Sidebilder
PDF
ePub

is not now so different as it was from that current in prosperity all classes of an overcrowded population, England. But he sees there is yet a margin and, and so it has done and is still doing in Ireland; bat indeed, until all our vast domain is fairly settled, Irish landlords of Lisgar's stamp, accustomed to look there must always be ; and he gives statements of the closely to present needs, cannot see beyond them relative advantages as to wages and cost of living of Mr. Brassey does. Throughout his book, indeed, many of the American fields for labour, the Plate, the i there runs a delightful vein of real human sympathy Argentine Republic, as well as the l'nited States and with his fellow-men of every nation, creed and des Canada. Nor does he omit mention of the influence He recommends courts of conciliation, to re-unne of emigration on the home countries. He shews the temporarily widened gap between employer and that, so great has been the exodus of railway labour employed; piece work, as a means of raising the ers from Ireland, that it is, at the present time, diffi- earnings of the men without detriment to the master; cult to procure the necessary supply to complete the 'the eventual shortening of hours to prevent the over Fermoy and Lismore Railway ; but he does not re- ' tasking of the energies, in these days when the close gret Irish emigration, on the contrary, he admits attendance upon machinery taxes brain and muscle that the labourer in Ireland is still comparatively poor, ' alike, and makes labour more severe than formerly, and, surely, he adds, a destitute, and“ because des. | co-operative societies, in shapes shewn to work adtitute, a disaffected population is a discredit and a vantageously, as means for the settlement of disputes weakness, and not an honour or a strength to a as to wages. He is a man of progress, not in the nation.”

“ Is it not immeasurably better,” he adds, sense of feverish, restless excitement; but in the “that a man should prosper in a foreign country, broad philanthropic sense, which looks to the eleva. than struggle miserably for existence in his native tion of the conditions of all classes, physically and land ?" Here speaks the man of large heart and morally ; not a man whose piety begins and ends in broad principles, and we cannot but contrast his his own money bags. And to Lord Lisgar 2nd :: language with that of Lord Lisgar, but yesterday' the public generally, we commend the extract with our Governor-General, now living on his Irish farms, ' which we close :where long may he remain, who, at a recent meeting “The importance of social reforms, and of secur of Irish landlords, tried, by false representations, ing the material well-being of the masses of our and for selfish purposes, to prevent emigration to population, is now universally recognised. I conthis country, to which, for his peerage and his fess my doubts as to the efficacy of legislation in sech savings, he should be for ever grateful. Mr. matters. It must be remembered that all national Brassey beautifully proves, in several chapters, expenditure for the benefit of the working classe that where the labourer is poorly paid, he is hardly which is not reproductive must be defrayed by alč. worked, and destitute of the comforts of life. He tional taxes. Let the transfer of land be by al gives a sorrowful picture of the condition of the pea- means facilitated, let railway communication be santry of Russia, where the women give birth to tween the centre of a great city and its suburbs be children in barns and stables, and, in three days at made as cheap as possible, let emigration be assisted the utmost, are again employed in hard field labour ! by loans, if security can be taken for the repayment --where, in some Provinces, the average limit of life of such advances ; but, granted that something may is but 15 years, and rarely exceeds 27, so that there be done by these various means, I hesitate to admi! are, in the whole Empire, but 265 persons alive be that the State can be the chief instrument for elera tween 15 and 60 years of age, out of 1,000 born, 1 ting still higher the moral condition of the people while in Great Britain there are 548. He traces up The work is too vast for any Government to under the relations between low wages and physical degra: take. It can only be accomplished by the self-bely dation and misery in many countries, under many and self-sacrifice of the whole nation. And when suns, and the conclusion is irresistible, that it is well all shall have done their duty in their several stations. for the labouring man to live where wages are high. the pressure of unforeseen calamity upon some un There were people like Lord Lisgar in the Hebrides, happy individuals and the incapacity of others wil in the time of Johnson's tour, who wished to dis- leave a mass of suffering to our compassionate care. suade the inhabitants from taking ship for America; which it will task our best energies to relieve. The but, if we compare the present position of the Heb poor we shall always have with us; and the great ridians with what Johnson describes, we find that even peers, the landowners, and the men who have be they are better off, while the sons of those who left come rich in commerce, must show themselves active are now among the rulers of the States and Pro- in their sympathies for all just demands, benevolen vinces on this side of the Atlantic. Has the wealth and kindly in the presence of distress. The exercise of the landlords of the Hebrides decreased ? Far of these excellent virtues, while it is in the first place from it. Emigration has raised to the average of a paramount duty, will undoubtedly bring with it to

:

the State and the society in which we live, the imme. Botany, to at least as great an extent as any other diate and priceless blessing of social union and con- of the Natural Sciences, requires to be taught practi. tentment."

cally, if it is to be taught with any real profit to the

learner. If the pupil is to be taught Botany in the First Book of BOTANY : being an Introduction to dead of winter, solely by means of text-books and

the Study of the Anatomy and Physiology of diagrams, he may acquire a parrot-like knowledge Plants, by John Hutton Balfour, F.R.S., Profes- of a number of technical terms, but he will assuredly sor of Botany in the University of Edinburgh. acquire nothing else—except, perhaps, a disgust at London : William Collins & Sons.

science in general. If, on the other hand, the leadNow that the Natural Sciences are rapidly taking ing facts of Botany are demonstrated to the beginner their true place in the education of the young, it has in the open fields, or by an appeal to actual specibecome a well recognised necessity that schools mens, he will be likely to gain some genuine acshould be able to obtain accurate elementary text- quaintance with the subject, along with some still books. Publishers are beginning to manifest a keen more valuable knowledge of the scientific method of appreciation of the revolution in educational matters' research, and some permanent and abiding love of nawhich is quietly but surely taking place; and from all ture-studies. So long as the teacher does not sides we have announcements of forthcoming manuals i make his text-book the sole agent in his teaching, and text-books of Science. Professor Balfour's little we can cordially recommend Dr. Balfour's little book is one of a series of elementary Science-text- i book. Its information is not imparted in the most books in course of issue by Messrs. Collins, and its attractive manner, but it is, at any rate, perfectly clear appearance is creditable to its publishers. No de and entirely accurate-qualities which cannot be too partment of Natural Science is better fitted to be highly estimated in judging of a work of this nature. taught in schools than Botany, and there is no lack As before remarked, also, it has the recommendation of excellent hand-books on the subject. In point of great brevity, and it thus obtains a most decided

| of size, Dr. Balfour's work is everything that could advantage over the excellent text-books of Professor be desired, not extending to one hundred and twenty Asa Gray. pages, duodecimo.

It is, also, in our opinion, a very wise, if somewhat novel, arrangement, that the ! THE LAND OF DESOLATION : being a personal narwork is made to treat exclusively of Vegetable Ana

rative of observation and adventure in Greenland. tomy and Physiology—the department of classifica- By Isaac J. Hayes, M. D., Gold Medallist of the tion being reserved for a second companion volume.

Royal Geographical Society, London, and of the The style is plain and clear, and the illustrations are

Société de Geographie, Paris; honorary member of all good. The chief defect in the book, intended as

the Geographical Societies of Berlin and of Italy ; it is, exclusively, for beginners, is that the subject

author of “The Open Polar Sea,” “An Arctic is treated with an excess of dry detail. Too

Boat Journey,” “Cast away in the Cold,” etc. Ilmuch space in proportion is devoted to a descrip

lustrated. New York: Harper and Brothers. tion of the structure of the organs of plants ; whilst If Dr. Hayes, arriving by night at a Greenland inn, far too little is said about the functions dis and asking for a bed, had given all his titles, the ancharged by these organs. In other words, there swer to him would probably have been as it was are too many dry anatomical details and not to the Spanish Hidalgo, who gave all his names : enough of the equally important and much more “We haven't room for half of you.” Nevertheless, interesting information as to the life of plants. his book is a pleasant, unaffected, lively little book, In spite of this defect, however, the work will and gives us, very vividly, the sensations and impresanswer its purpose admirably in the hands of a sions of the Land of Desolation. It is the record of good and thoroughly qualified teacher. It cannot a summer voyage with a party of friends in the steam be too strongly insisted, however, that the teacher yacht of Mr. William Bradford, an eminent painter constitutes as important an element the teaching of Arctic scenery. The party sought out all that was as the text-book. In the hands of one not suffici- most picturesque and striking in every way-photoently acquainted with the subject, and relying for his graphed the northernmost human dwelling on the knowledge entirely upon books, Dr. Balfour's work globe by the light of the midnight sun, explored glawould be likely to fall short of its object. In the ciers, saw the birth of icebergs, chased bears on the hands of a really good practical botanist, on the ice-did Greenland, in short, to their own and our other hand, the dry bones of this little book would satisfaction. The plum of the book-at once the be clothed with flesh, and might be presented to the most impressive scene and the most exciting advenlearner as a living body and not as a dead skeleton. ture, is the birth of an iceberg in the fiord of ScrimtIt cannot, also, be too strongly insisted upon that sialik. An iceberg is the extremity of a glacier

[ocr errors]

a

a

a

a

a

which protrudes into the sea, and in course of time terrupted. It was like the wind which moaning becomes detached. The Panther was lying by the through the trees before a storm, elevates its voice glacier, the artists were on shore, photographing ; with its multiplying strength, and lays the forest low the sun was hot and, under its influence, cracklings in the crash of the tempest. The whole glacies and splittings had been going on in the glacier for about the place, where these disturbances were occarsome time. “Then without a moment's warning, ring, was enveloped in a cloud, which rose up over there was a report louder than any we had yet heard. the glacier as one sees the mist rising from the It was evident that some unusual event was about to abyss below Niagara, and, receiving the rays happen, and a feeling of alarm was generally expe- of the sun, hold a rainbow fluttering above the forter. rienced.” On the glacier was a forest of ice spires, While the fearful sound was pealing forth, I sawa and one which stood out quite detached, nearly two blue mass rising through the cloud, at first slosis, hundred feet high. “The last and loudest report then with a bound ; and now from out the foam and came from this wonderful spire which was sinking mist, a wave of vast proportions rolled away in a down. It seemed, indeed, as if the foundation of widening semicircle. I could watch the glacier 20 the earth was giving way, and that the spire was de- more. The instinct of self-preservation drove me ze scending into the yawning depths below. The effect seize the first firm object I could lay my hands upon, was magnificent. It did not topple over and fall and grasp it with all my strength. The wave came headlong, but went down bodily, and in doing so, down upon us with the speed of the wind. The crumbled into numberless pieces. The process was swell occasioned by the earthquake can alone comnot instantaneous, but lasted for a space of at least a pare with it in magnitude. It rolled beneath the quarter of a minute. It broke up as if it were com Panther, lifted her upon its crest, and swept her toposed of scales, the fastenings of which had given wards the rocks. An instant more, and I w2- Eat way, layer after layer, until the very core was reach upon the deck, borne down by the stroke of fal.ing ed, and there was nothing left of it. But we could water. The wave had broken on the abrupt store, not witness this process of disintegration in detail and, after touching the rocks with its crest a hundred after the first few moments, for the whole glacier, feet above our heads, had curled backward, and almost to its summit, became enveloped in spray-a striking the ship with terrific force, had deluged the semi-transparent cloud through which the crumbling decks. A second wave followed before the shock of of the ice could be faintly seen. Shouts of admiration the first had fairly ceased, and broke over us in like and astonishment burst from the ship's company.

Another and another came after in Quick The greatest danger would scarcely have been suffi- succession, but each was smaller than the one precient to withdraw the eye from the fascinating spec- ceding it. The Panther was driven within two tacle. But when the summit of the spire began to fathoms of the shore, but she did not strike. Thank sink away amid the great white mass of foam and heaven our anchor held, or our ship would have been mist into which it finally disappeared, the enthu- knocked to pieces, or landed high and dry with the siasm was unbounded. By this time, however, other first great wave that rolled under us." The agitation portions of the glacier were undergoing a similar of the sea continued for half an hour. “The iceberg transformation-influenced, no doubt, by the shock had been born amidst the great confusion; and as which had been communicated by this first disruption. it was the rolling up of the vast mass that sent that Other spires, less perfect in their form, disappeared first wave away in a widening semicircle, so it was in the same manner, and great scales, peeling off from the rocking to and fro of the monster that continced the glacier in various places fell into the sea with a the agitation of the sea ; for this new-born child of prolonged crash, and followed by a general hissing the Arctic frosts seemed loath to come to rest in its and crackling sound. Then in the general confusion watery cradle. And what an azure gem it was! all particular reports were swallowed up in one uni- glittering while it moved there in the bright sun versal roar which woke the echoes of the hills and shine like a mammoth lapis lazuli set in a sea of spread consternation to the people on the Panther's chased silver, for the waters round were but one mass deck. This consternation increased with every mo- of foam.” The iceberg when measured was found ment, for the roar of the falling and crumbling ice to be a hundred and forty feet high above the water, was drowned in a peal, compared to which, the loud. giving a total depth of eleven hundred and twenty est thunder of the heavens would be but a feeble feet, since the proportion of ice below is to that above sound. It seemed as if the foundations of the earth

Its circumference was almost 3 which had given way to admit the sinking ice, we mile. now rent asunder, and the world seemed to tremble. The visit to the ruins of old Norse settlements, From the commencement of the crumbling till this long since abandoned either because the climate has moment the increase of sound was steady and unin. changed, or because the circulation of the blood in

manner.

as seven to one.

man has become less heroic, are an interesting part two subjects more or less connected by the author : of the book. The part which we could best have the sacred literature of the Hindu and Iranian nations, spared, is that which relates to the pranks of an and the origin and development oi articulate speech American youth, nicknamed “The Prince,” with a –the former pertaining to Comparative Mythology, Greenland beauty, called Concordia. The book is the latter to Philology. Yankee, not in a disagreeable sense, but as having a So far as the primitive religions of the Aryan race strong tinge of Yankee adventurousness and audacity, are concerned, the mass of educated men are still in which come out conspicuously-breaking through ice gross darkness ; but this is not to be wondered at, with the Panther. We are not told where the Panwhen dignitaries of the church are hopelessly at sea ther was built, but she seems to have done credit to regarding the existing beliefs of the people they proher builders.

pose to convert. It was only the other day that the Archbishop of Canterbury pulled a hornet's nest

about his ears by stigmatizing a number of Hindu THE CHRISTIAN'S MANUAL: being a book of Di. rections and Devotions to be used daily, and the Inns of Court, as “heathens” and “idolaters.”

youths, now studying English law at one or other of especially in preparing for the Holy Communion.

Dr. Tait went so far as to express the whimsical ap. Toronto: Adam, Stevenson & Co, 1872.

prehension that London was in imminent danger of This little work, written, we believe, by an Angli- being converted to Brahminism. The imputation can clergyman of the diocese of Toronto, and dedi. was resented with what appears to us unnecessary cated to the Bishop of the diocese, is extremely warmth ; but the Hindu is extremely sensitive, discreditable to the earnest piety of the author. He putatious, and fond of self-assertion. The truth is, the evidently belongs to what is commonly called the gulf between the creed of the intelligent Hindu and “ High Church," and his views on the Eucharist that of the lower castes and the pariahs is practically will, perhaps, prove unacceptable to some sections immeasurable. It is wider than that which divides of his own communion ; yet, controversy apart—and the ethereal mysticism of Fenelon and Pascal from we do not think it is obnoxiously prominent--the the simple devotion of the Italian contadino, or that “Manual” ought to be of essential service to all which served to distinguish the mad capers of an English Churchmen. It provides, within a brief Athenian slave at the Dionysia from the philosophic space, a complete scheme of personal and family contemplations of the Porch or of the Grove. devotion, self-examination and preparation for the As far back as we can trace them in the Veda and reception of the Communion. The prayers are, for the Avesta-for both are of kindred origin--the Orithe most part, taken from the Liturgy of the Church ental beliefs were pure forms of nature-religion. of England ; the hymns, selected with admirable Before the Hindu had set foot within the fertile pentaste ; and the admonitions to the reader, are well insula-in a remote past when he still gazed wistcalculated to stimulate worshippers “to be spiritually. fully across the Indus upon the promised land-his minded which,” as St. Paul informs us, “is life and faith had found a permanent record in writings which peace.

are with us to this day. The gods of Greece are conWe may add that the manual is, in point of price, jecturally resolved into human embodiments of the within the reach of all, and that, typographically, it powers of nature ; in India we find the spiritual is all that can be desired.

religion itself, out of which sprang the Titans and

their somewhat degenerate successors, the deities of ORIENTAL AND LINGUISTIC STUDIES. The Veda, veloped when the hymns of the Rig Veda were

Olympus. Anthropomorphism had not yet been de. the Avesta ; the Science of Language. By Wm. chanted by dusky worshippers. There was a god in Dwight Whitney, Professor of Sanskrit and Com the fire and a god in the breeze—in the rosy dawn parative Philology in Yale College. New York : and in the sober depths of the clear, blue sky. We Scribner, Armstrong & Co,

are thus brought closer to the momentous question :This work is made up of a number of papers which What is the origin of the world's religions ? Did originally appeared in American periodicals or were they uniformly begin with the impersonation, in a embalmed in the transactions of learned societies. spiritual form, of the beauty and the power displayed The endowment of a Professorship of Sanskrit and in earthly phenomena ? Or was there an anterior Comparative Philology is, of itself, a creditable faith,-purer than these—which taught that there proof of intellectual life; and the republication of were not "gods many and lords many”-numerous these essays seems to indicate that Prof. Whitney as the manifestations of nature—but one God alone, hopes to interest and instruct a wide circle of readers. whom men saw in clouds and heard upon the wind ? As collected in the volume before us, they treat of A collection of writings which confronts the student

a

with one of the great problems of this perplexing call to mind the connection which subsisted between time, deserves the serious consideration of Christian the conquerors of Babylon and the Jewish race, reand philosophic minds. It may be admitted that, stored by them from captivity, will readily recognize at their best estate, the Aryan faiths, as we now the interest of the subject; our limits, however, for know them, were but as broken rays, soon to grow bid even a slight sketch of this important portion of hazy in the darkness. Still, to the eye of faith, they the work under review. yet glow with some sparks of the Divine effulgence In the remaining papers, Prof. Whitney discusses they possessed when first, like every perfect gift, the origin and development of language-a subject they descended “from the Father of Lights, with too vast to be hastily noticed here. We should like whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.” to have been able to give them unqualified comma

To appreciate the sacred writings of the East, we dation ; but they are largely controversial, and the must first divest our minds of the prejudices which discussion is not conducted, unfortunately, in a tenEuropean contact with modern Hindu-ism has natu- perate and becoming spirit. It is deeply to be rally excited. We must forget the modern institu- regretted that, in treating of a purely scientific tion of Suttee, the worship of Juggernaut and other question, national jealousy and self-sufficiency shoul: kindred abominations and go back to "the infancy be permitted to insinuate themselves. Our Ameriof the Hindu nationality, at the dawning time of can friends ought not to mistake the pursuit of krow. Hindu culture, before the origin of caste, before the ledge for its attainment as Prof. Whitney is probe to birth of Civa, Vishnu or Brahma, before the rise of do. Especially do we protest against the rade abà the ceremonialism, the pantheism, the superstition unscholarlike attack upon so respected a name as and idolatry of later times.” Bearing this in mind, we that of Max Müller. In some parts of this volume have “enough to attach a high and universal inter- the author is prodigal in the Oxford professor's est to these books--that as, in point of time, they praise ; in others, he is as coarsely vituperative. Ir. are probably the most ancient existing literary re- deed we have a shrewd suspicion that the New Eng. cords of our race, so, at any rate, in the progression lander owes the European scholar more than he is of literary development, they are beyond dispute the willing to acknowledge, and that, as sometimes hapearliest we possess, the most perfect representation pens, the abuse is but a measure of the felt, bat eof the primitive lyrical period”—for the form of the acknowledged, obligation. One of Max Müller's onVedas is that of lyrical poetry. Prof. Whitney gives pardonable sins is that he is the supreme authority : an interesting view of each of the four Vedas which England on philological subjects—a sufficient reason, constitute the mantra of the Hindu theology. His it would appear, for an attack hardly less bitter than second paper, devoted to the “Vedic doctrine of a St. Bernard's onslaught upon Abélard and the Nonfuture life” is exceedingly interesting. For over two nalists. Continental scholars are treated with a little thousand years past, the doctrine of metempsychosis more courtesy, but they are also the victims of what has prevailed in India ; but this was not counte- Max Müller terms Prof. Whitney's “over coaz. nanced in the Vedas. Here we have a simple faith dent and unsuspecting criticism.” Bleek and the and ceremonial, based upon a firm trust in the im- Simious (!) Theory, Schleicher and the Physcal mortality of the soul :—“Yama hath found for us a Theory, and Steinthal and the Psychological Theory passage ; that's no possession to be taken from us, are all astray, and are likely to continue so mo whither our Fathers of old time departed, thither they espouse the “scientific theory" which, their offspring, each his proper pathway.” “Death course, is that of the professor himself. An Engist was the kindly messenger of Yama, and hath thus sent sergeant-at-law once remarked, “ that the oftener ke his soul to dwell among the Fathers”—“they who went to the West, the better he understood how the within the sphere of earth are stationed, or who are wise men came from the East :” it is to be feared the settled in the realms of pleasure.” The parallel pas- saying will receive a wider application, unless oer sages in Scripture will readily occur to the reader, | American friends cultivate in season the humility and even “the fore-heaven as the third heaven is which characterizes sound learning all the work styled, there where the Fathers have their seat,"'revealed in trance to St. Paul, finds mention in Hin- These pugnacious manifestations somewhat mar du verse.

Prof. Whitney's work ; but they are not fatal blemWe ought now to proceed to a consideration of ishes. As an introduction to the subject of which it the Avesta, --or Zend-avesta, as they are sometimes treats we commend it with pleasure to our readers. incorrectly termed--the Persian sacred writings, It will serve a good purpose if it only directs the with which the name of Zoroaster, the Moses of the student to the rich treasures of Oriental literature. Iranian race, is intimately associated. Those who

over.

« ForrigeFortsett »