« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »
openely deny it. Howandiver he thried to pick a hole in it this way. 'Granting,' says he, "that there is the differ you say betwixt the reality ov the cork and these cortical accidents; and that it's quite possible, as you allidge, that the thrue cork is really prisint on the end ov the schrew, while the accidents keep the mouth ov the bottle stopped-still,' says he, 'I can't undaerstand, though willing to acquit you, how the dhrawing ov the real cork, that's onpalpable and without accidents, could produce the accident of that sinsible explosion I heard jist now." pp. 75-80.
WELLS'S ANNUAL OF SCIENTIFIC DISCOVERY FOR 1861.*-We have little doubt that if the value of this "Annual" was understood, every reader of the NEW ENGLANDER would feel that to add the volume yearly to his library was henceforth a necessity. Few persons are able to keep pace with the various European and American scientific journals, so as to cull for themselves what is of most interest. We need not, therefore, enlarge upon the value of a book which furnishes, each year, a good digest of all that is most important for the general scholar to read and know of the progress of science in all its departments.
The volume before us, for 1861, consists of seven sections, each devoted to the discoveries which have been made in some special branch of science. The articles in each section are short, and vary in length from a few lines to five or six pages, and the information is in all cases given in as condensed a form as possible. The first section is devoted to "Mechanics and the useful Arts." Here are articles on many subjects pertaining to the construction and preservation of ships; on steam engines; fire engines; steam boilers; railways; locomotives; car wheels; and on all the new war implements, their construction and practical effects; on the "wave line theory"; on non-inflammible fabrics; on the wear of gold and silver coinage. There are many articles, too, on less weighty subjects:-"why shoes pinch;" "new forms of baths;" sewing machines; magic ruffles; embroidery; &c.,
* Annual of Scientific Discovery; or, Year-Book of facts in Science and Art for 1861. Exhibiting the most important discoveries and improvements in Mechanics, the Useful Arts, Natural Philosophy, Chemistry, Astronomy, Geology, Zoology, Botany, Mineralogy, Meteorology, Geography, Antiquities, &c., &c.; together with Notes on the progress of science during the year 1860; a list of recent scientific publications, and obituaries of eminent scientific men, &c. Edited by DAVID A. WELLS, A. M. Boston: Gould & Lincoln. 12mo. pp. 424.
&c. We have not space to give the titles of even the different classes of subjects which are treated.
In the second section, which is devoted to Natural Philosophy, we have described new theories respecting lightning rods; uses of electric light; weaving by electro magnetism; the aurora borealis; electrotype work; the last of the Atlantic cable; new theories respecting magnetism; dynamics of gases; color blindness; interesting facts in optics; new applications of photography; ice; lunar tidal waves on the American lakes; &c., &c.
The third section gives us the discoveries in Chemical Science. Some two hundred subjects are here discussed, from the "metallurgy of platinum," and "Tungsten steel," to "improvements in soap," fermentation of bread, and means of preserving flesh.
The fourth section gives a summing up of the discoveries in Geology. The fifth is devoted to Botany. The sixth section, which is upon Zoology, is especially interesting. We find here articles upon "the composition of atmospheric dust; "upon the attitudes of the dead," based upon observations made by the surgeons of the French army after the Italian battles in 1859; "poisoning by looking glasses ;" and statistics respecting consumption; suicide; the hight of the human species; &c., &c. The seventh section is devoted to Astronomy and Meteorology.
There are, besides, obituaries of persons eminent in science who died in 1860; and a list of books and pamphlets, pertaining to science, which have been published in the United States during the same year. The volume closes with a good index.
ANNALS OF THE RESCUED.*-The religious public in the United States, thanks to the Messrs. Carter, have been kept well informed of what has been doing in England during the past few years, by individuals there, who have sought by their own personal efforts to reclaim and bring under religious influence the degraded, the ignorant and the vicious among the laboring classes. The books which have given us the surprising results of these efforts, such as "English Hearts and English Homes," "The Missing Link," and "Haste to the Rescue," have been more than once commended to our readers in the pages of the New Englander. We know that the simple stories which they contain of what has been accom
Annals of the Rescued. By Mrs. CHARLES E. L. WIGHTMAN. New York: Carter & Brothers. 1861. pp. 263. 12mo.
plished in the most unpretending way by females in reclaiming the roughest and most unlikely characters among English day-laborers and railroad "navvies," has done much to encourage similar labors here. We therefore gladly call the attention of all who are interested in home, and city, and neighborhood missionary work, to the new volume which is now before us. It is written by Mrs. Wightman, already known as the authoress of "Haste to the Rescue." In this volume she continues the details of her personal efforts among the poor, and especially among poor working-men, in persuading them to give up "drink," and to take the pledge of total-abstinence from all intoxicating liquors as the first step towards self-rescue. In order to gain their confidence she was obliged to become a teetotaller herself, and she incidentally gives us her own experience and the assurance that her health and strength were improved by giving up the daily glass of beer, to which she was accustomed.
Her position as the wife of an English clergyman, gave her perhaps greater influence with the laboring men whose acquaintance she made, than any lady can have here, on account of the traditional respect accorded in England to those who belong to the upper classes. Still the human heart is everywhere the same, and is moved in the same way. We wish that many of our Christian country women might be incited to attempt similar experiments.
One of the things upon which Mrs. Wightman most insists, is the need of a radical change in public sentiment with regard to the hurtfulness of alcoholic drinks; and another that Christians must be willing to adopt, as respects their use, the principle of the Apostle Paul, as laid down by him, when he declared-"If meat make my brother to offend, I will eat no flesh while the world standeth, lest I make my brother to offend."
Despairing of making an impression on the government in England, which seeks revenue as the first object, in order to meet its immense expenses, and derives an enormous income from the various taxes connected with "the drink," Mrs. Wightman sets forth the pledge as the sheet anchor of her hopes. She says, "Once persuade men and women of the help it will be to them, let them associate together and surround themselves with this safeguard, and there is hope!".
But we will let her speak for herself.
"We do not care to establish Total Abstinence Societies as an end; that is not our object. We want to bring sinners to CHRIST, and for this reason we earnestly desire them to give up 'the drink,' because it is the besetting hindrance of our home heathen to this blessed end.
"We do not see any object in weekly temperance meetings for those who have signed; they have passed beyond the need of such help; we desire to bring new members at once into contact with the rich and free Gospel of Jesus Christ. And for this we recommend the weekly religious meetings, when in a kind, affectionate and familiar way, they shall be taught their need of Christ and brought to attend the services of the sanctuary."
Mrs. Wightman advocates strongly the establishment of common rooms where men may sit down with a companion for a friendly chat, knowing well how little space they have at home, and how often they are driven to drinking places for want of other shelter. But she does not advise the furnishing of refreshments, because usually such men have not money to spend away from their families. The book well deserves careful consideration.
THE BLACK SHIP.*-This is a little volume which contains some fifteen short allegories and parables, in which we find many important truths in religion and morals, illustrated with great beauty, and presented with a freshness which has quite charmed us. They are prepared by the author of "The Three Wakings," a volume of poems of which we have before spoken very highly.
CHAMBERS'S ENCYCLOPEDIA OF UNIVERSAL KNOWLEDGE for THE PEOPLE.t-Dictionaries, atlases, encyclopedias, have ever been considered by students as of the first importance in their libraries. It would be better policy for them to dispense with almost any other class of books than with these. In our opinion, such books ought to be regarded as of equal importance in the library of every intelligent family. They are not to be looked upon as a luxury, but as a necessity; and should be placed in every house just where they can most conveniently be taken up for ready consultation.
We have abundant evidence that the public are beginning to
* The Black Ship. New York: R. Carter & Brothers. 1861. 18mo. pp. 235. † Chambers's Encyclopedia. A Dictionary of Universal Knowledge for the People. Illustrated with Maps and numerous Wood Engravings. Vol. I, II. Royal octavo. pp. 824, 822. 1860. Philadelphia: J. B. Lippincott & Co. Edinburg: W. & R. Chambers. Price $3. Bound in muslin.
understand that this is so, from the fact that books of reference, of all kinds, have multiplied, of late, so rapidly; and now it is not only rival atlases and dictionaries that present their claims to us, but we can have a choice even in encyclopedias. We have said, on a former occasion, "Happy is the man who is so fortunate as to be the owner of either Webster's or Worcester's Dictionary, and thrice happy is he who is the possessor of both!" We repeat the same thing, with emphasis, of the man who is able to provide himself with all of the three leading encyclopedias which are now offered to the American public. But the mass of readers must of necessity content themselves with but one; and will, we doubt not, feel themselves rich when either is secured and is fairly in their hands. The expenditure, though it may seem large, will never be repented of.
We have before us the first two volumes of "Chambers's Encyclopedia of Universal Knowledge for the People." It is an admirable work, of whose special excellencies we will say something without any disparagement of the other works of the same character which are so well known.
Chambers's Encyclopedia is emphatically an encyclopedia "for the people." The Messrs. Chambers of Edinburg have, for a century, distinguished themselves by their efforts in providing cheap and yet valuable books of all kinds "for the million." In none of them have they been more signally successful than in this. We have had the two volumes which are already published, on our table for three or four weeks, and have examined them at different times with some care. With every fresh consultation we have had new reason to be satisfied that the work is what it claims to be, and that it is admirably adapted to meet the wants of families and that large class of persons who wish to have a really valuable and reliable encyclopedia, and yet are deterred by the expense from purchasing either of the other works which are in the market. Chambers's Encyclopedia is to be comprised in six or seven volumes, which, when bound, are to be sold at three dollars each. The page is a little larger than that of the New American Encyclopedia, published by the Messrs. Appleton, and there are a few more pages in each volume. The Articles, however, are usually more brief and condensed than in that work, though in all cases they seem to be sufficiently extended to satisfy any general reader. On the other hand, we have found that not