BISHOP MERCER writes for children, and in a manner in accordance with the Child's Guide of our grandparents rather than with modern educational ideals. His primary concern is to excite the naïve wonder which he considers so valuable; so he makes no selection, but ranges apparently at random from Pharaoh's serpents to Brownians motion without giving any clue to the relative importance of the very varied matters at which he glances. So wide a range in so small a space would tax severely the highest powers of exposition, and Bishop Mercer has not the, genius for happy analogy that is characteristic of all the most successful writers for the young. Again, though the work is free from serious error, we judge that its author has not a first-hand acquaintance with science. If he had, he would scarcely puzzle the brains of his small charges (and incidentally that of the reviewer) by raising questions no serious student of science would ask—those, for example, which give rise to the paradoxes of Berkeleyan idealism. On the other hand, some parents will welcome the definitely religious tone and be gratified that the Divine Intelligence is. presented in a form sympathetic to the simplest.
Some Wonders of Matter.
By the Right Rev.. Pp. 195. (London: S.P.C.K.; New York: The Macmillan Co.,1919.) Price 5s. net.