Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 44.djvu/576

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562
THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

amined; then the Darwinian doctrine of progress by natural selection among spontaneous variations is shown to be a case of "natural law," which is true also of the "spiritual world." The question of the fate of those rejected in God's selective judgment and the subject of freedom are next considered; and the final chapter contains an argument against both gnosticism and agnosticism, and in favor of "religious common sense." (Macmillan & Co. Price, $1.75.)

Mrs. Schuyler Van Rensselaer believes that landscape gardening is a real art, and in Art Out of Doors asks that it be recognized as on a par with architecture, sculpture, and painting. "The mere statement of its purposes," she says, "should show that it is truly an art. The effort to produce organic beaty is what makes a man an artist"; and this is done by the man who uses ground and plants, roads and paths, and water and accessory buildings, with an eye to organic beauty of effect. Then, having shown what are or should be the aims and methods of landscape gardening, she goes on to describe its particular features and accessories—the home ground and "close to the house," roads and paths, piazzas, formal flower beds and formal gardening when they are in place, architecture, outdoor monuments, and trees. In the chapter entitled "A Word for the Axe" she advocates the removal of trees that interfere with the artistic plan, no matter how dear they may be to the individual owner. Other chapters deal with cemeteries, the love of Nature, books as an aid to the love of Nature, and the artist. (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons. Price, $1.50.)

The Niagara Book is designed to remedy what its projectors regard as a lack of a good souvenir of Niagara Falls. They have tried, "by securing the co-operation of the most prominent literary men in America, to supply such a need. By following an idea of their own they have persuaded representative men in their lines to write for the book original stories, sketches, and essays—descriptive, humorous, historical, and scientific—dealing directly with Niagara Falls." The articles are of unequal merit. They are: Niagara, First and Last, by W. D. Howells; What to See, by Frederick Almy; The Geology of Niagara Falls, by Prof. N. S. Shaler; The First Authentic Mention of Niagara Falls, by Mark Twain; Famous Visitors at Niagara Falls, by Thomas R. Slicer; Historic Niagara, by Peter A. Porter; The Flora and Fauna of Niagara Falls, by David F. Day; As it Rushes by, by Edward S. Martin; The Utilization of Niagara's Power, by Coleman Sellers; and The Hydraulic Canal. These are illustrated by photo-copies from water colors and drawings by Harry Fenn. (Underbill & Nichol, Buffalo. Price, $1.50.)

The Revolt of the Brutes (C. T. Dillingham, 50 cents) is unique among the books of the year. It describes a convention consisting of an "upper house" of air-breathers, which is supposed to meet on the shore of Lake Michigan, and a "lower house" of water-dwellers assembling in the lake itself. After a lively debate, in which the wrongs done by man to the brutes are set forth, the extermination of the human race is resolved upon, and means are chosen for putting this purpose in execution. The proceedings of the convention are humorously recounted and the officers of both "houses" are described in the same vein. Throughout the text is kept up a running fire of allusions and witticisms, and one must be widely read to appreciate them all. The author is Mr. Hyland C. Kirk, who has published Heavy Guns and Light, The Possibility of not Dying, etc. A word must be said for his illustrations, which are many and display great ingenuity in the posing of the creatures represented.

The merits of William Swinton's School History of the United States are too well known to need elaboration at this day. It was prepared to meet the views of teachers who are aiming at definite results in the study. A revised and readjusted edition of the book is now offered by the American Book Company, in which are added an introductory chapter on Prehistoric America, and a chapter giving some account of the settlement of the three colonial centers—Boston, New York, and Philadelphia. Price, 90 cents.

The American Book Company publishes, as additional volumes in its series of English classics for schools, Matthew Arnold's poem, Sohrab and Rustum, and Ralph Waldo Emerson's essays on The American Scholar. To the former volume are prefixed an account of the life and the critical and educa-