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Nature
(Thursday, November 4, 1869)

Our book shelf,   pp. 17-18


Page 17


NA TURE
these insects are represented on coloured plates, these
figures, accompanied as they are by good descriptions,
will prove an invaluable boon; and we can only hope
17
that Mr. -Newman s book, the result of years of study,
may meet with the success which it so well deserves.
                                     WV S. DALLAS
THE GOAT MOTH (Ceossns lin$ ra)
TIlE MIERVEILLE DU JOUR (Agrwr ajirilina)
                 OUR BOOK SHELF
Text Book of Botany.-Lchrbich de'r Botanik fiWr Gi m-
    nask", Rca/schn/en, --c. By Dr. Otto WV Thome.
    X vol. 8vo. 358 pp., with 621 woodcuts. Price 3s.
    (Brunswick, I 869.)
DR. THONItS name is new to us. He is a teacher in
what we may call the Upper Grammar School at Cologne.
Because he has not published original observations it does
not follow that he should be a bad teacher.  Rather,
indeed, this is a point in his favour; for original obser-
vers, unless they be men of wide grasp of mind, or of
great experience, are apt to ride special hobbies too far,
and to be very unfair and crotchety.
  A cursory inspection of this book leaves a favourable
impression. It is German, of course, and the first chapter
is entitled Die Ze/le a/s Individuum, but so far as we
can judge it is a handy book for a beginner, and if not all
pure milk, it does not seem very badly diluted: much
cream now-a-days it is hardly fair to look for. It is very
copiously illustrated; the cuts by no means all original,
and not a few borrowed from this side the Channel, but
none the less well adapted to their purpose.  D. 0.
The Retardation of the Beat of the Heart.-Das Hemn-
    m;nngsncrz'ensystemt des Herszens. By Adolf Bern-
    hard Meyer. (Berlin, i869. London: Williams and
    N orgate.)
A CRITICAL and experimental inquiry- into the inhibitory
action of the pneumogastric nerve on the beat of the heart.
The chief features of the experimental investigation are-
first, the extension of the facts of inhibition to many animals
(chiefly reptiles) not hitherto specially examined in refer-
ence to this point. Curiously enough, in Enmys Zntaria
the left pneumogastric is inert ; unfortunately Dr. Meyer
has not worked out the cause of this singularity. Second,
the author brings experiments to show that the effect of
stimulation on the pneumogastric may be kept up for a very
long time-more than an hour. In frogs the effect may
be carried as far as complete stoppage for this time; in
mammals as far as retardation only of the beat.  M. F.
Exotic Lepidoptera.-Ltpidottera Erotica; or, Descri45-
     lions and I/iustrations of Erotic Lepidoptcira. By
     A. G. Butler, F.L.S., &c. (London: E. WV. Janson.)
 MR. BUTLER, who is well known as an ardent and care-
 ful student of the diurnal Lepidoptera, has undertaken, in
 conjunction with 'Mr. Janson as publisher, what will no
 I doubt prove a very valuable and beautiful work. 'Many
 new species of Lepidoptera have been described-by M\r.
 Butler himself amongst others-without any figure: this
 practice is exceedingly inconvenient to those who attempt
 to identify species ; and though, as Mr. Butler observes, it
 enables those who adopt it to "call the beautiful their
 own " to a larger extent than if they had to wait for figures,
 it is nevertheless a reprehensible proceeding, and has
 afflicted the conscience of one at least who has been guilty
 of it. Mr. Butler is a very skilful artist, and evidently an
 | intense admirer of the lovely colours and forms of the
I insects he deals zvith. Consequently'it is a matter for
congratulation that he has undertaken to make up for the
shortcomings of past times, and intends to bring out once
a quarter a part of his " Lepidoptera Exotica," with three
coloured plates of new or unfigured species. In the two
parts already issued, which are before us, the figures are
admirably done, and very handsome; whilst the descrip-
tive text is concise, and in Latin in part. Some of Mr.
Wallace's Bornean butterflies are figured in the second
I part.                                     E. R. L.
Physiology of the Human Voice. - Physiologic rend
     Pathoiogie der ifcnsch/ichen Stinme. By Dr. M. J.
     Rossbach. (XVurzburg. London: Williams & Norgate.)
 A TREATISE on the physiology of the voice, intended by the
 author to be useful not only to physiologists and patholo-
 gists, but also to those engaged in singing or in teaching
 singing. A chapter on the nature and qualities of sounds,
 based on Helmholtz' well-known work, and a short one on
 musical instruments, introduce the main topic, the physi-
 ology of the human organ of voice. There are also separate
 chapters on the vocal register, the different kinds of voice,
 and the relations of voice, speech, and song.
Nov. 4, I 869]


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