IT must be confessed that the ideas of Japan and the Japanese which we are likely to gain through the current literature of the day are apt to be sadly confusing. This, I am quite confident, is not from any desire on the part of writers on Japanese subjects to encourage any false impressions, but rather from the very fact that neither poet nor artist traveler—ay, nor many of the long residents in Japan, for that matter—have opportunity to see or take part in the home life of the people of Japan.
ALONG with that inadequacy of natural section to explain changes of structure which do not aid life in important ways, alleged in § 166 of The Principles of Biology, a further inadequacy was alleged. It was contended that the relative powers of co-operative parts can not be adjusted solely by survival of the fittest; and especially where the parts are numerous and the cooperation complex.
THE recent sweeping denials by Mr. W. H. Holmes, of the Bureau of Ethnology, respecting the validity of the evidence upon which the existence of glacial man in America has been so generally accepted makes it necessary to present the facts in greater detail than has heretofore been done.
BEFORE the time of the project for the Atlantic telegraph cable in 1854, there seemed to be no practical value attached to a knowledge of the depths of the sea, and, beyond a few doubtful results obtained for purely scientific purposes, nothing was clearly known of bathymetry, or of the geology of the sea bottom.
THE main object of every society for the prevention of cruelty to animals I take to be the establishment of right feelings toward our speechless fellow-creatures. But feeling, to be correct, strong, and abiding, must be based on sound conceptions of the nature of that toward which it is exercised.
TO-DAY, in the quiet, old city of Oswego, N. Y., stands a school whose influence has extended throughout the land. At its head is its founder, Dr. E. A. Sheldon: the school is his life work. In 1848 Mr. Sheldon, a young man of twenty-four, then a resident of Oswego, felt moved to study somewhat into the condition of the poor of that city.
FRUITS decay and everybody knows it, but how this rotting takes place is less evident. Grandfathers told our parents that it was due to the weather, and some of them may have held to the notion that the moon had a remarkable influence upon the keeping quality of various fruits.
ALCOHOL is an important factor in modern civilizations, the source of great revenues to states, and of immense wealth to those who deal in products containing it. While wine, beer, hydromel, etc., have been in use from prehistoric times, the active principle common to them which produces the pleasant excitement and the disgusting intoxication, and which is concentrated in spirituous liquors, alcohol, has been known for only seven or eight centuries ; it was unknown in antiquity.
TRIBUTE OF THE FRENCH ACADEMY TO AMERICAN GEOLOGICAL EXPLORATION.
THE following tribute to the Americans who have conducted meritorious geological and geographical explorations is a graceful and well-bestowed recognition from the French people of the remarkable results that have been achieved in this country by individual and Government agencies in adding to the sum of human knowledge.
A SCORE or more years ago, when Horace Greeley and Henry Ward Beecher were telling the American public what they knew about farming, there was quite a general tendency on the part of the agricultural class to hold up to ridicule what was termed "scientific farming." Great claims were then made as to the importance of a knowledge of science, so that the farmer might analyze the soil, crops, fertilizers, etc.
IN the practice of medicine as now carried on, one marked feature is the particular and detailed attention directed to the diet. It thus happens that as much heed is paid to "kitchen physic" as to pharmaceutical agents. Dietetics, according to modern enlightenment, has secured careful study, more particularly within the last quarter of this century, and the subject was certainly insufficiently appreciated before that time.
PROF. SAMUEL WILLIAM JOHNSON is eminent for the services which he has rendered to scientific agriculture as an experimenter, a contributor to its literature, and a teacher ; and for his agency, always active and earnest, in securing the introduction of whatever could advance its standards or add to the prosperity of the farming interest.
THE article of President Eliot to which we called attention three months ago dealt with the subject of education mainly in its intellectual aspect. In a recent number of the Contemporary Review we find an article entitled The Teacher's Training of Himself, which discusses the same subject, but mainly from the moral point of view.
A HANDBOOK OF PATHOLOGICAL ANATOMY AND HISTOLOGY. With an Introductory Section on Post-mortem Examinations and the Methods of Preserving and Examining Diseased Tissues. By FRANCIS DELAFIELD, M. D., LL. D., and T. MITCHELL PRUDDEN, M. D. Fourth edition.
Number of Glacial Periods.—An article by Prof. George F. Wright, in the American Journal of Science, is devoted chiefly to showing that certain points of evidence relied upon by those who believe that the "Glacial epoch" consisted of two periods of glaciation of similar extent separated by a long interglacial epoch, are insufficient to afford a basis for such a conclusion.
A CLARIFICATION of muddy liquids and partial separation of micro-organisms is effected by M. R. Lezé by subjecting the liquid to a rapid rotation. Thus, cider, in turbid fermentation, after being whirled in a turbine wheel, came out clear; and while specimens kept in bottles at 86° soon generated bacteria, the yeast and alcoholic fermentation had all disappeared.