14 JUNE 1924, Page 26

CHINESE LANTERNS. By Graeo Thempscia Beton. (John Lane. 12s. 6d.

net.) This book, by the wife of the well-known naturalist, contains a great deal of popular information about the China of to-day. We read of presidents, prime ministers, revolutions, bandits, of the present position of women, of education and various industries, of the progress of the democratic ideal in.China, of solemn ceremonies and the present life of the Emperor and Empress and the Royal Family. The style of the book makes no pretensions to literary quality : it is lively, easy-going, verbose—in fact, of the- variety generally described as "

popular" or "chatty." The preface—or, as it is here called, "What the Author says. tb the -Reader "—is headed by a 'quotation from Mr. Wu. The book is illustrated by a large number of photographs, moft of them portraits. These, for the most part, are saddening to anyone who loves the old art and civilization of China, for they show Western influences in their most ugly and depressing form, and once again make us wonder whether, when China again settles down into law and order, anything of her ancient art and culture will have survived in the minds of her people.