Books of the Month

History and Government. Congressional Government, by Woodrow Wilson (Houghton, Mifflin & Co.), is a small volume of studies, devoted to the actual working of our government, as tested by experience, measured by the Constitution, and compared with representative government elsewhere. Mr. Wilson is a keen observer, a fairminded critic, and so fresh and unhackneyed in his comments that any student of our history who once begins this interesting volume will read it to the end. —The Civil Service in the United States (Holt) is a hand-book of a very thorough-going character, which gives the fullest possible information as to the positions open to competitors and as to the requirements under the law. Examination papers are printed, and all the regulations. It is the first satisfactory exhibit of the civil service in its practical working. The compiler is John M. Comstock, Chairman of the U. S. Board of Examiners for the Customs Service in New York City. —— The eighteenth of Questions of the Day, published for the New York Free Trade Club by G. P. Putnam’s Sons, is the Spanish Treaty opposed to tariff reform. The pamphlet is the report of a committee of inquiry appointed by the club.—A very useful serial has been begun by J. H. Hickcox, in Washington, of a monthly catalogue of United States’ Publications. It gives the titles of publications of every description printed by order of Congress or of any of the Departments of Government during the month preceding the date of publication.—Mining Camps, a Study in American Frontier Government, by Charles Howard Shinn (Scribners): an interesting monograph, in which the author has not dispossessed himself of his humane interest because of his scientific purpose. The subject is an admirable one, and offers a capital opportunity to the student of realizing the older forms of social order. It is as if a naturalist should make a comparative study of a fossil and the living type of the same family. — G. P. Putnam’s Sons have issued the first volume of their edition of The Works of Alexander Hamilton, edited by Henry Cabot Lodge. Hamilton’s complete writings have long been unprocurable in a convenient form, and this collection, beautifully printed and admirably edited, will find the warmest welcome. We shall hereafter have occasion to refer to the work. The present volume is enriched by a portrait of Hamilton, engraved for the first time from the original picture painted by Trumbull in 1792 for George Cabot, and now in the possession of Mr. Lodge. — A Directory of English History, edited by Sidney J. Low and F. S. Pulling (Cassell), may have been suggested by Lossing’s Dictionary of American History. However suggested, it is a commendable execution of a good plan. It is a handbook arranged in alphabetical order, covering the chief facts and persons in English history. The articles are brief and well proportioned by their

importance. Thus Cromwell has five columns; the Crown has an interesting article three columns long; the Church of England is eight Columns long, and is by Mr. Creighton; while such a subject as Hereward is contained in half a column. Among the contributors are Oscar Browning, J. F. Bass Mullinger, J. E. Thorold Rogers, and R. L. Poole, besides others whose names are not so well known in America. At the end of the more important articles are summaries of authorities, and altogether the work has the appearance of thoroughness and accuracy.— The N. Y. Historical Society publishes an address delivered before it on its seventy-ninth anniversary by John Jay. Mr. Jay’s subject is the Peace Negotiations of 1782 and 1783, in which his grandfather bore so conspicuous a part. The more light is thrown upon the transaction, the more insidious appear the real character and dealings of Vergennes. — Italy, from the Fall of Napoleon I. in 1815 to the Death of Victor Emmanuel in 1878, by John Webb Probyn. (Cassell.) The period, embracing, as it does, the unification of the Italian states, is one of the most striking in modern times; and while it is yet too near to be treated with historic perspective, it is so interesting and so important that one is glad to have the story told concisely and clearly, as in this volume. — The Patriarchal Theory, based on the papers of the late John Ferguson McLennan, edited and completed by Donald McLennan (Macmillan), is not, as the reader might imagine, a restatement of Sir Henry Maine’s views, but an inquiry into them, with the intent to show their instability. This involves a critical study of the patria poteslas and agnation. The work is one which shows a keen mind and an impartial desire for truth, and the essay will help toward that most interesting of studies, the foundation of social order. — American Political Ideas Viewed from the Standpoint of Universal History, by John Fiske (Harpers): a tidy volume containing three lectures, which have also done service as magazine articles, namely, The TownMeeting, The Federal Union, and Manifest Destiny. Mr. Fiske’s luminous style makes his essays very readable ; he is a capital generalizer from a few striking facts : he has made excellent use of the labors of special workers, and if he seems sometimes to reach his theories and find his facts afterwards, he writes in so frank and direct a manner that one is tempted to accept him as a guide, philosopher, and friend, in place of the possibly more learned Dr. Dryasdust. — Two recent numbers of Questions of the Day (Putnams) add little to the profitable discussion of public affairs. Mr. F. W. Taussig’s The History of the Present Tariff, 1860-1883, is an intelligible and brief account of the tariff as we know it, with little reference to its previous development. It is not a colorless history, for Dr. Taussig does not conceal his antagonism to the system of protection Mr. John Codman’s treatment of The Mormon Problem is called a solution. He advises that the people should throw their weight in favor of that branch of the Mormon church which discards polygamy.— Ludlow’s Concentric Chart of History (Funk & Wagnalls) is in form a fan of cardboard. It appears to be constructed upon the theory that a great deal more happened in the nineteenth than in the first century, for the centuries start from the handle and branch upward to the periphery. It is an ingenious piece of foolish wisdom. — The Statesman’s Year Book for 1885 (Macmillan) is the twenty-second annual issue of this admirable manual. It is a statistical and historical annual of the states of the civilized world, and the editor, J. Scott Keltie, has evidently spared no pains in his work. We can tell him, however, if he wants minute corrections, that our late president spells his middle name with one l, and we do not call our members of the cabinet ministers, but secretaries. The compact presentation of statistics is well considered, and by a number of ingenious comparative tables, the editor shows the statistical contents of Christendom very effectively. — The fourth volume of Dr. Philip Schaff’s History of the Christian Church (Scribners) is devoted to mediæval Christianity, embracing the period from Gregory I. to Gregory VII., A. D. 590-1073. The period covers, therefore, the impact of Christianity upon Mohammedanism, and the separation of the eastern and western churches. Dr. Schaff is more encyclopsædic than philosophic in his method, and his book thus furnishes one with a large store of information upon any one given point, and is rather a book of reference than a book to be read.

Art. The three numbers of L’Art beginning the volume for 1885 (Macmillan) are notable for sustaining the high literary and artistic excellence which has always characterized the work. On opening a new number of L’Art, one turns to the etchings with the certainty of finding something gracious and rare in that line. The numbers under consideration contain several choice examples, among which are Jasinski’s La Bêfe a Bon Diett, after Alfred Steven’s picture, and Émil Buland’s portrait of Pope Innocent X., after Velasquez’s famous canvas. The former etching has unusual qualities. The engravings on wood are admirable, though they lack something of the delicacy that belongs to the best American work in this sort. The chief feature of the letter-press, all of which is carefully prepared, is Otto Schulze’s account of the Loge du Bigallo in the Via de’ Calzaioli, at Florence. This delightful little loggia, by the way, furnishes the subject for a full-page engraving from a design by Henry Toussaint. — The last two numbers of The Portfolio (Macmillan) are particularly attractive, both in illustration and letter-press. As is the case with L’Art, the strongest artistic feature of The Portfolio lies in its etchings. A Street in Rouen, Christ Church Gateway in Canterbury, and the views of Windsor show exceedingly delicate work. The paper on George Moreland, by Walter Armstrong, and the essay on Landseer, by F. G. Stephens, are pleasantly written.

Philosophy and Theology. The Rise of Intellectual Liberty from Thales to Copernicus, by F. M. Holland (Holt), is the vague title of a vaguely conceived book. Apparently, Mr. Holland’s only conception of intellectual liberty is in individualism, which is to be free from restraint of any kind. The standpoint is that of a radical, but it does not appear that the author’s philosophy goes beyond his own personal caprice. The book, however, is interesting as a reading of the history of thought, not front a central position held in common with a body of men, but from an extreme position on the outside of the circle. It does not follow that the person who has left behind the most traditions is necessarily the nearest to the goal of truth. — A Protestant Converted to Catholicity by her Bible and Prayer-Book (Catholic Publication Co., Buffalo, N, Y.) is a reprint of a narrative by Mrs. Fanny Maria Pittar of her religious experience, addressed in pity to poor Prottestants; in pity, and also in some scorn. —Paradise Found : The Cradle of the Human Race at the North Pole, by W. F. Warren (Houghton), is a most ingenious and learned speculation, in which the author brings to bear upon his theory a great array of testimony from ancient and modern sources, and from a great range of thought. Science, ethnic religions, philosophy, poetry, and traditions are all summoned to the witness-seat, and whatever may be the verdict, there is no doubt that the author of this theory has a most remarkable cloud of witnesses. Some people may think they and he are in a cloud, but Dr. Warren indulges in no vague statements. He knows what he has set out to prove. — Ha-Tapuach: The Apple. A treatise on the immortality of the soul, by Aristotle, the Stagyrite. Translated from the Hebrew, with notes and aphorisms, by Rev. Dr. Isidor Kalisch (The American Hebrew, New York). One is disposed to think this little book has been on a long journey: written originally by Aristotle in Greek, translated anonymously into Arabic, rendered thence into Hebrew, and now brought into English. It appears, however, on its journey to have acquired some parasitic growths, for we hesitate to believe that Aristotle referred to the patriarch Abraham. — The Religion of Philosophy, or The Unification of Knowledge: a comparison of the chief philosophical and religious systems of the world, made with a view to reducing the categories of thought, or the most general terms of existence, to a single principle, thereby establishing a true conception of God, by Raymond S. Perrin. (Putnams.) The author aims to dethrone God as a personal existence and reinstate Him as a principle. He wishes to establish a philosophical religion in the place of Christianity ; but the prime error which vitiates his ultimate logic lies in his conception of Christianity as a religion. It should be said that he is inspired by no mean motive, and he has written in serious alarm at the apparent failure of our political morality.