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Doctor Alexander's handy little volume is a valuable addition to the contiually increasing number of books upon Browning. He very modestly calls it an introduction; but we doubt if that is a suitable term for the intimate acquaintance which he shows with Browning, and which he takes for granted on the part of the reader. The book is indeed far more than an introduction. It is not as simple as that of Mrs. Sutherland Orr, nor as full as that of Professor Corson. It addresses itself to a more advanced class of readers and proposes a higher kind of work. It presupposes an extended knowledge of the subject, and with that as a basis, it deduces the principles underlying Mr. Browning's poetry and art.

The book is not developmental. It is a compilation of a series of lectures — and no chapter is therefore dependent in thought upon either the preceding or succeeding one. In stating the object of the work, Doctor Alexander outlined its arrangement. According to his own words, "The value of the present attempt is expected to be found in its giving a compendious view of Browning's peculiarities, showing the reader what he is to look for in Browning's poetry, and what he need not expect; in unfolding such a consecutive view of Browning's leading ideas and aims as may be necessary for the understanding of his work; and finally in giving and elucidating such a series of extracts as may set the reader in the proper path for appreciating the poet, and studying him further!" Following this plan, Doctor Alexander commences with an essay upon Browning's General Characteristics, and then comments upon his Philosophy, his Christianity, his Theory of Art, and the Development of his genius through its three stages. In the first period he gives a full outline of Sordello, choosing this poem because it is the biography of a poet, and because it presents so many difficulties. As the object of this analysis is to enable the reader to follow Sordello intelligently, its interest will therefore be limited to those who admire that poem. A larger audience is reached, however, by the essay on Browning's Philosophy, since it gives the fundamental principles of the poet's theory of life. According to Doctor Alexander, it is not man in the mass that most interests Browning, but "the life and destiny of the individual." He quotes and comments upon Cleonas as the embodiment of the unsatisfied aspirations and clouded destiny of the pagan soul. He emphasizes the fact that to Browning,

and that he considers,

"Life is probation and the earth no goal,
But starting point of man,"

"Life just the stuff

To try the soul's strength on."

Browning's peculiar way of regarding passion is the natural result of this theory. To him it is "as a pledge of the future possibilities of the soul and

the spur which urges it on." The hint is of value, but we should like to see it expanded. The few pages which are devoted to Browning's love poems are entirely inadequate to the subject. And the poems quoted, since they were necessarily selected to suit this theory — are not the best of the kind. But this is a fault of omission and not of commission. As a rule the selection of poems is admirable and the comments suggestive. Especially is this the case in the essay on Christianity. The poems which Doctor Alexander chooses from which to demonstrate the poet's faith are An Epistle, and The Death in the Desert. Of the former, he says: "Just as in Cleon, Browning presented the instructive need and yearning of the human heart for immortality, so here he concretely presents its need and longing for a God of love." To the latter he gives over thirty pages of comments explaining John's argument, and closing by saying: "This poem merely presents Christianity in such an aspect as will correspond in Browning's opinion to the needs of the spiritual instinct for truth and good with which man is endowed.”

We cannot praise too highly the spirit of moderation which runs through the book. We have here no blind worshipper of a god, but an intelligent critic of a writer who exhibits blemishes as well as beauties. In the first chapter on General Characteristics, Doctor Alexander admits that Browning is limited by the conditions of this age, by the narrowing of the literary field through preoccupation, that his lyrical metres are nearly always jerky, his rhymes often astonishing in their uncouthness, and that he has a tendency to the out-of-theway in illustration and subject. But yielding all this, he then goes on to show that Browning is the greatest writer of the inner drama of the soul—that he is the successor of our great dramatists, and that "no English poet since Shakespeare has seized and presented views of human life and character with such variety and vividness."

LA PETITE REVUE. Paris: Lecène et Oudin. An illustrated weekly of sixteen generous pages (6 x 8), sold for ten centimes, about two cents.

It is put together in an attractive cover, upon which one of the illustrations of the current number is repeated. These illustrations, of which from eight to ten are given in each number, are very good. Of course, among them the reader recognizes many familiar friends, especially in the scientific articles where, both for these, and for the text, La Nature, Le Tour du Monde, and other well-known publications are freely drawn upon. The selections, however, have been made with judgment, and that they are well up to date may be inferred from the fact that the chair recently devised in New York for the execution of criminals by electricity is depicted and described in the number for Aug. 11, 1889.

The literary portion, which includes part of a serial story, is very readable--among the writers being Alphonse Daudét, Emile Richebourg, Lucian Biart and others of established reputation. History, Biography, Poetry, Geography, Travels, Engineering, Astronomy, and the other sciences, have more or less space in each number, rendering "La Petite Revue" well suited to that numerous class of readers who require an inexpensive, entertaining family magazine.

It would seem to be admirably adapted for use in teaching French, as a substitute for the conventional "Reader." The subscription, post-paid, is seven francs per annum, - probably about $2.00 to American subscribers.

Of the books brought out the past summer for school use are more of the class of which we spoke at some length in June. We refer to those intended as supplementary readers and in other ways to aid in giving a right course in, and to promote the knowledge of, the best literature in our language.

In the STUDENT'S SERIES OF ENGLISH CLASSICS, published by Leach, Shewell & Sanborn, Boston and New York, are the following:

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COLERIDGE'S ANCIENT MARINER. Edited by Katharine Lee Bates, of Wellesley College. Pp. 72. Cloth.

Besides the poem there is a Biographical Sketch of Coleridge, Pen Pictures of Coleridge, Hints on the Handling of a Poem, nearly twenty pages of Notes, abundant side notes accompanying the poem.

WEBSTER'S FIRST BUNKER HILL ORATION. Edited by Louise Manning Hodgkins, Wellesley College. Pp. 51. Cloth.

This contains a sketch of "Webster the Man," the "Style of Webster," a list of his "Ten Most Famous Speeches," "Hints on the Study of an Oration," "The Address," and several pages of notes.

MACAULAY'S ESSAY ON LORD CLIVE. Edited by Vida D. Scudder, Wellesley College. Pp. 147. Cloth.

Here are "Chief Facts in Macaulay's Life," "Map of India,” “Macaulay the Man," List of "Six Famous Essays on English History, by Macaulay,” "Macaulay the Writer," ""Hints on the Handling of an Essay," The Essay on "Lord Clive," and carefully prepared notes.

These three books will be of especial value to students who are to enter either of the colleges comprising the Association of New England Colleges, as a familiarity with them is among the requirements of these institutions. Any student of English Literature will find them of equal value.

The same enterprising house issued as a textbook,


In this book the author has attempted to give briefly, but quite exhaustively, the essential facts regarding those English writers with whom all but the most superficial student should be acquainted, and by tables to give a general survey of the field of American Literature, together with a bibliography of helpful references for teacher and student and brief biographies of the authors whose works are treated. Students of English Literature will find this book one of much help in their work.

GEORGE WASHINGTON. By Henry Cabot Lodge. In two volumes. Pp. 341 and 399. Cloth. Price, $2.50. American Statesmen series. Boston: Houghton, Mifflin & Co.

In these two volumes we have a life of Washington treated from a standpoint different from any which has heretofore been given to the public. In the first volume the condition of Virginia at the time of Washington's youth, and the ancestors of the immortal George, are the subjects of the first two chapters. The remaining nine chapters are devoted to the youth of Washington, his preparation for the great duties to come upon him, his family life, and the trials, discouragements, conflicts with both friends and foes, and the final victory and the treaty of peace.

Volume II., beginning at the close of the war, gives the reader a clear insight into the great work which was necessary to form the Union, the anxieties and perplexities of the establishing of a new government the like of which man had

never seen, and of the devotion with which the great leader gave the best years of his life to caring for and guiding with consummate skill and foresight the affairs of the new nation amid much organized opposition. The treatment of his relations with foreign government is also worthy of a careful reading by every student of history or biography, and particularly by the youth of our secondary schools and colleges who are just entering upon the study of civil government. It is a most worthy addition to this excellent series.

APPLETON'S CYCLOPÆDIA OF AMERICAN BIOGRAPHY. Edited by James Grant Wilson and John Fiske. Vol. VI. Sunderland-Zurita. With Supplement and Analytical Index. Pp. 809. Cloth. New York: D. Appleton & Co. The publication of this, the last volume of a wonderful set of books, marks an era in the study of Americana. With these six volumes at hand one can hardly think of any event in American history, connected with the government, with literature, art, science, discovery, invention, manufacture, education, religion, or law, which will not, through the leading characters connected therewith, be treated in these volumes.

As was said in the extended review* of the five volumes preceding this: "It is with more than usual satisfaction that we note the publication of a new work of rare excellence in this department of American Literature."

In this volume we find steel portraits of Washington, Zachary Taylor, Geo. H. Thomas, John Tyler, Martin Van Buren, Morrison R. Waite, Daniel Webster, John G. Whittier, John Winthrop, and President Harrison, with numberless smaller portraits on wood.

Among the writers are Henry Carey Baird, John Fiske, Rossiter Johnson, Wm. E. Griffis, D. D., Jefferson Davis, Rufus King, James Russell Lowell, Robert C. Winthrop, Jr., James Grant Wilson, Edmund C. Stedman, John G. Whittier, Robert C. Winthrop, LL. D., and many others.

The sketches of the thousands of men who have, since the discovery of America, been prominent in some line in North or South America, give a clear, concise, and accurate account of each. Every educated man will wish to possess this excellent work.


Appet. Pp. 272. Cloth. New York: The Century Co. (Only sold by subscription, and the twenty-four parts together.) Price, $2.50.

The English speaking world will be especially gratified to know that the first part of the Century Dictionary is ready for delivery.

When the immensity and magnitude of this work appears, one is almost overawed at the temerity of any publisher or editor in even thinking of such a possibility, but now that the first part is an accomplished fact, and we see the completeness and accuracy of the work in which two hundred and seventy-two pages are given to what in the largest dictionaries heretofore occupied but about one quarter as much space, and the ability of those engaged upon it, the accomplishing of even so herculean a task seems to be assured.

In an advance notice we published quite a full description of what was proposed by the editor and the publisher, and we need only say that the part before us, as to its exhaustiveness, accuracy, and clearness in the lines of Etymology, Orthography, Pronunciation, Definition, and all the points which are essential to a complete dictionary and including much of an encyclopædic character, there is little if anything left to ask for.

* EDUCATION, January, 1889, p. 346.

The mechanical construction, including typography, illustrations, which are very numerous, paper and press-work, is all of a high order of art.

The writers, editors, publishers, and those who may secure a set are all to be congratulated and felicitated upon this addition to the world's great reference books.

It is expected that the entire twenty-four parts will be ready in two years from last June. They may then be had in parts, or in six volumes, of about one thousand pages each.

A GUIDE TO THE STUDY OF NINETEENTH CENTURY AUTHORS. By Louise Manning Hodgkins, Professor of English Literature at Wellesley College. Pp. 157. Cloth, cased. Boston: D. C. Heath & Co. Price, $1.50.

Miss Hodgkins and Messrs. Heath & Co. are to be thanked by all students of English Literature for this unique little book. It might perhaps be called a combination note book and biographical dictionary of the eighteen English and eight American authors of whom it treats.

Perhaps a better idea of this very attractive book can be got by showing its treatment of our own poet Whittier, than in any other way. First is given the poet's full name and date of birth. Then eight names by which he is known, including The Quaker Poet; The Wood-thrush of Amesbury; The Prophet Bard of America; The Boanerges of American Poets, etc. Eleven significant facts in his life. List of biographical writings. Seven selected poems upon Whittier. List of poems by Whittier on Indian traditions. List of poems by him on Colonial life. List of poems illustrating his love of freedom. On the Persecutions of the Quakers - six. On Freedom and Slavery-fourteen. Group of sixteen famous Anti-Slavery Men and Women. List of Personal Poems- nine. List of Poems of Life and Death- twelve. List of Poems of Religious Life-twenty. List of Poems of Nature-twelve. List of Narrative Poems-eight. List of Poems of Occasion — three. List of Selections from Whittier's Prose-six. Selected books of Reference on Whittier and his Works- nineteen. Four pages for notes.

There is shown in this book a large amount of careful discriminating work on each of the twenty-six authors discussed.

THE BEGINNINGS OF NEW ENGLAND; or the Puritan Theocracy in its Relations to Civil and Religious Liberty. By John Fiske. Pp. 296. Cloth. Boston: Houghton, Mifflin & Co. Price, $2.00.

Professor Fiske needs no introduction to the readers of EDUCATION, or to students of history. Particularly are those who have made a study of American history well acquainted with his clear and careful treatment of the subjects before him. In this book, which is made up from a series of lectures on early American History, delivered at the Washington University in 1887, the student of history will find much to please and many useful deductions, comparisons and conclusions in regard to the principles which governed the fathers, and many comparisons between the early history of this republic and that of Rome and with the English idea of government. It is a valuable addition to our rapidly growing list of books illustrating American history.

ELEMENTARY PSYCHOLOGY; or First Principles of Mental and Moral Science for High, Normal, and other Secondary Schools, and for Private Reading. By Daniel Putnam, M. A., Michigan State Normal School, with an Introduction by John M. B. Sill, M. A., Principal of the Michigan State Normal School.

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