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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 34.djvu/877

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LITERARY NOTICES.

"The Century." Views of the buildings of the other colleges described are also given. Several special articles on the university are contributed by various writers, viz.: "Influence of the University upon Southern Life and Thought," and "The Writings of the Faculty of the University, 1825-'27," by William P. Trent, A. M.; "Present Organization and Condition of the University," by Prof. John B. Minor; "The Elective System of the University," by Prof. J. M. Garnett; and a "Bibliography of the History of the University," by the editor.

The book on Manual Training in Elementary Schools for Boys, by A. Sluys (Industrial Education Association, New York, Part I, 20 cents), will form Nos. 1 and 8 in the series of monographs published by this association. The author is principal of the Normal School of Brussels, and has studied the subject of manual training in Sweden, whither he was sent for this purpose by the Belgian Minister of Education. His book has been translated for this series, with the belief that it is the best and most accurate as well as the most condensed treatment of the subject that has yet appeared in any language. In the first part of this work, now before us, the author states the two standpoints from which manual training is advocated, the economic and the pedagogic, giving a somewhat detailed view of the economic side of the subject. An account of the schools of Nääs, and a history of instruction in manual training in the primary schools of Sweden, are the other topics treated in this portion of the book. There are some traces of the translation process in the English of this pamphlet. We note, for instance, the expression "whets the saw," and on the same page the visitors are made to say, "We have often assisted the pupils in their manual work at the Nääs school," where the original phrase undoubtedly meant "to be present at"; and in the Gallicism "assisted at," at the foot of the next page, the translator has reproduced the form of the same phrase instead of its meaning.

In his oration on The American University, delivered at Columbia College, June 2, 1887, Prof. Charles Sprague Smith expresses the view that the future university of this country must be formed in harmony with the development of the American people; that the last two years of the usual college course may be taken a« the first two of the university, relegating the present freshman and sophomore work to a preparatory course; that election of courses rather than of separate studies should be allowed in the university, and but little or no election in the academies; and that the scope of the university should be twofold—to instruct the few and to enlighten the many.

Prof. Robert T. Hill delivered before the University of Texas, October 26, 1888, an inaugural dissertation on Some Recent Aspects of Scientific Education, in which he points out that the introduction of the study of the natural sciences into the modern system of education has had a vast and beneficent influence on the popular mode of thought, and of searching for truth, on the public health, on the art of agriculture and the mechanical arts, on our knowledge of man, on the methods of education itself, and on the progress of sociology. He touches also upon the benefits of the extension of university study into the homes of the people.

 

According to Secretary S. P. Langley's Report, the Smithsonian Institution is overtaking the capacity of the fund to sustain it, and is beginning to need larger resources. New accommodations are needed for the National Museum; the library, now including 250,000 volumes, and extremely valuable, is so crowded in the Congressional Library rooms as to be of little use; the erection of an astro-physical observatory is suggested. The first part of Prof. Cope's work on the reptiles and batrachians of North America is in the hands of the printer. Explorations are mentioned in Japan, the islands of the Gulf of St. Lawrence (for remains of the great auk). Central America, and Alaska. A steady falling off is remarked in the rate of addition to the quarto series of Smithsonian "Contributions," while the series of "Miscellaneous Collections" grows much more rapidly. The recent accessions to the museum (12,000 groups or lots of specimens since the present building was opened) include several extensive collections. The increasing popularity of this department is proved by the increase of 32,463 in one year in the number of visitors (249,025 in 188'7'88). A higher standard than the average is