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LITERARY NOTICES.

corded to German thought and German policies. The "sketch" begins with the accounts of the Germans given when they first began to attract attention by the Roman authors, and is continued by periods—the "Merovingian," "Carlovingian," "First Feudal," "Second Feudal," and "Reformation" periods, the "Period of Disintegration" and the "Period of Dissolution," ending in 1806. The Constitution of the new empire is not considered.

 

The third number of the proceedings of the American Society for Psychical Research (Damrell and Upham, 50 cents) opens with a paper, by Miss Alice C. Fletcher, on the "Supernatural among the Omaha Tribe of Indians," embracing myths regarding the origin of woman and the entrance of death into the world, beliefs about the fortunes of the spirit after death, and about ghosts, together with a variety of superstitions and legends. This is followed by a "Criticism on 'Phantasms of the Living,'" by Prof. C. S. Peirce, with "Remarks on Prof. Peirce's Paper," by Edmund Gurney, and "Mr. Peirce's Rejoinder." In his criticism. Prof. Peirce states sixteen conditions to which he says the thirty-one coincidences between a visual hallucination and a death, mentioned by Messrs. Gurney, Myers, and Pedmore, ought to conform, but one or more of which are sinned against by every one of the thirty-one cases, and concludes that "the evidence, so far as it goes, seems to be rather unfavorable to the telepathic character of the phenomena." Mr. Gurney admits the weakness of a few cases, defends others, and gives additional evidence in support of some, but yields no important point. Prof. Peirce's rejoinder deals with the mathematical probabilities of the thirty-one cases being accidental coincidences, and reviews some of the cases in detail. This discussion is followed by brief reports from several committees. The experiments and investigations of the Committee on Thought-Transference had yielded little but negative results. The Committee on Experimental Psychology had received five hundred returns from a blank designed to test the prevalence of superstition regarding sitting down thirteen at table, beginning a voyage on Friday, seeing the new moon over the left shoulder, and occupying a house reputed to be haunted. Of three hundred and nine men, about one tenth were more or less influenced by the first three superstitions, and of one hundred and ninety-one women about two tenths. The form of the fourth question is not such as to separate the respondents who have a belief in the superstition from those who have not. The Committee on Apparitions and Haunted Houses deemed the last part of their designation a misnomer, as they had not been able to learn of any house which was reputed to be haunted at the present time. They reported a number of well-authenticated cases of presentiments, and stated that materials for their research were coming in quite freely. The Committee on Mediumistic Phenomena reported that professional materializing mediums could not be got to give séances under conditions suitable to a scientific investigation, and that where non-professional mediums had given such séances the results were negative. A paper by the chairman, on "The Basis of Investigation of Mediumistic Phenomena," was appended to the report. This is followed by two papers on hypnotism, and one on "The Consciousness of Lost Limbs."

"The American Folk-Lore Society" has been formed for "the study of folk-lore in general, and in particular the collection and publication of the folk-lore of North America." Its President is Prof. Child, of Harvard; William Wells Newell, of Cambridge, Mass., is the Secretary; and among its other officers are many well-known American anthropologists. Its medium of publication is The Journal of American Folk-Lore (Houghton, $3 a year), a quarterly magazine, the second number of which is before us. W. W. Newell is the general editor. This number contains ten articles, treating of Indian myths and customs, folk-lore of the Pennsylvania Germans, superstitions and tales of the negroes, etc., together with departments for notes, items, meanings of words, and titles of articles on folk-lore in American and foreign journals. The field to which the journal is devoted is exceedingly interesting and instructive, and is one in which the material for study should be seized upon at once, for it will soon be too late.

Part II, of Vol. IX, second series, of the Journal of the Academy of Natural Sciences