second volume is now before us. The publishers describe the latter series as a collection of books setting forth the achievements of scientific and mechanical skill at the present day. The volumes arc intended to be as free as possible from technical terms, and to deal but little with matters of theory. Prof. Mendenhall's Century of Electricity, already issued, has been made the first volume of the series. Mr. Kimball's book is devoted to that department of physics usually known as pneumatics. It gives the properties of gases, and the current theories in regard to their constitution and behavior, in language that is readily understood and free from mathematics. A chapter is devoted to Geissler tubes and the phenomena of the radiant condition of matter as developed by Prof. Crookes. The text is illustrated with about forty cuts of.apparatus.
The Unknown God; or, Inspiration among Pre-Christian Races. By C. Loring Brace. New York: A. C. Armstrong & Son. Pp. 336. Price, $2.50.
The author accepts the "modern method" of studying ethnic or heathen religions, by looking for what is good in them rather than searching for their defects or trying to show their inferiority to the highest—or his own—religion. He inquires how the man of other races and times regarded the problems of the universe; what was his conception of the primeval cause, how he considered his relation to it, and how far that relation affected his daily life and practical morals. In pursuing this study he expects to find with man in all ages and races some evidences of the inspiration of the Divine Spirit. Dealing first with the Hamitic and Semitic races, a period is found in Egypt in which a belief in the one God existed in the minds of the scholars and priests. Then, among the Semitic tribes of the valley of the Euphrates, the penitential psalms and prayers of the Accadians are stamped with a monotheistic spirit. Among the Aryan races the belief in God and a future judgment is discovered in the mysteries of the Greeks, and the faith in a spiritual God or Zeus is discerned in their early poetry, before the idea had been degraded by the myth-making fancy. "The evidence from the Greek dramatists and many of the ancient writers is here overwhelming that one spiritual God was at certain periods adored by considerable numbers of the Greek race." Similar evidences are found in the religion of Plato and Socrates, and of the Stoics. Monotheism and moral purity are found to be marked characteristics of the Persian religion of Zoroastrianism. The old Vedic hymns furnish the proof of Hindoo monotheism in the worship of Varuna, the heaven-god. The fullest descriptions are devoted to the Buddhist faith, which the author regards as "in a high degree inspired, and as an instrument in the hands of Providence for the elevation and purification of Asia." The final chapter is on the biblical argument for the inspiration of the heathen. The work is not designed for an attack on the heathen religions, or as a defense of Christianity; but rather to show what great truths have inspired the pious heathen of the past.
Midnight Talks at the Club. Reported by Amos K. Fiske. New York: Fords, Howard & Hulbert. Pp. 298. Price, $1.
The "talks" which this little volume contains embody earnest and more or less conflicting opinions on some of the more serious subjects which are being discussed at the present time. It is not the purpose of the book to put forth judgments of startling novelty, and many readers will find in the utterances of one or another of the speakers represented simply their own views, though they may never have expressed them in the same way, or, in fact, at all, or perhaps were never quite conscious before that they held these views. The first subject discussed is temperance; from that the talk goes to the lack of practical work by the churches, and is led through the question of Sunday observance up to a discussion of religion in general. Political immorality is the subject of the next conversation, and the somewhat allied topic of the Irish Americans comes up for attention later. Most of the talks which follow concern religious matters, such as superstition and worship, the Scripture fetich, the teachings of Moses and the prophets, and the usefulness of religious delusion. Other fields are entered in discussions of the value of human evidence and the power of personality. Throughout the volume the modern progressive views are