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relation to it which is certainly very curious. The religious monuments of the Egyptians, whether stone or papyrus, bear testimony everywhere to the fact, that the priests had originally a distinct. conception, and taught the doctrine of the unity of God; and that, however much this doctrine may have been perverted afterwards by the people in their worship of animals, it was still preserved by the priests in their mysteries, and revealed to the initiated, and to them alone, although a dark allusion to it was made in the papyrus roll which was put into the mouths of the dead to accompany them to the grave. The name, however, of the one God was not mentioned in these rolls it was only paraphrased in the profound words, nuk pu nuk, — "I am that I am," — words which recall at once the similar phrase in Exodus (iii. 14) with which God names himself to Moses and the children of Israel, and which, in its Hebrew form Jahveh (mispronounced Jehovah), signifies the same as the Egyptian formula, nuk pu nuk, -I AM THAT I AM.
H. J. W.
GEOGRAPHY AND TRAVELS.
TRAVELS in Turkey are, for the most part, a dismal record of days wasted in weariness, and nights sleepless with fatigue and misery. Read one book, and you have read all. Now and then, indeed, some clever writer appears, who unites the gift of style with considerable knowledge of the country and the languages, and then we can really get through his book. But this is an exception, unfortunately a rare one; and one to which the two brave ladies - whose names figure on the titlepage of the bulky book on the Turks, the Greeks, and the Slavons, which has just reached us damp from the London press cannot fairly lay claim. The expectations raised by the title are by no means satisfied. It is not a book about the Turks or the Greeks, but chiefly about the Serbians, as the writer (for there is obviously but one) terms them in deference to their national pride, which is offended by spelling the word with a v, as giving their enemies a ground to taunt them with its derivation from the Latin servus. The Serbians are, however, an interesting people in many respects; their history, especially that chapter in it which relates to the enfran
*The Turks, the Greeks, and the Slavons: Travels in the Slavonic Provinces of Turkey in Europe. By G. MUIR MACKENZIE and A. P. IRBY. With maps and numerous illustrations by F. Ranitz. London: Bell & Daldy, 1867.
chisement of a part of them from the Turkish yoke, is highly honorable; and it is encouraging to know, from the careful observation of these ladies, that they are such a clean and thrifty race. Montenegro and the Herzegovina, and Albania also, countries which are so rarely. visited, bordering though they do upon the Adriatic, whose waters are ploughed daily by the merchant steamers of the Mediterranean, were included in the travels of these adventurous English women. The descriptions which they give of the scenery and the people of the Black Mountains and the Albanian hills are certainly valuable, because fresh and truthful. But the book is twice as heavy as it ought to have been, and the title twice as ambitious.
That the Turks misrule the country, as they have misruled every country they were once strong enough to conquer, nobody outside the arid circle of English political prejudices and timidity need be told. That the leading prelates of the Greek Church are in many cases the supple tools of Turkish despotism over the Slavic races, is a fact, too, which will hardly be disputed by one familiar with the history of the vast country which stretches from the borders of Thrace to the Julian Alps, between the Danube and the Adriatic. Nor again is it to be doubted, that, in obedience to that law of nationality which has drawn the Italians under one flag, which is giving a head to Germany, and is marshalling the Greeks to assert their independence and their unity, the Slavic races south of the Danube will join hands under a common standard, and, inspired by a common patriotism, redeem their land from the long blight of Islam, and open it to commerce and the civilizing arts.
These things are clear to the careful observer. No one can open a book of travels in these countries without perceiving it. But, meautime, there is immense popular ignorance about the condition and characteristics of this South Slavic people; and one who cares to be enlightened should study this book, we cannot say read it. There is a good colored map accompanying the work; and one is thus able to take in at a glance the variety of races of which the population of this great region is somewhat confusedly made up. The Greeks, it will be observed, occupy, with a trifling exception, the whole Egean coast, and are massed up heavily against the Sea of Marmora. They are essentially a commercial, maritime race; and, when the Turks withdraw, as withdraw they must, into Asia, the Greeks will very likely be masters of the country south of the Balkan range. Further north they cannot go: nor should they, for the Slavic race is
agricultural, and to a certain degree aspiring; and it will occupy the country better than the Greeks, and, moreover, will be its own best
Of Serbia and the Serbians, therefore, we repeat, considerable information will be found in this book; of the Turks, little new that is worth knowing; of the Greeks, nothing whatever.
THE title of Mr. Hepworth Dixon's last book, though not mystical or cabalistic, gives no idea of its real subject. What he calls "New America" is simply an account of three or four of the eccentric religious sects of America, the Mormons, the Shakers, the Funkers, the "Bible Christians" of Oneida Creek. The book is in no sense a book of American travel, and it describes things which are but little known, and have very little influence, in America, — except, perhaps, in its short notice of Spiritualism. It begins with a journey across the plains to Salt-Lake City; exaggerating somewhat the discomforts and hazards of that exciting trip, and giving a picture, by no means fascinating, of life in Colorado, the roughness, brutality, recklessness, and waste of life in the new mining cities. Mr. Dixon's theory, that Indian law and life are the model of the present and coming civilization on these plains, will not be accepted as wise or as plausible. Indeed, we may say that the chief defect of his book is its untenable theories. It is pure fancy to offer the Arab of Cairo and Damascus as the true type of refinement and courtesy, and to show a steadily decreasing grace of bearing and address, as one travels westward. The Arab is lithe and graceful in bodily movement; but it is a perversion of language to call such an ignorant, bigoted, false, and vindictive race, who rarely smile, and with whom cunning is the first of virtues, a race of gentlemen. Mr. Dixon's observation on this subject is simply absurd. There is no such measure of courteousness by degrees of longitude, and the manners of Paris and Boston are not to be set half way between the elegance of the Arabian Desert and the barbarism of Denver City.
Mr. Dixon's pictures of the abnormal sects which he deals with are life-like and accurate; and there is no prejudice in his account
H. J. W.
* New America. By WILLIAM HEPWORTH DIXON. With Illustrations from Original Photographs. Philadelphia: J. B. Lippincott & Co., 1867. 12mo. pp. 495.
of their opinions. He does not go out of his way to approve or condemn; and, to some pious Puritan readers, his book will seem faulty that it relates such moral indecencies with no burst of indig nation, that it leaves doubt as to the real feeling of the author about polygamy, and free love, and asceticism. Ought a respectable writer to reveal such things without denouncing them? "He that is not against us is for us;" and the Mormons will have the right to say that Mr. Dixon favors their plurality of wives, because he has no harsh words for it. But, on the whole, this impartial calmness of judgment is a pleasant feature of the book, and gives confidence in the writer's statements. It will not probably make converts to promiscuous intercourse of the sexes, or to the patriarchal system of the harem. It may send visitors to New Lebanon or to Oneida Creek, but will hardly add recruits to those strange communities.
Mr. Dixon is a friend of America and American institutions, a believer in republican ideas, and a strong foe to every kind of slavery and oppression. It is impossible, therefore, to mistake him for an advocate of the Mormon despotism, which perpetuates the worst features of slavery. He cheerfully recognizes the material progress, the industry, the temperance, the good order, the thrift, of the SaltLake oasis. But he has not that cynical joy which we find in the work of Burton, in showing how material prosperity comes with moral obliquity. Burton would have us believe that the preaching and the practice of the Mormons are quite as respectable as those of any Christian sect, and that the success of this polygamy and this vulgar hierarchy is a substantial proof that the patriarchal religion and method are as good as the Christian. Dixon does not say that, but only gives the good side of the Mormon life along with the disgusting side.
His book is fresh, entertaining, and instructive. There is not a dull page in it. If some of the statements are extravagant, they are far less so than those of most English writers on American things. A writer who can describe so well American oddities can be trusted to give us another book on the ordinary experiences of the traveller here, and on things better known.
POETRY AND ART.
THE law of demand and supply seems, in these days of perfected commercial arrangements, to have extended itself into the domain of
poetry; so that the literary market is now supplied, with very considerable regularity, with the productions of its most popular and recognized poets. The fact is, doubtless, entirely creditable; and we ought to felicitate ourselves on having achieved a final victory over the eccentricities of genius. But it is occasionally a little annoying to be forced to amend our ideas, and to learn the new aphorism, that, whatever may be the origin of the poets themselves, their verses at least are not created, but manufactured, and that to order. It is useless to complain of degeneracy, or to talk about inspiration in our day, the best inspiration is success; and the substantial tribute of quick sales and multiplied editions is a very acceptable discount on that very long note of hand which goes by the name of Fame.
"Think of this, good peers,
But as a thing of custom: 'tis no other,
This moralizing is apropos of Mr. Whittier's last book, “The Tent on the Beach," which appears just a year after the "Snowbound." The two are very different from each other, and both are very different from the earlier poems of their author. They are the work of a prosperous writer, whose name is sufficiently established to make it of comparatively little importance to his publishers what he writes or how he writes it. The "Snow-bound" has the advantage of being complete and single, and of a subject which is sure to make its own interest in the heart of every reader who has reached middle age, and can look back on the vanished joys of a New-England country home. Many of its pictures are charming, because they are simple and true, and shine with the tender radiance of a loving and sad memory," the light of other days." But it is quite evident that much of the matter was added only to make up the volume; and the public interest, which follows with pleasure the outlines and even the details of the main picture, flags and fails when invited to examine all the nameless family portraits which follow, drawn though they are with a reverent hand, and out of a feeling which it is impossible that a stranger can share.
Of the later volume still less can be said. This is still more obviously a manufactured poem, of which the public have been
The Tent on the Beach. By John Greenleaf Whittier. Boston: Ticknor