Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 32.djvu/873

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literature are dissected, analyzed, and criticised in detail, with especial reference to those characteristics. Poetry being regarded as a fine art, the source of its definition is sought in the sphere of the human emotions. In respect of matter, it is contrasted with science, oratory, morality, and religion; in respect to literary form, it is distinguished from history, narrative, description, and exposition, all of which, however, have their poetical aspects. And the pure romance, or novel, is considered "a species under the genus poetry, which must be so far widened as to include it."

Biographies of Words; and the Home of the Aryas. By F. Max Müller. London and New York: Longmans, Green & Co. Pp. 278.

Admitting that language and thought are inseparable, as the author has labored to show, it follows that all thoughts which have ever passed through the mind of men must have found their first embodiment and their permanent embalmment in words. If, then, we want to study the history of the human mind in its earliest phases, where. Professor Müller asks, can we hope to find more authentic, more accurate, more complete documents than in the annals of language? "Every word, therefore, has a story to tell us, if we can only break the spell and make it speak out once more. It is known that every word, if we can analyze it at all, is found to be derived from a root. It is equally well known that every root is predicative, that it predicates something of something, and that what it thus predicates is in reality an abstract or general concept. This applies to all languages, even to those of so-called savages, whenever they have been subjected to a really scholar-like analysis. . . . Every language, if properly summoned, will reveal to us the mind of the artist who framed it, from its earliest awakening to its latest dreams." In the light of these views, the history and fortunes of a certain number of words and expressions in common language are taken up and traced back through the various changes which the forms have undergone, as far back as possible toward their original Aryan roots. The chapters on "The Home of the Aryas" and "The Earliest Aryan Civilization" are devoted to the vindication of the theory that the original seat was in central Asia, as against the newly-proposed view that it was in northern Europe. These chapters are followed by a list of words in the seven principal languages of Aryan descent, which is intended to illustrate the argument. The appendices contain letters on the Aryan fauna and flora, the original home of jade, the original home of the soma, "philosophy versus ethnology," and a discussion whether copper or iron was the third metal. The author, with his warm enthusiasm, has a rare way of making the dry and abstruse theme on which he is engaged, despite the terrible-looking words and roots with which he illustrates his points, singularly attractive. We are pleased to see that he regards the labors of our Americans, Brinton and Hale, with others, as "every whit as important as the labors of Grimm, and Kuhn, and Pott."

The "How I was Educated" Papers. New York: D. Appleton & Co. Pp. 126. Price, 30 cents.

The pamphlet having the above title is a collection of autobiographical articles by Rev. E. E. Hale. T. W. Higginson, W. T. Harris, and Presidents or ex-Presidents of Columbia College, the Chautauqua University, Dartmouth, Vassar, Yale, Brown, Michigan, and Cornell, which first appeared in "The Forum." As Mr. Hale wittily describes the articles, "The editor of 'The Forum' has thought that a series of papers, in which different people shall describe the methods of their school-education, may be at least amusing, and perhaps profitable, if only by way of caution. He has, therefore, induced a good many men to pose on his platform as 'awful warnings,' and, as it happens in the story of the Indian march, he selects a little elephant to lead the risky way down into the river."

Trees of Reading, Massachusetts. Part I. By F. H. Gilson. Reading: The Author. Price, $1.50.

Mr. Gilson has embodied a very attractive idea in a most tasteful manner. The pamphlet consists of heliotype views of five fine old trees—elm, sassafras, oak, and birch—standing in the town, near Boston, where the author resides, with a page of description and history of each one, and an