Popular Science Monthly/Volume 44/February 1894/Literary Notices
Romance of a Born Criminal. Milan: Chiesi, 1893.
This remarkable book, published and prefaced by a well-known Italian criminal anthropologist, can not and ought not to be judged by the usual canons of criticism. The title of romance must be subjectively justified, since the feeling that inspired the protagonist, a convict, to write these pages was certainly not diverse from that which moves other contemporary authors to expose their intimate ideas and sentiments in biographical form. Le Crime et le Châtiment, by Dostojewski; La Bête Humaine, by Émile Zola, Giovanni Episcopo, and L'Innocent, by Gabriele d'Annunzio, are the latest examples of this pathological literature, in which the skill of the authors opens before our minds a vista of deep knowledge of morbid states of mind, in which art takes the place of truth. In this book art there is none, but of truth there is perhaps a great deal more, and the very literary inexperience of the writer throws this into high relief; for, if truth comes to the fore because it is touched with the accent of veracity, what is false can not be glossed over here as with professional scribes, who know how to varnish and pleasantly hide by means of a pleasing and misleading style. It may have been the writer's intention to indite a work of art, but he has succeeded rather in furnishing the world with a most precious scientific and human document, and as a scientific document the book must be perused. The adventures of this capo camorra, a perfect type of the instinctive criminal, who believes he can justify and rehabilitate himself in the eyes of the world by recounting his crimes, his changes of fortune, are not without interest. The protagonist endeavors to attenuate and almost to vindicate the former by excusing them in his own way. In publishing this work A. G. Bianchi wishes to give a practical illustration of the theories of the new penal school of criminal anthropology which, thanks to Lombroso, Tamassia, and other well-known observers, has developed so greatly in Italy, and is beginning to influence the decrees of human justice when called upon to decide on the culpability of criminals. This book by Bianchi is, in short, the offspring of analytical studies.
"This work of mine," says Bianchi in his preface, "ought to be a help to the study of individual criminality, whether subjectively by the narration of his own adventures by the delinquent himself, or objectively and scientifically, thanks to the help of the great savant, Silvio Venturi, professor at the university at Naples and director of the lunatic asylum at Girifalco, who was able to know, observe, and study the subject of this book."
Bianchi defines Antonino M. as a graphomaniac. His memoirs are important documents in many ways. For example, they help us to estimate how far those modern and ancient writers were sincere who have given to us real or fancied confessions. In some respects, mutatis mutandis, these pages recall to our minds Rousseau's famous Confessions. Here, as there, we encounter an absolute lack of the sense of shame which seems a distinctive feature of the instinctive criminal. And who, judging Rousseau by modern standards, would deny that he had in him many traits of the born criminsil? This work should make jurists and sociologists pause to think Surely prison life should turn out its inmates not only punished but corrected. Yet from these pages we learn that they are apt to issue forth more expert thieves than they entered. This book is really to the thoughtful an indirect apologia for capital punishment.
Signor Bianchi's book is a new proof of how incessantly the positive school of criminal anthropology labors in Italy, and what many and diverse modes they adopt to make known and to popularize their science.
The Bible: its Origin, Growth, and Character. By J. T. Sunderland, D. D. Putnams.
This book makes no claim to originality, but is an excellent summary of the most probable conclusions of modern scholarship on the questions discussed. It covers the ground admirably for so small a work. It is reverent in spirit and judicious in statement, and all who desire to know just what the best thought on biblical criticism is should read this book. Its chapters on the canon, the text, and the infallibility of the Scriptures are specially fine and interesting, and it is astonishing that any one, with such facts before him as are here stated, can believe in the inerrancy of the Bible, and it is still more astounding that those who dispute this dogma should be expelled from the Church. The vexed question of the Pentateuch, or rather the Hexateuch, the origin and authorship of the Old Testament histories, the Psalms, the Prophecies, etc., the composition of the Gospels and Epistles of the New Testament are all ably discussed. The author holds that "sacred books or Bibles come into being naturally. They are a necessary and inevitable outgrowth of the religious nature of man." Again he says: "Our Bible, particularly our New Testament, is greatly superior to any of the Bibles of the so-called heathen peoples. But the difference is one of degree, not of kind." He denies the mechanical theory of inspiration, which makes the Bible writers mere penmen of the Deity, but admits that they were "quickened by touch with the Infinite Mind and illuminated by that Light which lighteth every man that Cometh into the world." These quotations are sufficient to give a general idea of the nature of the book. An excellent bibliographical appendix is added.
The Story of my Life from Childhood to Manhood. By Georg Ebers. New York: D. Appleton & Co. Pp. 382. Price, $1.25.
In this volume Dr. Ebers tells of his family relations in childhood, of his school days, of the beginning of his career, and of the friendships he formed, with only a single sensational element in the political disturbances of 1848; and we follow the whole with deep interest. As he was born in a country quarter of Berlin where now the city is dense around, before there were railroads, when the journey to his grandfather's in Holland required several days, and when tinder boxes had not been superseded by matches, his story helps us realize the extent of the social changes that have taken place. Remarkable changes have likewise been wrought during his lifetime in the political affairs of Germany; and nothing gives him more cause for gratitude "than the boon of being permitted to see the realization and fulfillment of the dream of so many former nations and my dismembered native land united into one grand, beautiful whole. I deem it a great happiness to have been a contemporary of Emperor William I, Bismarck, and von Moltke, witnessed their great deeds as a man of mature years, and shared the enthusiasm which enabled these men to make our German Fatherland the powerful united land it is to-day." A picture is given of the revolutionary excitement of 1848 in Berlin. Dr. Ebers passed through the Keilhau Institute, where Froebel's spirit prevailed, the gymnasium at Koltbus, and the University of Göttingen, and after a serious illness began to prepare himself for his life work. He relinquished the study of the law, which he had begun, and was attracted to Egyptology. He had no guide, but found an adviser in Jacob Grimm. Grimm told him he was beginning at the wrong end. His decipherment of hieroglyphics could only make him a dragoman, while he must become a scholar in the higher sense, a real and thorough one. "The first step is to lay the linguistic foundation." He obeyed this counsel, studied, with Lepsius and Brugsch to oversee and advise him; and after he had studied, wrote his sketches and novels. In teaching this example of thorough preparation the book, besides the pleasure it gives, furnishes a valuable lesson.
Build Well: The Basis of Individual, Home, and National Elevation; The Plain Truths relating to the Obligations of Marriage and Parentage. By C. A. Greene, M. D. Boston: D. Lothrop & Co. Pp. 233.
The rough self-regulation by which society protects itself against evil influences is seen in its treatment of books of this class. Written so often by charlatans from purely mercenary motives, and hence appealing to a widely prevalent craving for loose literature, it has happened that all books upon this theme done in a popular style are considered disreputable if not positively pernicious. This feeling keeps down their circulation and prevents a great deal of mischief that would arise from the perusal. But in creating a feeling that prevents the proper study of these subjects in the family other grave evils are begotten for which the only remedy is a more discriminating public opinion. Certainly there is no other form of knowledge that so vitally interests the individual or the nation as this relating to the obligations of marriage and parentage.
It concerns the one function to which all others are subservient, which governs our actions in a greater degree than any other, which has the greatest power for happiness or misery over our lives, and which, above all, owing to the more or less unnatural position in which modern civilization places us, is not satisfactorily governed by our instincts and desires. It seems very irrational that this central function about which all others are grouped should be a tabooed subject, not to be read about or even thought about till the individual has suffered oftentimes irreparably through his ignorance.
This work. Build Well, has evidently been written with an earnest and devout desire to help the public in this greatly needed direction. And nobody can understand more truly the perishing need there is of such help than its author, who for more than thirty years has been in charge of a successful sanitarium for the treatment of the diseases of women. If profound learning, wide experience, marvelous powers of intuition, and the tenderest sympathy with suffering are a proper warrant for treating this subject. Dr. Greene can certainly claim her right to a hearing. It is a work that ought to be read and pondered over by every father and mother, and it will be the greatest help to any young person of either sex about to join fortunes with another for life. It is a book that will do much toward correcting many false impressions regarding not only purely physiological questions, but also some social fallacies, more especially having to do with the marriage relation. In the first chapter, entitled Introductory Thoughts and Inquiries, the author asks the question, "Are all the unfortunate results of heredity a necessity?" and answers it strongly in the negative. Chapter II, headed Man, deals with the outward results on face and form of certain ways of living and habits of thought. Chapter III is given over to an embryological excursion, and sums up with the conclusion that "dual force is indispensable in our world to the full conservation of all living things." Chapter IV gives in detail the more important physiological facts relating to and governing the phenomenon of reproduction. In Chapter V the author treats of the same subjects, but more in their dual and emotional aspects. Chapter VI deals with the proper care of the mother during intrauterine life. Chapter VII is devoted to a discussion of the Proper Conduct of the Marital Relations. The remainder of the book with the exception of two chapters. The Love of Manhood and The Love of Womanhood—consists of a consideration of some of the various diseases, both mental and physical, which may affect the reproductive function. The book is an extremely satisfactory one and calculated to do much good.
Text-Book of Geology. By Sir Archibald Geikie, F. R. S. Third edition, revised and enlarged. London and New York: Macmillan & Co. Pp. 1147. Price, $7.50.
It is little enough to say of this textbook, by the most eminent of living geologists, that it is a most able and authoritative work. Its scope and characteristics were set forth in the notice of its first edition, in the twenty-second volume of this magazine. The present edition has been entirely revised, and in some portions recast or rewritten, so as to bring it abreast of the continuous advance of geological science. The additions made to the text, which extend to every branch of the subject, increase the volume by about one hundred and fifty pages. The position of the author as Director-General of the Geological Survey of Great Britain and Ireland has given him exceptional facilities for securing the utmost fullness and accuracy attainable in a geological treatise, and it is greatly to the credit of the British Government that it keeps such a man in such a place.
Essays on Rural Hygiene. By George Vivian Poore, M. D., F. R. C. P. London: Longmans, Green, & Co., 1893. Crown 8vo, pp. 330. Price, $2.
The author states that eight of the thirteen chapters of this work have been previously published as lectures, addresses, or essays, but notwithstanding the desultory manner of their appearance there is a continuity in the subject matter, and the book has none of the characteristics of a collection of published papers.
He tells us that the title Rural Hygiene was chosen because it is only in places having a rural or semi-rural character that it is possible to be guided by scientific principles in our measures for the preservation of health and the prevention of disease. He considers that the hygienic arrangements in cities are the products of expediency rather than principle, and are not infrequently carried out in defiance of the teachings of pure science. He truly says that if the rural element be entirely banished from our towns, and if the fearful concentration of population that is seen in the modern city, both in England and America, be allowed to proceed unchecked, we are in a fair way to increase rather than decrease the liability of our towns to suffer from epidemics. He expresses the Utopian sentiment that before the nineteenth century closes people will begin to see the advantages not only of rural features in the city but also of urban features in the country.
In the first and second chapters, on the concentration of population in cities, it is insisted that this is an indirect effect of our modern sanitary methods, that give a fatal facility for the packing of houses in dangerous proximity to each other. It is shown that the retention of a rural element in rapidly developing towns, by allowing open spaces to exist between houses, has great advantages on the score of health as well as on that of finance.
Some of the shortcomings of modern sanitary methods are dealt with in the third chapter; such as the mixing of putrescible matter with water, that leads to the dissemination of water-borne diseases, to the pollution of rivers, and the poisoning of wells.
The fourth chapter, on the "living earth," shows that by virtue of the animal and vegetable organisms contained in humus it has the marvelous power not only of turning organic matter into food for plants, but of protecting the air and water from animal pollutions.
The many evils associated with what are known as modern sanitary fittings are reviewed in the fifth chapter, on the house. It is insisted upon that no house can be securely and permanently wholesome unless it have tolerably direct relations with cultivable land.
The sixth chapter discusses some of the elementary facts in regard to air as well as the relationship that exists between the earth and the air. The latter is freshened by vegetation, and when the air in cities becomes too foul to allow vegetation to flourish a danger to health is in existence.
The seventh chapter shows that, if we want pure water, a scientific and careful disposal of putrescible refuse is necessary; and the relations that exist between earth and water are discussed.
In the eighth, ninth, tenth, and eleventh chapters the practical details of the various problems of domestic sanitation are discussed from the standpoint of personal experience.
The author advocates, in the twelfth chapter, the advantages of inhumation over cremation, because the former is cheaper, simpler, and quicker, and it is productive, not destructive.
The thirteenth chapter gives a brief biography of Nicolas Thomas Bremontier, and describes his successful efforts in the reclamation of the sand wastes of Gascony.
There is a great deal of sound common sense in this volume, and the advice it gives can not but be of advantage to every householder.
The Meaning and the Method of Life. A Search for Religion in Biology. By George M. Gould, A. M., M. D. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons, 1893. Pp. 297. Price, $1.75.
It would seem that the anagram that some schoolman of the middle ages made of Pontius Pilate's question. Quid est veritas? (What is truth?) the letters being ingeniously transposed into Est vir qui adest (It is the man who is before you), anticipated the fundamental fact of Dr. Gould's philosophy. For as in the life of Him that was tried by Pilate is to be found an explanation of life's meaning and a suggestion of its method, so in all living matter does Dr. Gould find an evidence of the Deity. He says, "It is plain that a practically omnipresent, invisible, living, intelligent force is operating in and through every living thing." He does not consider that the inorganic world shows any hint of design or of divinity. In the word Biologos he would connate the purpose, wisdom, and intelligence instinct in every living thing, and his philosophy takes no heed of unknown power and possibility. This is a wide step beyond agnosticism, that the author considers an unmanly resignation and despair after a first defeat, and yet beyond monism that he says is muddleism, or pantheism that ignores the dead material, or materialism that ignores the living worker. Rather than an infinite there is a finite creative being, aiming at the highest, encouraging all that is good, and while combating the bad still often baffled because of the refractoriness of material laws.
The world may be considered as a letter direct from the Father's own hand, advising us, telling us of himself, and urging us to hasten our return to him. During the long journey we read it over and over again, delighted at the kindness it witnesses, and the beautiful suggestions it gives of his thoughtfulness and wisdom and lovableness.
The author's creed is that the extension and perfection of healthy life over the globe are the plainest aim and the most primary work of Biologos. Whatever aids in that is right and whatever opposes it is wrong.
Many will not, can not accept Dr. Gould's conclusions, but all must be impressed by his earnestness that finds expression in such sentiments: "Dazzled and dazed the scientific mind is at present like the aphakic, suddenly brought to see, but not recognizing or knowing what he sees. It still sees men as trees walking, and does not know that what it sees is at last the benignant and beckoning God himself."
A Dictionary of Birds. By Alfred Newton, assisted by Hans Gadow. With Contributions from Richard Lydekker, Charles S. Roy, and Robert W. Shufeldt, M. D. Part I (A to Ga) and II (Ga to Moa). London: Adam and Charles Black; New York: Macmillan & Co. Pp. 304. Price, $2.60 each.
This work is founded on a series of articles contributed to the ninth edition of the Encyclopaedia Britannica, modified so as to make them more continuous so far as alphabetical arrangement will admit, and supplemented by the intercalation of a much greater number. Of the additional articles the most important, chiefly anatomical, are furnished by Dr. Gadow. Dr. Shufeldt, of Washington, who is well known to our readers by his contributions to the Monthly, has also furnished valuable aid. In the choice of subjects for additional articles the author has aimed to supply information which he knows, from inquiries made of him, is greatly needed. Hence he has had regard to names found in books of travel and other works, which no dictionary will explain. But there are other names, compounded (mostly of late years) by writers on ornithology, which have not come, and are not likely to come, into general use; and these are left out, for "these clumsy inventions are seldom found but in technical works, where their meaning, if they have one that is definite, is at once made evident." Hence many local names, except those which have found their way "into some sort of literature," are omitted. Yet, though arbitrary, the author has tried to make his method tend to utility. The longer articles consist chiefly of descriptions of birds, with notices of synonyms, and excellent papers on bird anatomy. A map of the world on Mercator's projection shows the bird regions and their boundaries.
A Popular History of Astronomy in the Nineteenth Century. By Agnes M. Clark. Third edition. New York: Macmillan & Co. Pp. 573.
The revision called for by the great number and importance of the astronomical discoveries that have been made since the last previous edition of this book was published has been made with great care and pains, and with the aim, not only of furnishing the new information, but also of so completely incorporating it with the pre-existing text as to leave no gaps in the narrative suggesting interpolations. The book has thus grown and been brought down to date "by a process of assimilation rather than of mere accretion." The foot-note references have been multiplied; the index has been made more copious; the chronological table has been considerably extended; and several new tables of data have been appended.
The Ore Deposits of the United States. By James F. Kemp. New York: The Scientific Publishing Company. Pp. 302. Price, $4.
The claim is made for this book that it fills a vacancy in our scientific literature, for no complete review of the ore deposits in our country has appeared since the publication of Whitney's Metallic Wealth in the United States in 1854. Yet within the last forty years enormous developments have been made in new mining districts, the relative importance of different regions has changed, and great advances have been made in our theoretical knowledge regarding the origin and formation of ore beds. The present work has been conceived with such considerations as these in view. A twofold purpose is to supply a condensed account of the metalliferous resources of the country which shall be readable and serviceable as a textbook and book of reference; and to treat the subject in such a way as to stimulate investigation and study of the phenomena. The ore deposits are taken according to the metals they yield. The treatment is geological, and the principles of origin have been made prominent. To the descriptions of others the author adds observations made by himself in travel during the last ten years.
Camp Fires of a Naturalist. By Clarence C. Edwords. New York: D. Appleton & Co. Pp. 304. Price, $1.50.
Prof. Lewis Lindsay Dyche, of the University of Kansas, enjoyed in his boyhood and youth the life of a pioneer on the plains. He lived in close communion with Nature, among the animals and plants, and grew up a naturalist. He acquired a school and college education largely by means of his own efforts, was graduated from the university at the head of his class, and became an assistant and afterward professor of anatomy and physiology there, of zoölogy and animal histology, curator of the natural history museum, and director of the taxidermical work. In the museum stands, according to Mr. Edwords, the finest collection of mounted animals in the world—his creation. This book is devoted to the relation of the story of the incidents and adventures of his fourteen expeditions after North American mammals. It is taken from his note-books and diaries, with nothing added to the facts he has recorded. The adventures are not of a thrilling kind, but present the life of the woods as it actually is, in a dramatic form, with sketches of scenery and the life of the hunting camp, and information about the character and habits of the animals hunted.
Socialism and the American Spirit. By Nicholas Paine Oilman. Boston and New York: Houghton, Mifflin & Co. Pp. 376. Price, $1.50.
The development of socialism in the United States is thoroughly discussed in the thirteen chapters of this volume. Whether the American spirit conforms to Mr. Oilman's outlines is a doubtful matter. He may depict a stage of its existence. There are other times when it does not fly, but crawls, or else is wrapped in a web of indifference. The preface contains the lesson of the book—the way to Utopia is for all of us over the difficult road of moral improvement.
According to strict definition, pure individualism separates man from his kind, calls government an evil, and tends toward anarchy, while socialism makes man dependent, exalts government, and ends in communism. Either alone is impracticable as a method of life. The wise man therefore uses both as he employs his two eyes or hands. In the domain of politics and property, the individualist seeks liberty, private capital, ownei'ship, and competition; the socialist demands authority, common possessions, and collective capital. The thorough American is an opportunist, wary of extremes, caring little for theory, and adopting only what is successful in practice. The tendency of the time, however, is in all countries distinctively socialistic.
Mr. Gilman deprecates the pseudo-scientific method in treating politics, economics, and ethics. The right order of things has been strangely mistaken by scientists—more properly sciolists. The knowledge of man is of more importance than the most astonishing development of natural science. Pure individualism, he conceives, is best illustrated by the struggles of brute man in prehistoric ages. We have, or ought to have, outgrown this struggle-for-existence ethics. It is a blunder in thought to introduce the evolution philosophy in place of the higher law for man.
The social problem, largely due to unrestricted immigration, belongs to the city. The labor question does not trouble the farmer, and it must be remembered that three fourths of the population still dwell outside the large cities. A difference is noted between English and American individualism. Twenty-five years ago liberal Americans avowed Mr. Spencer's political creed. No longer do they belong to the Suspencerumam-homi—the sect that swallowed Spencer whole! Government is not a monstrosity, but the organ which expresses the intelligence and will of a reflecting community. Elsewhere the author states that to take anything out of politics in civilized countries means to take it out of corruption into honesty!
Among socialistic measures the American accepts free schools, free libraries, and free text-books as benefits, while he rejects the state publication of books as a failure.
Nationalism, or romantic socialism, flourishes chiefly on paper. It was doomed to failure since it ignored the separate commonwealths. Christian socialism aims to accomplish by religious influence what socialism attempts in the reconstruction of society.
Without violent reforms the industrial situation maybe much improved by means of boards of arbitration, building associations, life insurance, and a better form of labor contract. There are now over three hundred business firms that practice some form of profit sharing. We may expect the functions of the state to be enlarged, but purification of existing method should precede this extension. As a way of escape from present evils, the author directs us to a higher individualism, properly Christian. This favors voluntary co-operation, and aims at fraternalism.
Mr. Joseph John Murphy is the author of a book entitled The Scientific Bases of Faith, published twenty years ago, the purpose of which was to show that the new ideas of the nature and origin of things, including the entire doctrine of evolution, constitute a better basis for Theistic and Christian faith than the old. Since the book was published much has been thought, said, and written on the subjects of which it treats; and a second book. Natural Selection and Spiritual Freedom, is now presented by the author to set forth his newer thoughts on the same class of subjects. In it Prof. Drummond's Natural Law in the Spiritual World receives prominent attention, and Mr. Murphy has to "remark with wonder over the vast change that must have come over the religious mind of the English-speaking people before Prof. Drummond's work could have been received as an orthodox book," which, we may say by the way, it is not, because "there is not one of Drummond's characteristic passages which might not have been written by a denier of the characteristic doctrines of apostolic and Nicene Christianity." Drummond's doctrine of conversion is first examined; 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 organicis 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 educational work of Mr. Arnold and an outline of the story on which the poem is founded; and to the latter, a sketch of Mr. Emerson's life and an inquiry into his religious belief, which is deemed necessary for a proper understanding of his writings. (Price, 20 cents each).
Mr. E. A. Kirkpatrick, of the State Normal School, Winona, Minn., has prepared, primarily for use in his own classes, a manual of Inductive Psychology, or introduction to the study of mental phenomena, in which a kind of experimental method is applied. The pupil, instead of taking what the author tells him about imaginary mental processes, is expected to analyze and observe the actual processes of his own mind and those of others, whereby he may be led to observe, judge, and think for himself. (Published by the author.)
The Exercises in Greek Prose Composition, based on Xenophon's Anabasis, of William R. Harper and Clarence F. Castle, originated in the belief that Greek prose composition is not an end to be sought for its own sake, but a means for learning the principles of the Greek language, that they may become the key to unlock its literature. The method adopted is believed to be one that will stimulate observation and investigation, and so become an inductive process. The text book matter is preceded by some helpful suggestions about composition, and followed by a series of inductive studies in the uses of the Greek modes. (American Book Company. Price, 75 cents.)
The Principles of Fitting—engine fitting it is usually called, but the author objects to that designation as being too special—by a foreman pattern maker, is a manual designed for apprentices and students in technical schools. The author has directed his attention to those cardinal matters which lie at the basis of the trade, in preference to entering into a multitude of details that would be applicable only to the practice of a limited class of shops. He has also assumed that his readers are thrown upon their own resources without the aid of the automatic machines of modern shops, and has devoted considerable space to vise work. (Macmillan & Co. Price, $1.50.)
The main purpose of the Duchess of Cleveland's relation of The True Story of Kaspar Hauser from Official Documents appears to be the vindication of her father, the Earl of Stanhope, who had the care of the mysterious personage during the latter part of his career, against the aspersions which have been cast upon his motives and conduct by certain writers who have assumed to tell the story. The author's version is told in a terse and vigorous style, with pungent criticism and comment. She regards Kaspar Hauser as simply an impostor and liar, whose whole life and conduct were a deception, and who fabricated the attacks that were made upon him, including the one from which he died, the fatality of which was due to some awkwardness or blunder of his own. She rejects the idea of his having been a person of any importance. (Macmillan. Price, $1.50.)
In Castorologia, or the History and Traditions of the Canadian Beaver, Mr. Horace T. Martin has presented a popular monograph on that subject, in which he has endeavored to separate the tradition from the history, while giving each its due presentment. His book includes chapters on the mythology and folklore respecting the animal, Indian legends of giant beavers, and the mammoth beavers of geology; the European beavers; the more important American rodents; the life history of the Canadian beaver, its geographical distribution, its engineering accomplishments, the economical uses that are made of it, the chemico-medical properties of castoreum, the importance of the animal in trade and commerce, the uses made of it in manufactures, the hunting of it. Experiments in Domestication, its anatomy and osteology, and the Beaver in Heraldry—all handsomely illustrated. (Montreal, William Drysdale & Co.)
Mr. D. W. Taylor's book, largely mathematical, on the Resistance of Ships and Screw Propulsion originated in the author's own sense of the need of a treatise on the subject, containing data, formulas, and tables. Much of the material has been derived, necessarily, from papers read by the late William Froude, and R. E. Froude, his son, before the Institution of Naval Architects; and much of it is original. The author has intended to discuss ships as they are, not floating bodies in general; and to set forth methods and deduce results as simple as the nature of the subject will allow, and sufficiently accurate for every-day use. (Macmillan & Co. Price, $3.75.)
Helen Gilbert Ecob makes a plea for rational dress in The Well-dressed Woman, which she designates as a study in the practical application to dress of the laws of Health, Art, and Morals. The study is made in the light of scientific investigations of the injurious effect of certain features of modern dress upon the vital organs. Of these features the tight corset is the worst and most formidable; and several chapters are devoted to the exhibition of the ills it causes on the breathing, the liver, heart, circulation of the blood, stomach, and pelvic organs; while the feet and the proper fitting of the shoes are not forgotten. Physical culture is commended as authorized by the laws of our being, and as teaching muscular economy as well as muscular development; and "one great step toward physical restoration will be taken when women adopt a style of dress which allows diaphragmatic breathing and muscular freedom." But "the failure of reformers who have appealed only to the conscience of women shows that correct dress will be adopted only when it is made beautiful." The latter part of the book is therefore devoted to showing how this may be done. (Fowler and Wells Company, New York. Price, $1.)
The Bureau of Education has issued a Circular of Information on Shorthand Instruction and Practice, by Julius Ensign Rockwell, which is in part a revision of a similar circular issued in 1884, but with some new matter. One important addition is a digest of legal decisions in regard to shorthand writers. The statistics of the new volume are for the scholastic year ending June 30, 1890. We can not see why any part of the taxes paid by the people of the United States should have been used for publishing this book. In justification of the outlay it is stated in the letter submitting the publication to the Secretary of the Interior that of the earlier circular "an edition of twenty thousand was soon distributed, and was followed by another of equal size, which was exhausted in a few years, and for the past three years I may say that there have been more frequent calls for this circular than for any other published by the Bureau of Education." Now the people, represented by the Government, are supposed to publish only such useful books as have no money in them for private enterprise. But a book of which over forty thousand gratis copies are called for would doubtless sell to half that number at a price covering cost, royalty to the author, and a fair profit to the publisher. The persons to whom the book has value would pay for the copies, and those who have no interest in it would not be forced to contribute to the cost of producing it. In no case should a second or a revised edition of an inexpensive book for which there is a large demand be published by the Government.
Part XXIV of the Proceedings of the Society for Psychical Research (Paul, 3,s. 6d.) contains three papers. Mr. F. W. H. Myers furnishes two chapters in continuation of his series on The Subliminal Consciousness, the first of which describes phenomena that seem to indicate the existence of a double personality, and the second brings together a considerable number of cases of thoughttransference, under the head of Motor Automatism. The defense which the theosophists have made agamst the adverse verdict of the society upon their operations and claims is reviewed by Dr. Richard Hodgson. There is also a joint paper by A. T. Myers, M. D., and F. W. H. Myers on Mind Cure, Faith Cure, and the Miracles of Lourdes. Their provisional judgment on this class of cures is that no evidence of their being miraculous has been furnished, but that they produce, "by obscure but natural agencies, effects to which no definite limit can as yet be assigned." Dr. Hodgson, 5 Boylston Place, Boston, is the agent of the society in America.
Professors James Harkness and Frank Morley have published a Treatise on the Theory of Functions (Macmillan). The earlier chapters are made complete in themselves by including indispensable theories which are given by some, but not all, recent writers on algebra, trigonometry, the calculus, etc. The authors have aimed at a full presentation of the standard parts of the subject, with certain exceptions. Thus the theory of real functions of a real variable is given only so far as they deem necessary as a basis for what follows. In the account of Abelian integrals their object has been to lead the student as simply and rapidly as possible into what is itself a suitable theme for more than one large volume. The automorphic functions have been entirely passed over, since it was not possible to give even an introductory sketch within the space available. However, an account of some of Kronecker's work, which is necessary for the study of Klein's recent developments of the theory of Abelian functions, is included, and one chapter is devoted to a treatment of double theta-functions, which goes further than the immediate purpose of the authors, for the reason that the subject is not very accessible in English. A glossary is added which gives the principal technical terms employed by German and French writers, with the adopted equivalents. There are also an index and a table of references.
The second volume of the Treatise on the Mathematical Theory of Elasticity, by A. E. H. Love (Macmillan, $3), has now been issued, the first volume having appeared a year ago. Volume II opens with a Historical Introduction, tracing the work of the two Bernouillis, Lagrange, Saint-Venaut, Poisson, Kirchhoff, Thomson and Tait, Boussinesq, Clebsch, Rayleigh, and others. In the eleven chapters forming the body of the volume the author treats first the elasticity of thin rods, passes from this to thin plates and shells, and concludes with a chapter on the stability of elastic systems. There is an index to the present volume, and forty diagrams are employed in the text.