Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 11.djvu/257

This page has been validated.
245
LITERARY NOTICES.

deep as possible into the question of Nature's economy in continuing, diversifying, and giving stability to the course of life upon our globe.

An Alphabet in Finance. A Simple Statement of Permanent Principles and their Application to Questions of the Day. By Graham McAdam. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. Pp. 210. Price, $1.25.

"This little book," we are told in the preface, "was written as a political duty;" and it would be a blessing to long-suffering listeners and readers if every one who feels a "call" to preach or to write was as well fitted for the task he undertakes as Mr. McAdam. He has succeeded in treating the elementary principles of finance briefly and at the same time clearly, simply, and effectively; and his discussion of the commoner fallacies and often-repeated stock arguments of the inflationists is so good, that it is to be hoped the book will find a circulation among them. The chapters on "Money a Creation of Government," "Pure Credit Money," "What is a Specie Basis?" "Banking"—all brief—are models of statement in their way. Although the author apparently accepts Mr. Jevons's views as to the word value, the somewhat ambiguous way in which he uses that term makes the chapter on "The Qualities of Gold for Money" slightly obscure, which is to be regretted, for much of the success of inflation arguments is rooted in the hazy notions concerning what is called the value of gold. We would call the author's attention to the statement on page 130, that "$4,444 still remains by custom the nominal par" (of exchange), the fact being that the nominal and real par have been in agreement, at $4,866, both by usage and United States statute for two years or more.

Report of the Geological Survey of Indiana, 1875. By E. T. Cox, State Geologist. Pp. 599. With Maps and Plates.

During the year 1875 the general work of the survey of Indiana was carried on in nine counties: Vigo, Huntington, Jennings, Ripley, Orange, Vanderburgh, Owen, Montgomery, and the southeastern part of Clay. A special reconnaissance was made of the coal-measure rocks of Putnam County; also a special hydrographic survey of some of the lakes in the northern portion of the State. Besides the results of these researches, the report contains observations on fossil marine plants from the coal-measures, by Mr. L. Lesquereux, and a catalogue of the Wabash Valley flora, by Dr. J. Schenck.

Ivanhoe. By Sir Walter Scott. Also Our Mutual Friend. By Charles Dickens. New York: Holt & Co. Pp. 350. Price, $1.

These little volumes belong to the "Condensed Classics" series. The text is absolutely identical with the original works, except that much of the less essential matter of the latter has been omitted. If any one thinks an acquaintance with all the leading writers of his language to be necessary, he must resort to condensations like this. Life is not long enough to enable a man to read our entire "polite literature" through.

Annual Reports of the Zoölogical Society of Cincinnati, for the years 1874-'75-'76. Cincinnati: printed for the Society.

It is to be regretted that an enterprise containing so much spirit should not as yet have proved a pecuniary success. The following is interesting: "In Europe there are now [1874] in operation, or in process of construction, more than eighty zoölogical gardens, and, almost without exception, they are profitable, and in some cases largely so. The experience in Philadelphia is encouraging, while that of the garden in San Francisco is. . . . marvelous." Strange that the last report contains no list or statement of the animals!

David and Anna Matson. By Abigail Scott Duniway. Pp. 194. With Illustrations. New York: S. R. Wells & Co. Price, $2.

Inasmuch as it does not lie within our province to estimate the value of works of the imagination, we will only say of this volume that its theme is the "tender passion," in one of its many phases; that the verses are smooth and musical enough, and that the mechanical make-up of the book is admirable as regards print, paper, and binding.