Books of the Month

History and Biography. Mrs. Kemble’s charming Records of a Later Life, already reviewed in these pages from the English edition, has been issued in this country by Henry Holt & Co. — Old and New Canada, 1753—1844; Historic Scenes and Social Pictures, or the Life of Joseph Francois Perrault (Dawson Brothers, Montreal), is the title of a volume by Dr. P. Bender, which combines in an agreeable fashion the record of the life of a prominent Canadian with sketches of the society and historic incidents among which he moved. Mr. Perrault lived to be ninety-one years of age, and his own recollections furnish a valuable part of the history included in this interesting work. — In the series Campaigns of the Civil War, the tenth volume is The March to the Sea, by Jacob D. Cox, LL. D. (Scribners.) The book is accompanied by ten maps. The impressiveness of the narrative is marred by the author’s critical and somewhat polemic mood. — Smiles’s Self-Help has been issued by the Harpers in the Franklin Square series.—The Life of Edwin H. Chapin, D. D., by Sumner Ellis, D. D. (Umversalist Publishing House, Boston) has the advantage and disadvantage of having been written with the help of very few documents. Dr. Chapin was a man of so much vitality and generosity that his biographer is able to illustrate his subject by many characteristic touches ; and while we have necessarily more of the biographer’s work than commonly happens, we have also a more diligent collection of the testimony of diverse minds. Something of Dr. Chapin’s large nature is preserved in this volume, in spite of a good deal of unnecessary writing. —The Life of Major-General George H. Thomas has been written by Chaplain Thomas B. Van Home (Scribners), and material is furnished for a better knowledge of one of the chief soldiers of the country. The author keeps pretty closely to his text, but the war was a notable occasion for the manifestation of personal relations, and it was impossible to avoid the discussion of the quarrels into which General Thomas was dragged ; but the interest of the reader is chiefly in his military movements.—The Reader’s Guide to English History, by Professor W. F. Allen, of the University of Wisconsin (Ginn, Heath &. Co., Boston), is an admirable hand-book, in which the really necessary books and chronological facts are given, to the exclusion of lumber and dead-wood. It ought to be of real service both to teachers and students. — The Political Conspiracies preceding the Rebellion (Putnams), by Lieutenant Thomas M. Anderson, is a brief monograph, in which the events just preceding the taking of Forts Sumter and Pickens is recorded by a writer who has in mind the historic vindication of Major Robert Anderson, but gives his readers material from which to draw their own conclusions. — In the English Men of Letters series (Harpers), Jonathan Swift, by Leshe Stephen, is a welcome addition. Mr. Stephen has shown himself before to be at home in Swift’s period, and a knowledge of the time is almost as necessary as a knowledge of human nature to qualify one for making an estimate of Swift, for the dean is the great puzzle of English literature. His candor, his freedom from refined theorizing, and his manliness of tone make Mr. Stephen exceptionally fitted to be Swift’s biographer, and this book, while not conclusive, is at least satisfactory within its range. — A Short History of the Kingdom of Ireland from the Earliest Times to the Union with Great Britain, by Charles George Walpole (Harpers), does not claim to be the result of original research. It is well provided with maps, chronological tables, and an index. The writer does not show any tenderness toward the English in his narrative of the armed attempt at protestantizing Ireland. — In their series of Biographies of Musicians, Jansen, McClurg & Co., of Chicago, have issued a Life of Haydn, by Louis Nohl, translated by George P. Upton. Haydn’s life was so full of bright and interesting incident that it has more outward attractiveness than that of any of his profession, except Mendelssohn — Outlines of Ancient History (Harpers) is the title of a manual prepared by P. V. N. Myers, which is designed for private reading and for instruction. It covers the period from the earliest times to the fall of the Western Roman Empire ; and while Greek and Roman civilization constitute the main subjects, there has been full reference to the Eastern monarchies and Egypt. The author has aimed to make his book a history of civilization before Christ rather than of persons and parties.—History of the Christian Church, by Philip Schaff (Scribners), is a work to consist of five octavo volumes, of which the first, on Apostolic Christianity, is now issued. The work is a revision and expansion of Dr. Schaff’s original history, issued in 1858. He has gone over his former statements with reference to using and sometimes answering the criticism which has been so vigorously exercised during the past twentyfive years. The author’s position is well known as that of an evangelical scholar.—In Epochs of Modern History (Scribners), the latest volume, Edward III., by Rev. W. Warburton, depends largely on Longman’s larger work. Covering as it does the period of Chaucer and Wiclif, the writer has done well in making much of these subjects, and in giving familiar pictures of life in the times.—Mr. Hubert Howe Bancroft follows his The Native Races of the Pacific States with History of the Pacific States, of which the first volume, devoted to so much of Central America as is covered by 1501-1530, is now ready. (A. L. Bancroft & Co., San Francisco.) The present work is the historical successor of the former, and itself only the initial volume of a series which the author has projected with what can only be called a Pacific magnitude of intention. Whatever decision may be passed upon Mr. Bancroft’s work, no one can hesitate to acknowledge the immense indebtedness due to one who has patiently collected and arranged so vast a store-house of historic material. Mr. Bancroft’s historic creed is an honorable one, “ to tell the truth, plainly and concisely;” and if one recoils a little from the idea of conciseness as expressed in an avenue of books devoted to the Pacific coast, he must remember that Mr. Bancroft’s conception of history could be realized only by the collection of photographic copies of everything relating to human life— Henry Holt & Co. have issued the second part of Mr. William Cory’s A Guide to Modern English History. The period embraced is that of 1830-1835, which the author claims as “full of the virtue and wisdom which make modern England supremely worthy of a student’s contemplation ; it seems not too much to say that they form a period of paramount importance in the universal history of legislation and government.” The book is not a history, but a guide to history; that is, it confines itself to a brief but connected summary of events which form the back-bone of history. It is not so full and discursive as Miss Martineau’s history! but it is probably quite as impartial an index to political movements.

impartial an index to political movements. Political History and Political Economy. The Development of Constitutional Liberty in the English Colonies of America, by Eben Greenough Scott (Putnams), is an attempt at tracing the spiritual history which had its most comprehensive genesis in the Reformation, proceeded through revolutions in English politics, and found a final expression in the Declaration of Independence. The writer has a good idea, but it appears to us that he has missed a full conception of the parallel growth of the national idea, without which his liberty would have resulted in an isolated individuality. The book is not especially easy reading, but it is full of suggestiveness to the historical student who wants something more than an exoteric view of history. — Political History of Recent Times, 1815-1875, with special reference to Germany, by W. Müller, translated by the Rev. John P. Peters (Harpers), is of a different order. It is a close narrative of the political movements of continental Europe, marked off into periods, and finding its culmination mainly in the consolidation of the German empire. The translator, Mr. Peters, has added a chapter, which brings the history to date. — Constitutional History and Political Development of the United States, by Simon Sterne (Cassell), is a popular treatise, with reference largely to the present condition of the country, and is, in fact, an account of the working of our political organization, Mr. Sterne regards the matter mainly as affecting industrial and commercial interests. — The American Citizen’s Manual, Part I., by Worthington C. Ford (Putnams), relates to governments, national, state and local, the electorate, and the civil service. The editor’s purpose is to give a clear, brief account of the relation of the citizen to the government under which he lives, and we think he has succeeded

Literary History and Criticism The Great Epics of Medieval Germany, by George Theodore Dippold (Roberts Bros.), is an outline of the contents and history of the Nibelunglied, Gudrun, Parzival, and minor poems. By means of the book one may acquaint himself with the drift of these remarkable works without the weariness of reading them, and qualify himself thus for hearing Wagner’s music. Professor Dippold is a careful and painstaking writer. — Wit and Wisdom of Don Quixote (Roberts Bros.), though in form a selection of passages, is in effect, by its full indexes, a classification of Cervantes’ fine philosophy and humor. A life of Cervantes is prefixed, signed Emma Thompson.

Fiction. Miss Phelps’s novel of Doctor Zay, with which the readers of the Atlantic are already familiar, has been published in book form. (Houghton, Mifflin & Co.) — Robin, by Louisa Parr, is the latest in the Leisure Hour series (Holt), and the readers of Dorothy Fox will only need to know that the book is out.. — The singular avatar of Democracy in England appears to have led to its reissue here by its original publishers (Holt) in paper covers at a cheap price. We doubt, however, if the real American democracy will recognize itself any better in the book in this form than it did when it was in the Leisure Hour series.—Under Green Apple Boughs, by Helen Campbell, is the title of the first of a new series called Our Continent Library. (Fords, Howard & Hulbert.) Mrs. Campbell puts much thought into the story, almost enough to carry it over the thin places of the plot, but her seriousness constructs the characters rather than finds them.—Her Crime is the first volume in the third series of the No Name novels. {Roberts.) — Miss Leighton’s Perplexities, by Alice C. Hall (Fords, Howard & Halbert), is a somewhat juvenile novel, in which young men and maidens carry on their game of love —The Cleverdale Mystery, or The Machine and its Wheels, by W. A. Wilkins (Fords, Howard &; Hulbert), is intended to do double service; to be a blow at the machine in politics, and an amusement to the reader. The machine will not suffer, but the intelligent reader, forced to read it, may. — A Transplanted Rose is a story of New York society. (Harpers.) The rose is transplanted from the Western prairies to New York, carefully potted there, and sent over to England to blossom in a nobleman’s greenhouse. It should be added that the rose belongs to the order of artificial flowers.

Theology, Philosophy and Religion. Science without God, by H. Didon, translated from the French by Rosa Corder (T. Whittaker, New York), is the impetuous attack upon materialism of an impassioned French preacher. — Prayer and its Answer, by Dr. S. Irenæus Prime (Scribners), is the narrative of personal incidents connected with the history of the Fulton Street prayer-meeting during the twenty-five years of its existence. — My Portfolio is the title given by Dr. Austin Phelps to a volume (Scribners) in which he has collected thirty-one essays originally printed by him in religious weeklies, and containing the views of a generous adherent to the old New England theology upon questions affecting especially the religious life of the community. Dr. Phelps is always direct and pastoral; he is always a pastor in his writing; he is also a kind and charitable man.—Practical Life and the Study of Man, by J. Wilson, Ph. D. (J. Wilson & Son, Newark, New York), is a collection of a hundred or more commonplace essays, which may have done duty first in a country newspaper. The positions taken are mainly incontrovertible.— Philosophy of Landscape Painting, by William M. Bryant (St. Louis Publishing Co ), is a study of landscape painting from a philosophic point of view, in which philosophy tells what ought to be found and seen, and the historical development of painting is the last thing considered. To some people this will be regarded as a back-handed way of getting at the subject; they would prefer a philosophy of landscape painting reached by a study of typical examples. — Christ’s Christianity is the title of a volume compiled by Albert H. Walker (Holt) upon the principle of classifying the words of Christ as contained in the gospels into an orderly succession of doctrines and precepts. Such an arrangement has its value, and is something more than a curiosity, but one may doubt the great efficiency of a system which emphasizes the teaching of Christ independently of his life. — The Christian Religion is the title of Professor George P. Fisher’s reasonable apology, reprinted from the North American Review by the Scribners. — Logic and Life is the title of the first of a volume of sermons by the Rev. H. S. Holland. (Scribners.) Mr. Holland is a clergyman of the English church, and is introduced here by President Porter, of Yale. The form and manner are more literary and permanent than one usually finds in sermons, and the book is one to be selected from the mass of contemporary apologetics. At the same time one must make up his mind to a good deal of rhetoric. — The Harmony of the Bible with Science, or Moses and Geology, by Samuel Kin ns Ph. D. (Cassell), is a popular work, which takes the order of creation as detailed in the opening verses of Genesis and makes it the subject of a discursive exposition in the light of modern knowledge. The book is bolstered behind and before with lists of eminent men who subscribe to the book and to some of Dr. Kinns’s statements. He appears to believe Moses and the subscribers. — Dr. James McCosh, President of Princeton College, has begun the issue of a Philosophical series, of which the first number has appeared under the title of Criteria of Diverse Kinds of Truth as opposed to Agnosticism, being a treatise on applied logic. (Scribners.) It can be read in a few hours, it may serve as a text-book, and is intended to give intelligent people a substantial ground on which to stand in meeting the latest philosophical heresy.

Education and Text Books. A Grammar of the Modern Spanish Language, as now written and spoken in the capital of Spain, by William I. Knapp (Ginn, Heath & Co,), proceeds upon the assumption that the student is already acquainted with some general laws which affect the structure of all Indo-European languages. The grammar leads him as quickly as possible to reading and writing the language. — H. B. Boisen’s Preparatory Book of German Prose, to which we have already referred, is accompanied by a separate volume of notes and vocabulary. (Ginn, Heath & Co.) — The Meistersehaft System, a short and practical method of acquiring complete fluency of speech in the French language, by Dr. Richard S. Rosenthal (Estes & Lauriat), has been published in fifteen parts, which together would make a volume of over four hundred pages. The author, keeping steadily in mind the single purpose of enabling the scholar to talk in French, and to say the things most necessary to be said, has arranged his matter in a lucid way and stripped the task as far as possible of all irrelevant matter. He is like a skillful coach in education, and has reduced the student’s work by the method in which it is taken up. The matter of pronunciation is the weak feature, since the English equivalents are often misleading and rarely quite satisfactory; but the difficulty is inherent. — Since the object of Those Children and Their Teachers, a story of to-day, by Byron A. Brooks (Putnams), is to indicate weaknesses in the school systems, and to suggest possible reforms, we place the book here; but it is a pity that the characters of parents in the book should lead one to place the principal mistakes, not where Mr. Brooks does, in schools and teachers, but in the foolish and weak parents.

Sport. The Tricks of the Greeks Unveiled, or the Art of Winning at Every Game, by Robert Houdin, translated by M. I. Smithson, is published in Lovell’s Library. (John W. Lovell Company, New York.) A rogue is set to catch a rogue.