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nts are the THE SINHALESE PEOPLE AND THEIR ART.
To many it will appear that in this work Dr. Coomaraswamy has attempted too much; cerleftainly the three purposes for which he tells us the
The arts and crafts of Ceylon, as they exist at the present day, represent the result of the action of western influence on the mediæval conditions which prevailed until the British occupation of Kandy, less
lled, does, book has been written have so little in common that a than a century ago. It is with the remains of this
a result was book which even in measure shall satisfy all three late-lasting mediæval culture that Dr. Coomaraswamy
ith observate !passing ev
ording the s
mainly deals, and we are thus given an account of the work of the craftsmen of a feudal period in which there was no great attainment in fine art, brought about by the genius of a few men, but in which there was a widely spread popular art largely based upon early Indian traditions, for "Sinhalese art is essentially Indian, but possesses this special interest, that it is in many ways of an earlier character, and more truly Hindu-though Buddhist in intention-than any Indian art surviving on the mainland so late as the beginning of the nineteenth century. The minor arts and the painting are such as we might expect to have associated with the culture of Asoka's time, and the builders of Barahat.... It was the art of a poor people, the annual income of whose kings did not in
cannot be otherwise than loosely knit and somewhat amorphous. This volume, we are told, is written first of all for the Sinhalese people as a memorial of a period which at present they are not willing to understand. . . . Secondly it is meant for those in East and West who are interested in the reorganisation of life, and especially of the arts and crafts under modern conditions. Thirdly, an endeavour has been made to render it as far as possible of value to the anthropologist, and to students of sociology and folkthe Brits lore." It seems very doubtful whether the Sinhalese appointed people, with the possible exception of a few of the educated" of whom Dr. Coomaraswamy speaks with scant sympathy, will appreciate the effort made for their benefit, and though there is much of interest
of infort ann functies tion to the aware
1 in Gray
0-01 [12 pla
the equator 1880, 18: to x=1 (x) from sa gnificant
to the folklorist and anthropologist in this sumptuous volume, it is as a work of art done for art's sake that the work is most interesting and valuable, and certainly few will be found to imitate Dr. Coomaraswamy's example at a time when publishers tell us éditions de luxe do not sell.
Not only the contents of the book preach the gospel of art, but, as it has been printed by hand on handmade paper, it is itself an excellent example of the point of view which, since this is a pioneer work, the author has been free to express with the least possible constraint. It is, indeed, in the fact that so much new ground is broken that the high merit of this volume lies, for it is certainly the first time that a detailed account of the arts and crafts of a small area in the East has been given, and it is well to remember that the culture here described was really limited to some two million people, inhabiting, roughly, twothirds of an island, itself about the size of Ireland.
1 "Mediæval Sinhalese Art." By Ananda K. Coomaraswamy. Pp. xvi+340; 53 plates. (Broad Campden, Glos.; Essex House Press, Norman Chapel, 1908.) Price 37. 35. net.
the eighteenth century amount to 2000l. in money, besides revenue in kind.'
The first chapter of Dr. Coomaraswamy's book is devoted to the Sinhalese people and their history. The next chapters discuss the social organisation of Sinhalese society, and while the difficult question of caste is but lightly touched upon, considerable space is devoted to the personal services rendered to the king and his high chiefs. This account shows how true was Knox's narrative, and it is pointed out that Sinhalese villages were self-contained to such a degree as to be dependent upon the outside world for little but salt. The religion of the people is rapidly sketched, and certainly too little stress is laid on the large element of demonism-" devil-worship "-in the actual working religion of the Sinhalese. A most interesting account is given of the netru mangalaya, or "eye ceremony," by which the image in a temple is dedicated. This consists essentially in the painting of the eyes of the image, when the figure, before this, not accounted a god but a lump of ordinary metal" (Knox), becomes so full of power that in some cases
anyone interfering with it is smitten with sickness. In this ceremony a mirror was held to receive the first glance (belma) of the image while the eyes were being painted.
An account of the teaching of drawing as practised at the present day serves as an introduction to a consideration of the motifs employed in Sinhalese decorative art. Although there is an immense amount of new material in this section, it may be doubted whether it would not have been rendered more valuable to all, as it certainly would have been to the anthropologist, if greater attention had been paid to the history of the evolution of the individual elements of decoration; for instance, the makara, which bulks so largely in Sinhalese art, and which occurs on the Barahat Stupa, circa 200 B.C., is dismissed in rather less than half a page of print, while the hamsa fares worse.
These and many other conventional elements were most skilfully combined, and the beauty of the results attained is seen in plate xvi. (here reproduced in Fig. 1), of a nineteenth-century ceiling painting from the Dalada Maligawa, Kandy, representing a forest
ful and pleasing fruit of the Sinhalese art impulse rivalled only by some of the superb inlay metal wor still existing on the temple doors. Fig. 2 represen an ivory carving in the Colombo Museum of guardian deity from the jamb of a temple door.
In the last two chapters Dr. Coomaraswamy showthat, in the present stage of our knowledge, it is on possible to indicate the main sources which hav influenced Sinhalese art. The most widely exert influence in Indian art is that due to the Asoka Buddhist missions, the culture which these disperse being early Indian; thus Sinhalese art is largely th result of the evolution of an early Indian art, in par sheltered by the geographical position of Ceylon from that Hinduism which overwhelmed it upon the mainland. But in post-Asokan and mediæval times thi art was continually exposed to Indian influence; "indeed, until the close of the period of mediav conditions, the relations between Southern India an Ceylon were similar to those obtaining in the Midd Ages between France and England." This leads t the suggestion that the famous rock paintings a Sigiri, the like of which are found only at Ajanta, ar due to a school, representatives of which were to b found both in India and Ceylon. The fine bronzes recently found by Mr. H. C. P. Bell at Polonnaru and now in the Colombo Museum, though of a latedate, point in the same direction, for the whole feelin of these is Hindu. To sum up, Dr. Coomaraswam sees in Sinhalese art " an early stratum of indipensable barbaric decorative motives, . . . then : main stream of North Indian Buddhist influence; and thereafter the influence of continued reliance upon and intercourse with India, especially Southern India accounting at every period for the strong admixture of purely Hindu with Buddhist motifs.' With this conclusion few will quarrel, though Dr. Coomara. swamy says all too little concerning the earlies stratum. It remains only to direct attention to the number and excellence of the photographs by Mr Coomaraswamy, and to indicate that it is owing to her energy that the remains of the moribund art c Sinhalese embroidery have been brought together t form chapter xv.
C. G. S.
A DISCUSSION OF AUSTRALIAN
THE meteorology of the southern hemispher
1 Solar Physics Committee. A Discussion of Australian Meteorology by Dr. W. J. S. Lockyer, under the direction of Sir Norm: n Lockyer K.C.B., F.R.S. Pp. vii+117; 10 plates. (London: Wyman and Sons Ltd., 1903.)
of a te
The opening chapters deal exclusively with Australian conditions. Pressure observations are con
: most as
The question of periodicity naturally comes in for discussion. After eliminating a variation of short Lockyer claims that the smoothed curves for Australia show a periodicity of nineteen years. It is true that there are conspicuous maxima in 1868 and 1897, and minima separated by about the same number of years, but this does not of itself prove a recurring periodicity, and the case is not advanced by drawing a "hypothetical" curve through the points of maximum in which an intervening secondary maximum is disregarded and replaced by a principal minimum. The occurrence of a similar interval between the maxima in the pressure curve for South America, but of other epoch, is suggestive, but the question of the connection between the two continents remains one for further study.
clo sidered first. The mean amplitude of the difference period by taking means of groups of four years, Dr. between a number of conspicuous minima and the Csucceeding maxima in the curves showing the annual variation, amounts to more than seven-hundredths of an inch. When the curves for those stations for which long records are available are compared, they all show a marked similarity, and the important generalisation is arrived at that simultaneous excess or defect of pressure in any one year is a marked feature of the whole Australian continent, and is not restricted to any one particular portion of this area. Coming next to the rainfall observations, an examination of the curves leads to a similar conclusion. Years of to Inte low rainfall are, broadly speaking, years of deficiency over the whole continent, and in years of excess the excess is also general. Moreover, a comparison of Sthe rainfall and pressure curves suggests very strongly that periods of high pressure are periods of low rainfall, and vice versa. These are generalisations of great importance, for they introduce a great simplification, and correspondingly facilitate the further of we study of Australian weather conditions. In view of The the few data available in proportion to the area considered, a meteorologist, arguing from analogy, might be disposed to regard these as hasty generalisations. The extraordinary variability of rainfall in other parts of the world is well known, and for its adequate study a large mass of information is essential. When the necessary figures are forthcoming we find that even within the narrow limits of Ire our own islands there are very conspicuous differences between the north of Scotland and the south of Stror England. Australian conditions are, however, dif
A highly suggestive and interesting chapter on the air movements over the three great land areas of the southern hemisphere points out some interesting similarities between the pressure distribution and the incidence of rainfall of the three continents. The volume also contains an interesting comparison of the flow of the Murray river with the rainfall, and of the frequency of southerly "Bursters" with the variations of pressure. The work thus ranges over a wide field. It offers much that is new, and brings together from a common point of view much information that has hitherto been scattered in a number of individual papers. R. G. K. L.
ferent. As Dr. Lockyer points out, the weather of
POSSIBILITY OF AN EXTRA-NEPTUNIAN
M. GAILLOT has contributed an admirable note
A review recently appeared in NATURE (June 17, P. 463) on Prof. W. H. Pickering's calculations. We there maintained that Prof. Pickering's supposed planet "O" could not possibly produce sensible perturbations in Uranus. Now, M. Gaillot and Prof. Pickering both locate their hypothetical planets in the same part of the sky. M. Gaillot's mass is five times that of the earth, or two and a half times that of Prof. Pickering's "O." A reader of the previous review will see that M. Gaillot's planet would, therefore, produce in Uranus inequalities exceeding a second of We suspect that Prof. Pickering has made some numerical mistake in estimating the mass of his planet "O," and, if he can rectify this, we should then have two independent researches in practical agreement. M. Gaillot's result is, however, sufficiently confirmed by the analogy from inner planets developed in the previous review.
In discussing these questions of correlation, whether it be between variations of the same element at different places or between different elements, Dr. Lockyer uses the similarity between two curves TRAL as his standard of measurement. The points of resemblance to which he directs attention are, indeed, striking. At the same time, the reader feels a desire for a more definite expression of the relation between the elements under comparison. come to the correlation between the Australian curves and those for other parts of the world, which takes up much of the later part of the work, this becomes more imperative. Thus, on p. 72, after discussing the striking resemblance between the pressure changes at Adelaide and those of Bombay or Batavia, we read, "While the Cordoba curve is nearly the inverse of Adelaide the curve for the Cape seems to be intermediate, being more inclined to be similar to the Australian type of variation than that of South America." The intermediate between two curves which are inverse to one another should be a straight line. If it is meant that the Cape curve follows now the variations of Adelaide and now those of Cordoba, it becomes a matter of importance to have some means of comparing the degrees of similarity in the two cases. Superpose any two arbitrarily drawn curves showing fluctuations of approximately the same amplitude, and we are sure to find that some of the maxima and minima agree. Can we say by how much the correlation between the curves we are discussing exceeds that between curves drawn arbitrarily?
The important question now arises, "Are the observed discordances sufficiently large to point un19 It is clear mistakably to some unknown planet? that an inequality with a coefficient of one second of arc appears to exist in the observations; but the elliptic constants of the orbit of Uranus are arbitrary, the observations are liable to small errors, and the theory of the action of known planets is not perfect. All this shows how unsafe it would be to assert the real existence of the inequality which would in its turn demonstrate the existence of an unknown planet. We
It is noteworthy that, like Prof. Pickering, M. Gaillot bases his hypothetical planet upon Uranus and not upon Neptune. It appears, therefore, that the motion of Neptune is in good agreement with the tables, and that no extra-Neptunian planet can exist of a mass and epoch to produce sensible inequalities in the motion of Neptune since its discovery. This is an important negative result; in fact, if it be assumed that the unknown planet has a mass at least one-third that of Neptune, a considerable part of the ecliptic is excluded from the domain where this planet can possibly be found.
THE SORBY RESEARCH FELLOWSHIP. T will be remembered that the late Dr. H. C. Sorby, F.R.S., of Sheffield, bequeathed a sum of 15,000l. to the Royal Society of London to be held in trust for the establishment of a professorship or fellowship for original scientific research, the testator expressly desiring the professorship or fellowship thus founded to be associated with the University of Sheffield. Accepting this trust, the council of the Royal Society appointed a committee to confer with representatives of the University of Sheffield with the view of drawing up a scheme for giving effect to the intentions of Dr. Sorby's will.
PROF. T. W. bridge, F.R.S.
WE regret to record the death, on June 30, of Dr T. W. Bridge, Mason professor of zoology r the University of Birmingham. By his death the Un versity is deprived of one of its oldest and mos experienced teachers, and zoological science has lo one of those workers who, under the influence Balfour and the Cambridge school, have contribute largely both by example and precept to our knowledg of vertebrate morphology.
Prof. Bridge was born in Birmingham in 1848, a. after studying science at the Birmingham and Midlan Institute, went in 1870 to Cambridge as assistant & Mr. J. W. Clark, then director of the Museum ở Zoology. In 1872 he was elected to a foundati scholarship at Trinity College, and appointe demonstrator in zoology under the late Prof. Newtor After his graduation in 1875, he spent six months a Naples working in the zoological station, where, c the advice of F. M. Balfour, he carried out research into the "abdominal pores " of fishes. In 1879 he was appointed professor of zoology in the Royal College of Science at Dublin. In 1880 he became on of the original professors at the Mason College, Birmingham, holding the chair of biology; and when this chair was divided in 1882 he retained the title Mason professor of zoology and comparative anatomy and kept the same position when the Mason College became a University in 1900.
The original work carried out by Prof. Bridge deal: chiefly with the osteology of ganoid fish, the "por abdominales" of vertebrates, and the air-bladder of Teleosts. The most important of these memoirs are undoubtedly those dealing with the last subject, and the large paper by Profs. Bridge and Haddon, pubA scheme, prepared by this committee for the established in the Philosophical Transactions in 1893, on lishment of a Sorby Fellowship for Scientific Research" to be associated with the University of Sheffield, has now been approved and adopted by the council of the Royal Society, and by the senate and council of the University of Sheffield. This scheme provides for the administration of the income of the fund by a joint committee consisting of four persons appointed by the council of the Royal Society, one person appointed by the council of the University of Sheffield, and two by the senate of that University.
The object of the fellowship is not to train students for original research, but to obtain advances in natural knowledge by enabling men of proved ability to devote themselves to research; and in making an appointment the committee will pay special attention to the capacity for original work of a candidate, as shown by the work already done by him, and to the likelihood that he will continue to do valuable work. Each appointment will be in the first instance for five years, subject to the control of the committee, but may in special circumstances be prolonged for further periods if the committee is satisfied with the fellow's work.
The fellow will be required to carry out his research, when possible, in one of the laboratories of the University of Sheffield, and provision is made under
the air-bladder of Siluroids, has become a classic. This work was the first thorough investigation dealing with the structure and physiology of this organ which had appeared since Weber's original discovery and fundamental treatise on the air-bladder published in 1820. In certain Siluroids, Weber found that extraordinary apparatus which still bears his name. He described in a few families the vertebral elements that link the air-bladder with the ear, and concluded that the apparatus subserved the function of hearing in these fish. What was now required was a systematic inquiry into the variation of this mechanism and inte the use or uses of it; and it is this monographic treatment that we owe to Prof. Bridge and his collaborator. They investigated 100 species of Siluroids, and concluded that this highly specialised mechanism was employed, not for audition, but for the registration of varying hydrostatic pressures. These memoirs no: only advanced our knowledge of this interesting struc ture, but threw light on many points of ecologica interest in connection with other physostomatous Teleosts.
Prof. Bridge's most recent work was his article on fishes in the "Cambridge Natural History" (1904). This article has proved one of the most useful treatises on this subject both to teachers and students. The
rch. The probably
alue of his work was recognised by his election into he Royal Society in 1903.
We must not conclude this short article without earing witness to the great success of Prof. Bridge s a teacher. He excelled, to no common degree, in rounding his pupils in the elements of zoology. As xamination candidates his students showed unusual ccuracy, and, in the main, a wide knowledge. Those of them who were able to go further and undertake Come piece of research found in him not only timulus, but an unwearied guide and a sagacious
th, on j
By his its ob
gical scr nder the
cept to oz.
IN Travel and Exploration for July Mr. H. Massac Buist discusses what the nations are doing in the progress of aviation, and refers to the annual prize offered by him to the Aerial League for the best essay by a member of that body dealing with the attention that is being devoted by the leading civilised nations to the advancement of aërial locomotion. The first competition is to close on In his article the author shows that January 31, 1910. while Governments are mainly devoting their attention to the construction of dirigibles, aëroplane machines are, to a large extent, being developed by private enterprise.
WRITING in the Oxford and Cambridge Review, with a foreword by Lord Montagu of Beaulieu, Mr. R. P. Hearne advocates the introduction of aviation as a form of sport at the older universities. It is pointed out that such a scheme would produce a school of skilled aviators whose experience would be of great value in future developments of aërial navigation. While the possibility of an Oxford and Cambridge flying race is suggested, we would point out that, in view of the fact that the great majority of Varsity men cannot afford to spend 1000l. on a motordriven machine, the man of moderate means might participate in the sport by gliding down a suitable incline selected on the Gogmagogs, Madingley Hill, or Royston Heath.
M. G. DARBOUX has been re-elected president of the Société des Amis des Sciences, MM. Aucoc and Picard viceresidents, and Prof. Joubin general secretary. The society vas founded in 1857 by Baron Thenard with the view of issisting unfortunate inventors, men of science, and proningkam essors and their families. Among the names of pastingham residents of the society Occur those of Thenard, ridge. B. Dumas, Pasteur, and others. Since its foundation of the he society has distributed in pensions and grants more ed to han two and a half million francs. This year eighty ge, pensions have been granted to old savants or their widows. e late The society has assisted the education of some seventy spent si children, and made grants to thirty-five widows. The work station of the society should appeal to all who benefit from the work of men of science. Information as to the society may be obtained from the treasurer, M. Fouret, 79 boule188vard Saint-Germain, Paris.
THE number of records of earthquakes obtained at Shide, Göttingen, Hamburg, and Laibach between January 1 and April 30 this year were, respectively, 98, 65, 61, and 33. Each of these earthquakes extended over wide areas, and was recorded at more than one station. At Shide the instrument employed is of the type adopted by the British Association. At the other stations the records were made on smoked paper or by photographic arrangements with a high multiplication.
THE Geologists' Association is arranging a long -excursion to the Arenigs, from July 28 to August 7, under here the direction of Mr. W. G. Fearnsides. The excursion secretary is Mr. E. Montag, 4 Queen's Road, Rockferry, Birkenhead.
THE annual general meeting of the Royal Society of Arts, the 155th since the foundation of the society in 1754, was held on Wednesday, June 30, Sir William H. White, K.C.B., chairman of the council, in the chair. The Prince of Wales was re-elected for the ninth time in succession president of the society, and the council, with certain additions and alterations, was re-elected. principal business of the meeting was the reading of the annual report, which recorded the proceedings of the society during the past year. Reference was made to the failure of the renewed attempt made by the managers of the London Institution to amalgamate with the society. The number of the society's members is now 3490.
THE Vienna correspondent of the Times announces that ea during excavations near Willendorf on the Danube by the tion prehistoric section of the Austrian Natural History rg-Museum, a chalk figurine, 11 centimetres high, representing a female figure, was discovered in a stratum containing instruments and weapons characteristic of the Stone . He age. ts the
THE maps of the cadastral survey of Egypt have just edbeen used to determine accurately the area of land planted ar with cotton and its distribution. Each plot in which cotton was sown was marked on the maps (scale 1/2500), so that not only the area and position were recorded, but, since the land-tax has been recently re-assessed with the aid of these maps, the distribution of cotton on land of different degrees of fertility was also determined. The total area was 1,466,530 feddans, or 1,522,258 acres.
THE Times announces that in July of next year there will be held in Brussels, in connection with the International Exhibition of 1910, the first International Congress of Administrative Sciences, under the direct patronage of the Belgian Government. The term "administrative sciences" is defined by the congress committee as meaning the sum of theoretical knowledge relating to the services, the organisation, the machinery, and the action of Governments, and to the most practical methods to be employed by them. The honorary secretary to the British committee of the congress is Mr. G. Montagu Harris, Caxton House, Westminster, S.W.
THE Naples Academy of Sciences (mathematical and physical section) offers a prize of 1000 lire for the best essay containing a systematic exposition of our present knowledge of the geometrical configurations of the plane and of spaces, considered in relation to the theory of substitutions, with, if possible, some new results. The memoirs are to be sent in anonymously not later than June 30, 1910.
THE recent notices issued by the committee of the International Aëronautical Exhibition at Frankfort show that many valuable prizes, in addition to those we have already mentioned, have been placed at its disposal, including one by the German Emperor; three prizes are also offered for the best kinematographic films of natural flight. A series of scientific lectures will be delivered, the first being