The Parents' Review

A Monthly Magazine of Home-Training and Culture

Edited by Charlotte Mason.

"Education is an atmosphere, a discipline, a life."



Volume 15, 1904, pg. 151-154

Velasquez [by Alfred L. Baldry] (Newnes Art Library, 3/6 net). Messrs. George Newnes, Ltd., have conferred another possession upon people who care for pictures and cannot afford great books. Those of us who saw the Velasquez Show in London a few years ago and were disappointed that they could not take away photographs, will be especially glad to have this volume with its 64 illustrations--good photographs on a broad page, shewing most of the best known pictures of the great master in a clear and forcible way. The reproductions of that most gallant little "Prince Balthasar Carlos" are especially good, and with them one pairs that most princely little maid, the "Infanta Marguerita." We have no space, nor indeed have we the power, to criticize the pictures produced here, but it is necessary to study Velasquez and some half-dozen other masters in order to gain a standard of comparison, without which one's notions of pictures are hardly worth while. The short introduction by Mr. Baldry covers a good deal of ground.

Bell's Miniature Series of Musicians (1/- each net). We have already noticed a capital little series of painters published by Messrs. Bell. Now we are indebted to them for a series of musicians prepared very much on the same lines, and with equal ability and discrimination. Thus, in the Gounod, by Henry Tolhurst, we have chapters treating of the life of Gounod, his works, his character, an analysis of The Redemption, a list of his works and a list of some books about Gounod, together with some eight illustrations--that is, we have a very satisfying introduction to the master.

Mozart, by Ebenezer Prout, Mus. D., is treated in very much the same way. We have a chapter on Mozart as a child, and an appreciation of his art. Again, after having read Mr. Prout's valuable and important little monograph, we shall have arrived at some intimacy with the great composer.

The little volume on Beethoven, by J. T. Shedlock, is also very illuminating, especially the chapter on the characteristics of his art work, which we commend to all young music students. The illustrations in this volume are particularly charming.

We are glad to see Sullivan, by H. Saxe Wyndham, included in this important little series. We have an idea that the next generation will take this master more seriously than do we of his own day.

Edwy the Fair, and Alfgar the Dane, by A. Augustine D. Crake (Longman, 2/- net each). We are exceedingly grateful to Mr. Crake for his effort to make the dead past live before us. These are historical tales--with a difference. In a general way we have the history subordinated to the tale, introduced somewhat awkwardly, and the powder is somewhat inextricably mixed with the jam; but Mr. Crake's effort is so to realize his personages and their times that the history in his hands becomes the story. In Edwy the Fair, whose own character is most carefully dealt with, the writer makes a brave vindication of Dunstan. His sympathies are evidently ecclesiastical, but perhaps not unduly so. The second tale of the series is concerned with the tragedy of the reign of Ethelred the Unready, and with that Judas of those dark ages, Eric Streorn. Saxon and Dane will be something more than names to the boy who has read these volumes. The sincerity and strong convictions of the author, and the simplicity of his treatment, the passion for history which has led to much careful research, will all make themselves felt by the boys (and girls) for whom he has worked. We look forward to the third "Chronicle of Aescendune," which will deal with the Norman conquest.

Austrian Life in Town and Country, by F. [Francis] H. E. Palmer (Newnes, 3/6). We are glad to come across a new volume of this series, Life in Town and Country, for they are always well done. The chapters on The Austrian Bauer, on Rural Life in Hungary, on Town Life in Hungary, on Political and Official Life, are written with intimate knowledge and in the style of the easy raconteur which is well adapted to a work of the kind. This is a series which everyone should possess.

The Handy Touring Atlas of the British Isles, by J. G. Bartholomew (Newnes, 1/-). This is a fascinating little atlas. That Mr. Bartholomew's maps are admirable goes without saying. We like his coloring too. Green, as the basis of these contour maps, is certainly less fatiguing to the eye than white would be. A hundred cycling routes are given with road, rail, river and elevation (shown by contour coloring), with amazing clearness and attractiveness. People who know how to get their knowledge from reading maps might enjoy many a fireside ramble over this charming little touring atlas.

Messrs. Seeley have done, and done well, a valuable service in producing in especially good type, and on good paper with admirable illustrations (from Roman sculptures for example), several important works illustrating ancient history, in pleasing paper covers at 6d. a volume. We hope this effort may spread the love of good reading among our boys and girls. Josephus, edited by A. J. Church, is especially valuable, so too is The Story of the Odyssey and The Story of the Iliad (also by Professor Church), with illustrations after Flaxman. Stories from Virgil, by the same author, appear in the same "People's Edition." And the late Mrs. Marshall's careful story of the days of George Herbert, Under Salisbury Spire, is of interest, though it has not the same manner of classical foundation.

The Book of Indoor Games, by J. K. Benson (Pearson, Ltd., 5/-). This is a capital book of indoor games. Toys, and how to make them, with instructions for a paper frog, a paper bird, how to make a chest of drawers with match boxes, and many other things--has our special commendation. The games too are very good, and it is satisfactory to see that the short list of "Sunday books" is to be commended.

Three Hundred Games and Pastimes, by E. V. & E. Lucas (Grant Richards, 6/-). To say that a book of games and pastimes is produced by Edward Verrall Lucas and Elizabeth Lucas is to pronounce it "capital" in advance, and we are very glad to see that the work has reached a third edition, and that Three Hundred Games and Pastimes is for the most part a re-issue of What shall we do now? There are games for a party and drawing games, guessing games and garden games, chapters on reading and pets, indeed all that the heart of a child could desire in the way of games, treated as the authors know how to treat the subjects children care for.

Only Toys, by F. Anstey (Grant Richards, 6/-). When the author of Vice Versa [A Lesson to Fathers] writes a Christmas book for children, and Mr. H. R. Miller illustrates it, we should be dull not to expect good fun, and we get it. When Torquil and the Ninepin talk over the banquet, when the sentry tells Torquil that "a countersign ain't a conundrum, you know," when the nine jurymen put their heads together, when a thousand things happen between the toys on the one part and the children on the other, we get good nonsense. "Only Toys," says the title, and "enough too" say we.

The Animal Game Book, by Harry Rowntree (Allen, 3/6). The pictures are delightful. The kangaroos at hop-scotch, the penguins at blind-man's-buff, the chimpanzees at follow-my-leader, the ostrich and the bear at hide-and-seek, the baby plovers and the ducklings at tug-of-war, and all the rest, are pictures of delight, while in the pages of description, which tell how the animals play their games, may be read between the lines instructions for the children. This is a charming book.

One Day, by Edith Farmiloe (Grant Richards, 6/-). The One Day is one day of Peter, who is just six years old, and you begin from when he gets up, and open his birthday letters with him, and look over his presents with him, and go shopping with him and his mother and his sister Olivia, and listen to his mummy's story, and then Peter tells his own story, and everything is beautifully pictured in colours.

The Lost Ball, by Thomas Cobb (Methuen, 2/6). We are not quite sure that The Lost Ball is up to the level of the author's former tales in the Blue Story Book Series. The tale is well told, the hero shows some resource and some pertinacity, but there is a somewhat careful absence of the heroic impulse and of generous emotion.

Fairy Tales, Far and Near, by A. T. Quiller Couch (Cassell, 1/3). We are glad to see a cheap edition of Mr. Quiller Couch's Fairy Tales. He knows how to tell a fairy tale, and Mr. Miller knows how to illustrate the same, and these ten make a charming collection. (Sleeping Beauty and other fairy tales is online at project gutenberg and

French Lessons on the Gouin Method, by F. Themoin (Hachette, 2/6). We think very highly of M. Themoin's book; he interprets the Gouin Method with vitality. The subjects of the series are well chosen, and are selected on the principle that there are certain "expressions and phrases which everyone should know." We wish that a writer of so much intelligence had adopted the short speech of common life in place of the elaborate phrases, which we can all recollect from our Ollendorf, for example, but for which we do not find a use for in after life. The conversation with the cocher is an example of what we mean. Life is not long enough for this sort of thing, though no doubt the object is to familiarize the student with words and phrases useful in any case. M. Themoin adheres to the faithfulness of intelligent exposition to the teaching of M. Gouin, and we believe that no other method is so good. Here is a counsel from the preface that we heartily endorse, "The pupil must never lose sight of the fact that the grammar is not the language. The language is the edifice, the grammar is but the explanation of its construction." We have not seen a better introduction to the study of French.

The Eton Nature-Study Note Book, designed by Wilfred Mark Webb, F.L.S. (Spottiswoode & Co., Eton College, 3/6). This is the perfection of a Nature Note Book, made of double paper--a blank page of cartridge for drawing on the one side and a ruled page for writing on the other. The cover of charming green linen is so arranged that new sheets can be added; in fact we have her a perfect Nature Note Book.


ERRATUM.--Page 73, January No., "Buddist" for "Buddhist."

Typed by Blossom Barden, Mar 2023