ty; when human sacrifices became impossible, animals were substituted; when combats between men seemed too horrible, fights of animals—of cocks, bulls, and fishes—were instituted. It has been said that the minister who should try to abolish bull fights in Spain would provoke a general revolt. In these cases the multitude are only spectators of the carnage; but when a people like the Spanish loves these sanguine representations with so furious a passion, can we be surprised that people less civilized ardently lust after the pleasures of collective criminality, although their manners may be in course of amelioration?
Besides having a historical interest, the study of these criminal festivals is very important for criminology, because it brings numerous evidences in support of the atavistic theory of crime. In discussing the questions whether crime is a phenomenon of atavism, or whether at least atavism does not play a considerable part in criminality, many criminologists have maintained that while most savage peoples are thieves, cruel and dissolute, nothing authorizes the affirmation that the ancestors of civilized peoples resembled them. We have, indeed, no direct proof of this fact; but if, in default of proof, we examine the usages and institutions of these peoples, which are a kind of fossil remains of their evolution, we may conclude that the primitive ancestor of the Greek was no more moral than the Australian or the Javanese. These criminal festivals can be explained only by assuming an. ancient condition of moral disorder; which admitted, everything becomes clear, and is susceptible of a simple and logical explanation.—Translated for The Popular Science Monthly from the Revue Scientifique.
A series of Roman tools, more than sixty in number, discovered in a rubbish pit during excavations at Silchester, England, in 1890, are described by Sir J. Evans. Among them are anvils, hammers, chisels, gouges, adzes, axes, and a carpenter's plane. The find also included two plow-coulters, a sword-blade, a large gridiron, a lamp, and a bronze steelyard.