Page images
PDF
EPUB

monly recognized as the funniest insti- sionaries, and traders, that the Bantu tutions of a funny nation. But now medicine-men of certain districts have and again some individual protests. a remedy for cancer. Doctors like The great botanist Fortune thankfully O'Sullivan Beare, willing to admit that recorded his deliverance from a virulent European science can learn from a fever by one of these despised prac- naked savage, are very uncommon. titioners, and be rather warmly de- And there is one great difficulty in the nounced the "common notion" that way of all research-the native protheir physic is compounded of gro fessor can seldom be tempted or pertesque materials. “The treatment is suaded to reveal his methods. Permost careful." The Chinese scholar, haps this reluctance grows stronger Mr. Cobbold, winds up a droll analysis as the competition of white rivals beof the medical theories taught in books comes more pressing. with the unexpected admission, “I my. A hundred years ago Dr. Winterbotself have no mean opinion of Chinese tom, Physician to the Colony of Sierra skill.” He has often consulted a native Leone, compiled a volume upon The doctor, always has followed the pre- Present State of Medicine among the scription, and "always" found himself African Natives of that coast. It deals better! Mr. Williams suggests an ex with almost every ailment of the Westplanation in The Viddle Kingdom: "the ern negro—with “sleeping sickness" practice of the Chinese is far in ad among the rest, though it has been vance of their theory."

confidently asserted of late that this The most bestial of human stocks terrible disease had only just reached have a minute acquaintance with herbs the district. And the native remedies and other substances, wholesome or are described in every case at length, noxious. So widespread is this knowl with the treatment. Sometimes the edge, and so unexpected some of its Colonial Physician becomes enthusimanifestations, that grave observers astic over the merits of a certain herb, have supposed it instinctive with prim- recommending it to the Apothecaries' itive man-one of the attributes which Company and even consigning samples are lost in the course of civilization. home. But Miss Mary Kingsley wrote Prima facia therefore it might be as- of the West Africans: "I have never sumed that after the experience of seen in their herbal remedies any trace countless generations aboriginal peo- of a really valuable drug.” Doubtless ples generally have learned how to she repeated what she was told, but treat such maladies as are common the statement seems very odd to one among them. Many travelers report who has looked through Dr. Winterbotthat it is so, and official documents tom's book. Unfortunately, that carebear testimony from time to time that ful inquirer too often forgot to say such or such a tribe possesses a se- whether the medicines so consciencret cure for some disease. For in- tiously enumerated produce the effect stance, a Bluebook issued by the Cape desired. Perhaps he did not know, Government in 1885 states positively, saving the cases mentioned. on the evidence of magistrates, mis

Frederick Boyle. The Outlook.

THE AMERICAN RAILWAY POSITION.

After the ruinous fall in American stances that a two cent per mile pasrailway stocks which was experienced senger fare shall be inaugurated, while a fortnight ago, it was hoped that no in one or two instances legislation to further decline of any magnitude would that effect has actually been passed. take place, but Monday's debacle in New The fact is, that the railroad interests York showed that there was a still have lost the control they formerly exlower depth, and the market there ap- ercised in the State Legislatures, and, pears to be in a state of demoralization that being so, they are now anxious to The one favorable outcome of the unto secure the protection of the very Fedward events of the past few weeks is eral authority which they formerly opthe changed attitude of the railway posed on high constitutional grounds. magnates towards Federal legislation. And in so doing they emphasize the Their volte face is, indeed, of so ex- “public anxiety” which they declare to traordinary a nature, that it has given prevail, though it has been very pointrise to cynical comment in the United edly remarked that what they really States. In the past they have been stal- mean is the anxiety of railway men wart upholders of State rights. The themselves, and of that public of financonstitutional arguments advanced by ciers and investors upon whom they their legal advocates against the intru- depend for funds. sion of the Federal arm into this do- While it is undeniable that for the main, indeed, were calculated to arouse general distrust of railway securities the admiration of connoisseurs in judi- which prevails the unscrupulous macial hair-splitting, and President Roose- neuvres of the financial magnates are velt was solemnly warned of the dan responsible, it is eminently desirable.in gers likely to arise from the undue con- the interests of the country at large that centration of power at Washington. confidence should be restored, so that To-day the position is entirely reversed the requisite funds for providing adeInstead of appealing to the States for quate transportation facilities may be protection against Federal interference, raised. Unless that can be effected the the magnates are now expressing their general commerce of the United States earnest desire to co-operate with the must inevitably suffer, and that is an President, and urging him to aid in eventuality which President Roosevelt allaying the "public anxiety" which has will be anxious to avoid. But there arisen, owing, they say, to the fears of are various indications that the Presiinjudicious and harmful legislation. It dent has no intention of modifying his is not Federal legislation, however, that policy of “increasing the power of the is now in question, but projects, some national Government over the use of of them apparently of a harmful and capital in inter-State commerce.” If ill-considered character, which are be- the magnates, therefore, desire to seing advocated in the State Legislatures. cure his co-operation in allaying the A formidable list of these measures public distrust, they must be prepared which has been published in New York to accept further Federal legislation shows that in at least eighteen States which will tend to check the unlimited action is being taken with a view of sway they have hitherto exercised in regulating the railroads, the proposal the domain of railroad finance. That being put forward in a number of in- appears to be recognized by high financial authorities in New York, one of tion which would put an end to the whom has well summarized the situa- gross abuses that have been the bane tion in these words: "The best way to of American railway finance. restore public confidence in the rail- It seems far from likely, in view of roads is to assist the President in plans past experience, that the President will for Governmental supervision. The be in any wise perturbed by the outgreat objection to legislative action cry raised in some quarters that further against the railroads is found not in the legislative interference may precipitate national administration, but in various "an industrial break-up.” In his MesState administrations. A broad, com- sage to Congress in December be prehensive plan of national supervision pointed out that "during the last five would do away with a great deal of re- months,” within which the new rate strictive legislative action of individual law was operative, "the railroads have States. The result would be that the shown increased earnings, and some of public would regain confidence in the them unusual dividends,” and yet ruin railroads, and the exploitation of the for the railways was predicted if that railroads for private advantage would measure should be enacted. And if cease.” It is beyond question that if Mr. Roosevelt, before the conclusion of the power of financiers to manipulate his term of office, can secure the pasthe transportation systems of the Uni- sage of a law which will remove the ted States for their own ends were elim- evils that have been described above. inated, the market for American rail. he will add materially to his own presway stocks would enjoy a stability it tige, and to the prosperity of the United has never hitherto experienced. The States. Meanwhile, the immediate outknowledge that holders of these securi- look is disturbed by the inability of ties are at the mercy of unscrupulous the companies to obtain funds, which wire-pullers has worked incalculable in- is necessarily leading them to restrict jury, and so far as investors here are their orders for material and rollingconcerned, it has practically killed their stock. This must act as a check on the interest in American railways. The activity of the industries concerned. same result bas followed in the United and unless the situation improves, the States, and in view of the detrimental railway deadlock may bring to an end effect on American commerce of an in- the trade boom which has been in eviadequately equipped transportation dence in the United States. system, the time seems ripe for legisla

The Economist.

BOOKS AND AUTHORS.

Among the latest issues of fiction Messrs. Macmillan announce a new in Everyman's Library are Cooper's and cheaper edition of “Lord Randolph “The Pioneers" and "The Prairie”; Churchill,” by Mr. Winston Churchill. Hawthorne's "The House of Seven Ga- The new issue will contain the combles"'; Samuel Lover's "Handy Andy''; plete work in one octavo volume of over Lever's “Confessions of Harry Lor- 900 pages. The same publishers have requer" and Alexandre Dumas's “The arranged to issue Professor Walter RaBlack Tulip" and "Twenty Years Af- leigh's monograph on Shakespeare, in ter.” E. P. Dutton & Co.

the English Men of Letters series, ou April 23, the anniversary alike of the of Piero Maironi. Young and rich, he birth and death of the poet.

is burdened with an insane wife. He

is about to succumb to the influence of "Dave Porter's Return to School," by

a beautiful freethinker, who is also unEdward Stratemeyer, is the third vol.

happily married, when he is reclaimed ume of the Dave Porter books for boys,

by his dying wife, who recovers her and carries his young hero from his ad

reason on the point of death. His reventures in the South Seas back to

vulsion of feeling decides him to devote school, where he experiences the full

his life to the cause which earned him delights of boyish sports. Lothrop,

his saintly reputation in the subseLee & Shepard Co.

quent years of his career. Messrs. Routledge, "recognizing the general desire on the part of the trade

Two small volumes of more than ordiand the public to give a fair trial to the nary interest are published by T. Y. experiment of reducing the original Crowell

Crowell & Co. in the dainty typography published price of new copyright nov

of the Merrymount Press. One is els,' are about to enter the field with a

old with a “Christ's Secret of Happiness,” by Dr. series of books to be published not

Lyman Abbott, a series of eleven brief merely at half-a-crown net, but at half

discourses, in which a twentieth-century a-crown "ordinary," which means, of

application is made of the beatitudes of course, that the books will be subject

Christ. The other is “The Greatest to the usual discount. Each work will Fact in Modern History” which conbe produced in all respects of type, pa

tains the admirable and patriotic adper, and binding equal to the ordinary

dress which Ambassador Reid delivsix-shilling novel. The first four vol

ered before Cambridge University last umes will be ready this month.

year on “The Rise of the United

States." Mr. Reid's subject was chosen *The Diamond Key and How the for him by the university authorities Railway Heroes Won It," by Alvab and he treated it with candor, discrimi. Milton Kerr is a series of twelve sto nation and a due sense of historic prories of railway adventure and heroism, portion. strung together on a slender thread of continuous narrative, and deriving In Miss Anna Chapin Ray's “Ackroyd unity from their connection with the of the Faculty" the hero has every good running of a single railway line in the and perfect gift except pedigree and mountain regions of the far west, and polish, but because those are lacking from being crowned with the reward of to him the daughter of his brother pro the same badge of honor, a "diamond fessor, a Brahmin of the true Holmes key.” Some of the stories have been species, despises him. To begin a published separately in the magazines novel with despising a man brings the and have attracted attention as among wisest of heroines to loving him before the most grapbic and stirring of their the tale is ended and the last page kind. Lothrop, Lee & Shepard Co. foretells happiness for all the charac

ters except one who has had the good The second of Fogazzaro's trilogy of fortune to die almost in the act of renovels, of which “The Saint” was the pentance for wrong doing. The author completion has been published by has mastered the secret of adding sufMessrs. Hodder and Stoughton. “The ficient moral interest to a tale of every Man of the World," as the English ver- day life to give it a certain gravity and sion is called, deals with the earlier life force without darkening its pleasant atmosphere, and the story has individ- betical arrangement guides the reader uality and brilliancy. Little, Brown & at once to what he wishes to know and Co.

saves him the trouble of picking it out

for himself from pages of general deThe "Kölnische Zeitung" states that scription. Not the least attraction of a rare Chinese manuscript, brought some the book is the illustrations, of which years ago from Pekin, has been discov- there are nearly two hundred and fifty. ered in Copenhagen. It is a transla- E. P. Dutton & Co. tion of the book on anatomy by Pierre Dionis, and contains many copies of Mr. Bertram Dobell writes to The anatomical drawings from the works of Athenæum, with pardonable exultation, Thomas Bartholin, the famous Danish of a recent literary discovery, as folanatomist of the seventeenth century. lows: It originated in the request made by the Most of your readers, I suppose, will Emperor Khanghi (1662-1722) to a be glad to know that I have recently French priest, by name Perennin, in discovered a very remarkable manu1677, that he would translate a Euro

script copy of Sir Philip Sidney's "Arpean book on anatomy into Chinese in

cadia.” It is a volume of 226 folios, or

452 pages. It contains a complete copy order to introduce Western medical sci

of the "Arcadia” in five "Bookes or ence into China. Perennin selected Di.

Actes," and also “Dyvers and Sondry onis's and Bartholin's works, and the Sonetts." Although there must have Emperor gave him a staff of twenty been a number of manuscript copies of assistants who took five years in pro- the book in existence soon after it was ducing the manuscript. Only three

written, no other copy save that which

is before me appears to be now extant. copies were made for the private use of

This alone would make it uniquely inthe Emperor.

teresting; but its value does not lie only

in its rarity. It is not merely an "ArThat expert traveller and charming cadia"; it is, I believe, the “Arcadia." writer, Mr. Douglas Sladen, is the It differs greatly from the printed texts. author of a unique guidebook to "Sicily It contains much matter which is not the New Winter Resort" which con

to be found in the latter, while it omits

much that appears in them. It gives tains everything which the visitor to

us five new poems, and many fresh that picturesque island needs to know

readings in the known poems. Among about its scenery, its monuments and

the “Dyvers and Sondry Sonetts" there its people. The plan of construction is is also an unknown poem. I have not unusual. There are first certain gen- yet been able to study the manuscript eral chapters upon the scenery, climate sufficiently to be able to see the exact and people, the gardens and the

relation which it bears to the printed

copies; but I have found a good many churches, and the conditions of travel

indications which point to its being Sir and motoring. Then, under the head.

Philip Sidney's first draft of the work. ing “Things Sicilian” arranged after

But whether it is this, or whether it is the fashion of an encyclopædia, there a recast of the first form of the roare hundreds of paragraphs of informa mance, it is without doubt a most retion, presented by topics, first relating

markable "find." Short of the discovto the whole island, and then, again

ery of a Shakespearean manuscript it

is hard to imagine a more valuable with an alphabetical arrangement, to

treasure trove of its kind. Two things particular cities. Finally, there is a

are plain-firstly, that it should find a complete road-guide to all the towns place in one of our great public librawhich are easily accessible by any ries; and secondly, that it should be means of communication. This alpha- printed with as little delay as possible.

« PreviousContinue »