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Popular Science Monthly/Volume 20/March 1882/Literary Notices

< Popular Science Monthly‎ | Volume 20‎ | March 1882

LITERARY NOTICES.

Uranometria of the Southern Heavens. Brightness and Position of Every Fixed Star down to the Seventh Magnitude, within One Hundred Degrees of the South Pole. By Benjamin Apthorp Gould. With an Atlas. Buenos Ayres: Paul Emile Conti. New York: D. Appleton & Co. Pp. 383. Price, $20.

In the excellent sketch of Dr. Gould which we publish, a reference will be found to his recent contributions to the astronomy of the southern hemisphere. At the invitation of the Argentine Republic he established and assumed charge of the observatory at Cordova in 1870, and took with him from this country four assistants to aid in carrying out the grand project of fixing the positions and grades of brightness of all the southern stars visible to the naked eye at his station. The work thus taken up was an extension to the southern heavens of the system of observations made by Argelander, of Bonn, upon the northern heavens, and published in 1843 in his celebrated "Uranometria Nova." The work of Argelander represents 3,256 stars from the first to the sixth magnitude, which are to be seen above the horizon of Bonn. Dr. Gould's problem was to extend this enumeration over the whole southern sky, keeping accurately to Argelander's standard. But the extraordinary transparency of the southern atmosphere makes visible grades of stars which can not be seen in the North; that is, stars can be seen at Cordoba, which have less than tour tenths of the light of the faintest of Argelander's stars. There are 10,649 stars visible to the naked eye at Cordoba, and of these 8,198 are given in the catalogue and in the maps of Dr. Gould.

The work before us consists, first, of a full description of the methods of observation and the stellar phenomena of the southern heavens, and this is followed by a tabulated catalogue of the stars. It is accompanied by a large atlas of fourteen charts, which "gives an exact pictorial representation of the state of the sky at the epoch of the work. Besides giving a representation of the isolated stars, the shadings and gradations of the milky way are given with the greatest detail from repeated observations and revisions."

These stellar maps, though South American work, are executed with great beauty and perfection. The obstacles in the way of their production were very formidable, and the genius of Dr. Gould is perhaps as much seen in the skill and perseverance with which he overcame them as in the scientific faithfulness of the labor and the artistic finish of the machanical results. The whole of the printing was executed at a distance of 500 miles from Cordova, and the proofs, frequently requiring three and four corrections, had to be passed backward and forward with long delay, so that the project, which should have been completed in 1877, actually required two years longer. The quarto volume containing the catalogue is in the Spanish and English languages, side by side in double columns.

The production of such a work, of course, involved very heavy expenses, which were liberally met by the Argentine Government. A few copies have been left on sale with D. Appleton & Co., at a comparatively nominal price, for the use of such observatories, libraries, and astronomers as may desire to procure them.

An Examination of the Law of Personal Rights, to discover the Principles of the Law. By A. J. Willard. New York: D. Appleton & Co. 1882. Pp. 429. Price, 82.50.

This is a work written by a lawyer, and, it may be assumed, written mainly for lawyers, although it claims to have an interest for a wider circle of readers. There are two great categories of law: those regularities of process in things around, which we call laws of nature and which execute themselves; and those rules of conduct laid down by civil authorities as laws of society, and which are executed by the machinery of government. The term law, as thrice used in the title-page of this book, belongs to the latter category—that is, to statutory regulations. Now, it has ever been a problem of great interest to find out the relations which these two systems of law sustain to each other, and this seems to be the fundamental question to which Judge Willard has addressed himself in the preparation of this volume. Although, as a discussion of the principles of personal rights, and the general policy of law in connection therewith, the treatise has practical claims upon the legal profession; yet its broader interest is to be found in the author's attempt to affiliate the system of law upon the natural conditions of society. The idea of the law which the work endeavors to bring into view and illustrate, by an examination of the present body of law, is that legal ordinances are but a formulation of those habits of a community that are essential to the continuance of social life. Judge Willard repudiates the idea, which he holds to be widely entertained, that law is nothing more than a set of merely arbitrary rules. "In every community of men," he says, "the habits of its individuals constitute a general law. These habits have been mainly derived by heredity, modified by various means. Certain tendencies have taken forms more or less developed in their habits, and still continue to operate as modifying causes in the further development of habit. So far as these habits are essential to maintain the social state, and attain its ends, they are imperative, or assume the form of law—that is, are embodied in the common will. Beyond this there must be an authority to select the means of maintaining the society, and the ends it shall pursue, and to prescribe the conduct of individuals in reference to the community and to each other. This is the public law of society. Though recognizing that law is a growth, the author is not here concerned with tracing out its development, and showing how successive forms grew out of those preceding, but with showing that the present body of law conforms in its essential features to the fundamental requirements of the social state of man. It is impossible to sum up in any satisfactory way the theoretical reasons of so comprehensive a work within the limits of a book notice. We can only say that the writer claims to occupy new ground, and to place the subject of public law on the same footing as the natural sciences. Certainly no task is more important than to show that the system of enactments by which society is regulated and the conduct of individuals controlled is not arbitrary, irrational, and chaotic. But the chief value of Judge Willard's book will no doubt be found in its usefulness to the students of law. He deals with a long series of specific subjects presented in forty chapters, and covering the whole comprehensive ground of personal rights and social obligation. The first chapter is on the origin of law, and the next on the nature and origin of rights, obligations, and powers. Chapter X takes up the science of law, Chapter V is devoted to the "proper subjects of contracts," and the following chapters develop the conditions of contracts in various aspects. In succeeding chapters a great variety of subjects are treated, throwing light upon the legal position of the individual, and the Litter portion of the work is much devoted to what may be called the modern liberties, or those higher prerogatives of the citizen which it is the object of free governments to secure. In the closing chapters, marriage, the family, and communal associations are considered; and the final discussion treats of the liberty of judgment and the liberty of self-gratification. Judge Willard has not given us a book of formal erudition; it contains no notes, and we have not observed that it refers to any authorities. It is rather an analytical work, occupied with the development and application of principles.

The First-Book of Knowledge. By Frederick Guthrie, F. R. S. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. Pp. 130. Price, $1.

Of this little book we can say emphatically, Yes! and No!

It is a most interesting and readable compend of information on all kinds of familiar objects, such as we find in and around the house, and that everybody ought to know about. The subjects are selected with excellent judgment; the knowledge is important and trustworthy; and it is simply concisely, and agreeably presented. In all these respects the volume is a model; and, when we add that there are questions at the end of each chapter to help the teacher, and that the teacher is exhorted to bring as many of the objects into the school-room as possible, for the inspection of the children, and to add as many questions as may be to those already given, it will naturally be asked, What more can be required?

Certainly nothing more is required on the accepted school-book standard; but we question the validity of the standard. The book is made on the old theory of pouring the facts into the little mental pitchers until they are full. But that is not the true idea of education; and therefore, as a "First Book," it starts wrong. A book treating of "objects" that does not provide, first of all, and as the essential thing, for the active effort of inquiry on the part of the pupil, and that he shall find out the properties of objects for himself, fails of its purpose as a means of education. Such failure has, of course, been the rule in our past school-history; but it can be no longer excused, and we confess to some astonishment that a book of this quality should emanate from a distinguished professor in a "normal school of science." South Kensington is getting behind the age if this is the best that its "normal science" can do.

Ecce Spiritus. A Statement of the Spiritual Principle of Jesus as the Law of Life. Boston: George H. Ellis. Pp. 238. Price, $1.25.

This work has largely in view the discrepancies between the theological and the scientific thought of the age. The author distinguishes three types of religious thought. The first type is illustrated in that class of persons "who ensconce themselves in a quiet corner of the church, away from the din of the controversies which distract the age," and who are indifferent to the vast changes that have come over the modes of thought; the second type in the class who stand at the other extreme, acknowledge no authority outside of matter and the mentality that is coextensive with it, reject faith, and rest content in the nice processes of rationalization; and the third type, in a class between the other two, who, satisfied with neither of the above positions, "are rationalistic in method and in sympathy with every negative result that has been wrought out by the study of the facts, and yet unwilling and unable to rest there. With no fear of science, and all due respect for its wonderful work of revelation, they are conscious of something in them more real in fact, and more satisfactory in recognition, not yet accounted for. Whatever the failure of current Christianity to harmonize these two apparently antagonistic positions, they are not wholly without hope of a possible meeting-ground between faith and fact." To those persons especially, who constitute a large proportion of earnest, thinking people all over the world, the book is directed.

The Land of the White Elephant: Sights and Scenes in Southeastern Asia. A Record of Travel and Adventure in Burma, Siam, Cambodia, and Cochin-China. By Frank Vincent, author of "Through and Through the Tropics," etc. New and enlarged edition. New York: Harper & Brothers. Pp. 375. Price, $3.50.

The present edition is about one half larger than the original work, which was already fairly well known as a most agreeable and life-like account of the countries to which it relates, of their geographical characteristics, people, governments, customs, and antiquities. The most valuable part of the added matter is that included in the third chapter of the supplement respecting Cambodia, of whose ruins, attesting to the former existence of a high civilization, Mr. Vincent's was already the most satisfactory and adequate, and the first account, except a too brief reference in the book of Mrs. Leonowens, that has been published in the United States. Concerning the interest attached to these ruins Mr. Vincent says, in a private note, that "not even the excavations which have shown to us the buried cities of Greece and Cyprus have thrown more light upon the perfection attained by Eastern art than have the splendid and stupendous ruins found in the interior of Indo-China. But, though the degree of Oriental art has thus been made plain, absolutely nothing is known concerning the people to whom the original structures are due." Since he first made known to his countrymen the character of these ruins seven years ago, he has devoted much time and study to the general subject of IndoChinese antiquities, with special reference to the solution of the problems when and by whom the Cambodian cities were built; where the homes of the descendants of their builders are now; and to what form of worship their temples were dedicated; and the results of his researches are set forth, in a condensed form, in the chapter we have mentioned. He assigns a late date (the fourteenth century) to the building of the Nagkon Wat, believes that it was intended for Buddhist worship, and suggests that the Cambodian monuments and those of Yucatan, between which there is some resemblance, may have been contemporaneous, and possibly the work of branches of the same race. Other theories look for a connection between Cambodian and ancient Assyrian works; and it is evident, from what Mr. Vincent says, that, until further and more exact explorations are made, there will be no end to the conjectures for which some plausible support may be found. This only makes it the more desirable that the works should receive immediate scientific attention.

The Honey-Ants of the Garden of the Gods, and the Occident Ants of the American Plains. By Henry C. McCook, D. D., author of "The Agricultural Ant of Texas," "The Mound-Building Ant of the Alleghanies," etc. Illustrated with Thirteen Plates. Philadelphia: J. B. Lippincott & Co. Pp. 188. Price, $2.50.

Dr. McCook started in 1879 to observe the honey-ants in New Mexico, but found them in the Garden of the Gods, in Colorado, and stopped and studied them there, ne is able to extend the territory of their natural habitat, so that it shall include Mexico, New Mexico, and Southern Colorado. The characteristic of the species is that, in one of the castes or worker forms, the abdomen is distended to the size and form of a currant or small grape, and is entirely filled with grape-sugar or honey. These ants apparently prefer elevated situations, but doubt is thrown over this by their having been mentioned as seen at Matamoras, which is but little above the level of the sea. Their nests are built on the tops of the ridges, and are marked externally by small moundlets of gravel six or seven inches in diameter, and two or three inches high; internally they present ramifications of galleries and enlarged chambers in several stories, within which the honey-bearers exist, clinging to the roof of the vault. The honey is gathered by another class of workers from the galls of a species of oak, where Dr. McCook found it in the shape of globules which had been exuded from the gall, and is conveyed to the honey-bearers by regurgitation. It is "very pleasant, with a peculiar aromatic flavor, suggestive of bee-honey, and quite agreeable." Dr. Loew also describes it as having an agreeable 'taste, slightly acid in summer from a trace of formic acid, but perfectly neutral in autumn and winter. The sirup extracted from the ants had an odor like that of the sirup of squills, and dried, when heated, into a gummy mass, which quickly became soft by the absorption of water from the atmosphere, and the alcoholic solution of which had the smell of perfumed bay-rum. The honey is gathered by the Mexicans and Indians, is eaten freely and regarded as a dainty morsel, and is fermented into an alcoholic product. It can never be got in large enough quantities to make it of economical value, even if that were desirable. The ants, showing the same traits as all other species that have been observed, take most excellent routine care of the honey-bearers and of the larva?, but seem wholly indifferent to occasions calling for care or sympathy which happen to be out of the regular line. Their chambers are constructed with the architectural skill that is shown by their making the floors perfectly smooth, so that their progress and work shall be facilitated as much as possible, and by their making or leaving the roofs rough, so that the honey-bearers may cling more securely to them. The Occident ant is the most numerous species of animal on the Western Plains, and, after the prairie-dog, affords the most prominent marks of its presence everywhere on their surface; yet Dr. McCook's memoir, forming the second half of this volume, is the first that has been published about them. Their habits are similar to those of the harvesting ant of Florida, the agricultural ant of Texas, and some harvesting ants that have been observed in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. They have been found from Brookville, Kansas, to Keno, Nevada, through twenty-one degrees of longitude, and range probably from 32° to 45° north latitude. They build their nests, which are marked by elliptical cones sometimes ten inches or a foot high, in slopes and flats, avoiding the ridges. The mounds are surrounded by cleared spaces which are sometimes ten feet or more in diameter, and appear to have been purposely stripped of vegetation, while the surrounding grass is penetrated by paths leading out. All of the mounds are covered with pebbles of the nature of the gravelly soil in which they stand, which appear to be collected by the ants and brought to the spot, if necessary. One of the insects was observed to carry a stone of six times its weight over a space of three hundred times its length and up inclines. These ants are evidently harvesters, gathering seeds and storing them in their nests, which are chambered under-ground, sometimes to a depth of eight or nine feet, and are not essentially different in their interior construction from those of the honey ant. Dr. McCook observed them gathering seeds of the sunflower, of a euphorbia, of an amaranthus, of the gramma-grass of the country, and of other plants. Their nests are infested by six or seven species of parasitic ants, toward which they show no liking, but no particular hostility, of two of which, the erratic ants and the fetid ants, an interesting account is given. Dr. McCook confines himself to relating and illustrating the facts he has observed, leaving inferences to be drawn by others; and he has made a valuable addition to the literature of a subject that engages the attention of the most distinguished naturalists.

Suicide: Studies on its Philosophy, Causes, and Prevention. By James J. O'Dea, M. D. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. 1882. Pp. 322. Price, $1.16.

The author defines suicide as the intentional destruction of one's own life, and excludes from the category deaths from acts or lines of conduct which, howsoever much opposed to self-preservation, are not intended to destroy life. The questions relating to it are partly social, partly medical. It presupposes two necessary conditions: 1. Moral and physical impressions derived from without; and, 2. On the part of the recipient of these impressions, a nervous impressibility, which not only magnifies and distorts them, but which gives them a dangerous power to affect his happiness. Hence the causes of suicide naturally fall under two main divisions—the external or social, and the internal or personal. The general external causes exist everywhere and under all circumstances, and have their sources in extravagant religious and moral beliefs. Special external causes comprise all those various circumstances and accidents which result from the relations of individuals to each other in society. The internal or personal causes include ill health, insanity, and temperament. All these influences are set forth in the present volume. For the prevention of suicide, the author proposes legal measures, religious and moral training, and medical advice and treatment.

The Nature and Function of Art, more especially of architecture. by Leopold Eidlitz, Architect. New York: A. C. Armstrong & Son. Pp. 493. Price, $4.

Mr. Eidlitz is an architect whose works attest his accomplishments and his competency to discuss the subject. He believes that, while all other branches of art are alive and advancing, something is wrong' in the condition of that branch to which he is devoted; that, while the mechanic art of building never stood higher than now, architecture itself, alone of the arts, is silent, or rather has ceased to speak of living ideas. To inquire into the causes of this condition, and to define the nature and function of art in general and of architecture in particular, so as to show how it may again become a living and creative art, is the object of this volume. Mr. Eidlitz combats the idea that taste is the quality which enables men to produce works of art, or even to judge them, or that common sense alone is a safe guide. In all other branches of knowledge, study and acquaintance with technical principles are considered essential to even a fair degree of proficiency. So it is with architecture. The evil effects of too great reliance en taste, and too little attention to training, are illustrated in the ill-adapted buildings that we meet everywhere and that are still growing up around us, the multiplicity of which gives point to the author's remarks respecting the present condition of the art, that "it appears to be the accepted opinion that the sole function of architecture as an art is to make monuments pleasant to behold; that this may be done in any way which to the author of the monument may promise good results; that it is useless to seek for a clew to all this in the organism of the monument itself, or in the nature of the idea which has called it into existence, or to seek to establish an organic relation between the ornament and the structure. That such a looseness of definition of the nature of architecture," he adds, "must lead to false conceptions and to other illogical reasoning must be apparent." Mr. Eidlitz's own view is, that it is the province of architecture to express ideas by structures—a principle that may be illustrated by showing that "if a man tries to build a house which shall be as good as he can afford to make it; if he does nothing for show, and everything for structural integrity; if he builds it so that it may serve his purpose—then his house will be a monument to his purpose." In order to create a monument it is necessary that its author should be conscientious, and that he should respect the thing he is doing. He should not resort to mechanical expedients, no matter how sound in themselves, because they are desirable only on economical grounds, if they are lacking in, or detrimental to, clear art expression. Self-denial should be exercised in refraining from unmeaning display for the sake of show; there is no beauty but that which results from a forcible, clear, and successful expression of the idea in matter, and this must depend on the amount of character in various features of the structure. And, finally, "in creating a monument, the problem is mainly to give expression to the acts performed within its walls, which is done by giving the structure a form which will correspond with the groups performing those acts, and to its parts such masses, modeling, carved and color decoration as will express precisely the degree of stability, dignity, and elegance which corresponds with the import of the acts to be expressed." The architecture of the past, the vague ideas of writers, and the aimless practices of the present, are reviewed and criticised in the light of these fundamental principles, and the conclusions are reached in the end that the dilettanteism of modern architecture must be rooted out before the art can revive and exercise a wholesome influence on society; it must be understood that "the road to architecture is long, tortuous, and thorny, and not a well-paved highway upon which man may amble into fame"; false taste has had its day, and style must also be cast off, when "nothing will be left but to pursue architecture pure and simple."

Dangers to Health: A Pictorial Guide to Domestic Sanitary Defects. By T. Pridgin Teale, M. A., Surgeon to the General Infirmary at Leeds. Third edition. Philadelphia: Presley Blakiston. Pp. 170. Price, $3.50.

The author, having discovered and rectified numerous defects in his own house, and having traced illness among his patients to carelessness and dishonesty in drain-work, became "indignantly alive to the fact that few houses are safe to live in." He was convinced also that a large fraction of the incidental illness suffered in England, including much childbed illness and some of the fatal results of surgical operations in hospitals and private houses, were the direct result of drainage defects. He then sought for the most impressive way of describing faults of this class to the public, and chose that of pictorial representation. The result is this work, which contains seventy plates representing nearly as many important faults to which domestic sanitary arrangements are liable, with letterpress explanations of the same, as well as of some other faults not so susceptible of pictorial representation. The illustrations are designed to give the most forcible expression possible of the fact to be told, and are clear and distinct as to their meaning. Three of the drawings arc designed as hints toward securing adequate ventilation and the exclusion of dust.

A Study of the Pentateuch, for Popular Reading. By Rufus P. Stebbins, D. D., formerly President, Lecturer on Hebrew Literature, and Professor of Theology, in the Meadville Theological School. Boston: George H. Ellis. Pp. 233. Price, $1.25.

This book embraces the substance of some articles which were published in the "Unitarian Review" in 1879 and 1880. The first paper is a review of the attacks of Dr. Kuenen, one of the most brilliant and reckless of the Dutch rationalistic critics on the authenticity of the Old Testament Scriptures. The other essays embody the author's own examination of the books of the Pentateuch, with reference to their authenticity, in respect to the external evidence, or that afforded by the references to them and quotations from them made by a succession of Hebrew writers from David to Josephus; and the internal evidences, or those afforded by the style and methods of expression of the books themselves, and the allusions contained in them as indicative of the time when they were composed. The definite conclusion is reached that the Pentateuch is substantially of the Mosaic age, and largely, either directly or indirectly, of Mosaic authorship.

The Opium-Habit and Alcoholism. A Treatise on the Habits of Opium and its Compounds, Alcohol, Chloral-Hydrate, Chloroform, Bromide of Potassium, and Cannabis-Indica. By Dr. Fred. Heman Hubbard. New York: A. S. Barnes & Co. Pp. 259. Price, $2.

It is believed that the opium-habit is increasing in the United States with frightful rapidity. It has spread much faster since the introduction of the hypodermic syringe, and has reached an extent which is partially represented by the payment of five million dollars annually for the drug, and by the estimate that there are now not less than 500,000 consumers in the country against 225,000 in 1870. The object of the author of this work has been to place in the hands of the profession a carefully arranged analysis of the peculiar physical condition induced by the indulgence of the habit, with descriptions of the symptoms that appear and the changes that take place under treatment. This is done by the presentation of accounts of typical cases. The effects of stimulants on the functions of the system, and certain diseases, are also considered. And, as relating to the same class of habits or affections, the author also discusses the dementing effects of bromide of potassium when taken habitually, and the treatment of the "bromide-habit," the treacherous and subtile tendencies of chloral, chloroform and x the means of warding off its dangerous effects, and the pathology and treatment of dipsomania. The subject of favorable surroundings for patients while undergoing treatment is also considered, and the inquiry is made why, as the author believes, "inebriate asylums and sanitariums have made so signal a failure in their efforts to reform the fallen." The book has neither table of contents nor index.

The Autobiography of Mark Rutherford, Dissenting Minister. Edited by his Friend Reuben Shapcott. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. 1881. Pp. 218. Price, $1.

An uncompleted story of the life and troubles of a man who appears to have been of morbid disposition, who was always struggling with doubts, the victim of questions coming up in the course of his discharge of his duties, which he could not solve. The regulation theological education which he received at the seminary of his sect was not adapted to its immediate purpose, much less to enable the student to face the popular and speculative thoughts of the day. He was, therefore, thrown upon the world unprepared to engage in its intellectual struggles, and was perpetually tormented by the presentation of difficulties, "which haunted his whole existence and prevented his enjoyment of it."

The League of the Iroquois, and other Legends from the Indian Muse. By Benjamin Hathaway. Chicago: S. C. Griggs & Co. 1882. Pp. 319. Price, $1.50.

The author believes the legends of the Indians embody the essentials of religious truth, and are to them what the Eddas were to the Scandinavians, their mythology to the Greeks, the story of Buddha to the Hindoos and Mongolians, and the teachings of Christ to the Christian world. He finds in them a central idea, of a Divine Man of miraculous birth and superhuman attributes, who was sent among the red-men from the Great Spirit to subdue the monsters of the forest and rivers, and teach them their arts; and that it is right to judge the character and capacity of the Indians in the light of this conception as we measure civilized peoples by their highest attainments in art, science, and literature. The present collection of poems is an attempt to give in an intimately related series of pictures the story, as embodied in the Iroquois tradition, of the origin of the confederation, "and, especially, all that relates to the part the great personage of Indian mythology—Hayo-went-ya—took in the formation of the league."

Zoölogical Atlas (including Comparative Anatomy), with Practical Directions and Explanatory Text, for the Use of Students; 231 Figures and Diagrams. By D. McAlpine, F. C. S., author of a "Biological Atlas," etc. Vertebrata. Edinburgh and London: W. & A. K. Johnston. 1881. Twenty-four Plates, with Explanations.

The object of this work is to help the student in the explanation and dissection of the leading forms of animal life. It is intended to be employed on the principle laid down by Professor Macalister, of Dublin University, that "it is only by the examination of specimens that any knowledge of the science worth acquiring can be obtained, and the function of a book is to assist in practical study." The illustrations, which are colored, represent the various points to be noted in the dissections, showing the details of anatomical structure and their relations, and arc accompanied by suitable and brief explanations. The sis types of vertebral life are represented by a specimen selected with reference to its convenience of size for handling and the facility of procuring it; the cartilaginous fishes by the skate, the bony fishes by the cod, the tailed amphibians by the salamander, reptiles by the tortoise, birds by the pigeon, mammals by the rabbit. The plates in their several series show the external and internal characters of the animals, the skeleton, nervous and sense organs, alimentary system, the circulatory, respiratory, and other organs.

The Verbalist: A Manual devoted to Brief Discussions of the Right and the Wrong Use of Words. By Alfred Ayres. New York: D. Appleton & Co. 1882. Pp. 220. Price, $1.

There can be no doubt concerning the importance of using the right words in the right places; and any guide which approaches the subject in the right way and in the right spirit is of value. Mr. Ayres has given such a guide. He does not assume to be an authority, but a student of authorities and a representative of them. Following a strictly alphabetical arrangement of words and topics in regard to which a wrong usage exists or authorities differ, he gives in brief what the authorities declare about each, with their differences where they differ; and, while he does this with apparent impartiality, he is not afraid to add his own view, which, so far as we have noticed, is the one agreeable to reason and common sense. As a whole, "The Verbalist" is equal to the best of the small works in this department.

New System of Ventilation, which has been thoroughly tested under the Patronage of many Distinguished Persons. A Book for the Household. Fourth edition, enlarged, with New Illustrations. By Henry A. Gouge. New York: D. Van Nostrand. 1881. Pp. 176.

Mr. Gouge's system of ventilation has been in use for several years, and has given general satisfaction as a cheap, simple, and effective method of solving the problem. It is adapted for any of the twenty or more kinds of buildings and apartments which he enumerates in his title-page, and can be applied with but little alteration of plans. The present volume gives an explanation of its operation, and a selection of miscellaneous paragraphs on the need of ventilation, good and bad ventilation, and the defects of modern buildings and modern life generally in respect to the subject.

Celestial Objects for Common Telescopes. By the Rev. T. W. Webb, M. A., F. R. A. S. Fourth edition, revised and greatly enlarged. New York: Industrial Publication Company. Pp. 493.

This work appears to be one of great value to amateur astronomers. Its purpose is to furnish the possessors of ordinary telescopes with plain directions for their use, and a list of objects for their advantageous employment. It begins with a description of the telescope, especially of ordinary telescopes (refractors of from three to five inches aperture, and reflectors of a little larger diameter), and directions for their practical care and use, after which are given descriptions of the sun, moon, planets, comets, and of the double stars, clusters, and nebulæ coming within the range of the class of observations contemplated. The account of the moon is accompanied with a large sheet-map, on which every point and object is distinctly marked and numbered, and that of Mars by a polar map of similar character. The chapter on double stars, clusters, and nebula?, is arranged by constellations, under the head of which each object is specifically and separately located and described.

The Labor Question, or an Exact Science of Equivalents; and also containing a New Theory of Cosmogony. By Amicus Humani Generis. Chicago: The Chicago Legal News Company. Pp. 186.

This is an example of the kind of work that an active mind of some ability may produce without having any of the knowledge that is gained by investigation and careful study. It offers a mixture of native ideas, some of which are good, with the utmost confusion of all that is taught by history and science. The author assumes that the great evils that afflict the world are land tenure, rents, interest, and the price of stocks—that is, all that furnishes the capital on which labor depends; and that it is the duty of labor to destroy these and establish a kind of communism. With all this he has some sound ideas on free trade and tariffs, and the spirit in which trades unions ought to be managed.

Elements of Quaternions. By A. S. Hardy, Ph. D., Professor of Mathematics, Dartmouth College. Boston: Ginn, Heath & Co. Pp. 230.

The object of this treatise is to exhibit the elementary principles and notation of the quaternion calculus, so as to meet the wants of beginners in the class-room; and to give them such a conception of the value and beauty of this instrument of research as may lead them to follow the more extended application of its principles in the works of the original and leading authors.

 

 
PUBLICATIONS RECEIVED.

Report of the Joint Standing Committee on Water, on the Impurity of the Water-Supply of Boston. With the Report of Professor Era Remsen on the Subject. Boston: Rockwell & Churchill. 1881. Pp. 22.

The Brain or the Cat. Preliminary Account of the Gross Anatomy, with Four Plates. By Burt G. Wilder. M. D. Read before the American Philosophical Society, July, 1881. Pp. 38.

A Theorem on Planetary Motion; or Sunshine and Shadow. By Clark Roberts. M. D. St. Louis: Slawson & Co., printers. 1881. Pp. 32. 23 cents.

Transactions of the New York Academy of Sciences, October, 1881. Pp. 20.

Drug Attenuation. By J. P. Dake, M. D. Nashville: Haynes & Co., printers. 1881. Pp. 35.

The Debt to Africa. The Hope of Liberia. By A. N. Bell, M. D. Reprint from "American Church Review." 1881. Pp. 28.

Sur la Distribution de l'Énergie dans le Spectre Solaire normal. Par M. S.-P. Langley. Paris: Gauthier-Villars, printers. 1881. Pp. 5.

The Indian Question. G. W. Owen. Ypsilanti, Michigan. 1881. Pp. 24.

Forestry Bulletins. Nos. 1, 2. 3, 4, and 5. Issued by the Census Office, Department of the Interior, Washington, D. C. 1881.

An Abstract of the Results obtained in a Recalculation of the Atomic Weights, by F. W. Clarke, pp. 12; and Some New Compounds of Platinum, by F. W. Clarke and Mary E. Owens, pp. 5. Reprints from "American Chemical Journal."

Twenty-sixth Annual Report of the Director of the Astronomical Observatory of Harvard College. By Edward C. Pickering. Cambridge: University Press. 1882. Pp. 16.

The Palæolithic Implements of the Valley of the Delaware. From the "Proceedings of the Boston Society of Natural History." Cambridge, 1881. Pp. 25.

Boulder County as it is. By John K. Hallowell. Published by the Colorado Museum of Applied Geology. Denver, 1882. Pp. 19. 15 cents.

On a New Substance resembling Dopplerite from a Peat-Bog at Scranton. By Henry Carvill Lewis. Read before the American Philosophical Society. 1881. Pp. 6.

No more Free Rides on this Jackass, or Protection Forever and Everywhere. By Frank Rosewater. Cleveland: Published by the Author. 1882. Illustrated. Pp. 169. 50 cents.

More Public Parks: How New York compares with other Cities. Published by the New York Park Association. 1882. Illustrated. Pp. 23.

Descriptions of some New Ichnenmon Parasites of North American Butterflies. From the "Proceedings of the Boston Society of Natural History." By A. S. Packard. Jr. 1880. Pp. 38.

On the Microscopic and General Characters of the Peach-Tree affected with the "Yellows." Reprint from the "American Naturalist." By W. K. Higley, of Geneva, Wisconsin. 1881. Pp. 24.

First-Book of Knowledge. By Frederick Guthrie, F. R. S. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. 1882. Pp. 130. $1.

Publications of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and of its Officers, Students, and Alumni, 1862 1881. Compiled by William Ripley Nichols. S. B. Boston: A. A. Kingman. 1882 Pp. 50.

The Q. P. Index Annual for 1881. An Index to "The International Review," "The Popular Science Monthly," "The Century," "Lippincott's," "The Nation." "The Atlantic," "The Living Age," "Harper's." and "The Eclectic, for 1880-81. Bangor, Maine: Q. P. Index, publisher. 1882. Pp. 56.

The Prevention of Syphilis: An Address read before the Philadelphia' County Medical Society, December 14, 1881. By J. William While, M. D. Reprinted from the "Philadelphia Medical Times." 1882. Pp. 20.

The Anatomy of the Mouth-Parts and of the Sucking Apparatus of some Diptera. By George Dimmock, of Cambridge, Massachusetts. Boston: A. Williams & Co. 1881. Pp. 50. With Four Plates and Explanations.

Statistics of the Iron and Steel Production of the United States. Compiled by James M. Swank, Secretary of the American Iron and Steel Association, Special Agent of the Census. Washington: Government Printing-Office. 1881. Pp. 180.

The Viscosity of Gases at High Exhaustions. By William Crookes, F. R. S. From the "Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society." 1881. Pp. 60. With Four Plates.

Elementary Lessons in Electricity and Magnetism. By Sylvanus P. Thompson. B. A., D. Sc, Professor in University College, Bristol. London: Macmillan & Co. 1881. Pp. 446. $1.25.

Experimental Researches into the Properties and Motions of Fluid, with Theoretical Deductions therefrom. By W. Ford Stanley. London: E. & F. N. Spon. New York: 446 Broome Street. 1881. Pp. 550.

Transactions of the Medical Association of Georgia. Thirty-second Annual Session. 1881. Edited by A. Sibley Campbell. M. D. Augusta: Joseph Loveday. 1881. Pp. 314.

Measurements of the Force of Gravity at Tokio and on the Summit of Fujinoyama. By T. C. Mendenhall, Ph. D., Professor of Experimental Physics in Tokio Daigaku. Tokio, Japan: Published by Tokio Daigaku (the University of Tokio). 2541 (1881). Pp. 17.

Geology of the Environs of Tokio. By David Brauns, Ph. D., M. D. . Professor of Geology in Tokio Daigaku. Tokio, Japan: Published by Tokio Daigaku. 1881. Pp. 84. With Eight Plates.

Tokio Daigaku (University of Tokio). The Calendar of the Departments of Law. Science, and Literature. 2540-'41 (1880-'81). Published by the University, Tokio, Japan, 2540 (1880).

Lectures on the Origin and Growth of Religion, as illustrated by some Points in the History of Indian Buddhism. By T. W. Rhys Davids. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sens. 1882. Pp. 263. Price, $2.50.

The Universe: or, The Infinitely Great and the Infinitely Little. By F. A. Pouchet. M. D. Sixth edition. Illustrated by 270 Engravings on Wood. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. 1882. Pp. 564. $3.75.

An Elementary Treatise on Electricity. By John Clerk Maxwell. M. A. Edited by William Garnett, M A., Oxford (Eng.) At the Clarendon Press. 1881. Pp. 208, with Six Plates. $1.90.

Sensation and Pain. By Charles Fayette Taylor. M. D. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. 1881. Pp. 77. 75 cents.

Aspasia. A Romance of Art and Love in Ancient Hellas. By Robert Hammerling. From the German, by Mary J. Safford. New York: William S. Gottsberger. 1882. Two vols. Pp. 685. $1.75.

Opium-Smoking in America and China. A Study of its Prevalence and Effects, by H. H. Kane, M.D. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sous. 1882. Pp. 156. $1.

Elements of Orthoëpy, consisting of the most Essential Pacts and Principles. By C. W. Larison, M.D. Published by the author at Ringoes, New Jersey. 1881. Pp. 132.

Sewer-Gases: Their Nature and Origin, and how to protect our Dwellings. By Adolfo de Varone, A.M., M.D. Second edition. Revised and enlarged. New York: D. Van Nostrand. 1882. Pp. 145. 50 cents.

Books of All Time. A Guide for the Purchase of Books. Compiled by F. Leypoldt and Lynde E. Jones. New York: F. Leypoldt. 1882. Pp. 80.

A Reading Diary of Modern Fiction. Containing a Representative List of the Novels of the Nineteenth Century, etc. New York: F. Leypoldt. 1881. Pp. 150, with blanks.

The Actual Lateral Pressure of Earth-works. By Benjamin Baker, M. Inst. C. E. New York: D. Van Nostrand. 1882. Pp. 180. 50 cents.

The Mother's Guide in the Management and Feeding of Infants. By John M. Keating, M.D. Philadelphia: Henry C. Lea's Son & Co. 1861. Pp. 118. $1.