17 MARCH 1866, Page 20

The Humbugs of the World By P. T. Barnum. (Rotten.)—A

wretchedly poor book, evidently made up by some colleague of Mr. Barnum in order to sell. The bulk of it consists of badly written accounts of well known impostors, a very old exposure of spiritualism, and accounts of American humbugs of no interest or value. The only fact of any interest in the book is the statement that the pamphlet on "miscegenation " which excited so much attention in England was an elaborate hoax, and the most amusing sentence this about the tulip mania :—"All at once, as it were, rich people all over Holland found themselves with nothing in the world except a pocketful or a garden bed full of flower-roots that nobody would buy, and that were not good to eat, and would not have made more than one tureen of soup if they were." That little bit of ultra-realism is American all over.