. I. San Francisco: The History Company. Pp. 749. $5.

 

POPULAR MISCELLANY.

Natural History Studies in Boston.—The reports of the Museum, as given in the "Proceedings" of the Boston Society of Natural History, indicate that considerable progress is being made in the cultivation of a public interest in the objects of the society. The purposes of the "Teachers' School of Science" were greatly aided by the liberal action of the trustee of the Lowell fund in defraying the expense of the lessons and in granting the use of Huntington Hall, and by the kindness of the volunteer agents in distributing and receiving applications and tickets. The superintendent of the public schools also aided the work, and took notice of it in his report. Fifteen lessons were given during the winter of 1883-'84, including five on the "Elements of Chemistry," by Professor Lewis M. Norton; five on "Vegetable Physiology," by Professor George I. Goodale; and five on "Chemical Principles illustrated by Common Minerals," by Professor W. O. Crosby; to all of which 2,798 tickets were given out, 2,295 of them to teachers. In the season of 1884-'85, ten lessons in zoölogy were given by the curator, mainly on a range of subjects specially indicated by the courses of instruction of the schools of Boston, for which 837 tickets were distributed. These were succeeded by a course of ten laboratory lessons in "Elementary Mineralogy," by Professor W. O. Crosby, which were attended by seventy-five persons, occupying the full capacity of the room. The Annisquam Laboratory has proved more useful, and its instruction has been more highly appreciated, than had been anticipated, and "a very decided revival in the number and quality of the attendance" is mentioned. Reliance is placed on the study of natural science in the public schools and in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology for assistance in keeping up the interest in this enterprise. In arranging the plan of the school, the director assumed that all persons admitted would be capable of conducting their own work, whereas they very rarely proved to be so; and that all the students would be able to realize that being taught how to do one's own work was more valuable than the mere information gained. As a rule, the ablest students acknowledged the benefit of the mode of work, and, after a short experience, expressed great satisfaction and gratitude.

 

Aztec Ikonographic Writing.—Ikonomatic is a term which Dr. Brinton applies, in distinction from ikonographic and alphabetic, to a kind of rebus-writing, in which a figure or picture refers to the name of an object, the sound of which is applied to the name of some other object or idea. It is exemplified in certain of the hieroglyphic inscriptions of Egypt, and in some of the heraldic devices of the middle ages. It was freely used in the ancient Mexican inscriptions, in which the suggestion of the figure itself, the relative position of the objects, and the colors used, all may have had, and evidently often did have, phonetic significance. The Aztec writing also contained determinatives, such in principle as are frequent in the Egyptian inscriptions, and numerous ideograms. Sometimes the ideogram was associated with the phonetic symbol, and acted as a sort of determinative to it. Besides employing it in proper names, the Aztecs composed in the ikono-