WHY is Belgium entitled to a separate national existence among the states of modern Europe ? Ireland and even Wales have tenfold stronger claims to political independence on the score both of race and religion. One half of this little state is topographically like Holland ; the other is not to be distinguished in climate, geography, or soil from Alsace-Lorraine—that shuttlecock among nations.
THE startling revelations in the scientific world are repeated in some degree in the sudden opening up of a new territory of medico-legal science, the jurisprudence of inebriety. Within five years the question of the mental soundness of the inebriate and his capacity to act or reason normally has been raised with increasing frequency in a great variety of criminal and civil cases.
THE nature and scope of the “ legal ” and wholly anomalous definition (to which reference has been made, see page 173) that has been given in the United States by its Supreme Court to a direct tax,* and the interesting judicial and historical circumstances in connection therewith are substantially as follows :
IN the past few years a remedy has been discovered for certain conditions hitherto regarded as incurable, which is certain in its action, and which for the beneficence of its results stands unrivaled in therapeutics ; and, since from the infrequency of the diseases which it cures but little is known of this agent outside of the medical profession, it has appeared to me that a short description of the development and application of the thyroid treatment, one of modern medicine’s greatest achievements, should prove of interest to any one who cares to observe the advances of medical science.
WHATEVER crushes individuality," says John Stuart Mill, describing the essential feature of all political governments, "is despotism, by whatever name it be called, and whether it professes to enforce the will of God or the injunctions of men.
THE cat family has given naturalists quite as much trouble as it has the ordinary citizen in his efforts to repose at night. The wild type (or types) of the domestic animal has never been located, although various views have been advanced to account for the household pet.
PROFESSOR OF BIOLOGY AND EMBRYOLOGY, AND LECTURER ON ANTHROPOLOGY AT THE COLLEGE OF PHYSICIANS AND SURGEONS, BOSTON, MASS.
JOHN S. FLAGG
ANTHROPOLOGY, the science of man, has been in the past a term of comparatively narrow significance. Journals of anthropological societies all show a habit of thought along a few restricted lines. Under the old scholastic régime the departments of archæology and written history comprised nearly the sum total of anthropological study, all other studies appearing to be related, though but slightly, in a fixed cosmogony.
IN all times painters have been fond of reproducing scenes of medical life, but the tendency has never been more marked than it was in the middle ages. Taking to the very life the oddest-seeming subjects, they have presented with the hands of masters the realistic pictures of the most various nervous troubles and pathological afflictions.
IN front of a sunny window there stands, on a small bamboo table, an aquarium of very unpretentious appearance and size. It is nothing more than a “globe,” such as is used for goldfish. In the bottom are a couple of inches of river sand, with a thin layer of gravel, which was repeatedly washed before it was placed there.
IT is generally acknowledged that we have in the number systems of the lower races to-day a means of studying the development of our own system. This is based upon the assumption that when the savage begins to count he does it always in essentially the same way.
THOUGH an animal product, its combinations with wood, particularly ebony, from the earliest history, and the similarity of its uses and working in the way of carving, turning, veneering, and inlaying, make ivory an interesting material to joiners, decorators, and builders.
HAVING had occasion several years ago to converse on subjects of psychology with a number of comedians, I sought their opinion concerning the “ paradox of Diderot,” and, finding much in their answers that was instructive, I took them down.
IN awarding the Wollaston medal of the Geological Society of England to Mr. James Croll in 1872, President Prestwich spoke of the additional value Mr. Croll's labors had in the estimation of the society from the difficulties under which they had been pursued, and the limited time and opportunities he had had at his command.
SIR: In Mr. Robert N. Reeves's interesting paper, Suicide and the Environment, Popular Science Monthly for June, 1897, there are several erroneous conclusions, which are, in my opinion, the direct result of false or incomplete statistics.
IT seems as if every age must have its fad, and perhaps we should not disquiet ourselves too much about it. Long ago the question was asked why the heathen raged and the people imagined a vain thing. The question, especially the latter part of it, is equally pertinent to-day; and the answer we venture to suggest is, because they like it.
IN these two handsome volumes* the distinguished Director General of the Geological Survey of Great Britain and Ireland traverses ground once hot with subterranean fires but long since cooled, and traverses, too, a field in science formerly heated by the fires of controversy which have burned themselves out like the ancient volcanoes.
THE evolution of special lines of culture is a most interesting study. Tylor’s Primitive Culture and Early History of Mankind have been followed by a host of books of a general or a special kind, in which almost everything has been “traced.”
Agricultural Experiment Stations. Bulletins and Reports. Connecticut: Twentieth Annual Report for 1896. S. W. Johnson, Director, New Haven. Pp. 414.—Cornell University : Nos. 133136. The Army Worm in New York. By M. V. Slingerland. Pp. 16 ; Strawberries under Glass.
The Swift’s Night Flight .—The curious night flight of the swifts is described in Knowledge by C. A. Witchell : “ The sun has set and most of the small birds have retired for the night, though the sparrows are still noisy in the creepers on the house.
EXPERIMENTS on the influence of music upon respiration recorded by MM. Alfred Binet and J. Courtier in the Année Psychologique for 1897 indicate that musical sounds, chords, and music in general as a sensorial excitation, independent of all suggested feelings, provoke acceleration of respiration, increasing as the movement is more lively, without disturbing the regularity of the breathing or augmenting its amplitude.