Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 4.djvu/647

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629
LITERARY NOTICES.

import, her publishers were induced to bring out a revised edition of them here. The English edition was defective from excessive compression, the figures often overlapping so as to produce a confused effect. In the American edition they are spread over twice the original surface, giving them much greater clearness for class-room use. Several American specimens have been substituted for English species which do not occur in this country, and the whole arrangement has been much improved.

These charts illustrate the principles of the whole science of botany. They represent twenty-four orders, and more than forty species of typical plants with all their details of structure, in such a way as to exemplify the complete organization of the science. Each specimen is first shown of its natural size and colors, then a magnified section of one of its flowers is given, showing the relations of the parts to each other. Separate magnified views of the different floral organs, exhibiting all the botanical characters that belong to the group of which it is a type, are also represented. All varieties of botanical structure, in leaf, stem, root, inflorescence, flower, fruit, and seed, are thus exhibited. The charts contain nearly 500 figures, colored to the life, and their purpose is not to supersede the study of living plants, but only to facilitate it. Minute parts which are often difficult to find are represented upon an enlarged scale, and thus become a guide to the study of the plant.

In her Second Book, Miss Youmans says: "Besides this special assistance in object-study, the charts will be of chief value in bringing into a narrow compass a complete view of the structures and relations of the leading types of the vegetable kingdom. In fact, they are designed to present, fully and clearly, those groupings of characters upon which orders depend in classification, while, in several cases of large and diversified orders, the characters of leading genera are also given by typical specimens. The charts will thus be found equally valuable to the beginner, the intermediate pupil, and the advanced student." A key accompanies the charts, ana they can be used with any botanical text-books;' and, during the season of plants, they should be upon the walls of every schoolroom where botany is studied.

On Intelligence. By H. Taine, D. C. L., Oxon. Translated from the French by T. D. Haye, and revised with Additions by the author. New York: H. Holt & Co. Pp. 553. Price, $5.

The writings of M. Taine on art, literature, and science, have taken a high rank in Europe and in this country. Though his genius may, in strictness, be said to be artistic rather than purely scientific or philosophical, yet, in the work before us, he has shown not only a varied knowledge of the details and specialties of the sciences, but an admirable aptitude in collocating and generalizing their doctrines.

All speculation, to have any permanent value, must be based upon the natural order of things: it must be interwoven with matter, motion, and force. When the intelligence becomes a faithful mirror, and reflects the universe as it is, weighing and measuring it, real progress in thought is inevitable. Well-observed and well-digested facts, thorough and patient experiments, drawn along the varied lines of Nature, generate new and recast old ideas which open out a fresh intellectual life between the two great factors of science, man and the cosmos.

We do not claim for M. Taine any noticeable discoveries in the realm of natural facts, through either observation or experiment; but we claim that he has enriched us with many new ideas and a wealth of expression very rarely equaled. His recondite thoughts are clothed in beauty by a most exquisite imagination.

M. Taine has divided his labor into two parts, containing eight books and eighteen chapters. The first two books, on "Signs and Images," are relieved of much of their necessary subtilty by the picturesque and realistic manner of their treatment. His words are never void of the kernel of the concrete, which is never overshadowed by abstractions. The various objects of the external world and their permanent relationships are physiologically gathered up by the five senses, and require to be properly named or labeled before entering into the laboratory of thought. For this purpose signs are deftly woven together and become indispensable as servants of the mind. This