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BOOKS OF VARIED INTEREST
the scores of books specially 25,000 additional words, phrases and defi
nitions, and some 5,000 illustrations in its 2,364 pages. It is easier to find things to praise about this most compact and valuable book, than things to blame. As an encyclopedia, perhaps it may be thought too compact, but who can find a book of reference too compact which contains so great a fund of accurate definitions as this? For essays on serious subjects one may consult works more extended in plan, but as a dictionary, the "International " certainly covers the field. The whole book, with all its tables and appendices, has been thoroughly revised, and it now stands. ready for another century of usefulness. [G. & C. Merriam Co., royal 4to.]
It is so seldom that a book full of fresh anecdote and first-hand information about any distinct class of our own people comes from the press, that the Rev. Mr. Brady's Recollections of a Missionary in the Great West is almost certain to arrest the reader's attention at the very beginning. One must entertain a considerably higher opinion of cowboy, miner, and missionary as well, after finishing this small volume of valuable human documents. Here are over two hundred stories alive with humor and pathos, dignity and beauty, the various vicissitudes of many lives, and vivid picturings of heroism, failure and success, side by side. The secret of the author's earlier successes as a story-writer, his straightforward, uncompromising accuracy, preserves in every instance the individualities of all sorts and conditions of men. The book is beautifully printed, and the stories are all well told—and they must be true, too. [Scribners, 12mo, $1.50.]
suited to the season of gift-bringing, one notices, especially, the number of volumes lavishly illustrated with reproductions of the most famous paintings by masters whom we call "old," but whose immortality is not very different from eternal youth. This kind of " art book," whose pictures are well reproduced, carries its own justification, and is deservedly popular.
A good example of such a volume, tuned in distinctly a religious key, as is surely fitting at Christmas, is The Great Painters' Gospel, a series of half-tone reproductions of famous paintings, which constitutes a pictorial history of the Life of Christ. The text of the volume, which is mainly descriptive or explanatory, is written by Henry Turner Bailey, and consists of the briefest notes. The pictures are the thing, as Hamlet said of the play. There are nearly two hundred reproductions, so arranged according to a harmony of the gospels as to form a consecutive history of Christ's life, and the result is thoroughly satisfactory. The idea, as here worked out, is new, and the broad pages and good printing contribute to the excellence of the book. There is an index by titles of pictures, and another index of artists; the chronological divisions of the book are detailed, and altogether the work is to be highly commended as a good idea carried out at once intelligently and reverently. [W. A. Wilde & Co., 4to, $2.00.]
A new edition of Webster's "International Dictionary" comes properly enough to join the end of the old century with the beginning of the new. Long acknowledged to be the best of one-volume dictionaries, in its present edition, made from entirely new plates throughout, it has
Hosts of books well worth reading, buying and owning, even when one's books. outrun one's shelf-room, came to this office
too late for proper mention in the Christmas BOOK BUYER. Here, for instance, is a compilation of extracts from the works of Dr. Henry van Dyke, by the Rev. George Sidney Webster, forming a volume called "The Friendly Year." Certainly these "short sermons," one for each day in the year, are friendly in tone and in matter. Dr. van Dyke is a friendly counsellor in whatever emergency, whether behind a pulpit cushion, or at the butt of a salmon-rod, and his sermons, like the quality of mercy, bless the giver and taker alike. [Scribners, 12mo, $1.25.]
Three attractive books are made up from material which has appeared in Life. The most important, perhaps, is called Attwood's Pictures, and is "an artist's history of the last ten years of the nineteenth century." The late Philip Gilbert Attwood was a smiling philosopher whose work in Life, and elsewhere, was always welcome. As a gentle satirist, he did such work with his pencil as Edward S. Martin does with his pen. Always dignified, never inclining to the farcical, he evoked good-humored smiles oftener than hearty laughs but never drew a picture, nor a line, to be regretted. The present book contains a selection of his monthly drawings in Life. Fore is a collection of very good golf pictures and reasonably good jokes on the same serious subject; and Half Portions is a collection of shortvery short-novelettes which first appeared in the same frisky periodical. All the books are well printed and bound. [Life Publishing Co.]
An exquisitely printed volume is Mr. A. H. Mallock's version of Lucretius "On Life and Death," in the metre of Omar Khayyam (John Lane). From cover to colophon, the work is a mirror of fine taste. Lucretius and Rostand are neighbors on the book-table; this brilliant dramatist's "L'Aiglon" comes from Mr. R. H. Russell in a finely printed volume
with two or three creditable illustrations from old paintings. The translation is by Mr. Louis N. Parker, and the cast of the first performance by Maude Adams's company is given.
Among the fine reprints are an edition of the Rubaiyat which includes Fitzgerald's and Whinfield's translations, with an appendix showing the variations in Fitzgerald's first three editions, by Miss Jessie Rittenhouse, together with the prose version of Justin H. McCarthy (Little, Brown & Co.); the "Naishpur Edition" of the Rubaiyat, giving Fitzgerald's fourth translation, in a pretty leather cover (A. Wessels Co.); an edition of "As You Like It" with charming illustrations and decorations by Mr. Will H. Low (Dodd, Mead & Co.), and an illustrated edition of "Pippa Passes," decorated by Miss Margaret Armstrong. The A. Wessels Co. also send us William Morris's "Pre-Raphaelite Ballads," illustrated and printed in Morris's manner, and Mr. M. F. Mansfield issues "The Book of Omar and Rubaiyat" being "a book of miscellanies-biographical, historical, bibliographical and pictorial notes on Omar." An interesting contribution to the books about Omar which many persons buy.
Three books for boys and girls arrive, breathless, at the eleventh hour. "Wonder Stories from Herodotus," retold by G. H. Boden and D. Barrington D'Almeida, with colored decorations and pictures by H. Granville Fell,'comes from the Harpers. "The Princess's Story Book," a first-rate lot of historical stories taken from English romantic literature, comes from Messrs. Longmans, Green & Co., and Messrs. McClure, Phillips & Co. send us Mr. Charles Battell Loomis's last volume of jolly stories about astonishing boys, called "Yankee Enchantments." Boys will be glad of this book, and their elders as well.
THE LITERARY QUERIST
How answer you that?
MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM iii. 1.
EDITED BY ROSSITER JOHNSON
[TO CONTRIBUTORS:-Queries must be brief, must relate to literature or authors, and must be of some general interest. Answers are solicited, and must be prefaced with the numbers of the questions referred to. Queries and answers, written on one side only of the paper, should be sent to the Editor of THE BOOK BUYÈR, Charles Scribner's Sons, 153-157 Fifth Avenue, New York ]
517. Can you give me some references to mistakes by modern authors of note, such as interesting anachronisms, blunders in description, etc.?
We do not know that anyone has attempted a systematic record of such errors, but many have been pointed out from time to time. A remarkable one that has not been pointed out occurs in Creasy's account of the battle of Chalons (A. D. 451). He makes King Theodoric commander of the left wing of the allies, when in fact that command was held by Theodored, Theodoric's father. Theodoric was born four years after the battle. All the great cyclopædias make the same error, though comparison with their articles on Theodoric would have corrected it. Dickens, in "Hard Times," speaks of Charles's Wain and the Great Bear as if they were two different constellations. Campbell has the line,
"On Erie's banks, where tigers steal along." He makes a clock strike in a house that has been deserted for months, and his rhythm requires the reader to pronounce the name of our great cataract Ni-a-gá-ra. Ramsay, in his "Reminiscences," says it is a well-known fact that the wild birds of America never sing. In the famous chariot race in "Ben-Hur" the catastrophe as described is a mechanical impossibility. Shakespeare, in "Henry V," speaks of a turkey-cock, but the turkey is a native of this continent and was not known in Europe in Henry's time. Shakespeare's "coast of Bohemia " is well known, and others of his many errors have been pointed out frequently. The early edition of Bancroft's "United States " bears the motto "Westward the star of empire takes its way," and Berkeley's line has been thus persistently misquoted, the true reading being, "Westward the course of empire takes its way." In Burke's "Peerage" (1867), article Fairfax, we are told that "Lord Fairfax holds the office of Clerk of the Supreme Court of California, and was elected Speaker of the House of Representatives of the State of Alcaldi." Macaulay makes a
Puritan soldier of Naseby, referring to the royalist leaders, say
"Their coward heads predestined to rot on Temple Bar." But that unpleasant practice was not begun till thirty-five years after the battle of Naseby, and no royalist head was thus displayed. Probably some of our readers will recall other notable blunders.
518. What is considered by "bookish" persons to be the best novel in the English language?
They are by no means agreed. If the question were put to vote among them, Thackeray's "Newcomes,' ""Esmond" and "Vanity Fair," Reade's "Cloister and Hearth," Scott's "Kenilworth " and "Rob Roy," Charlotte Brontë's "Jane Eyre,” George Eliot's "Adam Bede" and Dickens's "Tale of Two Cities" and "Bleak House" would each get a great many votes. But it may be questioned whether on a novel the judgment of distinctly 'bookish" persons is the best.
521. Edward Everett Hale, in a recent article, asserts that "the printing-presses of England and America have printed more pages in the last twelve months than had been printed in all the world, in all languages, before the year 1801." I venture to ask whether this is not rather a large statement. Is there any authority for it? J. T.
It is probably correct. An approximate calculation could be made by multiplying the reported number of books by a fair average for the number of pages, and that by a safe average for the number of copies issued of each book; adding to that the printed proceedings of the legislative bodies,
514.-Brander Matthews, in the Century Magazine in 1898, wrote: "I once heard Lowell, that most expert and easy of speakers, declare that a good after-dinner speech ought to contain a platitude, a quotation and an anecdote." C. O. R.
514. (2) Probably the first expression of the idea (which has been repeated in various ways) is in Lessing's epigram on Klopstock: "Who will not praise a man like Klopstock? But will everyone read him? No. We would rather be extolled less and read more." E. L. W.
The Golden Horseshoe. Soldiers' Letters. Edited by Stephen Bonsal. Macmillan Co., 12mo, 316 pp., $1.50. The Africanders. Le Roy Hocker. Rand, McNally & Co., illustrated, 12mo, 279 pp., $1.50.
The Puritan Republic. Daniel Wait Howe. BowenMerrill Co., 8vo, 422 pp., $1.
History of the Scandinavians in the United States. Edited by O. N. Nelson. O. N. Nelson & Co., illustrated, 8vo, 280 pp.
A Short History of Russia. Mary Platt Parmlee. Scribners, 12mo, 251 pp., 60 cents net.
A History of Scotland. Vol. I. Andrew Lang. Dodd, Mead & Co., 8vo. 509 pp., $3.50 net.
Lessons of the War. Being Comments from Week to Week Until the Relief of Ladysmith. Spenser WilkinJ. B. Lippincott Co., 12mo, 201 pp.
Modern Italy. Pietro Orsi. Story of the Nations Series. Putnams, illustrated, 12mo, 404 pp., $1.50.
Salons Colonial and Republican. Anne Hollingsworth Wharton. J. B. Lippincott Co., illustrated, 8vo, 286 pp., $3.00.
A Condensed History of Modern Times. Victor Duruy. Crowell, 12mo, 260 pp., $1.00.
A Condensed History of the Middle Ages. Victor Duruy. Crowell. 12mo, 100 pp., 75 cents.
Slavery and Four Years' War. Joseph Warren Keifer. G. P. Putnam's Sons, illustrated, 8vo, 2 vols.
Diplomatic Relations of the United States and Span
ish America. John H. Lalané, Ph.D. Johns Hopkin Press, 12mo, 294 pp, $1.50.
Towards Pretoria. Julian Ralph. F. A. Stokes Co., 12mo, 328 pp., $.
The Mississippi Valley in the Civil War. John Fiske. Houghton, Mifflin & Co., 8vo, 268 pp., $2.00. Campaigning in the Philippines. Karl J. Faust, Hicks Judd Co., illustrated, 8vo, 314 pp.
BIOGRAPHY AND LETTERS Paine, Thomas. Ellery Sedgwick. Beacon Biographies. Small, Maynard, 18mo, 150 pp., 75 cents. Lincoln, Abraham, The Life of. Ida M. Tarbell. Doubleday & McClure Co., 2 vols., illustrated, 8vo, $5.00. Adams, Charles Francis. Charles Francis Adams. American Statesmen. Houghton, 16mo, 426 pp., $1.25. Heroes Alexander the Great. Benjamin Ide Wheeler. of the Nations. Putnams, illustrated, 12mo, 520 pp., $1.50.
THEOLOGY AND RELIGION
The Spiritual Life. George A. Coe, Ph.D. Eaton & Mains, 12mo, 279 pp., $1.00.
Twentieth Century Knighthood. Louis Albert Banks, D.D. Funk & Wagnalls Co., 12mo, 142 pp., 75 cents. Mental Index of the Bible. Rev. S. C. Thompson. Funk & Wagnalls Co., 16mo, 280 pp., $1.50.
The Life of Jesus of Nazareth. Prof. Rush Rhees. Historical Series for Bible Students. Vol. VII. Scribners, 12mo, 320 pp.
Scribner's for January
A RICH NUMBER
SCRIBNER'S MAGAZINE begins the new year and the new century with a particularly char
acteristic and individual number, unusually rich in text and in illustrations.
RUSSIA OF TO-DAY
Mr. Henry Norman's third article in his series of "RUSSIA OF TO-DAY" describes the Caucasus, and the illustrations reveal the extraordinary scenic beauties of that country. Many readers will say that this is the best of Mr. Norman's notable articles thus far published. The author has certainly done no better writing than his description of the scenes and people of this romantic region.
Another article, and one quite different from the ordinary descriptive paper, has for its subject "MODERN ATHENS." It is by George Horton, for some years consul at Athens and an authority on modern Greece, its people and languages. It shows in every line long familiarity with the scenes described and an affectionate interest in the subject. The many rich illustrations, by C. K. Linson, are the result of a visit to Athens made specially for the work.
A third article, also descriptive, but quite different in character, is that by Mr. Henry James on
THE AMATEUR CRACKSMAN
Of the stories in the number, " No Sinecure," by E. W. Hornung, is especially noteworthy as the first of the NEW CRACKSMAN STORIES, of which announcement has already been made. It reintroduces the incomparable Raffles with his friend and partner in intrigue, the faithful Bunny, in a wonderful succession of hair-breadth escapes. The illustrations are by F. C. Yohn.
THE ARMIES IN CHINA
Mr. Thomas F. Millard, whose brilliant articles in Scribner's on the Boer War will be remembered by magazine readers, has been in China for some time acting as a correspondent to Scribner's. The January number contains an article of marked interest and distinction, comparing the armies in China and reviewing military conditions there. It is illustrated from photographs taken by the author.
STORIES AND POEMS
There is a remarkable story of adventure on the China coast, called "THE PLAGUE SHIP," written by Stephen Bonsal. There is also a story by Mary Tappan Wright, and poems by Robert Bridges, Grace Ellery Channing, and Marguerite Merington.
RODIN, THE FRENCH SCULPTOR
Special note should be made of Mr. W. C. Brownell's critical article on the French sculptor RODIN, an art contribution of unusual distinction, which will be illustrated by reproductions of a number of Rodin's most significant works.
An interesting article by Arthur Reed Kimball considers the subject of disfigurement of nature in its various manifestations as observed in several countries and tells of the efforts that have been made to check it.