24 MARCH 1866, Page 21

Haydn's Dictionary of Dates, relating to All Ages and Nations.

Twelfth edition. Corrected to February, 1866. By B. Vincent, Assistant-Secretary and Keeper of the Library of the Royal Institution. (Moron.)—This well known volume professes to be not merely a dictionary or dates, but "a dated encyclopasclia, a digested summary of every department of human history." Of course a book that is to be a guide to every road on which the mind can travel in the search of facts, and that contains only 833 pages, must be compiled with great care and judgment, and too

much pains cannot bo taken in the selection of the information. In the present case we are not always satisfied on the latter point, and we think a little weeding is still desirable ; but we are bound to say that the variety of subjects is infinite and the amount of information im- mense, and that in the very numerous chronological tables the events seem well chosen and the dates accurate. We take a page at random, and we find the following subjects treated :—" Huguenots," " Hull," " Hulseian Lectures," "Humane Society," "Humiliati," "Humming Birds," "Hundreds," and "Hungary." Now the summary of events in the history of Hungary is very fair, but why under the heading of "Humming Birds" should we have but two facts given, viz., that Mr. Gould exhibited a collection of their skins in 1851, and that his book about them was completed in 1862 ? and why in the case of Hull is the information limited to the fact of a fire in 1864? Again, out of the seven lines allotted to the "Russell Trial," four are devoted to the de- scription of the touching scene with his wife, and the statement that he slept well the night before his execution. This is scarcely what one would turn to this heading for in a book of this kind. The same objection applies

to other short articles, " Stirrups," for example, " Index Expurgatorius," "High Treason," "Royal Academy," all of which would be the better for a revision. But we have no intention of finding fault with the book as a whole ; it is a sort of universal directory, and our wish is that it should be as uniformly, as it at present is in parts eminently useful.