« iepriekšējāTurpināt »
this compact volume will keep before scholars most of what they may care to retain of Hume.
SMITHSONIAN CONTRIBUTIONS TO KNOWLEDGE, Vol. XVII. Systems of Consanguinity and Affinity of the Human Family. By Lewis II. Morgan, Rochester, N. Y., Washington, D. C., Smithson. Inst. pp. 590.
The investigations comprised in this elaborate work extend over more than four-fifths of the human family. They resolve themselves into forms of relationship, the descriptive and the classificatory, each ascending to remote antiquity. The first comprises the Aryan, Semitic and Uralian races, the latter being the author's name for the Turk and Finn stocks, which have an independent system of relationships. The second includes the Ganowanian, Eskimo, Turanian, Malayan and unclassified Asiatic families. Mr. Morgan draws the inference from his laborious and voluminous investigations that intermarriage in the same family was the primitive barbarian custom, disclosing, he says, "the hole of the pit whence we have been digged." The elaborate tables in his work give him occasion to say that most of the materials were furnished by American missionaries, of whom he says: "There is no class of men upon earth, whether considered as scholars, as philanthropists, or as gentlemen, who have earned for themselves a more distinguished reputation. Their labors, their self-denial and their endurance in the work to which they have devoted their time and their great abilities, are worthy of admiration. Their contributions to history, to ethnology, to philology, to geography, and to religious literature, form a lasting monument to their fame. The renown which encircles their names falls as a wealth of honor upon the name of their country.
FAMILIES OF SPEECH: Four Lectures before the Royal Institution of Great Britain. By Rev. Frederic W. Farrar, M. A. F. R. S. London, Longmans, pp. 192.
These able and deeply interesting lectures were delivered before the same Institution as the nine which compose Max Muller's "Science of Language," but nine years later. They cover less ground; they deal less with details of Comparative Philology, more with grand generalizations and questions of history; and they are more eloquent. The linguistic trees scattered through the text, and the philological tables and maps appended are ingenious and useful. The first lecture traces the growth of Comparative Philology, an interesting narrative. Two lectures are then occupied with the Aryan and Semitic families of race and speech, respectively. The last shows that there is no third or “Turanian " family, and under the name Allophyllian" discusses and characterizes the immense variety of lowtype languages that remain, "perhaps a thousand," which are not Aryan and not Semitic, and which have not yet" been grouped together by mutual affinities," monosyllabic, agglutinating, and polysynthetic. The author
prefers Steinthal's classification as recognizing psychological distinctions as well as grammatical structure. He is best known this side the water as editor of "Essays on a Liberal Education," and author of "Seekers after God." A dozen other volumes have proceeded from his pen. So practiced a writer should be above his manifest fondness for the word "infructuous "for" unfruitful."
HAND-BOOK OF ENGLISH LITERATURE, for the use of High Schools, etc, By Francis Underwood, A, M., Boston: Lee & Shepard. pp. 608.
The only fault we find with this peerless selection is its price. Not its size. It could not well be smaller and be of any considerable value as a representation of "British Authors." It is an exhibit of all deceased authors who have a permanent place in English Literature, and a judicious, just, and sufficient one; of the living it represents Carlyle, Miss Martineau and her brother, Kinglake, Lord Lytton, Disraeli, Tennyson, Froude, Kingsley, Clough, Ruskin, Tyndall," Geo. Elliot," Thompson, Hughes, Mrs. Craik, Lecky, Jean Ingelow, Morris and Buchanan. If another book of American authors of equal cost is to be added to the list of High School books, can this study be generally pursued? As to the merit of Mr. Underwood's selection there can be no question among persons of large reading and cultivated taste. It is simply unapproached by any other. And his "Historical Introduction" is one great judgment, skill and worth.
THE NATION: The Foundations of Civil Order and Political Life in the United States. By E. Mulford. New York: Hurd and Houghton, pp. 418.
Philosophical statesmen and philosophical writers on topics of statesmanship, have been so few in this land, that the approbation and applause with which Mr. Mulford's able and exceptional work has been received, and the attention it has won, are not surprising. These twenty solid chapters furnish such a discussion of the characteristic elements and relations of a republican state, as we have nowhere in English beside. The progress of thought is logical, the views propounded and reasoned out are profound and Christian. The very titles are appetizing to thinkers. The contents of the first chapter disclose well enough the genius and scope of the book -"The Substance of the Nation" defined as founded in the nature of man, as a relationship, a continuity, an organism, a conscious organism, a moral organism, and a moral personality.
THE STORY OF MY LIFE. By Hans Christian Andersen. Now first translated. Author's Edition. New York: Hurd and Houghton, pp. 569.
It reads just like Herodotus-was the report of one who had preceded us in perusing this singular autobiography,-just such quaint simplicity, and naive, unconscious egotism. Weird and wild too, in incident and costume
at times, and altogether strange throughout to American experience and thought. We read for ourselves and found the report of the home critic accurate and just. To one that has little that is more tasking at hand, the innocent garrulousness of Andersen may be, we can conceive quite charming; to one whose reading must needs lie in more laborious fields, it is a trifle wearisome. It has all his graces, however, of diction and expression.
AD FIDEM, or Parish Evidences of the Bible. By Rev. E. F. Burr, DD., author of Ecce Coelum and Pater Mundi. Boston: Noyes, Holmes & Co. 1871, pp. 353.
In this new work of Dr. Burr, the evidences of Christian truth are presented with the same vigor of style, and earnestness of conviction, shown in his former writings. Searching tests are applied to those asserting a wish to know the truth, and it is maintained that God will give light to all who truly desire it, use what light they have, and seek patiently for more by prayer and study. Those who are careless or unwilling to receive the truth, will be left to fall into error; and this explains the admitted conflict of religious opinions.
The arguments from the character and influence of the Bible, from prophecy and miracle, are présented in a very fresh method and with forcible illustrations from history and the scenes of daily life. Great use is made of Christian experience; and it is wisely claimed that men must admit its facts as realities, and the basis of belief. The whole book rings with confidence-to use one of the author's phrases, there is not "a quaver of uncertainty" anywhere. A doubter might occasionally be repelled by what would seem to him an excess of assurance; but to most the volume will be a most useful tonic, showing the power of an earnest faith-and the abundant warrant we have for firm convictions and the bold assertion of them. The title of the book alone repels us.
GUTTENBERG, AND THE ART OF PRINTING. By Emily C. Pearson. Boston: Noyes, Holmes & Co., 1871, pp. 292.
The new and enterpising firm, which published Ad Fidem, have brought out this volume in a most tasteful style.
The facts in the life of Guttenberg have been diligently collected, and with some aid of imagination, wrought into a very interesting tale. Interwoven with this are many instructive and curious facts relating to the early history of printing, and the processes now in use. The whole abounds with well executed illustrations.
THE LIFE AND TIMES OF HENRY LORD BROUGHAM, written by himself. Vol. II. Harper & Bro., New York, S. C. Griggs & Co., Chicago. 12mo. pp. 392.
This second volume is of far more interest and value than the first. It covers the first stage of the Statesman's public life from 1808 to 1829, a
period of exciting events in English and European history. Lord Brougham's account of his personal connection with the rescinding of the Orders in Council, the trial of Queen Caroline and the Bill for Catholic Emancipation, takes the reader behind the scenes, and gives a vivid distinctness to his impressions of both the persons and the doings concerned with those transactions.
THE LIFE OF CHRIST, by Rev. William Hanna, D. D. The American Tract Society, N. Y. 8vo. pp, 861.
We are glad to see this valuable work, which has already been noticed in our columns, put forth by the Tract Society in a form and at a price calculated to give it a wide circulation.
AT LAST; A Christmas in the West Indies. By Charles Kingsley, with illustrations. New York: Harper & Brothers. Chicago: S. C. Griggs & Co. 12 mo. pp., 465.
This is a book of easy, pleasant and instructive reading. It embraces facts of personal adventure, and personal observation, interspersed with comments, scientific and moral, all done up in the graceful style which characterizes the writings of the distinguished author. One who supposes himself well acquainted with the West Indies, will find here much new and valuable information.
REPUBLICS; or Popular Governments an Appointment of God. By the Rev. John Crowell, D. D., Philadelphia. Presbyterian Board of Publication, Chicago: W. G. Holmes. 18mo. pp., 238.
The author attempts to show, in opposition to the doctrine of the divine right of Kings, that Republican governments are a gift from God. For this purpose, he considers severally the Republic of the Hebrew statethe Republics of the Christian Church, and the Republics in Church and State resulting from the diffusion of Christianity in modern times. The book presents a good resumé of facts and principles in the line of its subject, though some points seem to us overstrained.
[NOTE.-We regret that quite a number of books, sent by publishers, for notices in this number, were burned and we have no record of them. We had also designed for this number a careful notice of our most important exchanges, which we now find to be impracticable. Our friends, the publishers, must this time," take the will for the deed."]
THE ROUND TABLE.
FIRE LIGHT.-God sometimes speaks so that man must hear. He has lessons of a thousand years; and when he chooses, he writes them in letters that outshine the blazings of the fieriest rhetoric. As the man who should have predicted all the history of the great Southern Rebellion would have been counted a madman, so he who should have foretold all the facts of the Chicago fire one week before, would have been called a fool. But it all came to pass, and the wisdom of the wise came to naught.
God showed to us, written in letters of flame by night upon the sky, the resistlessness of his might. In twenty-four hours he laid low the achievements of a generation. He drove his scourge four miles in a right line through the heart of a great city, brushing away its brain-work and handwork as one sweeps down a cob-web. Twice it leaped the river on its way; and once it crossed the bridge, when the bridge was swung. When the firemen made a stand it hurled the fire-brands far over their heads. The flames even burned their engines and licked up their water works. Men saw their costly buildings, their elegant fabrics and their cherished homes vanish before their eyes. They fled, to be again put to flight; and the clearest head could not tell where there was a place of safety. They rescued their goods to have them burned at last. They saw their precious papers burned in the ashes, with no certainty of ever beholding them again. They watched the sky longingly for a rain, and watched the wind in terror lest it should change. The river lay on one side and all lake Michigan slept on the other; while 300,000 people helplessly beheld the flames burn on till they burnt out.
God showed us with how slight an agency he could humble the pride and power of man. A lamp, a cow and a barn were his simple apparatus. A flame that a breath would put out, a breeze that moved the vessels briskly on the lake, and the very negation of water, a drought, did his fearful work. God gave a wisp of burning straw the victory over all the forces of a great city.
God showed us the breadth and the minuteness of his workings. If there are any events on earth of which it were fitting that he should take charge, one of them would seem to be that in which the lives, the homes,