Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 4.djvu/258

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and electricity, including the subjects of the laws of climate. The contents are, therefore, of deep importance to all classes of persons, especially to the observer of Nature, the agriculturist, and the navigator."

The volume is elegantly executed, and in its whole style is a credit to the publishers.

The Comparative Anatomy of the Domesticated Animals. By A. Chauveau, Professor at the Lyons Veterinary School. Second edition, revised and enlarged, with the Coöperation of S. Arloing, Professor at the Toulouse Veterinary School. Translated and edited by George Fleming, F. R. G. S., Veterinary Surgeon, Royal Engineers. 957 pages; 450 Illustrations. Price, $6.00. D. Appleton & Co.

The first edition of this comprehensive work appeared in 1854, and it has held a leading place as a text-book in the Continental colleges. It is an exhaustive and exact description of the anatomical machinery of which the bodies of our domestic animals are composed. As the first trait required in such a work is accuracy, Prof. Chauveau could not be satisfied with a compilation, no matter how weighty the authorities; and, although the whole range of anatomical erudition was consulted, the work took its character from the direct study of Nature, the position of the author as anatomical principal in the Imperial Veterinary School affording him the most extensive opportunities of observation and dissection. Moreover, the author aimed at something more than the. mere accumulation of an endless and arid mass of anatomical details. He sought the bonds, and relations, and meanings, by which they could be connected and harmonized, in a philosophic method. Inspired by the influence of the two illustrious anatomists, George Cuvier and Geoffroy St.-Hilaire, he thus speaks of their labors:

"The first, after immense researches, ventured to compare the innumerable species in the animal kingdom with each other; he seized their general characters––the analogies which allied them to one another; he weighed these analogies, contrasted them with the dissimilarities, and established among them different kinds and different degrees; and in this way was he able to form natural groups, themselves subdivided into several categories in which individuals were gathered together according to then analogies and affinities. Then the chaos was swept away, light appeared, and the field of science was no longer obscured; comparative anatomy was created in all its branches, and the structure of the animal kingdom was brought within those laws of uniformity which shine throughout the other parts of creation.

"Geoffroy St.-Hilaire followed Cuvier over the same ground. More exclusive than Cuvier, he entirely neglected the differential characters, and allowed himself to be governed by the consideration of resemblances. He especially pursued the discovery of a fixed rule for guidance in the search after these resemblances—a difficult task, and a dangerous reef, upon which the sagacity of his illustrious rival was stranded. To be more certain than Cuvier, and the better to grasp his subject, he restricted the scope of his observations, confining himself more particularly to the class of vertebrata, in order to solve the enigma whose answer he sought. At last he found it, and made it known to us in those memorable though abstruse pages, in which the meaning is often obscure and hidden, but which contain, nevertheless, magnificent hymns chanted to the honor of the Creator. The shape and functions of organs, he says, do not offer any stability, only their relations are invariable; these alone cannot give deceptive indications in the comparison of the vital instruments. He thus founded his great principle of connections, firmly established its value, and fortified it by accessory principles. Then was the philosophical sentiment decidedly introduced into the researches in organization, and anatomy became a veritable science."

The new edition of the work has been rewritten throughout, greatly extended, and brought up to the present time; but its method is the same. The two branches of anatomy, human and comparative, are brought into closer alliance, and the comparison of the organs of man with those of animals is made a prominent feature. The work is, therefore, not only a complete dissection-manual for the student of veterinary