XX.—FROM THE DIVINE ORACLES TO THE HIGHER CRITICISM.
V. VICTORY OF THE SCIENTIFIC AND LITERARY METHODS.
ANDREW DICKSON WHITE
WHILE the struggle for the new truth was going on in various fields, aid appeared from a quarter whence it was least expected. The great discoveries by Layard and Botta in Assyria were supplemented by the researches of George Smith, Oppert, Sayce, and others, and thus it was revealed beyond the possibility of doubt that the accounts of the Creation, the tree of life in Eden, the institution of the Sabbath, the deluge, the Tower of Babel, and much else in the Pentateuch were simply an evolution out of earlier myths, legends, and chronicles.
CLEAR as are the connections between the priesthood and the several professions thus far treated of, the connection between it and the professions which have enlightenment as their function is even clearer. Antagonistic as the offspring now are to the parent they were originally nurtured by it.
IN the early days of fish, culture, which for many years was only trout culture, the statement was often made that any farmer who had a small spring of cool water could, within a few years, realize enormous profits from it, and that an acre of water was worth more than an acre of land.
IN 1879 a Catholic professor of theology in the University of Bonn, Dr. Heinrich Reusch, published a little volume entitled Die deutschen Bischöfe und der Aberglaube (The German Bishops and Superstition), in which he called attention to the vast increase of superstitious beliefs and observances within the Catholic Church since the middle of the present century, and to the official approval and promulgation of them by the highest ecclesiastical authorities.
TWO scenes in Huxley's life stand out clear and full of meaning amid my recollections of him, reaching now some forty years back. Both took place at Oxford, both at meetings of the British Association. The first, few witnesses of which now remain, was the memorable discussion on Darwin in 1860.
VII.—PISCES, ARIES, TAURUS, AND THE NORTHERN STARS.
GARRETT P. SERVISS
THE eastern end of Pisces, represented in map No. 22, includes most of the interesting telescopic objects that the constellation contains. We begin our exploration at the star numbered 55, a double that is very beautiful when viewed with the three-inch glass.
WHEN we mentally survey the floral dress that variegates the solid crust of our globe, the world of plants appears to be divided into a few large groups. We think of the primitive forest with its mossy trees, the slender vines, and the multiform beauties of the orchids; the steppe comes to our minds with its hard, sharp-cutting grasses; and the moist carpeting of the Alpine flora, with gentian and fragrant herbs.
WE may now turn to the other main charge against children, that of lying. According to many, children are in general accomplished little liars, to the manner born, and equally adept with the mendacious savage. Even writers on childhood by no means prejudiced against them lean to the view that untruth is universal among children and to some extent at least innate.
AMONG the animals that man has in different periods of history forced to serve his purposes, none are now so much neglected in western lands as birds of prey. These creatures, however, at a time which is not yet far away from us, constituted the essential factor of falconry, which was a few centuries ago held in the highest honor.
MAN’S progress toward civilization has been by no royal road. His every step has been met by opposing influences, some of them inherent in Nature, others in the conditions of the social organism, whose action is to prevent any rapid or continuous development.
IN the early part of the nineteenth century no citizen of New York was held in higher honor than was De Witt Clinton. Closely associated with Clinton in the leadership of the civic life of the day, but holding rigidly aloof from politics, was Dr. Hosack.
IT is a very long time since the discovery was first made that the processes of human thought are only valid within limits; and it might be supposed that all the consequences which could properly be deduced from that fact had long ago been drawn and reduced to their true value.
THE scientific study of anthropology, which has risen to prominence within the last few years, bids fair to yield knowledge of much practical value. The anthropologists of several countries, and especially those of Italy, have been investigating the criminal class—trying to see if criminals are a distinct class, and what peculiarities mark them off from moral persons.
An Instance of Webbed Fingers in Man. —(Communicated by F. E. LLOYD and F. L. WASHBURN.) The subject of this sketch, now about twenty-five years of age, was born near Smyrna, Iowa. He now resides in eastern Oregon, and is attending one of the State schools, where, though slow, he is proving himself fairly efficient in some lines of work.
IN the construction of the new speedway at High Bridge, New York, a bed of quicksand was encountered, which much impeded the work. The difficulty was obviated by the artificial refrigerating process. A row of four-inch pipes was sunk a few feet apart to the depth of forty feet.