Occident : with Preludes on Current E cents. By Joseph Cook. (Ward, Lock, and Co.)—These lectures are not np to the level of those which were issued by Messrs. Dickinson of Farringdon. Street. We think, moreover, we have had the gist of most of them in these earlier volumes. Mr. Cook has completed his tour round the world, and has come back to his old platform, the Fremont Temple, at Boston. We presume that with the fatigue of incessant travelling and lecturing, he has been unable to store much fresh material, save such as he has obtained from a talk with Professor Tholuck, or Professor Christlieb; and we miss the clear, incisive style of argument and the condensed expression of opinion which were such marked features in former lectures. We object also to the frequent records of popular applause which are inserted throughout the book, such as " Many voices, ' Amen' !" "Loud laughter and applause," &c. A full half of the book is occupied by an appendix, which contains lectures on such heterogeneous matter as "Intemperance," "Decline of Rationalism," and "Notes on Art and History at Athens." These last may be described as a very good accompaniment to a series of dissolving views of Athens and its environs. Mr. Cook tells how he " leant over the parapet of the Acropolis on the side towards the modern city and looked in vain for the print of that Venetian leprous sandal, and that Turkish hoof which for GOO years trod Greece into the slime." We do not say that Occident is not worth perusal ; but we cannot say that Mr. Cook has reached a high level in this, his
latest, series of lectures, nor that the book bears any traces of care We should have imagined it to have been en unauthorised version, had it not been for the dedication, which declares it to be an offering to the new friends whose kindness " has encircled the earth with a chain of memories."
Lives of Greek Statesmen. By Rev. Sir George W. Cox, Bart., M.A. (Longman, Green, and Co.)—This excellent little book is the first of a series of Biographies of Greek statesmen, intended to reach from the dawn of authentic history to the close of the Acbaian Confederation. It embraces ten lives, beginuing with that of Solon (Draken, the "seer," and Lykourgos, the "light-bringer," being regarded as only mythical personages), and ending with Theron, the victor of Himera. It thus covers the eventful period from the rise of Athens, through the Persian struggle, to the deliverance of Hellas, continental and Sicilian, from Median and Carthaginian barbarism respectively. Greek history, with its long line of illustrious states. men combining both political and military authority, and as prominent in the camp as in the council, lends itself in a special way to be treated through a course of such biographies ; and while few men can tell a story better than Sir George Cox, none have a deeper sense of historical truth, or a greater fearlessness in reversing accepted verdicts on actions and characters, when a more careful sifting of evidence seems to point to such a conclusion,—ell., he considers that neither Thirlwall nor Grote has done justice to Themistocles, through admitting too easily the charges of treachery and corruption recorded against him by Herodotus and others. These charges, born, as he holds, of Eupatrid misrepresentation and Spartan malignity, our author analyses with force and skill ; and though we allow that by the glaring inconsistencies he has pointed out in the ordinary version of the career of Themistocles—involving conclusions as monstrous as if Nelson on the eve of Trafalgar had intrigued to secure the good-will of Napoleon in the event of defeat—he has made the story somewhat more difficult of belief, we cannot go so far as to acquit the great Athenian statesman of all personal corruption and selfish intrigue; e.g., it does not sufficiently disprove the charge of the bribe given him by the Eubmans to say that be did no service for it, and was not called publicly to account by the islanders for failing to perform his promise. Themistocles seems to us to have done what he covenanted for the thirty talents to do, viz., " stay and fight the impending battle off Eubcea ;" the islanders thus gained additional time (had they only used it) for the removal of their families and chattels ; and though the results of the conflict at Artemisium and the defeat at Thermopyla: compelled the retirement of the fleet, we find Themistocles promising his benefactors convoy fur their persons,—an engagement we have no reason to suppose that he violated. As to the two secret messages to Xerxes, Sir G. Cox questions the first as being superfluous, the Greek fleet being already surrounded ; the second he absolutely disbelieves as without ground in either fact or probability. The results of acting on the first message had not been such as to dispose the King to listen readily to a second. Still, the favour of the exile at the Court of Persia must be accounted for. Even if the treasonable messages were never sent, and the snbscquent letters to Artaxerxes, given by Thncydidcs, were proved to be forgeries, some explanation is demanded of the honours paid to Themistocles for so many years by the great enemy of his country ; and even his vindicator is compelled to allow that he might hare entered later into some sort of treasonable engagement with Artaxerxes. Sir George Cox has made an able defence of the victor of Salamis ; but it falls many degrees short of "a complete vindication of his good name." Nothing can be better done than the sketch of the Cleisthenean reforms ; but is it certain that Aristeides, in his further extension of these by opening all magistracies to all citizens, "nobly set aside his deep oligarchical prejudices "? Is there any proof that, though an aristocrat by birth, he ever shared in the sympathies of his order ? Sir George Cox takes an original view, when he tries to connect the Medism of the Bceotians with the Oriental affinities of the people, as indicated in the legends not only of Cadmos, but of Melicertes (the Phoenician Melkarth) and Palaomon (Baal Hamon), and the orgiastic worship of Dionysos ; but we must cot follow him into these ingenious but somewhat arbitrary hypotheses. From this specimen we wish every success to the rest of the series. Pbocion and Philoscemen will possess a still deeper interest than the familiar names of Aristeides and Themistocles.
Anna, the Professor's Daughter. By Marie Deal. Translated from the Dutch by Colonel Charles Mueller. (Swan Sonnenschein and Co.)—The motive of this book is excellent, but, as worked out here, it is scarcely adequate for a work of the pretensions of that which is now before us. We say this with the less reserve because the Spectator, of all journals, cannot be accused of indifference to the cause which the author seeks to promote. The plot of the tale is very little more than this,—that the heroine becomes engaged to a very. learned and generally admirable young man, that she refuses to go to a ball with him because the dog that she has loved for years is dying. He is greatly enraged, and breaks-off the engagement. Afterwards he is himself saved by a dog, and repents him of his cruelty and wickedness, and so all things end happily.
The S.ottish Highlanders and the Land-laws. By John Stuart Blackie. (Chapman and Hall.)—Professor Blackie denounces with a righteous indignation the wrongs which the Highlanders have suffered. He goes back to the past, to the Strathnaver clearance, when several townships were actually burnt as the most effectual way of clearing-out the inhabitants ; and it was thought an act of unusual humanity when the evicting party took a bedridden old woman out of one of the doomed dwellings, and laid her on the grass, wrapped in her own blankets. The Knoydart clearance, not more than thirty years ago, was scarcely less barbarous. Here is another instance where there was no act of downright cruelty, but where a change most injurious to the country has taken place. Glencannicb, in Inverness, is, with the exception of one small farm, a deer-forest. Fifty years ago, it contained thirty-three tenantfarmers, and twelve cottars. There were within this same space of time, seventeen officers in the Army from the glen, and twelve men in Holy Orders. What is the sport of a wealthy cotton-spinner and another thousand for a Highland proprietor to spend in London, to match against such devastation as this ? Professor Blackie's book, written, as all his books are, from the heart, is worth study.
Life and Work in Benares and Kuntaon. By James Kennedy, M.A. (T. Fisher Unwin.)--Mr. Kennedy went out to India in connection with the London Missionary Society in 1839. His work in that country lasted over nearly forty years, and in this volume he gives us a valuable summary of his experiences. He faces the difficulties of the situation frankly ; but regards the prospect with hope. This volume will be found most interesting reading, even apart from its value as dealing with a subject of great importance.—We may mention in connection with it a publication of the Baptist Missionary Society, The Rise and Progress of the Work on the Congo River, by the Treasurer (Baptist Missionary Society), and Bible Work at Home and Abroad, described as a new series of "The Missing Link Magazine" (Cassell and Co.).
From Post to Finish. By Hawley Smart. 3 vols. (Chapman and Hall.)—This is a brisk story, founded on a good idea, and carried on successfully to the end. Gerald Rockingham is the son of a Yorkshire squire who has ruined himself on the turf. To earn his bread, he makes use of about the only accomplishment which be possessesriding—and becomes, first, " boy " in a trainer's establishment; and then, having won the "Two Thousand Guineas" on an animal which no one but himself could ride, so vile was its temper, a jockey_ Gerald keeps his hands clean from turf villainies, and prospers, as such virtue ought to do, but seldom does. He makes a handsome sum by winning another great race, marries the trainer's daughter, buys back his father's place, and lives happily ever after. Captain Smart always writes very well about turf matters, and contrives to give an interest to the chances of racing ; but we never read any of his books without a deepened conviction that this same racing isabout as bad and demoralising a thing as ever was invented for the rain of mankind.
POETRY.—Poems. By the late Thomas George Youngman. (Kegan Paul, Trench, and Co.)—It would be unkind to blame the friends who have collected this volume of verse, though there is nothing in it, to be quite candid in our criticism, that is likely to live. Mr. Youngman wrote correctly, though without force ; his sentiments and opinions are always such as no one would censure, and we feel as we read that he was a man of worth and feeling. It is in the expression of personal feeling, indeed/ that be comes nearest to being poetical, but the approach is never very close.—Lisfen ! Poems for the Children's Hour. By J. E. Penton. (Wells Gardner, Darton, and Co.)—MrPanton's verse is best when it is simplest. He describes Nature with what is evidently a genuine love, and frequently succeeds in being effective. His rhyme is better than his blank-verse, and his short, easy pieces better than the larger and more laboured. The poems, indeed, differ much in quality, and some have, we should say, little to attract a child, though they may be otherwise meritorious. —Boys Together, and other Poems. By Margaret Scott Taylor. (Kogan Paul, Trench, and Co.)—Miss Taylor writes, we see, by preference in the ballad metre. " Boys Together " contains some hundred-and-twenty stanzas, " The Prodigal's Return" nearly one hundred. She does not seem to be aware that she has set herself a most difficult task. There is not a ballad of such a length, we fancy, in the language ; and this experiment does not lead us to desire one. We do not wish to be rude, but really there is no word quite so expressive as "namby-pamby" for stanzas of this kind : " And blest be he who, upon this night,
Shall freely all forgive ;
To do to all as we would receive,
This is indeed to live."
—Poems. By Edward HenryNoel. (Elliot Stock.)—This, we gather from the dedication, is a volume of posthumous verse. We can honestly say, that though at least four out of five of the volumes of verse published would better have been left in the manuscript, there is something in this book that is worth preserving. We do not expect,—the author's moat partial friends can hardly expect,—that it will gain a permanent place in English literature. Still it may well survive, at least for a time, as the memorial of one who had culture, tenderness of feeling, some depth of thought, and some power of poetical expression. Here is a poem which, though not perfect in expression, many will find beautiful and suggestive :—
" LOVE AND LAW. The buried days have taught me this That love exists, though lovers die; For none of all the living miss Some breath of his eternity.
With strength not mortal thns we bear
The evils of our mortal lot ; And sorrow's never quite despair, Nor sin an everlasting blot.
Time paints with tints of single lives •
His picture of Humanity, And many a one, howe'er he strives, Must touch of darkest shadow be.
So that through war of light and shade, Through mingled tints and flowing line. Man's portrait may be slowly mv'.e To take expression more divine.
Still, while the whole to beauty grows, Hard seems the individual fate That on the living oinvas shows A. contrast wide as love from hate.
Are these toa thine, whose blighted lives.
0 Love! our hearts so sorely grieve? Oar thought here into darkness dives, But, knowing thee, we must believe The power which set Creation's goal, That Beauty's conquests should delight. Must still support each single soul Who joins, though vanquished, in the fight. We see without that Law is be,t ; We feel within that Love's supreme ; But how at one may not be queried ; Let each one dream his private dream."
—Sorrow's Pilgrimage, and other Poems. By H. A. Jackson. (London Literary Society.)—The first of these poems is an adaptation from a poem of the Queen of Roumania ; " Remidava " is a "historical romance," translated from the Roumanian of Arsaky ; and there is also " A History of Servin," which we take to be original. This last is not a happy effort. Even Milton's matchless skill in cataloguing names, historical and geographical, would have been puzzled to give poetical forms to those which Miss Jackson thinks it necessary to intro
duce. "Remidava" is better than this, though we cannot honestly admire the hexameters in which it is written ; but the story has interest, and Miss Jackson is certainly more successful in representing the thoughts of others, than in shaping, as far at least as poetry is concerned, her own.—The Voyage of Arundel, and other Rhymes front Cornwall, by Henry Sewell Stockes (Longmans) is a " new edition with additions." It is fairly correct verse, which gains some little interest beyond what would naturally attach to it from its local associations.—Conradin. By Lieut.-Colonel Eons. (Kegan Paul, Trench, and Co.) —Colonel Rona tells, in heroic couplets, the tragic story of Conradin. He does not seem to have determined what type of his chosen metre to adopt,—the type of Pope, or that of Leigh Hunt. The consequence is that he is neither sonorous nor fluent.—Songs in Many Keys. By the Rev. Charles D. Bell. (Nisbet and Co.)—Dr. Bell must allow us to tell him that be writes too much. For a man so busily employed as he must be, one such volume as that before us may fairly represent all the available leisure of life ; and this is one out of many. It is inevitable that concentration and polish should be wanting. If the writer would be content with, say, a couple of hundred lines in the year, instead of a couple of thousand, there would be better hope of a really good resalt.—Gustavus Adolphus. By Frederic Pleader Swinborne. ( Wyman and Sons. )—This is a stately and ornamental volume. It will look well upon the table ; it may be opened with pleasure so far as the rinspecting of twelve respectable illustrations goes ; but it must not —we might venture to say it cannot—be read. It contains somewhere between fourteen and fifteen thousand lines, written in a considerable variety of metres, but in all, we are bound to say, uuconscionably prosaic and dull. Here is a specimen : " It happened at a feast the Elector gave,
At which ho brooding sate, and to Gustave, Who pressed him to decide, would answer scarce at all.
At last the Hero said in worn,—
Thy silence doth not me surprise ; I call
For help in this, a matter of some weight,—
On my demand, perchance, may even hang thy fate."
And this is not an unfavourable sample.
Boors RECEIVED. — The Virgin, Mother of Good Counsel, by Monsignor G. F. Dillon, D.D. (Barns and Oates).—A Treatise on the Principles of Chemistry, by M. M. Pattison Muir, M.A. (Cambridge University Press).—Book VI. of Chambers's Graduated Readers (W. and R. Chambers).—A second edition of the Sarum Missal, done into English by A. H. Pearson, M.A. (Church Printing Company).—The People's Bible : Discourses upon Holy Scripture, by J. Parker, D.D. Vol. I., "The Book of Genesis" (R. Clarke).—The Kingdom of God, Biblically and Historically Considered, by J. S. Candlish, D.D., being the tenth series of the Cunningham Lectures (T. and T. Clark).— Electric Illumination, edited by J. Dredge, with Abstracts of Specifications, by W. L. Wise, Vol. II. (Offices of Engineering).—Memoir and Letters of Jenny C. White Del Dal, by R. E. White (Gill and Son).—The Ethics of Urban Leaseholds, by J. T. Emmett ; A Commentary on St. Paul's Epistle to the Galatians, by J. A. Beet (Hodder and Stoughton).—A second edition of Sacerdotal Celibacy in the Christian Church, by IL C. Lee (Houghton, Miffi in, and Co., Boston tht3.)-L:Tluis Pulpit Commentary, edited by the Rev. Canon H. D. M. Spence and the Rev. J. S. Ezell ; I., "Chronicles" (Kegan Paul, Trench, and Co.)—Elcald's History of Israel, Vol. VII., "The Apostolic Age," translated from the German by J. F. Smith (Longmans, Green, and Co.)—Record of Family Faculties, by F. Galton (Macmillan and Co.)—The Pierced Heart, and other Stories, by Captain Mayne Reid (J. and R. Maxwell).— De Bary's Comparative Anatomy of the Phanerogams and Ferns, translated and annotated by F. 0. Bower, M.A., and D. H. Scott, M.A. (Oxford Clarendon Press). —Poems, Real and Ideal, by G. Barlow (Remington and Co.)—A new edition of More Leaves front the Journal of a Life in the Highlands, from 1862 to 1882 (Smith, Elder, and Co.)—The Prince of Palms, by W. P. Treloar ; Our Gipsies, in City, Tent, and Van, by V. S. Morwood (Sampson Low and Co.)—Rome : its Princes, Priests, and People, translated from the work of D. Silvagni by Fanny MacLaughlin (E. Stock).—Handbook to New Zealand, by A. Clayden (Wyman and Sons).