Thoughts after Business. By a City Man. (Simpkin, Marshall, and
Co. 2s. 6d.)—The "City Man" is not humorous, but he is pugnacious, and pugnacity is perhaps the next best thing after humour to make an essay readable. He is often trite. It is really a little late to say : "What a solace books are !" and "This mortal state is mainly one of probation." On the other hand, he belabours various conventional beliefs with a vigour that leaves at least an impression of novelty. He is not always just. To say that "Kings and statesmen" are "mainly responsible" for wars is too absurd. It is from commercial jealousies or ambitions that the quarrels of nations arise. They fight for the freedom or the restriction of trade. Not Kings and statesmen, but "City men," one might 'say, are the makers of wars. The Kaiser is the most restless of present-day Monarchs, but it is the commerce of Germany that he seeks to promote. The Russo-Japanese War, again, is largely the result of financial speculation.