14 MARCH 1835, Page 20

We have three Catechisms before us :

A Catechism of the British Constitution ;

A Catechism gf Chemistry ; The Mother's Catechism if Useful Knowledge.

The first is compiled by the author of the " Key to both Houses of Parliament ;" and is revised by Mr. PRATT, the bar- rister. It contains a view of the respective rights of King and People, an account of the constitution and functions of Parlia- ment, and of the duties of public ollicers of all orders, from the Crown down to the Coroner. There is also a useful list of the different classes of society, with their grades in matters of prece- dence. Without possessing any claims to novelty of matter, or to notice as regards composition, the Catechism of the British Constitution combines a quantity of general information which is often wanted. In the revisal, however, Mr. PRATT might here and there have improved the book by some amendments. The amount of the Civil List is not a million; it was reduced to some half million on the accession of his present Majesty. The consti- tutional maxim that the King can do no wrong, has not, consti- tutionally speaking, the mental reservation with impunity. The theory is, that the King can do nothing without instruments, who are responsible fin. the deeds they advise or execute.

Mr. MauGis AM'S Catechism of Chemistry is a methodical exhi- bition of the leading points of what is at present known in the science, intermingled with many directions for popular experi- ments. The information is conveyed in a clear style, but the 'author deals rather with facts than principles.

The design of the Mother's Catechism is better than the execu- tion. The idea was to present to children an account of the sub- stances they daily meet with, and an explanation of such learned terms as they frequently hear. Properly accomplished, such a book would form a Child's Encyclopedia. In the present case, too many things are handled ; and instead of the facts and circum- stances which excite interest in youthful minds, many of the explanations are mere definitions, and those are not always accut;