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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 16.djvu/587

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LITERARY NOTICES.

graphical art, may be commended to the attention of our readers, but we must remind them that it is a very incomplete representation of the original lecture. A condensation in literature is generally the worst kind of mutilation; for, instead of cutting the thing into large sections by which considerable portions are left unmutilated, the condenser performs his crushing operation on the whole, so that very little is left as the author puts it. Compression is often necessary, but it is generally at the expense of the symmetry and finish of the performance. The President of the Geographical Society expresses regret that his pressure of legal duties during the past year had not allowed him time to work up the progress of current geographical discovery, as he has been in the habit of doing in the preparation of his annual address. But in place of it he has given the world unquestionably the best monograph on the history of map-making in connection with the development of early geography that can anywhere be found. It is a careful statement, laying under contribution all the resources of geographical erudition, and the few small cuts we reproduce from it but poorly represent the full series of old maps that have been prepared to illustrate the subject, and are contained in the pamphlet issued by the Geographical Society. To that document the reader is referred for the ampler and more satisfactory discussion of the subject.

 

LITERARY NOTICES.

Octavius Perinchief: His Life of Trial and Supreme Faith. By Charles Lanman. Washington: James Anglim. Pp. 403. Price, $2.

This is the biography of a devout clergyman, who was at the same time a cordial and fearless friend of science. We call attention to some features of the work that illustrate this combination of traits.

The subject of it was born in Bermuda in 1829. He got the rudiments of a common education there, and came to New York at the age of eighteen. Having a thirst for study, and deciding to become a clergyman, he went to Amenia Seminary, and then to Trinity College at Hartford. After graduating there he taught a year at Racine College, Wisconsin, and then wound up his professional studies in the General Theological Seminary in New York. He was ordained by Bishop Potter as a clergyman of the Episcopal Church in 1857.

Mr. Perinchief’s pastoral experiences were varied. He had charge of several parishes, beginning to preach in Brooklyn; he afterward went to Bridgeport, then to York, Pennsylvania, from which he removed to Mount Holly, New Jersey, and finally returned to Bridgeport, where he died in 1877, at the age of forty-seven years.

Mr. Perinchief was during all his adult life an invalid and a great sufferer. Straitened in means, and fighting his way through the educational institutions, he was often subjected to great privations, living for long periods on bread and water, with insufficient clothing, which, with the customary overwork in such circumstances, permanently impaired his constitution. Besides this, he early met with a terrible accident which produced a lesion of the spine, that was ever afterward a source of much pain and prostration.

It is hardly possible that so intense and prolonged an experience of physical suffering could have been without its influence upon his mental life. Yet he was far from being the victim of his bad bodily conditions. His subjective experiences did not color or distort his view of the world. His manhood triumphed over the unhappy accidents of his lot, and the influence he exerted upon all around him was in a remarkable degree healthful, ennobling, and purifying. He had a large measure of that quality which is currently characterized as "personal magnetism," and all who knew him were brought under its influence, and quickened in their aspirations after a higher and more perfect life. He was a man of great spirituality and profound devotion, but this involved no weakness, and he did not waste himself in mere fervid emotion. His judgment was clear, his criticisms telling, and his views