Popular Science Monthly/Volume 21/May 1882/Literary Notices
Physical Education; or, the Health Laws of Nature. By Felix L. Oswald, M.D. New York: D. Appleton & Co. Pp. 259. Price, $1.
The health papers contributed by Dr. Oswald to the "Monthly" during the past year, having been revised by the author, are now issued in a separate form, and, as we are glad to see, at a price which will favor their wide circulation. We call attention to some points of interest in this remarkable little book.
In the first place, it must be said that the author is no mere unpractical theorizer. He is a medical man of thorough preparation and large professional experience, and an extensively traveled student of nature and of men. While in charge of a military hospital at Vera Cruz, his own health broke down from long exposure in a malarial region, and he then struck for the Mexican mountains, where he became director of another medical establishment. He there spent eight years, making many excursions to explore the imperfectly known Mexican highlands, and he has given the results of his observations and adventures in his "Summerland Sketches," 5 one of the most interesting and instructive books of travel that has appeared in a long time.
Dr. Oswald has also journeyed extensively in Europe, South America, and the United States, and always as an open-eyed, absorbed observer of nature and of men. So active a career we might suppose not to be in the highest degree favorable to superior literary work, which we are accustomed to expect only from the devotees of scholarship, who concentrate themselves upon books in the solitude of their libraries. And yet Dr. Oswald's merits as a writer are of a very high order. He has a genius in the use of language which is less a result of cultivation than a gift of nature. He writes in a style that is at once crisp and incisive, easy and flowing. His vocabulary is prolific, and every word is the most felicitous for its place. There is
no halting and no dissonance in the musical rhythm of his periods, and there is not a weak or a faltering sentence to be found between the covers of the book on "Physical Education." He never spins out his passages, or plays with epithets for effect; and though the earnestness and ardor of expression often start the pulse, the strain of eloquence never breaks into rhetorical inflation. These traits are possessed by our author in a degree that places him, beyond question, among the few unrivaled masters of lucid idiomatic English.
In an age when the whole force of culture is thrown upon the art of effective expression, it is no easy task to reach preeminence in this field; but the interest of the case is heightened when we learn that Dr. Oswald is not an Englishman, and is not writing in his native speech, but in a foreign tongue. Macaulay, in his life of Frederick the Great, remarks, "No classic work, as far as I recollect, was ever composed by any man except in a dialect which he had learned without remembering how and when, and which he had spoken with perfect ease before he had ever analyzed its structure." The little book now before us will go far to refute this dictum of the great essayist. At any rate, we do not think the critic of the "Troy Press" is far from the truth when he declares that "Mr. Felix L. Oswald, of Cincinnati, is the cleanest writer of pure English on this continent."
But, though proficient to a rare degree in one of the most difficult arts, yet with Dr. Oswald this art is far from being an end in itself; he subordinates his gift of writing to a more serious purpose. It is by the breadth, beneficence, and vital urgency of this controlling purpose that the man is to be properly measured. With him the accomplishments of literary expression, like the facts and truths of science, only acquire their highest value as they are made tributary to human amelioration. By "physical education" he means not mere "gymnastics," as hitherto interpreted, but all hygienic and educative resources for the physical improvement and redemption of mankind. Though a man of many-sided culture, and a passionate lover of nature, and therefore with inexhaustible resources for his own mental gratification, yet Dr. Oswald is still more a man of profound sensibility to his human environment, and of irrepressible sympathy with the weakness, the difficulties, the errors, and the miseries of his fellow-beings. His book has the double object of pointing out the more common and fruitful sources of those debilities and infirmities from which people suffer through their prejudices, ignorance, unhealthy habits, and unnatural practices, and of arousing them to more earnest, hearty, and determined effort at amendment.
It is just at this point that criticism intervenes with its accusation that our author writes with exaggeration and extravagance. If this objection implies that facts are distorted or truth overstrained in Dr. Oswald's pages, we believe it will be found to have a very slender basis; if it is a mere matter of taste, the use of superlatives is certainly excusable here if anywhere. Dr. Oswald is inspired with the hope of mending things; and, in writing for the people, he does not believe that noncommittal understatements are best suited to answer that purpose. With feeble conventional protests which arouse no indignation and provoke no action Dr. Oswald has little patience. He writes both to divert and to convert his readers, and his essays are therefore doubly contrasted with the subdued regulation monographs of a scientific period that is cultivated out of half its life. To produce any salutary and permanent reform, the evils to be corrected require to be presented in a very strong light and vividly realized. "Cool indifference, whatever subjective advantages it may have, will never set a rubbish-heap of old shams and errors afire."
There is but one thing worse, in the view of Dr. Oswald, than the injurious practices which undermine the stamina and lower the health and life of a people, and that is the dull, conventional acquiescence in a confessedly vicious state of things. Holding that this widespread and culpable torpor is due largely to the preaching of an ancient gospel of anti-naturalism, he maintains that its only possible counteraction is the vigorous and vehement inculcation of the gospel of nature, and his book is animated throughout with this preaching. The mere lazy indifference of those who are comfortable in prevailing customs, and content with the decorous rule of Mrs. Grundy, is sufficiently intolerable; but when these fall back upon a philosophy of life which maligns the natural instincts, libels the world we live in, and promises another to compensate for the breakdown of this, he has only hot denunciation of the doctrine and all who teach it. However we may object to pungency of speech, Dr. Oswald may at any rate plead the abundant example of his adversaries in the use of it.
The "Physical Education" is one of the most wholesome and valuable books that have emanated from the American press in many a day. Not only can everybody understand it, and, what is more, feel it, but everybody that gets it will be certain to read and re-read it. We have known of the positive and most salutary influence of the papers as they appeared in the "Monthly," and the extensive demand for their publication in a separate form shows how they have been appreciated. Let those who are able and wish to do good buy it wholesale and give it to those less able to obtain it. It will be a boon to benighted multitudes.
The Voyage of the Yega round Asia and Europe, with a Historical Review of Previous Journeys along the North Coast of the Old World. By A. E. Nordenskiöld. Translated by Alexander Leslie.With five Steel Portraits, numerous Maps, and Illustrations. New York: Macmillan & Co. Pp. 741. Price, 86.
The frequent references which have been made within the last two years to the enterprise of which this work gives the first full and detailed account, attest the value which the world attaches to the problem which it was designed, if possible, to solve, that of forcing a northeast passage to China and Japan—a problem which, the author remarks, "for more than three hundred years had been a subject of competition between the world's foremost commercial states and most daring navigators, and which, if we view it in the light of a circumnavigation of the Old World, had, for thousands of years back, been an object of desire to navigators." Professor Nordenskiöld was led to undertake this voyage by the success of his previous voyages, in which he had reached the mouth of the Yenisei River by sea from Sweden, in 1875 and 1876, and was convinced that the open navigable water which had carried him so far extended probably to Behring Strait. He laid his plans before the King of Sweden and other persons, who were known to sympathize with his object, and received from his Majesty, Mr. A. Sibiriakoff, and Mr. Oscar Dickson, whose portraits on steel worthily appear in the volume, pledges of substantial support, selected his company, prepared his vessels—the Vega, a steam-whaler, the Lena, as a tender to go ahead in doubtful places, and two merchant-vessels, which were to carry coal for the exploring vessels—and sailed from Maosoe, a few miles southwest of North Cape, on July 25, 1878. Here the expedition proper began and hence it was conducted through the sea that washes the northern edge of the Old World, along the coast-lines of provinces of which readers may have seen indefinite mention, and conceived hazy ideas, but of which they could have hardly had distinct notions before, till it emerged again through Behring Strait into the regions of civilization and exact knowledge. Of the sea and coasts along the Arctic borders of Europe and Asia, Professor Nordenskiöld's account gives the fullest and most interesting descriptions, touching nearly all the subjects of interest appertaining to them. First, we have the history, which in the present case naturally relates and is largely confined to previous voyages to the same regions, the relation of which, Professor Nordenskiöld remarks, adds a much-needed variety to the interest of the story, "for nearly all the narratives of the older northeast voyages contain in abundance what a sketch of our own adventures has not to offer, but what many readers, perhaps, will expect to find in a book such as this—accounts of dangers and misfortunes of a thousand sorts by land and sea." Then come geographical descriptions of features of land and sea, with the varied aspects of summer and winter phenomena according to the season when the author witnessed them; natural history, embracing the vegetable and animal life of the whole Arctic stretch covered by the voyage; geology; and the delineations of the people. In the latter category are included full and satisfactory as well as entertaining accounts of those curious tribes, the Samoyeds and the Chuckchees, their mode of life, habits and manners, and religion, which are rich in incidental and personal sketches, are given in the kindliest of feeling and with delicate humor, and form, perhaps, to general readers, the most interesting part of the book, while they must also rank high as anthropological studies. A prominent object of the voyage was to study the feasibility of opening a commercial highway from Europe to the river-marts of Central and Eastern Siberia, by way of the sea-route which the expedition took. Professor Nordenskiöld's estimate of the productive capacity of these regions of the far North, and of their possible value in the world's economy if they could be brought within reach of the markets, may be a surprise to those who have associated with Siberia all that is frozen and inhospitable. "If we take Siberia in its widest sense," he says, "that is to say, if we include under that name not only Siberia proper, but also the parts of High Asia which lie round the sources of the great Siberian rivers, this land may very well be compared in extent, climate, fertility, and the possibility of supporting a dense population, with America north of 40° north latitude. Like America, Siberia is occupied in the north by woodless plains. South of this region, where only the hunter, the fisher, and reindeer nomad can find a scanty livelihood, there lies a widely extended forest territory, difficult of cultivation, and in its natural conditions, perhaps, somewhat resembling Sweden and Finland north of 60° or 61° north latitude. South of this wooded belt, again, we have, both in Siberia and America, immeasurable stretches of an exceedingly fertile soil, of whose power to repay the toil of the cultivator, the grain exports during recent years from the frontier lands between the United States and Canada have afforded so striking evidence. There is, however, this dissimilarity between Siberia and America, that, while the products of the soil in America may be carried easily and cheaply to the harbors of the Atlantic and Pacific, the best part of Siberia, that which lies around the upper part of the courses of the Irtish, Obi, and Yenisei, is shut out from the great oceans of the world by immense tracts lying in front of it, and the great rivers which in Siberia cross the country and appear to be intended by nature to form not only the arteries for its inner life, but also channels of communication with the rest of the world, all flow toward the north, and fall into a sea which, down to recent times, has been considered completely inaccessible." The basins of the three Great rivers together cover an area of nearly 2,500,000 geographical square miles, of which 1,440,000 geographical square miles lie south of 60° north. A part of the journey lay through the region of the remains of the mammoth, and "between shores probably richer in such remains than any other on the surface of the globe, and over a sea, from whose bottom our dredge brought up, along with pieces of driftwood, half-decayed portions of mammoth-tusks." The business of gathering and disposing of these tusks is really an important one, estimated to amount to a hundred pairs a year, or twenty thousand pairs since the country was conquered. These figures indicate that the mammoth population of the country must have been more considerable than the impression of the barrenness of the Arctic regions which is given by a superficial view leads us to suppose could have been the case. Professor Nordenskiöld finds no difficulty, however, in indicating the sources whence these animals derived their food. Having remarked that the remains of food which were found in the hollows of the teeth of a rhinoceros discovered on the Wilui River consisted of portions of leaves and needles of species of trees that still grow in Siberia, he observes that "it ought not to be overlooked that in sheltered places overflowed by the spring inundations there are found, still far north of the limit of trees, luxuriant bushy thickets, whose newly expanded juicy leaves, burned up by no tropical sun, perhaps form a special luxury for grass-eating animals, and that even the bleakest stretches of land in the high north are fertile in comparison with many regions where at least the camel can find nourishment."
Even now the animal life in the extreme north, as in Nova Zembla, in summer, "is more vigorous and, perhaps, even more abundant, or, to speak more correctly, less concealed by the luxuriance of vegetation, than in the south." Especially is this the case with "the innumerable flocks of birds that swarm around the polar traveler during the long summer days of the north." Insects, also, of a few species, are remarkably abundant, considering that the soil is continually frozen below the depth of a few inches, but as a rule "the actual land vertebrate fauna of the polar countries is exceedingly scanty in comparison with that of more southerly regions. It is quite otherwise as regards the sea. Here animal life is exceedingly abundant as far as man has succeeded in making his way to the farthest north. At nearly every sweep the dredge brings up from the sea-bottom masses of decapods, crustacea, mussels, asteroids, echini, etc., in varying forms, and the surface of the sea on a sunny day swarms with pteropods, beroids, surface-crustacea, etc," A greater number also of the higher types of animals within the polar territory occur in the sea than on the land. Having spent a winter in the frozen ocean, the expedition proceeded eastward to and through Behring Strait, and calling, always with scientific intent, at Japan, China, and the East India islands, came around through the Red Sea, the Suez Canal, the Mediterranean, and the Atlantic Ocean, to its starting-point in the Scandinavian waters, thus accomplishing, for the first time in history, the circumnavigation of Europe and Asia.
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 Sons. Pp. 262. Price, $2.50.
A religion which is believed to embrace more adherents than any other system of religious thought; the fundamental principles of which are embodied in a literature the merit and intrinsic interest of which have received the general recognition of scholars in all nations; and some of the external aspects of which present a striking resemblance to some Christian forms, is entitled to be regarded as a most remarkable outgrowth and manifestation of human thought, and deserves profound and respectful study. Buddhism is such a religion as we have described, and it receives the treatment it merits at the hands of Mr. Davids, who is considered one of the most competent living authorities on the subject It has to be examined by nations, for it presents very varied phases in different countries, according as it has been modified by the character and circumstances of their people and by their history. Everywhere, however, India is looked to as the land of its origin; and it is in India that its oldest and most important books are found. Mr. Davids has, therefore, very properly selected India as the country in which to consider it for the elucidation of its fundamental principles. His lectures, which were delivered on the Hibbert foundation, consider, first, "The Places of Buddhism in the Development of Religious Thought," under which head the author reviews the condition of India at the time of the introduction of Buddhism, the effect the new religion had on that condition, and the influence the condition exerted upon the shape it eventually took; and, afterward, the "Pali Pitakas," or the principal books of Buddhism—the Buddhist theory of Karma, or what takes the place, with a striking difference, of the Christian idea of the future life; the "Buddhist Lives of the Buddha"; "Gotama's Order," or the rules that were laid down by the founder of the religion himself; and "The Later Forms of Buddhism," which are immense in their variety. Among the lessons to be derived from the study, Mr. Davids points out that "the knowledge of what man has been in distant times, in far off lands, under the influence of ideas which at first sight seem to us so strange, will strengthen within us that reverence, sympathy, and love, which must follow on a realization of the mysterious complexity of being, past, present, and to come, that is wrapped up in every human life."
Bacteria. By Dr. Ferdinand Cohn. Translated by Charles S. Dolley. Rochester, New York. Pp. 30, with a Plate.
The title of this paper and the name of its author commend it without any further words. We need notice especially only the translator's statement of one of his objects in offering it, which is, to set the example of publishing scientific books in cheap editions, as is done abroad. The plate of illustrations consists of figures that were drawn by Dr. Cohn himself for "The Microscopical Journal."
Beliefs about Man. By M. J. Savage. Boston: George H. Ellis. Pp. 130. Price, $1.50.
This work, a complement to a previously published volume on "Belief in God," embraces the substance of a number of regular Sunday-morning sermons on the nature, origin, and destiny of man, in which were also considered some of the problems, such as those of sin and salvation and of free-will, which have troubled him during all the ages. The points brought out may be summed up in brief, that "man is the animal that has learned to think of himself, to think of right, to think of God, and has ended by thinking that he is a son of God"; that the doctrine of evolution has no relation to theism or atheism; that the doctrine of necessity, as distinguished from free-will, "gives us motive power, gives us a way to work, gives us confidence that our work will "not be without its appropriate results"; that the forces, the powers, that are at work in human nature today do not need uprootal or change, but only instruction, guidance, self-control; that the perfect city of God is to begin here; that the absolute conditions of progress are freedom and knowledge; and that death is not the end, but may be simply the fitting for "that other, higher life, that we may trust surrounds us everywhere now, and of which, even today, unknowingly, we are a part."
Transactions of the Medical Association of Georgia. Thirty-second Annual Session, 1881. Edited by Dr. A. Sibley Campbell. M. D., Secretary. Augusta, Georgia: Pp. 314. Price, $1; by mail, $1.05
This volume includes the papers which were read at the meeting of the association whose proceedings it records; which papers pertain to appropriate subjects in medical and surgical treatment, and are based upon material drawn chiefly from cases in the practice of their authors. The one, perhaps, of most general interest is that of Dr. R. J. Nunn, on "Female Diseases, the Result of Errors in Habit and Hygiene during Childhood and Puberty." Illustrations are given where the matter calls for them. The necrology of members of the association who died during the year is followed by a number of biographies of physicians previously deceased, among which a conspicuous position is given to that of Dr. Crawford W. Long, for whom is claimed absolute priority in the discovery of anæsthesia by ether, and who died in 1878, "at the bedside of a patient, in the discharge of his duty."
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. Pp. 564. Price, $3.75.
To present the leading facts of nature to the non-scientific public in such a style that it will read of them with the interest with which it follows the development of a romance, without detracting from the dignity and accuracy of scientific statement, to compose such a vivid word-picture as shall enable the reader to form an adequate conception of the marvelousness of the wonders that science has discovered, without falling into exaggeration and sensationalism, are tasks which the most learned investigator in science and the best-trained writer would be justified in shrinking from attempting. Only a man of strong imagination, combined with an unusually even mental poise, could undertake to carry a series of description of this character through the whole field of nature. M. Pouchet has undertaken this, and has accomplished it successfully. He leads us in his most entertaining work, which the child or the student of science may read with equal pleasure, by successive steps, truly from the infinitely little to the infinitely great. Beginning with the invisible world of the microscope, which includes the animalcules that still live in our fluids, the fossil infusoria of the edible earths, and the nummularia of the lime-stones of which cities and the pyramids are built, and the "architects of the sea," the corals, the boring mollusks, and the "mountain-building" foraminifera, he goes on to make us acquainted with the insects, the abundance of their life, and the magnitude of their works and their depredations, the birds and the artful structures of which they are the architects, and with the wonderful migrations of animals of every class. Then, passing to the vegetable kingdom, he illustrates the anatomy and physiology of plants, the functions of the seed and the process of germination, the "extremes in the vegetable kingdom," from the lichen of the rock to the baobabs and sequoias of the primeval forest, and discourses of the longevity and density of plants, and their migrations, even more wonderful than those of animals. Next the department of geology is brought under review, with an account of the formation of the globe by gradual development and change as recorded on the tablets of the rocks, descriptions of fossils, embracing here again the extremes, though not infinite, of the little and the great—"the mountains, cataclysms, and upheavals of the globe, volcanoes and earthquakes, glaciers and eternal snows, caverns and grottoes, steppes and deserts, and the air and its corpuscles. The "Infinitely Great" is represented in the sidereal universe, under which head are considered "The Stars and Immensity" and the solar world. The final chapter gives a brief account of the monsters and superstitions, belief in which was cultivated in the middle ages. The author declares—and his work bears him out—that his object in composing it has been to inspire and extend to the utmost of his power a taste for natural science: hence, he has given, "not a learned treatise, but a simple elementary study, conceived with the idea of inducing the reader to seek in other works for more extensive and more profound knowledge." We can only refer to the richness of details that characterizes the work and the excellence of the illustrations.
The Gospel in the Stars; or, Primeval Astronomy. By Joseph A. Seiss. D. D. Philadelphia: E. Claxton & Co. New York: E. P. Dutton & Co. Pp. 452. Price, $1.50.
The author of this work, a prominent Lutheran clergyman, has already acquired considerable distinction from the zeal with which he has propagated Piazzi Smyth's theory that the great pyramid of Egypt was constructed in pursuance of a divine revelation, for a divine purpose. He here propounds a similar theory for the formation and delineation of the forty-eight original constellations of the sky, which he believes were primarily composed under inspiration, to typify man's redemption by Christ. Whatever skeptics, readers, and scholars may think of the matter, he has no doubt about it.
The Art of Voice-Production, with Special Reference to the Method of Correct Breathing. By A. A. Patton, author of "The Voice as an Instrument." New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. Pp. 106. Price, $1.
Application is made in this work of the investigations which have been carried on, by means of the laryngoscope, into the structure and mode of action of the vocal organs, to the study of a scientific cultivation, or, as the author, with but little exaggeration, calls it, production of voice. The foundation of voice-culture is laid in correct breathing. This should always be full and easy, and done by the action of the muscles of the diaphragm, not of the clavicle or ribs. The technic consists in learning to know when the voice-organs act properly, and how to make them act so. Particular stress is laid upon what is called the articulate action of the glottis—an action under which, in its perfection, the individual notes of a series are divided in such a manner that a complete scale of fractional tones of very small degree may be produced with perfect smoothness, and with unchanging though naturally modifying tone-quality, by the voice, as the best violinists accomplish the same through their instruments. To this, the author believes, such singers as Nilsson and Stanley owe their marvelous powers of execution; and, in illustration of the fineness to which it is possible to reduce it, the case is cited of Madame Mara, who was able to perform twenty-one hundred changes of pitch within the compass of three octaves, or one hundred changes between each two notes of the ordinary scale.
The Study of Trance, Muscle-Reading, and Allied Nervous Phenomena, in Europe and America. With a Letter on the Moral Character of Trance-Subjects; and a Defense of Dr. Charcot. By George M. Beard, A. M., M. D. New York. Pp. 40.
This is a setting forth, in brief, of what has been done in Europe during the past two or three years, in a department of psychology in which the author was one of the earliest and is still one of the most indefatigable workers, and offers a means of comparing American (of which Dr. Beard's have been the most conspicuous) and European researches in it.
Sparks from a Geologist's Hammer. By Alexander Winchell, LL. D. Chicago: S. C. Griggs & Co. Pp. 400. Price, $2.
This is a very pleasant volume of essays, descriptive, scientific, and philosophic, though predominantly geological, and written in a style intended to suit the general reader. As is well known, the author has command of a very entertaining style, and his long and varied experience with the practical study of nature has given him ample materials for an attractive volume. Books of this kind perform a most important office, not only in awakening a feeling for science, but in instructing the public on many interesting topics which are hardly touched in our scientific manuals. A few of his titles will suggest the variety there is in these pages: "Mont Blanc and its Ascent," "Obliterated Continents," "A Grasp of Geological Time," "Geological Seasons," "Salt Enterprise in Michigan," "Huxley and Evolution," and "The Metaphysics of Science. We need not commit ourselves to everything Professor Winchell says in this volume, but it will prove instructive and provocative of thought to most readers, and may be therefore cordially recommended.
Principles of Chemical Philosophy. By Josiah Parsons Cooke, of Harvard College. Revised edition. Boston: John Allyn. Pp. 623. Price, 83.50.
We are glad to see that this well-known standard work devoted to the higher grade of chemistry has undergone careful and extensive revision by the author, and been so largely rewritten as to make it in many respects a new book. Not only is the work itself essentially improved by this further elaboration, but the results of the last ten years of chemical progress are thoroughly embodied in its text, and many features of scientific interest are here brought forward for the first time. The distinctive aim of the work is philosophical, that is, it presents the great body of the chemical truths in a closely correlated and thoroughly systematized form. "Thus alone," says the author, "can the student give breadth and dignity to his knowledge, and come to know nature not as a sum of certain parts, but as a grand and related whole." Such a generalized knowledge of chemistry this book aims to impart. It presents chemistry as a philosophic system, and it deals with the facts of the science only so far as they illustrate this system. It is not intended in any respect to take the place of laboratory teaching, but solely to supplement it. Not until the student has become familiar with chemical phenomena, at least to some limited extent, is he prepared to study the science in a systematic way; but all who have this preparation will acquire most rapidly a general knowledge of the whole field when the subject is presented in a deductive form.
Report of the Director of the Astronomical Observatory of Harvard College. By Edward C. Pickering. Cambridge: University Press. Pp. 16.
This is the thirty-sixth annual report of the institution. Mention is made of. the improved position that has been given the Observatory for conducting researches by means of the subscription which was raised in 1878. Observations have been made on eclipses of Jupiter's satellites, the spectra of particular stars, the comets of 1881, variable stars, and the working of the instruments, and also photometric observations. Some interesting results have been derived from the observations on stellar spectra, one of them giving a hint toward a more rapid method of detecting variable stars, another suggesting analogies between the spectrum of a certain star and that of the great comet of 1881. Mr. Chandler, of the observatory staff, is engaged in collating, for comparison, the observations of stars of known or suspected variability.
The Palæolithic Implements of the Valley of the Delaware. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Peabody Museum of American Archæology and Ethnology. Pp. 25.
This publication contains communications which were made on the subject named in the title to the Boston Society of Natural History at one of its meetings, as follows: "Historical Sketch of the Discovery of the Implements," by C. C. Abbott; "A Comparison of them with Palæolithic Implements from Europe," by H. TV. Haynes; "On the Age of the Trenton Gravel," by G. F. Wright; "Statement relating to the Finding of an Implement in the Gravel," by Lucien Carr; and "On the Lithological Character of the Implements," by M. E. Wadsworth. Mr. F. TV. Putnam furnishes the concluding remarks, in which he describes the finding of three implements by himself and a companion, and adds, "Certainly the evidence that has been brought forward to-night will clear away all doubts as to the importance and reliability of Dr. Abbott's discoveries and investigations, which have proved the former existence of Palæolithic man in the valley of the Delaware."
Chemical and Physical Analysis of Milk, Condensed Milk, and Infants' Milk-Foods, with Special Regard to Hygiene and Sanitary Milk-Inspection. By Dr. Nicholas Gerber. Translated and edited by Dr. Hermann Endemann. Illustrated. New York. Pp. 101.
The author of this treatise has been engaged, scientifically and practically, in the dairy industry for several years, and is now manager of a milk-product company in the interior of the State of New York. Having often himself felt the need of a uniform method of analysis for milk and its products which would satisfy practical wants, and possess scientific accuracy, he has aimed to give in this volume a short and exact method for the examination of the various milks and milk-foods, expecting to follow it up with another volume on other milk-products and substances employed in the dairy industry. He claims superiority for his method over the methods known before 1877, in accuracy, in simplicity, and in cheapness and economy of time.
The Brain of the Cat. By Burt G. Wilder, M. D. Pp. 39, with Four Plates.
This paper, which was originally read before the American Philosophical Society, is the first of a series of contributions to the knowledge of the brain of the domestic cat, and is to be followed with a "Description of the Cerebral Fissures, together with their Synonymy." The author believes that the cat offers superior advantages over other easily accessible animals for preliminary anatomical work. He also proposes a revision of anatomical nomenclature, with a schedule of alterations for abbreviating and simplifying it, and making it more intelligible.
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. Pp. 50.
The list is intended to include the books, pamphlets, reports, and contributions to periodicals (excepting daily journals) printed during the time included within its scope, by the Institute officials and its affiliated societies and associations; by professors and other instructors during their connection with the school; by special students during their connection with the school; and by alumni and holders of certificates of proficiency during their connection with the school and in after-life. The list is of considerable size, covers a variety of subjects, literary and scientific, includes many titles from foreign journals, and is creditable to the institution and to American research.
The Science of Mind. By John Bascom, author of "The Principles of Psychology," "Comparative Psychology," etc. G. P. Putnam's Sons. Pp. 462.Price, $2.
The first thing to be said about Dr. Bascom's various philosophical works is that the handling of the subjects is his own, and in stamping upon them the individuality of his own mind he gives them a new and attractive interest. And that freedom and freshness which he maintains in his methods of statement are to no small degree preserved in the elucidation of his views. He is in no sense either a compiler or a servile expositor of established opinions, but he is an independent (we had almost said a free) thinker upon his chosen themes of study. Although by no means always up to the times, he is always in a progressive way, and moves as fast, perhaps, as the circumstances will allow. His present work, "The Science of Mind," though avowedly and essentially metaphysical, and standing squarely upon intuitional or transcendental ground, is still a very different book from its predecessors of the same class, and shows that the intelligent metaphysician is compelled to yield to the advance of scientific knowledge.
Dr. Bascom does not sympathize with the current reproaches of metaphysical philosophy, but recognizes that, like all other imperfect and difficult things, it may be and must be practically improved. In his preface he says: "If asked why I hoped that this volume might reward study, I should answer, not because the system presented is new, but because the statement it here receives is at once succinct and elaborate, is strengthened by new points, by a consistent! maintenance of all that belongs to it, and by the rejection of that which, essentially alien to its principles, only embarrasses it. I trust the intuitive philosophy will be found hereby to have gained somewhat of that proof which springs from completeness and proportion of parts."
Political Economy in One Lesson. By Alphonse Coartola. New York: The Society for Political Education. 1882. Pp. 20.
Formula and Tables for the Horse-Power of Leather Belts. By A. F. Nagle, M. E. Providence, Rhode Island: J. A. & R. A. Reid, printers. 1882. Pp. 8.
A Free Canal. Letter of ex-Governor Seymour. Pp. 5.
Some Points relating to the Geological Exploration of the Fortieth Parallel. By M. E. Wadsworth, Ph. D. Reprint from "Proceedings of the Boston Society of Natural History." Pp. 32.
History of the Water-Supply of the World. By Thomas J. Bell. Cincinnati, Ohio: Peter G. Thomson. 1882. Pp. 134.
The Geological and Natural History Survey of Minnesota. Ninth Annual Report. By N. H. Winchell, State Geologist. St. Peter: J. K. More, State Printer. 1881. Pp. 392.
The Constants of Nature. Part V. A Recalculation of the Atomic Weights. By Professor F. W. Clarke. S. B. Washington: Smithsonian Institution. 1882. Pp. 271.
Natural Law. or the Science of Justice. Part I. By Lysander Spooner. Boston: A. Williams & Co*. 1882. Pp 16.
Our Homes. By Henry Hartshorne. Philadelphia: P. Blakiston, Son & Co. 1882. Pp. 119. 50 cents.
Report to the State Board of Health on the Methods of Sewerage for Cities and Large Village* in the State of New York. By James F. Gardiner, Director of the New York State Survey. Pp. 15.
Nervous Shock as a Therapeutical Agent. By Romaine J. Curtis. M. D. "St. Louis Medical Journal "Publishing Co. 1882. Pp. 13.
The Germination and Vitality of Seeds. By Richard E. Kanze, M. D. Pp. 14. 50 cents.
National Regulation of Interstate Commerce. By C. C. Bonney. Chicago: Legal News Co. 1882. Pp. 32.
A Free Canal. Argument of the New York Produce Exchange in favor of making the Canals of the State free from Tolls. 1882. Pp. 18.
The Books of Chilan Balam: The Prophetic and Historic Records of the Mayas of Yucatan. By Daniel G. Brinton. M. D. Philadelphia: Edward Stern & Co. 1882. Pp. 19.
Anæsthesia and Non-Anæsthesia in the Extraction of Cataract. By Haskett Derby, M.D. Cambridge: Riverside Press. 1882. Pp. 32.
Studies from the Biological Laboratory of Johns Hopkins University. Professor H. Newel Martin. Editor; Professor W. K. Brooks, Associate Editor. Baltimore: N. Murray. Vol. II, No. 2. 1882. Pp. 178. Illustrated.
Cotton-Seed: The Greatest Wonder of the Present Day. By Professor J. P. Stelle. Mobile. 1882. Pp. 8.
Hints and Suggestions for Reform in Medical Education. By Frederic R. Sturgis, M.D. New York: William Wieser, printer. 1882. Pp. 13.
Bulletin of the Buffalo Society of Natural Sciences. Vol. iv, No. II. Buffalo: Bigelow Brothers, Printers. 1882. Pp. 63. Illustrated.
Experiments in Amber Cane and the Ensilage of Fodders at the Experimental Farm, Madison. Wisconsin. David Atwood, printer. 1882. Pp. 78.
The Mistakes of Robert G. Ingersoll on Nature and God. A Scientific Criticism. By George W. Edgett. Boston: Thomas Todd, printer. 1881. Pp. 37.
Insects injurious to Forest and Shade Trees. By A. S. Packard, Jr., M.D. Washington: Government Printing-Office. 1881. Pp. 275. Illustrated.
Report on a Water Supply for New York and other Cities of the Hudson Valley. By J. T. Fanning, C.E. New York. 1881. Pp. 38. Illustrated.
On Ovariotomy. By Thomas Keith, M.D. Louisville, Kentucky: John P. Morton & Co., printers. 1881. Pp. 19.
Epidemic Convulsions. By David W. Yandell, M.D. Louisville, Kentucky: printed by John P. Morton & Co. 1881. Pp. 15.
A Discourse on the Life and Character of Dr. Richard O. Cowling. By David W. Yandell, M.D. Louisville, Kentucky: printed by John P. Morton & Co. 1882.
Statistics of the Production of the Precious Metals in the United States. By Clarence King. Washington: Government Printing-Office. 1881. Pp. 94. With Plates.
Gloria. A Novel. By R. Perez Goldos. From the Spanish, by Clara Bell. In two volumes. New York: William S. Gottsberger. 1882.
Polly's Scheme. By Corydon. Boston: D. Lothrop & Co. 1882. Pp. 207. $1.
The Chemistry of Cooking and Cleaning. By Helen H. Richards. Boston: Estes & Lauriat. 1882. Pp. 90.
Vaccination. Arguments Pro and Con. By Joseph F. Edwards, M.D. Philadelphia: P. Blakiston, Son & Co. 1882. Pp. 80. 50 cents.
First Aid to the Injured. By Peter Shepherd, M.B. Revised by Bowditch Morton, M.D. New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons. 1882. Pp. 87. 50 cents.
How to Make the Best of Life. By J. Mortimer Granville, M.D. Boston: S. E. Cassino. 1882. Pp. 96. 50 cents.
Easy Lessons in Light, by Mrs. W. Awdry, 114 pages; and Easy Lessons in Heat, by P. A. Martineau, 136 pages. London: Macmillan & Co. 1880.
The Rhymester, or the Rules of Rhyme. By the late Tom Hood. Edited, with Additions, by Arthur Penn. New York: D. Appleton & Co. 1882. $1.
The Occult World. By A. P. Sinnett. Boston: Colby & Rich. 1882. Pp. 172. $1.
Tables for the Determination. Description, and Classification of Minerals. By James C. Faye, Ph.D. Chicago: Jansen, McClure & Co. 1882. Pp. 85. $1.
John Stuart Mill: A Criticism. With Personal Recollections. By Alexander Bain, LL.D. New York: Henry Holt & Co. 1882. Pp. 200. $1.25.
James Mill: A Biography. By Alexander Bain, LL.D. New York: Henry Holt & Co. 1882. Pp. 466. $2.
The Wine Question in the Light of the New Dispensation. By John Ellis, M.D. New York: published by the author. 1882. Pp. 228,
The Practice of Commercial Organic Analysis. By Alfred H. Allen, F.C.S. Vol. II. Philadelphia: Presley Blakiston. 1882. Pp. 561. $5.
Annual Report of the State Geologist of New Jersey for the Year 1881. By Professor George H. Cook. Trenton, New Jersey: J. L. Murphy, printer. 1881. Pp. 107.