SCIENTIFIC METHOD AND ITS APPLICATION TO THE BIBLE.
REV. DAVID SPRAGUE
“TRAINED and organized common sense” is Professor Huxley’s definition of science. There is probably no better. The popular mind persists in thinking that there is a wide difference between science and knowledge in general. Yes, there is a wide difference, but it is just the difference that there is between a trained and organized body of men for the accomplishing of some great work, and a crowd of men unorganized and undisciplined.
THE gold fields of the Klondike or Troandik district, as officially designated, lie along or immediately about the waters, whether direct or tributary, of the Klondike, an eastern affluent of the Yukon, which discharges into the “father of northern waters” at the site of Dawson.
I HAVE been asked a number of times during the last few months the cause of and the cure for the riots that have taken place recently in North Carolina and South Carolina. I am not at all sure that what I shall say will answer these questions in a satisfactory way, nor shall I attempt to narrow my expressions to a mere recital of what has taken place in these two States.
THE claim of satisfactory evidence of the extreme antiquity of man in the valley of the Delaware River has been soberly discussed and intemperately ridiculed until the public, both scientific and general, have become tired of hearing the subject mentioned; but this is no valid reason why the truth should not be ascertained.
IT is now five years since the use of acetylene as an illuminant was suggested to the public, and it may be of interest to give a sketch of what has been done during this time, especially as it seems that with the year 1899 the tentative period which must characterize every new industry is in some respects passed, and a period of solid and well-directed industrial effort, backed by ample capital, has begun.
YOU are aware that the pedagogue is no longer treated with that deference and respect which he feels to be due to his love of learning. Past is all his fame. Past is the day when the village all declared how much he knew. Nowadays he is accustomed to be told by the rustics, who once gazed and wondered, that he is old-fashioned and out of place in our modern world; that he does not represent the nation; that the love he bears to learning is at fault; and that the university the people want must be universal like an omnibus, with a place for all, either for a single square or to the end.
LONG ago, in the old Devonian times, when life was very leisurely, all the beasts and people that there were lived in the sea together. The air was dull and murky on the land. It was so light that it gave no support to the body, and so those that ventured about in it had to lie prone on the ground all the time wherever they went.
THE dolphin family (Delphinidœ) contains nine genera, with only one species in each, but the most interesting one is the white whale (Delphincipterus leucas of Pallas, or D. catodon [Linn.] of Gill), because it is the only one that can be kept in confinement and its habits observed under semi-domestication.
THE unexpected is apt to occur. Along with the regularity in living things, which we call "uniformity of Nature,” there is so strong a tendency to vary that one almost expects to find a turn in the avenues of life sooner or later, and that gradual or sudden, as the case may be.
THE Malay has a literature peculiarly his own, and in it comes to light all that subtle appreciation of Nature which marks him as a Naturmensch, but not a savage. This lore of his race he carries mostly in his memory, for to reduce it to writing has been, until recently, a task at once laborious and scholarly, and the ordinary Malay, living in the ease of perpetual summer, is neither.
MUCH might be said, from an artistic and poetic point of view, concerning the colors of flowers. It is in the corolla that they reveal themselves in their most minute delicacy. The tints so widely diffused among animals, even those of butterflies, are coarse as compared with them, and the painter’s palette is powerless to reproduce them.
THE West Virginia mountaineer lives very close to Nature, and viewed from many standpoints the relation is characterized by pleasing amenities: juicy berries refresh him along the road; nuts drop into his path; “sang” (ginseng), which makes one of his sources of revenue, reveals itself to his eye as he follows the cows to pasture; a cool brook springs up to quench his thirst when weary of following the plow; pine knots are always within reach to make light as well as warmth; mud and stones easily combine in his hand to shape a daub chimney; and a trough dug out of an old tree furnishes a receptacle that is as good for dough at one end as for a baby at the other.
IT is manifest that India is indebted for some of its astronomy to the Greeks. Not that it had not astronomy and astronomers from an epoch anterior to the invasion of Alexander. It had, in fact, been necessary to make observations of the heavens in order to fix a calendar that would enable the sacrifices of the Vedic ritual in connection with the return of the seasons and the revolutions of the stars to be celebrated at the right dates.
THE old problem of Nature versus nurture that meets us in studying the life history of any organism becomes especially interesting in dealing with the biography of men of eminence. Are their achievements the inevitable expression of the natural forces innate in them at birth, or the product of environmental influences, or some resultant of these two factors?
TWO articles contributed to the April and May numbers of the Fortnightly Review by Mr. J. G. Frazer, the learned author of The Golden Bough, and more recently of a monumental edition of Pausanias, are worthy of the close attention of all who are interested in the early history of mankind.
The Lesson of Popular Government* is a fruit of thirty years’ study, by Mr. Bradford, of certain peculiarities in the political workings of our institutions. The book is not for those who consider it patriotic to shut their eyes to whatever is going wrong, but for those whose regard for the Federal Constitution and the organization of our governments is only increased by the consciousness of the strain to which they are exposed, and who feel strongly that while the principles of the Government and the character of the people “are still sound and reliable, some modifications and readjustments of the machinery must take place, unless we are to drift through practical anarchy and increasing corruption to military despotism.”
The Gypsies and their Folk Tales. —In the introduction to his collection of Gypsy Folk Tales Mr. Francis H. Groome describes the wide dispersion of the gypsy race as extending, in Europe, from Finland to Sicily, and from the shores of the Bosporus to the Atlantic seaboard; in Asia, from Siberia to India, and from Asia Minor (possibly) to China; in Africa, from Egypt and Algeria to Darfúr and Kordofan; and in America, from Pictou in Canada to Rio Janeiro.