« AnkstesnisTęsti »
BOOKS AND AUTHORS
If the reading world could quite for from conversation and from literature. get "The Prisoner of Zenda," and An. Now comes a rumor that the right thony Hope should republish it, how whale is returning and that whale oil many editions would it see? Not half, and “parmaceti for the inward bruise" probably not one tenth as many as may come again, and so Mr. James when it made its species fashionable. Cooper Wheeler may be held to have Imitated by at least a score of success- chosen a fortunate moment for pubful writers, and by as many justly un- lishing his “There She Blows," a whalsuccessful, it would indeed have the ing yarn. It tells of one of the oldcharm of agreeable writing and would fashioned long voyages through many please the select few, but the royalty seas and describes not only the taking which is not royalty, the subject who of the whale, but the disposition of his simulates or is made to simulate roy- carcass, and the storage of the various alty, and the subject who marries roy- valuable parts. The narrator is one of alty are now as commonplace as Darby the crew and gives the hero's place to and Joan. As for the imaginary king- the captain, a shrewd, just man, who dom, those who construct it now take controls his crew because he underno more trouble than is necessary to stands each and every one of them. make it a bob for the Hapsburg or The book would have been worth writHohenzollern kite, and Mr. Harold ing if for no other purpose than to exMacgrath takes even less for his “The hibit a man of this type. E. P. DutGoose Girl" and leaves the scene de- ton & Co. tached. The lover is Irish, but an American citizen and a fine fellow and Prof. R. M. Johnston's "The French the two heroines are charming. The Revolution" announces itself three princes and two realms Short History," and as it consists of equally fantastic, but pleasantly mys
less than three hundred pages the terious and it is only because its spe- name is certainly justified. It is also cies is so large that the story fails to an almost impartial history, equally awaken enthusiasm in the reader. free from rhapsodies on liberty and Those to whom the book comes as a lamentations over the fall of picturfirst novel will not quarrel with it. esque unworthiness, and not exalting Bobbs-Merrill Company.
the claim of the fourteenth of July to
be regarded as momentous in the hisThe old fashioned whaling story, the tory of liberty. If one could wish that “There she blows!" and “Starn all!" a little more emphasis were laid upon yarn is having a revival, and those fa- the enormity of the patrician folly miliar with whaling fiction only in its which fluently prattled of philosophilater pbases with much glorified cal theories too mischievous to be scenery and a love-story introduced, mentioned with safety, it is no small will find the elder style an agreeable compensation to read the neat, conchange. Time was when every Mas- temptuous phrases with which the sachusetts boy and girl could have fashionable, sweet sensibility is learned the routine of whale fishing treated. The horrors of the Terror from the school “readers" and geog- are described as curtly as may be, but raphies, but after the year of misfor- in words so well chosen that their not only from the school books but frightfulness is by no means dimintune the topic seemed to have departed ished. Indeed, the death of the Prin
cess de Lamballe has not many times, rily good study of thorough-going if ever, 'een so effectively described fiendishness. The subject of the as in Professor Johnston's eight direct study, John Barclạy, clever while a lines. An introductory chapter enti- boy, his small wants suppried by his tled “The Perspective of the French mother's toil, becomes a little fiend as Revolution," and a second describing soon as he begins to depend upon himVersailles lead to the consideration of self, sacrificing all persons whose evil the economic crisis and the measures fate puts them in his way to his love taken to meet it and these are all the of money, and thereafter his only preliminaries which the author permits change is in size. The loss of the himself; he nowhere indulges in that young girl who loves him does affect portrait drawing which is the almost bim slightly, but having already set invariable characteristic of histories of foot in the downward road of utter the French Revolution, but an occa- selfishness he takes no step backward. sional sketch, embodied in a phrase or He drives every creature upon whom two, shows that his abstinence does he has any influence either to misery not proceed from inability. His preface or to sin, and takes measures which does not say whether or not his work kill his wife, for no other end than to is intended for school or college use, obtain money, and always he sins but if it be, a chronological table and against knowledge. He repents at a fuller index should be added. Fa- last, and sets himself right with the bred Eglantine's nomenclature of the world at the expense of his entire formonths and the rule for translating tune and for four years lives the life Julian dates into Revolutionary phrase of a man, and then is given the privimake a welcome addition to the ordi- lege of dying in a manly fashion. His nary history of the period. Henry friends forgave him with wonderful Holt & Co.
charity, his mother loved him even
while she despised his sin, and they When Kant, or John Wilson, benevo- and she wept over his grave, but Vr. lently acting in his place, wrote that White cannot convey the slightest any man's full, candid, and unaffected glimmer of his charm to the reader account of what he had seen and once advised of his wickedness and be thought would make the most interest- is the most repulsive creature to be ing and instructive book in the world, found in modern fiction. Still Wr. he did not, it is fairly evident, intend White has produced a work of art. that such an account should include That he has not been able to blot every detail of every year, much less out the memory of the sin by the picof every day. Comparatively few ac- ture of the repentance is merely to say tions of a man's life from its beginning that he is human and that his readers to its end are in the least interesting, are like unto him and cannot forget in and none but the Omniscient can know the very act of forgiving. Even the the bearing of many of them, and in forgiveness is a severe task and it is most hands such a book would be a to be feared that in real life. repentweariness to its readers. Mr. William ance even at the cost of millions would Allen White is an exception inasmuch by no means end such hostility as as his "A Certain Rich Man” is not Barclay had richly earned; but Mr. dull throughout all its length, but only White has drawn some uncommonly at the beginning which he is so ill- good Christians to offset Barclay and advised as to write in the fashion of has made a book worth all of his “The Court of Boy ville.” The re
former work taken together. The mainder of the book is an extraordina- Macmillan Company.
No. 3400 September 4, 1909
FORTNIGHTLY REVIEW 579
NATIONAL REVIEW 591 Hardy-on-the-Hill. Book II. Chapter VII. By M. E. Francis (Mrs. Francis Blundell). (To be continued.)
TIMES 597 On the Labrador. By H. Hesketh Prichard. CORNHILI. MAGAZINE 602 The Road and the Power-Vehicle. By the Right Hon. Sir J. H. A. Macdonald, K.C.B.
CHAMBERS'S JOURNAL 6:3 The Green Door. By Marguerite Curtis. BLACKWOOD's MAGAZINE 620 Edinburgh in the Time of Sir Walter Scott.
ACADEMY 629 The Malady of Armaments.
NATION 634 The Union of South Africa.
VI. VII. VI.
TERMS OF SUBSCRIPTION, For Six Dollars, remitted directly to the Publishers, THE LIVING Age will be punctually forwarded for a year, free of postage, to any part of the United States. To Canada the postage is 50 cents per annum.
Remittances should be made by bank draft or check, or by post-office or express money order if possible. If neither of these can be procured, the money should be sent in a registered letter. All postmasters are obliged to register letters when requested to do so. Drafts, checks, express and money orders should be made payable to the order of The Living Age Co.
Single Copies of THE LIVING AGE, 15 cents.
THE CULT OF THE UNFIT.
We are celebrating this year the cen- who smile over the remembrance of tenary of Darwin's birth and the jubi- the invective of a party politician adlee of the publication of the Origin of dressed to an ecclesiastical audience Species.
It is well that we should rec- forget that thirteen years later the inognize these dated days, though the fluence of one of the most distincomplacency with which we assume guished scientists that Germany has credit for "our Mr. Darwin" or "our produced, Rudolf Virchow, not only Mr. Shakespeare," salutary enough in combated with relentless animosity the itself, is not without a touch of humor. theories of Darwin, but attempted, We are all Darwinians to-day, and we and, in the case of the two chief Gerhave travelled far from the time when man States, succeeded in excluding the the disciple of Darwin, who was also dangerous doctrine of evolution from the heir of Goethe and Lamarck, was the schools and in forbidding the classed with the fool who said in his teaching of Darwinian ideas. But, as heart "there is no God." Men remem- I have said, we are all Darwinians tober-not without amusement-Dis- day, and Bishops in lawn sleeves exraeli's diatribe before the Oxford Dio- pound the doctrines of evolution which cesan Society some five years after the fifty years ago conjured up before the appearance of Darwin's famous work. affrighted mind of Disraeli terrible pic"I hold," he said, “that the highest tures of "young ladies lisping atheism function of science is the interpreta- in gilded saloons." But while most tion of Nature, the interpretation of fairly educated people accept the Darthe highest nature is the highest winian theory or hypothesis in its science. What is the highest nature? main outlines, it is very doubtful if the Man is the highest nature. But I practical lessons involved in acceptmust say that when I compare the in- ance of the theory of evolution are terpretations of the highest nature of more clearly understood to-day than the most advanced, the most fashion- they were in the time of Disraeli and able, of modern schools of modern Virchow. Among the many grave science-when I compare that with problems that confront this generation, older teachings with which we are fa- none is more perplexing and more unimiliar-I am not prepared to say that versally debated than that of poverty the lecture-room is more scientific than and unemployment with all their atthe Church. What is the question
tendant difficulty. Yet very few even which is now placed before society attempt to understand the nature of with a glib assurance which to me is the problem, as it reveals itself in the most astounding? That question is
light of the doctrines of evolution. this: is a man an ape or an angel? The late Henry George, of whose name My Lord, I am on the side of the an- and principles the present Chancellor gels. I repudiate with indignation and of the Exchequer seems to be the res. abhorrence these new-fangled theo- iduary legatee, stated what he imagries. I believe they are foreign to
ined to be the problem in a once popthe conscience of humanity, and I say ular work entitled Progress and Povmore that even from the most intel. erty. It is quite possible that Mr. lectual point of view, I believe the se. Henry George had never read a word verest metaphysical analysis is op- of Darwin, and, in any case, his book, posed to such conclusions." Those which gave an enormous fillip to So.