Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 43.djvu/572

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America, where party organization is more developed than here, whoever declines to surrender his convictions and follow in the mob which is led by a 'boss' to the polls, is labeled with the contemptuous name of 'Mugwump,' and is condemned as pharisaic and of an unsocial disposition. In the 'land of liberty' it has become a political crime to act on your own judgment."

Mr. Spencer has not for a long time given us a book from which a greater number of striking and helpful quotations could be made than from this; but our notice has already exceeded the limits usual in these columns, and we close by renewing the expression of our hope that the admirably practical teachings which the book contains may be widely diffused and bring forth fruit abundantly.

Darwin et ses Précurseurs Français. Étude sur le Transformisme (Darwin and his French Precursors. A Study of Transformism). By A. de Quatrefages. Paris: Félix Alcan. Pp. 294. Price, 6 francs.

The purpose of this work, as defined by the author, is, looking at the subject from the point of view of natural science, to determine exactly what is Darwin's, find what is true in it as well as what can not be accepted of it, and to try and assign to each its value and the deductions which are drawn from it. Reduced to the terms of a descent of all animal and vegetable species by successive transformations from three or four original types and probably from a primitive archetype, it is found to offer little wholly new. Darwin himself has given a list of twenty-six naturalists of various nationalities who had published views more or less similar to his before him. Of these, M. Quatrefages has compared the expressions of the French naturalists, including Benoist de Maillet (or Telliamed), Robinet, Buffon, Lamarck, Étienne and Isidore Geoffroy-SaintHilaire, Bory de Saint-Vincent, and M. Charles Naudin. Suggestions of these ideas may be found further back still, even among the alchemists of the middle ages and the Greek sophists; but the question of the formation of species could not present itself to those thinkers with the same significance that it has done with us. Beginning with the seventeenth century, the proposed solutions multiplied rapidly. The author, not appreciating, perhaps, the patience which English philosophers have cultivated in the matter, thinks the process described by the term evolution too slow to account for the changes of species, and prefers transformism, with transformists as the appellation of the advocates of the theory. After the accounts of Darwin's French precursors, a general exposition of Darwinism and a review of its agreement with certain general facts are given; following which the Darwinian system is subjected to a full discussion in eight chapters. As every one knows, M. Quatrefages is not a Darwinian; but differences of opinion concerning heretofore unexplained phenomena, he says, never make him unjust toward eminent men. While he contests their doctrines he desires to render a sincere and cordial homage to their works. In Darwin he admires the almost chivalric good faith which enables him, even when his mind is most preoccupied with his hypotheses, to be still calm enough to see in his own labors reasons and facts that militate in favor of his adversaries and sincerity enough to point them out. "There is a real charm in following such a mind in its excursions." In the preface to a second edition of the work he dwells upon the neutrality of the Darwinian theory as concerns religious questions, and the impartiality with which it is sustained by orthodox and by agnostic supporters, or opposed alike by adversaries of either school.

Extinct Monsters. A Popular Account of some of the Larger Forms of Ancient Animal Life. By the Rev. H. N. Hutchinson. New York: D. Appleton & Co. Pp. 254.

The object of this book is twofold: to describe some of the larger and more monstrous forms of the past, and endeavor by pen and pencil to present them as they were in life; and to illustrate how in animal life the past has grown into the present without the long and abrupt leaps which we are too liable to regard as one of the chief features of the transition. Stress is laid upon the quality of the illustrations. They are still to a certain extent conjectural, but they rest upon larger and more accurate information than any portraits of the giants and dragons of old that have previously appeared. Many