POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.
appeal to the difficulty of obtaining or coining judicious or otherwise appropriate names. The case is different with the naming of places on the earth's surface, which at this day can be done with direct reference to euphony, to a certain appropriateness of dedication or appeal, and the intelligence of the student. A map of the world is intended for everybody, and not for a class of specialists, and its symbols are devised for readers of all classes. Maps of America have particularly suffered from irrelevant and commonplace designations, and only during recent years has the money value of names suggested radical changes, as in the case of many of the seaside resorts of the middle Atlantic coast. But, with all our indifferences and extravagances of even a half century ago—the period of Hog Hollows and Yuba Dams—a no cruder infraction of the logic of nomenclature can be found than in the coining of such names as "Cape Mary Harmsworth," "Cape Cecil Harmsworth," "Alfred Harmsworth Island," "Harold Harmsworth Straits," "Cape William Bruce," "Bruce Island," "Mabel [Bruce] Islands," "Mabel Bruce Fjord," "Albert Armitage Island," "Cape Alice Armitage," "Rhodes Straits," "H. M. S. Worcester Glacier," etc. These have not even the advantage of an old-time arctic "ring" about them. Courting popularity by the bestowal of all manner of personal names, irrespective of direct relation to the expedition or to geographical exploration, is hardly commendable, and is only less objectionable than the plan suggested a few years ago by an American would-be arctic explorer to "sell" the names of places to be discovered to the highest bidder—i.e., according to a graded schedule of contributions to the expedition funds.
On the South African Frontier is a narrative of the experiences and observations of the author, Mr. William Harvey Brown, partly as naturalist of the United States Government Eclipse-observing Expedition of 1889 to the west coast of Africa, and partly as a resident in various occupations for seven years in Rhodesia. The principal object in composing it was to give American readers a clearer idea of English operations in conquest and colonization on the South African frontier than it is possible to glean from current fragmentary accounts. The author served his apprenticeship at natural history collecting under Prof. L. L. Dyche, of the University of Kansas, and Mr. W. T. Hornady, of the New York Zoölogical Gardens, and was recommended by Mr. Hornady to the Government for the Eclipse Expedition. He sailed first to Freetown, then to St. Paul de Loanda, where he spent a few weeks collecting, establishing his headquarters at Bishop Taylor's American Methodist Self-supporting Mission. Thence, after a short attack of African fever, he proceeded to Cape Town, where he was attacked by the other sort of African fever—"an irresistible longing to penetrate the Dark Continent for purposes of exploration and of observing both man and Nature." He made the journey overland to and to the Mashona country, in the region of which he spent seven years as "game-hunter, gold-seeker, landowner, citizen, and soldier," observing and participating in the settlement and early development of the new state of Rhodesia. The larger part of the book is devoted to his adventures and observations, "travel, collecting, hunting, prospecting, farming, scouting, fighting," and seeing pioneer life. Two chapters are devoted to ethnology. The race problems which arise during the stage of transition from barbarism, the agricultural and mineral resources of Rhodesia, and its prospects and possibilities, are discussed.
A very handsome book, in what to many are the most graceful and interesting forms of vegetable life, is Mrs. Par-
- On the South African Frontier. The Adventures and Observations of an American in Mashonaland and Matabelaland. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons. Pp. 430, with map. Price, $3.