4 APRIL 1914, Page 26

The Myths of Mexico and Peru. ByLewis Spence. (G. G.

Harrap and Co. 7s. 6d. net.)—Macaulay tells us of a 'Frenah writer who published a ,grave history of a particular period, and then supplemented it by a novel, in which le set forth the manners of the time. A somewhat similar division df labour has been practised by Mr. Spence, who has already written an account of ancient Mexican civilization in which " all tradition is eliminated," and who now gives us a volume mainly consisting of the traditional element. He ie a well- known authority cm American mythology and archaeology, and his contribution to" The Myths Series" is all the more interesting because it deals with a large group of legends which are unfamiliar to the English reader, and which 'have almost certainly developed without any influence from Aryan or Semitic stooks. Mr. Spence's work is of great value to the folk-lorist, who can here study the mythopoeic faculty at work in an isolated environment It will also entertain the reader in search of amusement, for Mr. Spence tells the Mexican and Peruvian legends in apiost readable fashion.