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Fourteenth Annual Report of the Trustees of the Peabody Museum of American Archæology and Ethnology. Vol. III. No. 1. Cambridge 1831. Pp. 41.
Noxious and Beneficial Insects of the State of Illinois. Fifth Annual Report. By Cyrus Thomas. Ph.D. State Entomologist. Springfield, Illinois. 1881. Pp. 232.
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Bacteria. By Dr. Ferdinand Cohn. Translated by Charles S. Dolley. Rochester, New York. 1881. Pp. 30.
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Gesture-Speech.—Colonel Garrick Mallory, of the United States Army, delivered a lecture on "The Gesture-Speech of Man," at the last meeting of the American Association, in which he remarked that North America had showed more favorable conditions for the development of gesture-signs than any other thoroughly explored part of the civilized world. Its aboriginal population was scanty, and so dialectically subdivided, with sixty-five families of languages, some comprising twenty languages each, that few bands could readily converse with each other. The Alaskan tribes generally used signs not more than a generation ago. The use of gestures could not be accounted for by any theory of the poverty of Indian languages, for no such theories were true, neither was it correct to suppose that a gesture-language was originated by a certain tribe, or in a particular region, and thence spread. The sign-language among the Indians is not uniform, and it is no argument in favor of uniformity that the signs used by any of the tribes are generally understood by others, for signs might be understood without being identical with any before seen. Regarding the question, whether the signs were conventional or instructive, Colonel Mallory was of the opinion that sign-language, as a product of evolution, had been developed rather than invented, and yet it seemed probable that each of the separate signs had a definite origin arising out of some appropriate occasion, and the same sign might in this manner have had many independent origins, due to identity in the circumstances, or, if lost, might have been reproduced. The studies so far pursued led to the conclusion that at the time of the discovery of North America all its inhabitants practiced sign-language, though with different degrees of expertness. The language has been disused with some, but with oth-