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had hastily despatched on a hopeless undertaking. Sir Charles Wilson, however, had other claims upon public notice which his biographer desires should not be forgotten. As Consul-General in Asia Minor Wilson displayed great activity as an explorer as well as firmness as an administrator. He extended to the Christians of Asiatic Turkey a protection of which they recognised the far-reaching efficacy, and when European Turkey became the scene of his activity he showed similar even-handed justice to the conflicting nationalities. As a pioneer in the exploration of Palestine he found a strange complement of the work of his youth, when he was occupied in the settlement of the frontier between Canada and the United States.
The atmosphere of ecclesiastical controversy which pervades Mr. Carnegie Simpson's Life of Principal Rainy (Hodder & Stoughton) will in the eyes of many readers enhance the value of these two volumes. The prominent part played by Dr. Rainy in the various movements which in the latter part of the last century affected fundamentally Scottish Churchmen, deserved to be placed on record and Mr. Simpson has succeeded in giving a vivid picture of the stormy times in which Dr. Rainy appears alternately as the provoker and the appeaser of conflicts about Church establishment, Church doctrine and Church discipline. Naturally in his career he made many enemies, but he attracted more admirers, and by both parties he was held in esteem and respect. The Free Church of Scotland will for all time look back to Professor Rainy as one of its doughtiest defenders.
The three factors which contributed to the building up of our Colonial Empire, the missionary, the mercantile and the military have alternately been put in prominence. During the last century, it will be admitted that it was the first named which was most frequently in evidence. Latterly other less unselfish motives have developed Colonial wealth and activity. Mr. Hawker's Life of George Grenfell (Religious Tract Society) comes opportunely, therefore, to show that the missionary spirit did not wholly disappear with the nineteenth century and that there is still a field left open for its work. Grenfell's claim to sympathy and admiration is based upon his untiring energy in the discharge of duty. He chose the Congo as the field of his labour; and what he found there, the difficulties to be surmounted, the prejudice to be removed, and the scarcely disguised opposition of the officials to be overcome, form a narrative as exciting as can be well imagined; luckily George Grenfell was a letter writer who kept his correspondents at home well informed of what was passing in the Congo State, and to these letters Mr. Hawker gives publicity.
GEOGRAPHY AND TRAVEL.
If the British expedition under the leadership of Lieut. E. H. Shackleton failed to reach the South Pole, it penetrated far enough into The Heart of the Antarctic (Heinemann) to make the way clear for the next comers. It was not for want of pluck or energy that almost within sight of the goal, Lieut. Shackleton and his party were forced by starvation staring them in the face to turn back. The difficulties of Polar exploration in the Antarctic Circle are enhanced by the almost total
absence of animal life on which adventurers in the Arctic Seas are able to rely. One of the main objects, to fix the South Magnetic Pole, however, was achieved by Professor David; the active volcano of Mount Erebus was ascended to a height of 13,370 feet and Lieut. Shackleton and his party planted the flag given by Queen Alexandra within 100 miles of the pole. The story is told with as much modesty as vividness, and the record of privations readily undergone, and self-imposed labours cheerfully discharged does as much credit to the officers and crew of the Nimrod as to the spirit infused into all by its leader.
Mr. Hilaire Belloc is a past master of the art of rambling, and his volume on The Pyrenees (Methuen) is an excellent plea in behalf of a rapidly vanishing form of enjoyment. He who would share the delights which fall upon the rambler must scorn the fashions of the day. He need not be a mountaineer, but with Mr. Belloc to guide him and a knapsack or a hold-all he will be able to enjoy magnificent scenery, to appreciate historic sites, and to learn something of the strangely mixed people among whom he is tramping.
No part of Europe has been less explored than High Albania (Arnold) into which Miss Edith Durham has penetrated and of which she has given a vivid account which will be read with profit by politicians as well as others. She found her movements in the Christian district less perilous than in the Moslem, but of these, too, she managed to obtain a glimpse, and even of the forbidden cities. Her experiences were for the most part of the roughest, but she conceived a high opinion of the Albanians, though she admits that the "taste for blood" still survives amongst them. This tradition though possibly interesting to ethnographers, is an obstacle to the civilising influences of Albanian "Franciscans," originally drawn from Italy; the explanation of the interest displayed by that country in each fresh development of the Eastern question on the seaboard of the Mediterranean. The separate aims and aspirations of the Moslem and Christian populations render the solution of the problem the more difficult, but a careful study of Miss Durham's book may throw some light upon this, and other complicated questions, whilst her keen observation and sane judgment of this almost unknown nationality gives it exceptional value.
The political importance of the Baghdad Railway, when completed, will probably overshadow its commercial value. Mr. David Fraser's story of his experiences on his Short Cut to India (Blackwood) will possibly relieve the minds of the anxious. At present the railway which is to become the real overland route traverses the plain lying to the south-east of Constantinople, and breaks off before reaching the slopes of the Taurus Mountains. The sum expended was raised in Berlin, and in view of the reckless extravagance displayed, German investors may think that the chances of any return for their money are very remote. How, therefore, it is hoped or proposed to raise the much larger sums required for the three or four remaining costlier sections is a question more for financiers than for statesmen. The Turkish Government has its own financial position to consider, and will hesitate to give further kilometric guarantees for services which are of somewhat doubtful value. Mr. Fraser writes in no partisan spirit, but places
clearly before his readers the natural obstacles to be overcome and the questionable advantages derivable from a line under the control of foreign administration.
Although Dr. Sven Hedin's Trans-Himalaya (Macmillan) was written in the Swedish explorer's native tongue, the two volumes recording his work are specially addressed to English-speaking peoples. Dr. Sven Hedin, notwithstanding countless obstacles raised by nature and men, and after two years of hardship, has practically revealed Tibet to the world. He shows that within its dreary and inhospitable borders the three great rivers of India have their source, and incidentally how impracticable the glacier-ribbed country is for serving as the base of an invasion of its neighbours. He throws, too, the light of new knowledge upon a people with whom hitherto outsiders have had the most superficial acquaintance. It would seem that the main object of the Tibetan life is the cultivation of religion, internal and external, and that for countless generations, this striving after perfection has been the occupation of the leisured classes. Dr. Sven Hedin's volumes are full of interest from beginning to end, and the photographs which throughout his perilous adventures he was able to take, and for the most part to preserve, give valuable assistance to the reader.
The constantly recurring question for politicians and financiers interested in the Far East is how far it is advantageous and practicable to link up India and China by means of railways. Major H. R. Davies, who for many years has been employed in fixing boundaries and collecting information on the spot, has given the result of his inquiries in an interesting volume on Yunnan (Cambridge University Press), which he proclaims to be the most important link between India and the Yangtsze. The rivalry with the French, whose sphere of influence is nearest, is at present a friendly one, and Major Davies' idea and wish are that whilst the British should carry on their line from Lashio in North-Eastern Burmah, the French should push forward their line which now stops at Lao-Kai on the limit of their Tong-King frontier. In this way the road to the fertile valley of the Yangtsze would be opened up from the junction of the two lines at Yunnan-fu. The cooperation of the Chinese Government, however, would be needed for these extensions of the railway system in China, and Major Davies, whilst giving full attention to the physical difficulties in the way, may have estimated too lightly the political objections and financial jealousy which his proposals might arouse.
Mr. J. B. Purvis has written a practical guide as well as an interesting account of his rambling Through Uganda to Mount Elgon (Fisher Unwin). As trader, explorer, sportsman and naturalist, he has plenty to say which will be helpful to those who follow his footsteps, and instructive to those who stay at home and are content with his pictures and the vivid description of a country of which from long experience and by careful investigation he has learnt the resources and its capabilities for British development.
Mashonaland has at least afforded scope for archæologists. late Mr. Theodore Bent who possessed the true flair of the discoverer, was the first to examine critically the stone buildings at Zimbabwe and
the neighbourhood. He came to the conclusion that they bore evidence of great antiquity, probably of more than thirteen centuries, and that they were the work of a non-negro, and probably Asiatic race. A few years later Dr. Randall MacIver, under the title of "Mediæval Rhodesia," published totally opposite conclusions from the study of the same buildings. He held them to be the work of some tribe of the Bantu race, and not more than four or five centuries old. Mr. N. Hall now throws himself into the fray, and in Pre-Historic Rhodesia (Fisher Unwin) gives whole-hearted support to Mr. Theodore Bent's theory. Possibly if Mr. Hall had been less assertive and less dogmatic he would have carried greater confidence in his judgment. His work, however, shows an intimate acquaintance with the remains, be they Asiatic or Bantu, in the province of Mokaranga, and the admirable illustrations give the reader an opportunity of forming his own judgment.
The Cambridge Modern History (University Press) planned by the late Lord Acton has been ably carried on by the present editors, and the two volumes which appeared during the year are among the most important, especially for students of European politics. The sixth volume deals with the eighteenth century, embracing the " Age of Walpole and the Pelhams," the rise of Prussia to a place among the great States of Europe, the development of the English Colonies and the financial schemes of Law and their influence upon trade and taxation. The harvest of the crop sown by European statesmen in the eighteenth century is to be found in the eleventh volume, which is devoted to the growth of nationalities in Europe, and the hollowness of the arrangements made by the politicians at Vienna, who imagined that it was possible to erase the effects of the French Revolution and to restore the old order. Able writers from all countries have been enlisted by the editors, and their labours enable the student to appreciate the march of events from different points of view far more clearly than when treated by historians of one nationality.
The ninth volume of The Political History of England (Longmans) also deals with the stormy period between the accession of Queen Anne and the death of George II. Mr. L. S. Leadam, to whom the work has been assigned, is well equipped, and makes the most of his materials. Marlborough's campaigns, the Union with Scotland and the subsequent Jacobite risings, the Ministries of Walpole and the elder Pitt, culminating with the surrender of Canada to Great Britain, had their bearings and influence upon the establishment of constitutional government in our country. For this reason they deserve the careful study which Mr. Leadam has given to the melting-pot of politics as well as to its "byproducts," whilst he is able to invest many of the events with a picturesqueness which makes history attractive.
In the welter of violence and intrigue in which Western Europe was involved throughout the fourteenth century the Papal Schism was a prominent episode and Baldassare Corsa a conspicuous figure. Mr. Eustace Kitts' In the Days of the Councils (Archibald Constable) attempts to throw light upon many events which remain obscure, and to
disentangle the schemes, political and ecclesiastical, of the chief actors in the stormy drama. The struggle between the Church and the Empire had come to an end and national feeling in ecclesiastical matters was making itself felt in England and France as well as in Italy. All Christendom was directly or indirectly represented in the College of Cardinals. Each election of a new Pope brought about jealousy, ill-will and intrigue, with the result that men were chosen whose claim to the Headship of the Church was not that of spirituality. Baldassare Corsa was a man of energy and intelligence. He realised quickly that it was only by means of Councils that external harmony could be achieved and dynastic rivalries appeased. For a time he was able to work at the problem from a distance, but at length he was forced to assume responsibility, and on Corsa's election to the throne as Pope John XXIII. Mr. Kitts' instructive volume closes.
Major Martin Hume has endeavoured in Two English Queens and Philip (Methuen) to place before English readers a less unfavourable view of the Spanish king than that generally received from Protestant and even more recently from Catholic writers. Major Hume's attempt to strike a balance between Philip's qualities and his defects is based mainly on the reputation which he still retains in Spain. It is possible that he may have been innocent of the brutalities which have defamed Mary Tudor's memory, but there is little doubt that they were encouraged by her anxiety to stand well with her husband, and to show her devotion to his interests. It is possible, even probable, that Elizabeth had for a long time kept him in suspense as to her intentions of taking him for her husband. Had she done so the question of marriage with a deceased wife's sister might never have disturbed the Anglican Church, but England would not have had to look back to her for the establishment of its naval supremacy, and the history of her Colonial empire in West and East. Major Hume, dealing with a critical period in the history of Western Europe, places a vivid picture before his readers and compels them to take sides in the life-struggle he depicts.
Mr. R. Bagwell's Ireland under the Stuarts (Longmans) resumes the history of that country on the accession of James I., a fresh startingpoint of its grievances against British rule. In his previous volumes Mr. Bagwell had shown that the policy of the Tudors, although ruthless, had been without result in bringing about peace between rival septs and rulers. The intermittent policy inaugurated by James I. was scarcely more successful, and in the distribution of the escheated lands the Stuart king, obstinately rejecting the advice of his counsellors, made more enemies than friends. Throughout the fateful century during which the Stuart kings and Cromwell were to make Ireland the battle-ground of their quarrel, the chances of the Irish were invariably lessened by the untrustworthiness of the Stuarts. Mr. Bagwell writes without bias in favour of either Catholic or Protestant ascendency, and leaves the reader to draw his own conclusions on the impartially marshalled facts attendant on the Plantation of Ulster, the Rebellion of 1641, and the Cromwellian Settlement.
Although Archdeacon Sinclair's Memorials of St. Paul's Cathedral