27 JUNE 1896, Page 12

Schoolmaster Sketches. By T. J. Macnamara. (Cassell and Co.) —Mr.

Macnamara is a satirist, who has a definite object in view. He wants to benefit his profession. Hence he pictures the hard- ships and injustices which its members endure, painting in strong and glaring colours the iniquities of the small School Board, of the autocratic manager of the voluntary school. Satire must be unjust ; it takes extremes and exaggerates them. Still, satire has been a recognised weapon of controversy since literature began, and we cannot complain of Mr. Macnamara using it. Only let the reader remember to take what he is told cum grano. We really do not see that all the grievances of Mr. Macnamara's clients are real. " Sidney Bale was toiling in the tenth year of his apprenticeship at a maximum salary of fifty-four and sixpence a week." That is £141 14s. per annum, and Mr. Bale probably began at nineteen with £80 or £90. His neighbour, Mr. Gale, the curate, after spending £750 on his education, began at twenty- three with £120, and at twenty-nine, like Mr. Bale, receives £140, " without the faintest chance of promotion." As for " Mrs. Bale and the six little Bales," they are beside the question.