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Social Science: being Selections from John Cassell's Prize Essays by Working Men and Women; with Notes. London: Cassell, Petter, and Galpin.
A VERY neat and well-edited volume of essays, extracts, and notes on a great variety of topics of everyday life and interest. The enterprising publisher, Mr. John Cassell, feeling warmly interested in the advancement of social science, became convinced that while, on the one hand, Social Reformers among the educated classes could suggest improvements, legislative or otherwise, it was most important, on the other, to elicit from the operative class their opinion as to how far they could work out for themselves the question understood by the designation of Social Science, apart from any legislative interference, whether municipal or parliamentary. Anxious to obtain this opinion, Mr. Cassell determined to offer ten prizes of five pounds each for the best essay on each of the following topics:-Self Education, Indiscreet Marriages, the Paternal Headship, Mechanics' Institutes, Labour and Relaxation, the Advantages of Sunday, Courtesy, Temperance and Provident Habits, Physical Education, Sanitary Reform. The following noblemen and gentlemen severally undertook to adjudicate the prizes,-the Earls of Carlisle, Shaftesbury, and Russell, the Bishop of Durham, Lord Brougham, Right Hon. Joseph Napier, Sir Walter C. Trevelyan, Bart., Sir Benjamin C. Brodie, Sir Fitzroy Kelly, Q.C., M P., and M. Davenport Hill, Esq., Q.C., Recorder of Birmingham. More than 500 essays were sent in, and the result is the handsome and elegant volume before us, which we most cordially commend. It is a credit to the working men and women of England, and to those by whose means it has been produced. We need scarcely say that the Temperance question has had ample justice done to it, not only by many of the essayists, but also by the able editorial notes and statements scattered throughout the volume, some of which we hope hereafter to insert in the Dietetic Reformer.
Letters on Modern Agriculture, 1860. By Baron LIEBIG. London: Walton and Maberley. WE commend this translation of the last work of the great German chemist to all our farming and horticultural readers, more particularly in relation to the suicidal policy of both his and our countrymen in relation to the millions worth of invaluable fertilising substances annually allowed to run to waste. His epitome of the agriculture of China, in which he shows that the farming community in that vast and populous country is entirely independent of cattle for manure, conveys an admirable lesson. We have seldom seen the objection, "What shall we do for manure?" so triumphantly demolished as in the following extract:"The doctrine which inculcates as necessary for the cultivation of the land the production of manure by green crops, and along with this the maintenance of a stock of cattle, is erroneous. It is necessary here to distinguish between necessity and utility. A stock of cattle may prove very useful to the farmer, and yield him a remunerative return in butter, cheese, and meat; but this is quite a distinct affair from the tillage of his fields; and he ought to know, and must be taught, that there is absolutely no compulsion upon him to keep a stock of cattle. The keeping of cattle is necessary for the production of manure; but the production of manure is by no means necessary for the fertilisation of corn fields. In the system of the rotation of crops, all that is required is that green crops should be grown, and that their constituent parts be incorporated with the arable surface soil of the field; and it is quite immaterial for the cereals whether the green crops be previously eaten by the cattle and converted into manure or not. If lupines, vetches, clover, turnips, &c., are cut up and ploughed in, in their green state, their action is far more powerful. There is no natural connection of mutual dependence between the production of corn and that of flesh and cheese. On the contrary, they interfere with each other, and must in science be considered as perfectly distinct and separate things; for the production and sale of flesh is carried on at the expense of grain and vice versa. We cannot (?) do without meat, milk, and cheese; and if the production of these articles be left entirely to the grazer, who on his part ought to meddle as little as possible with the growing of grain, both he and the farmer, as well as the consumer, would profit by it."
Fifteen Reasons for Abstaining from the Use of the Flesh of Animals as Food. An Essay. By J. H. LONGSTAFFE, Norton, Stockton-on-Tees. London: Job Caudwell, 335, Strand, W.C. Price One Penny.
THIS little pamphlet very briefly presents the leading arguments in favour of Vegetarian diet, and may usefully be placed in the hands of inquirers and objectors. Amongst the arguments adduced are those derived from the original dietetic law, man's anatomical structure, digestion, nutrition, &c. A large number of Mr. Longstaffe's Essay might advantageously be distributed at the coming Annual Meeting in Sheffield.
Intemperance and Crime: Their Causes and Remedies.
Three Letters. By WILLIAM Manchester: United Kingdom
THIS is a reprint of a Series of excellent Letters bearing on the subjects indicated They cannot be too widely circulated.
Intelligence, Reports, &c.
THE BRITISH ASSOCIATION FOR THE ADVANCEMENT OF
THE meeting of the British Association, just held in Manchester, has been a great success. We should have been glad if our space and the scope of our magazine would have permitted us to have given our readers an extended notice of the deeply interesting proceedings of the various sections. We can, however, do no more than insert a few brief extracts from some of the more important papers read before the association. On another page we notice some crude and unphilosophical remarks of the president of one of the sections, who has the conceit that cannibalism has grown out of a natural craving for animal food, under circumstances that render the custom if not proper at least pardonable.
The application of the experimental method pursued during the last thirty years had led to a large modification of the early and economic science in reference to free colonisation, legal interference with labour, currency prices, the nature and operation of rent, and the effects of a large increase of metallic money. As to legal interference with labour, there was no part of political economy, apparently as clear as that which taught that capitalists and labourers should be left to make their own bargains. Prior to Adam Smith and Ricardo, nearly all such interference by law and custom had been mischievous; and, therefore, experience seemed to be on the side of laissez faire, and against guilds, sindics, and government officers. This was true, so long as the labourers were of the adult class, working singly or in small numbers, or in families. But it ceased to be true when manufacturers congregated workpeople in large masses, and largely employed women and children, who were only partially free agents. Capitalists said that the limiting the hours of labour would mischievously and fatally discourage capital; and so it would, in the abstract. But there were these qualifying conditions-that capital, depending for its return upon the order and energy of large masses of persons, must take especial care of the physical and moral condition of such persons; and that the efficiency of exertion, even with machinery, did not mean unlimited hours of labour, but skilled efforts during the best selected parts of the day. The experiment had fully answered; and the orderly, educated, and contented labourers of Lancashire were security against foreign competition, and a guarantee of peace. Economie science dealt with six principal classes of questions, namely, the nature of wealth, the exchango of commodities, taxation and finance, currency and banks, wages and division of employment, and interference by the State. The last three only were still in dispute. Formerly with regard to these the laissez faire principle seemed to be the general rule; but as society became more complex, it seemed to be clear that the State must in many cases protect individuals. It could not be denied that at present the tendency of civilisation was to deal with rights in masses. The conclusion of the whole matter seemed to be, that as the result of the last thirty years, full as that period had been of scientific achievements, they might justly claim for the services rendered by economic science and statistical inquiry a place in the front rank; that they had now arrived at a kind of intermediate point, at which, after long debate, many of the earlier controversies were finally settled, and from which they might see their way to a higher summit; and that the least doubtful result of their experience had been the discovery that the most solid progress was made by guiding themselves in the main by close observation of facts, and by employing speculative and hypothetical reasoning under the most cautious conditions. But there was a larger moral beyond these results. The last thirty years had been an age of rennaissance, because they had found out that human life had higher ends than employment in incessant labour or devotion to excessive gain; that to accomplish these higher ends they must free themselves bodily and wholly of artificial and false supports, and contest with no mimic earnestness for the honour of the first place among modern civilised states. He did not believe in the New Zealander looking upon the ruins of St. Paul's; but rather looked forward to Windsor Castle becoming a west end mansion, and the villas of the metropolis flourishing on the hills of the White House. No community ever decayed in which the poorer classes could earn a reasonable independence.-Mr. W. Newmarch's Address in Section F.
FREE TRADE IN FOOD AND PROHIBITION OF LIQUOR TRAFFIC.
To complete the argument, it can also be shown that the free-trader, if intelligent and honest, is bound to seek the suppression of the liquor-traffic, in order to fully carry out his own principles, and be consistent with his avowed policy. The force of all the arguments in favour of the abolition of the Corn Laws did not rest upon a mere change of fiscal arrangements, or the acceptance of a party phrase. "Free trade" had indissolubly attached to it the idea of cheaper bread. It meant nothing if not that. Hence the parading of the large
loaf in contrast with the small one. But this promised boon could only arise from a more plentiful supply of corn in our own markets. It is conceivable that free trade might exist, and yet this country might be afflicted with famine. The only consolation we should have would be the melancholy one, that other countries must be suffering the same affliction. The destruction of food, then, is clearly tantamount to a deficient harvest, just to the extent the destruction stretches; and if Mr. Gladstone's remarks were true as to the 7,320,000 quarters represented by the £366,000, the receipt of which he regretted, they are equally true in respect to that quantity which he regards as included in a normal demand on foreign markets, but which we see is entirely owing to what is worse than wasted in the manufacture of a demoralising poison. He considers half a million of revenue from corn might be received without its being the measure or indication of any scarcity. In other words, he thinks ten million quarters might be imported without any cause of regret, whilst all above that is an indication of diminished resources, and a limit to revenue payments in other ways. But, suppose the waste the section are now considering was stopped, it is palpable there would still be upwards of two millions of quarters to import, proving that we have none to spare for such questionable purposes. Moreover, it must be borne in mind that the mere outlay of the nation for the food they need to import is not the only evil. Scarcity, occurring through unpropitious weather or waste, increases the price of all that is left. The rise of a shilling per quarter is at the least a million pounds of loss to the consumers; but if the average price during the year be twelve or fourteen shillings per quarter more than another year, it is as many millions subtracted from the free capital of the nation. This is reckoning at the low rate of twenty millions of quarters consumption. In conclusion, we remark that the FOOD of a people is their life-the means of their existence; and that whatever tends to render human food scarce in quantity, or to deteriorate its nutritious quality, or converts it into an element of mischief and disease, must be anti-social, immoral, irrational, and highly criminal. Reason, morals, political economy, social science, all concur in condemnation of any system that inevitably destroys that which is essential to the life, the health, and happiness of the people. To destroy food is, in effect, to destroy that life and health and happiness that food sustains. Hence, it becomes one of the first duties of statesmanship to provide and to husband the means of subsistence. It is said in a revered book, " He that withholdeth corn, the people shall curse him;" and the instincts of humanity respond to that saying. But if it is wicked and accursed to "withhold" corn in times of scarcity, how much more infamous and criminal it must be to cause that scarcity, by artificial means, by the deliberate destruction of human food, and by the conversion of it into that which is not food; but which tends to promote disease, and to degrade the people, in the same proportion that it dissipates the resources of the nation, and perverts and frustrates the bountiful and beneficent intentions of Providence!-Paper, by Charles Thompson, "On some exceptional Articles of Commerce, &c."
ADVANTAGES OF GEOGRAPHICAL SCIENCE.
This proof of the soundness of geographical science was that which all ages had shown. It was that which enabled Columbus to say to those of his day-There, there in yon dark and mysterious west is another and a mighty world, equal to your own. It is that true germ of science, budding and growing in man's mind, which enables the unknown, the humble, the ill-clad labourer to mount on high beyond all common things, and in a short time to burst upon the world with new light on some valuable and important subject. Here, surrounded by eminent travellers and numerous intellectual minds, who must have felt all this, I need say no more on the subject. But I must now ask, why should the Arctic regions be forbidden to the energy and perseverance of man? The Swedes have sent a good expedition towards the North Pole; the American has gone there: why, then, are we to stop, after so many years of glorious labour? Mineral wealth is found in those regions; the fur trade can be well extended; the whale fishery improved; and, above all, the honour and dignity of our flag maintained by completing that little yet remaining to be accomplished in the polar seas. I would venture to suggest that Government should be asked to send a ship to the Mackenzie for magnetic purposes and to collect those scientific documents undoubtedly left by the ill-fated Franklin expedition. Everywhere England is nobly at work spreading and obtaining new light. She stops nowhere, save, just now, in that very region where she has so long laboured. Hand to hand the Saxon and the Gaul, the white man and the black, are traversing the earth in all directions, seeking for new intellectual wealth and to benefit each other. The native races are becoming better known and their rights more respected. And thus in the east, the west, the south, and yet the north, will pure light be spread and the knowledge of sound truth disseminated. It is by such great and daring deeds as those I have dwelt upon that a nation wins its fame. Geographically, our country is but a speck on the surface of the globe; and yet how great, how mighty she is! No difficulties, no dangers appal her, and she pursues her way, undisturbed at home, while storms and convulsions often reign elsewhere. So England advances; so England will advance; whilst England's sons, encouraged by England's fair daughters, boldly carry our time-honoured flag, here, there, and everywhere-aye, even to the very pole itself.Capt. Parker Snow on Arctic Explorations.
TAXES ON TEA, COFFEE, AND SUGAR.
What sources of poverty, misery, vice, and crime would be removed if the working classes of this country were only placed on a level with our colonists in that one article of tea! In Australia, before the gold discoveries, the consumption was estimated at 15 pounds per head per annum. The average consumption in the United Kingdom last year was only 2lb. 9oz. During the last session of parliament, many honourable members, not hitherto distinguished for their free-trade principles dilated on the heavy pressure of the tea duty on the industrial classes, and on the great advantages to them and to the trade and shipping of the country which would result from a reduction of the duty by 3d. per pound. All this was undoubtedly true; but if such were the benefits to arise from a reduction of less than one-fifth of the duty only, how vastly would they be increased by its total abolition! Coffee, another great civiliser, and potent foe of drunkenness, is taxed as if it were a poison instead of an antidote. That of the lowest quality pays the same duty as the highest, 3d. per pound, !! and a quarter per cent. The duty operates as a premium on adulteration. To meet this mischief, chicory, its most convenient adulterator, is taxed; and chicory, in its turn, is adulterated also. Thus, one of the most powerful antagonists of the demon drunkenness, is all but banished from those who most need its aid; a wholesome beverage is polluted, and the revenue is robbed and re-robbed through the agency of duties imposed for its benefit. Sugar, also, is heavily burdened, and with the same consequences-restriction of consump tion, limitation of trade and employment, unprofitable abstraction of capital, adulteration and great injury to the community at large. There can be no doubt that the numerous coffee-houses, first established some years ago, on a partial reduction of the sugar and coffee duties, are successful and most beneficial competitors with public-houses. But how much more powerful would they be if tea, coffee, and sugar were obtainable at their natural prices-prices which would require no unprofitable investment of the merchants or dealer's capital in customs duties - the prices of perfect free trade! And how would the domestic comforts be multiplied, with the refreshing cup at any time within the command of any man's or woman's wages-the cupboards stored with jars, the jars with preserves-the fruit grown in abundance, preserved in sugar which paid no taxes! In the case of sugar an attempt is made to regulate the scale of duties according to quality. It depends on the judgment of the custom-house officer, which may be honest-may be erroneous unintentionally-or may be warped by a bribe equal to a whole year's pay, whether the duty paid shall be 18s. 4d. or 12s. 8d. per cwt.-From a Paper by Mr. M Queen "On the True Principles of Taxation."
THE OPIUM TRADE WITH CHINA.
He could only consider the question in relation to the prospects of the British trade with China. The expenditure of British blood and British treasure in three successful wars had extorted from the Tartars all the facilities that the British trader desired to have, leaving, however, in Tartar breasts a burning resentment at the degradation of the Imperial government, and in Tartar officials a manifest disposition to obstructive subterfuges in carrying out the treaty of Tien-tsin. The Taepings or rebels on their part issued proclamations professing amity for foreigners, calling them "Christian brethren," and inviting them to enter into commercial relations, but with one exception. The traffic in opium they denounce as a religious ordinance, and threaten the penalty of death to those who engage in it. The taxpayers of England, therefore, would have to determine whether we were to tread in our former steps, and, for one article of commerce, waste life and money to force upon a reluctant people, for selfish gain, a deleterious product; while, at the same time, we crushed a national movement to throw off a foreign oppression, which under analogous circumstances in Europe had had our warmest sympathy, and at the success of which all freemen rejoiced.-From a Paper by Colonel Sykes, M.P.
SHEFFIELD.-Vegetarianism continues to have a firm existence here; although no new members have been enrolled since our last report, yet we are happy to say that those identified with us are staunch in their adherence to our principles. We have altered the time of our meetings from once a month to once a fortnight with great advantage. On these occasions, we examine and discuss the arguments of Mr. Lewes, in his "Physiology of Com mon Life," or of persons present by invitation, who may be seeking information, with a view to the adoption or rejection of our views. These fortnightly discussions not only confirm us in the faith, but give considerable interest to, and increase the attendance at, our periodical gatherings. We purpose making arrangements for the delivery of a course of lectures on Dietetic Reform during the approaching season, which we hope will result in some additions to our numbers. We regret to have to report the removal from us of our late esteemed corresponding secretary, the Rev. William Sharman. The following copy of a resolution, passed at one of our special meetings, may not be out of place in conclusion. It is as follows:-"That the members of this association feel deep regret at the loss of the valuable services of their esteemed corresponding secretary, the Rev. William Sharman,
and desire to express to him their fervent gratitude for the indefatigable manner in which he perseveringly and persistently laboured for the glorious cause in which he and they feel such a deep interest: and they trust that in the new sphere of exertion to which he has been appointed, he will be long spared to promote by his talents the success of all good and noble movements for the elevation of their beloved country. And that the Rev. Wm. Sharman, of Birmingham, be constituted an honorary member of this association."-The Annual Meeting of the Vegetarian Society is expected to be held here, during the month of October, and will, doubtless, add a fresh impetus to our movement.
THOS. CHAPMAN, Hon. Sec.
TEMPERANCE YEAST.-Boil two ounces of hops in four quarts of water half an hour; have ready three pounds of potatoes well mashed; strain the hop water upon the potatoes; then let the liquor boil again, and mix one pound of flour with cold water until it makes a paste; add half a pound of brown sugar and a little salt, stir it well into the hot liquor, and let it be until new-milk warm; then add a little balm. When cold, cork it down in stone bottles, when it will be ready for use, and will keep six weeks.
SMOKELESS FIRE. -This may be secured by attending to the following instructions:Before you throw on the coals, pull all the fire to the front of the grate towards the bars, fill up the cavity at the back with the cinders or ashes which will be found under the grate, then throw on the coals. The gas evolved in the process of roasting the coals will be absorbed by the cinders-will render them in an increased degree combustible. The smoke will thus be burnt, and a fine, glowing, smokeless fire will be the result. This rule should be enforced from the kitchen upwards.
HOW TO KEEP A HOUSE SWEET.-Every sink within the house must be carefully trapped, and every external pipe; for every water pipe leads into some sewer, and where water can flow down sewer gases can come up. We read of a rainwater-pipe bringing up sewer fumes to the outside of a drawing-room window. There is another case, too, in which a whole family had been ill in one of the principal streets at the west end of London, and the house at times unbearable from effluvia, which entered the upper windows. Enormous expenses had been incurred, and everything which builders could suggest had been done. At last it was discovered that the waste pipe (i. e., that which lets surplus water run off), hidden within a cistern, which was supported on a bracket outside the next house, led down to an old, rotten, untrapped drain in that house, and that this was the source of all the illness, and expense, and misery.-Medical Times.
INDIA-RUBBER VARNISH.-That india-rubber dissolved in various liquids yields a good varnish, is well known; but in general they are too viscid for delicate purposes, and are only good for making stuffs waterproof. India-rubber liquified by heat, dissolved in oil of coal tar, or drying linseed oil, does not give a varnish of sufficient fluency, or free from smell. Moreover, a considerable quantity of india-rubber remains undissolved in a gelatinous state, suspended in the liquid, so that the solution is never clear. Dr. Bolley has recently published some remarks upon this subject, which may be useful. If india-rubber be cut into small pieces, and digested in sulphuret of carbon, a jelly will be formed; this must be treated with benzine, and thus a much greater proportion of caoutchouc will be dissolved than would be done by another method. The liquid must be strained through a woollen cloth, and the sulphuret of carbon be drawn off by evaporation by a water-bath; after which the remaining liquid may be diluted at will with benzine, by which means a transparent_but still yellowish liquid will be obtained. A more colourless solution may be prepared by digesting india-rubber cut into small pieces for many days in benzine, and frequently shaking the bottle which contains it. The jelly thus formed will partly dissolve, yielding a liquid which is thicker than benzine, and may be obtained very clear by filtration and rest. The residue may be separated by straining, and will furnish an excellent waterproof composition. As for the liquid itself, it incorporates easily with all fixed or volatile oils. It dries very fast, and does not shine unless mixed with resinous varnishes. It is extremely flexible, may be spread in very thin layers, and remain unaltered under the influence of air and light. It may be employed to varnish geographical maps or prints, because it does not affect the whiteness of the paper, does not reflect light disagreeably as resinous varnishes do, and is not subject to crack or come off in scales. It may be used to fix black chalk or pencil drawings; and unsized paper, when covered with this varnish, may be written on with ink.- Galignani. Benefit your friends, that they may love you still more dearly; benefit your enemies, that they may become your friends.