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After the age of fifteen months, when the young fish are placed in the river, and go to and return from the sea, during which journeys we obtain our relative proportions of marketable fish, the question arises, From which system, the natural or artificial, can we derive the largest quantity of tablesalmon at the least relative numerical cost? Let us of course remember that we have a migratory fish to deal with. The ova may be nursed into life, and the young salmon be protected for a few months; but at the end of the period of protection, when the fish are led away, they become exposed to the same chances of hurt as the millions of others which are going to and returning from the sea. A salmon, it is said, must twice visit the salt water before it is fit for the table; therefore, out of the four years of its average life it can be protected for only a few months-in the case of half the fish of a brood, for fifteen months; and for the other half, a little over two years. I shall not at present enter into the minutiæ of salmon-commerce, but it would be interesting to consider the pounds, shillings, and pence of the artificial system. Given four hundred thousand eggs laid down at an expense of about sixty pounds, the question comes to be, How many of these eggs will reach, say, the state of twenty-pound fish? If only five in each hundred do so, that will of course be two thousand fish; and as to price, these may be estimated all over at a pound sterling each-yielding, therefore, a sum of two thousand pounds. As the largest mortality in salmon-life occurs during the infancy of the fish, it is not too much to assume that five per cent. of the well-protected parrs will attain to the condition assumed.
Various questions in the natural history of the salmon have been determined by the wonder working salmon-ponds. It has been proved that the eggs of the salmon produce parr, that parr change into smolt, that smolt become grilse, and
that grilse become salmon; and yet at one time all these conditions of salmonlife afforded matter for grave and learned disputation. One of the wonders disclosed by the artificial system is the rapidity as well as the anomaly of salmongrowth. One portion of a family of salmon may be disporting in the Stormontfield ponds under the kindly protection of Peter Marshall, fishes scarce an ounce in weight, and of corresponding size; while another portion may be returning from the salt water, salmon weighing four pounds, well-grown and shapely fishes, many of which are captured and sent to table-which is not right, seeing that they are only grilse. Whenever it gains the sea, the little smolt can revel and gorge itself in water that abounds with food, so that, with its rapid digestive power, it grows and gets fat as quickly as if it were an aquatic alderman living on turtle soup and fins of turbot. All kinds of odd experiments as to the development and growth of the salmon have been tried in the magic breeding-boxes at Stormontfield. The eggs of the largest fish have been milted by the smallest parr, and with no visible effect on the growth of the offspring; they grow and become smolts the same as the other produce of the ponds. Again, female salmon have been crossed with a male grilse, but with no particularity of growth: the same anomaly as to youthful changes distinguished the young fish in both instances; only the half of them changed to smolts in the first year, as before. An old Tay fisher whom I have met has a theory that salmon life evolves in biennial stages: half of a shoal of parr only goes to sea the first year, and half of these remain in the salt water for two seasons; and so on with the grilse and the salmon in a circle forever. In short the natural history of the salmon has as yet been very imperfectly investigated, and theories are sometimes promulgated just to hide the ignorance of those who invent them.
But that if Love on Virtue lean,
Then lead it through the immortal door,
Breathe gently, wind of Summer,
To keep their summer in the soul,
And that the Wrong which seems to stand,
Is but a breath of vain endeavor:
I HAVE waited while primroses faded;
Time's gray has passed over my tresses,
And the white summer clover is mown.
I have waited long under the elm-trees,
I have waited through light and through dark
I have waited in sunshine and rain; I am waiting for one who may never Come back from the rough sea again.
NOTHING is lost: the drop of dew
So with our deeds, for good or ill,
- Chambers' Journal.
NOTES ON RECENT BOOKS.
The Seven Weeks' War. Its Antecedents and its Incidents. By H. M. HOSIER, F.C.S., F.G.S. Based upon Letters reprinted by permission from The Times. 2 vols. London: Macmillan & Co. The enterprise and recognition of the newspaper press, securing as they do the highest available talent, and every possible facility, have wrought a wonderful change in the history of warfare. We should feel as if a wrong were done to us if the Times had not special correspondents upon every great battle-field or with each army, recognized by its commander, placed in the most favorable positions for observation, and put in possession of all the information that the necessities of strategy permitted; and if therefore, fast as the post could travel, we had not in our morning paper full details of every great battle. Who of us can ever forget the thrilling feeling, in which coffee and toast were forgotten, while Dr. Russell's description of the Balaklava charge or of the Inkermann repulse was read? Scarcely inferior in vivid interest were the descriptions of the battle of Königgrätz by the Times correspondents-the one with the Prussian, the other with the Austrian army. The presence and recognition of these gentlemen in these two armies is one of the most notable indications of the modern power of public opinion. Upon the letters and observations of the former these two volumes are based. In less than a year we have a minute and careful history of not only the battle, but the entire war of which it was the crisis. Mr. Hosier has had access to trustworthy sources of information, and with great skill and ability he has told the entire story of this wonderful campaign. In seven weeks the entire polit ical constitution of Germany was changed; the incubus of Austria was lifted from it and from Europe; Italy completed its unification; France was cleverly checkmated; the public opinion of Europe was first defied, and then conciliated; aud Prussia leaped to a foremost place among the nations of the world. We can neither follow Mr. Hosier through the details of his history, nor criticise them; we can say only that he writes with great intelligence and completeness of information, and with tolerable fairness, putting before us in a succinct and lucid manner the various incidents that led to the war, the position and resources of the nations engaged in it, and the issues, actual and probable, which it determined. We do not however, accept his judgment of the position of England in reference to the war with Denmark, concerning the Duchies. Nor do we think many will endorse the opinion that the "reputation of England was fortuitously won on the plains of Belgium," nor is it quite clear to us that France was discontented with the insolence of the English Cabinet." These are little petulances unworthy of a writer generally so fair as Mr. Hosier, and they involve matters so doubtful that his patriotism might well have refrained from them, without any compromise of honor.
We heartily commend his book, however; if not without its manifest partialities, it is never unfair-and we apprehend that his judgment of both Bismarck and his master, and of the characteristic unscrupulousness of Prussian ambition, will be accepted generally. It is written with great ability; in the statistical parts with great techni
cal knowledge and lucidity, and in the narrative parts with eloquence and graphic power. It is not in descriptive power equal to the narratives of Dr. Russell or Kinglake; nor are its battle-pieces etched in with the wonderful art of Napier or Carlyle, but it is clear, informing, and interesting. It is the last new chapter of the History of Europe; and since Waterloo, the most important. It will interest the reader to compare the narrative of the battle of Königgrätz with a military article in the last number of the Edinburgh Review, said to have been inspired by a high Prussian authority.
Military readers will also note the singular parallel between the position of the first Prussian army, hard pressed by the Austrians, and waiting for the cooperation of the army under the Crown Prince, and the position of Wellington at Waterloo waiting for the arrival of Blucher. They will also note, probably with admiration and envy, the wonderful facility with which armed men, fully appointed for the field, sprang from the earth, when the moment for giving the word of command came. Europe, which since Waterloo has undervalued the military resources and organization of Prussia, now rubs her eyes, and feels that she may profitably sit at her feet and learn a lesson. We can hardly hope that the Landwehr will supersede standing armies, but we may hope that it will reduce their necessity to a minimum.
There is an epical unity in the great revolution which began with the seizure of the Danish Duchies, and was completed at Königgrätz, which Mr. Hosier has very ably seized, and which gives great interest to his book.
Zmudzo-Lethonians.-Can it be possible that there still exist any survivors of the Old-Prussians, as appears to be indicated by the Russian statistics of the recruitment of 1866, giving the proportion furnished by each different race of the empire? These state that there were 852 recruits contributed by the "Zmudzo-Lethonians," who are described as being "Old-Prussians, a nearly extinct race of Lithuanian descent, formerly inhabiting the now German province of East Russia." East Russia is obviously a misprint for East Prussia in this passage. Who are these people? The description seems to point to a migration of the old race at some period when they were in retention of their old speech, or otherwise had means of keeping up a distinctive character of race-descent. But there is no account of any such migration in any ethnological work accessible to English readers, nor is any mention made of them or their dialect in any of the important German works recently written on the Lithuanic languages. The true Old-Prussians of Prussia are known to have lost their language since the end of the seventeenth century-a few old people alone having spoken it in 1689-and they are now perfectly undistinguishable from any other German-speaking Prussian, unless possibly by physical tests, of which, however, we have no record. Zmudz is the Polish form of the word, which we are more accustomed to sce in the Latin form of
Samogitia. It is a strong corruption of the full
mouthed native Lithuanian term Zemaitis, plura Zemaitei (the z by rights bearing a mark to show that it is sounded like a French ), meaning a Lowlander, as opposed to the Upper Lithuanians of Prussia. The word is the correspondent, in fact, both in sense and etymology, of a Greek xauaírios, if one may venture to create such a form for illustration's sake. But these Samogitians are not Prussians, but true Lithuanians, and, in so far as the authorities have hitherto informed us, certainly do not speak the extinct Prussian, which differed from Lithuanian as a substantive language, not as a dialect. They speak true Lithuanian, only differing dialectically from that of the Prussian kingdom. The difference is important enough, for the one dialect, under Polish influence, accents its words uniformly, as in Polish, while the other has actually retained, in all but perfect integrity, an independent tonic accent coexistent with prosodial quantity. It is thus the exact living counterpart of Hellenic Greek during the Homeric and the classical period; and a reference to it, or a comprehension of its method, may be called indispensable to an understanding of the ancient Greek sound-system, to say nothing of its beautiful completeness of archaic diphthongation. This alone would make it of sufficient importance to justify our seizing a passing opportunity of allusion to its existence. But the real fact is that the Lithuanian language is, for reasons into which we would gladly enter had we space, as much the most important of living European tongues in the eyes of the comparative philologist, as French is the most important to the practical linguist. In the Prussian kingdom it has gone down by the run; it is dying out rapidly, and is only to be heard in the peasant's hut; yet Schleicher speaks naturally when he compares his exultation at coming across its "herrliche formen" in living speech, after going through hardship and trouble to obtain them, with that of the botanist who has at last come on a rare plant, after searching through brakes and swamps. Nor does Diefenbach unpardonably exaggerate, when he says that what may be called its discovery excited hardly less sensation among the learned of Europe than even that of Sanscrit itself. Surely an Eton master, and even an Eton boy, might be moved at hearing that there are Europeans alive who not only called their sons sunus, their beer alus, and their bulls bullus, but who actually decline them like gradus into the bargain, with the us short in the singular and long in the plural.-Pall Mall Gazette.
Origin of the Chinese.-"The Origin of the Chinese" is the title of a pamphlet of seventyeight pages, published at Hong Kong, by the Rev. John Chalmers, A.M. (of the London Mission), with a view of contributing toward the knowledge of early Chinese history, and also, it would seem, as an attempt, by means of comparative philology, to connect the Chinese race with the Aryan stock, and to strengthen the arguments existing in favor of primeval unity of the human race. Mr. Chalmers is favorably
known to most students of Chinese as an ornament to the missionary body in China, in respect to his literary labors, and attempts to throw light upon the language and records of the people. He