Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 11.djvu/129

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A Practical Treatise on Diseases of the Skin. By Louis A. Duhring, M. D., Professor of Diseases of the Skin in the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania; Physician to the Dispensary for Skin-Diseases, Philadelphia; Author of Atlas of Skin-Diseases, etc. Philadelphia: J. B. Lippincott & Co. Pp. 600. Price, $6.

As a manual of dermatology for the medical practitioner this treatise will be found valuable and satisfactory. It is practical, thorough, and systematic, without claiming to be exhaustive, in the erudition of the subject, or the details of its historical literature. It presents the elements of the subject concisely, giving all the important facts in connection with each disease treated of. In classification Dr. Duhring follows the authority of the celebrated Prof. Hebra, of the University of Vienna, his former teacher, and to whom the present work is dedicated. A special and highly commendable feature of Dr. Duhring's work is the definition of the various skin-diseases, which he has made out from the standpoint of clinical observation with a view to its practical usefulness, and which consists mainly of succinct descriptions of characteristic lesions and symptoms, where the cases were not too complex and obscure to make clear definition possible. In the sections devoted to treatment, while the author makes due reference to all those methods that are favorably regarded by the profession, he has also brought distinctly forward those remedies and modes of treatment that he has found of greatest benefit in his own medical experience.

Skin-diseases appear to undergo grave modifications in different geographical circumstances, so that well-executed treatises upon the subject in one country are liable to lose their accuracy when applied to other countries. On this point Dr. Duhring remarks: "I can but incidentally refer to the fact that disorders of the skin manifest more or less variation in type as they occur in one or in another part of the world. Having had some few years ago favorable opportunities for observing a large number of cutaneous affections in the various countries of Europe, and since then of studying these diseases in the United States, I can state that in many instances they differ materially in type as they are seen on the two continents. Without entering into this interesting subject, it may be remarked that the diseases met with here resemble more closely those of Great Britain than those of either France or Germany. A recognition of this fact must, I think, go far in accounting for the discrepancies which exist in the descriptions of certain diseases as given by trustworthy observers."

Ancient Pagan and Modern Christian Symbolism. By Thomas Inman, M. D. Pp. 174. With numerous Illustrations. New York: Bouton. Price, $3.

The exceedingly curious figures which abound in this volume give to it nearly all the value which it possesses. The book contains no less than 180 woodcut figures, together with 19 lithograph plates of full page size. With hardly a single exception, they are more or less plainly symbolical of sexuality in religion. The author has undoubtedly rendered a great service to students of that particular aspect of the religious idea, by bringing together so many interesting memorials of the wide diffusion of sex-worship. His own remarks and speculations, however, do not carry much weight.

We reproduce some of the things said by the London Examiner in reference to Arnott's "Physics," which, in its new form, is attracting much attention:

"It was in 1827 that Dr. Arnott took the world by storm. The publication, in that year, of the first volume of the 'Elements of Physics' was probably the greatest 'sensation' ever made by a scientific work, purely as an exposition. The first edition was sold in a few days; a second had to be followed by a third, a fourth, and a fifth, in as many years. If the author had devoted himself to keeping it up by the necessary improvements, it would have long continued to distance all competition in its own walk. It had an equal run in America, and was translated into nearly all the Continental languages. The popularity of the book was not due to any meretricious qualities. There was an extraordinary profusion of interesting examples, but these interfered less than in almost any other popular work with the understanding of the doctrines—