IN this essay, Miss Pallis endeavours to assess the various factors which have determined the character of the existing vegetation of Europe. She naturally places in the foreground the climatic factors, particularly the rainfall, which according to Schimper governs the development of woodland and grassland respectively. For Europe, with its comparatively abundant rainfall, woodland should be dominant. But this dominant vegetation which Miss Pallis calls primitive has been considerably modified by the action of animals and man, both in historic and in prehistoric times. Miss Pallis thinks that Schimper did not appreciate sufficiently the enormous effect of such action, to which he only refers incidentally. The fact that much of the present vegetation of Europe is of a secondary or degenerate type caused by animal and human interference seems to the author to be of far-reaching importance.

    The General Aspects of the Vegetation of Europe

    By Marietta Pallis. Pp. iv + 66. (London: Taylor and Francis, Ltd., 1939.) 3s. 6d. net.

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    Biology. Nature 145, 135 (1940).

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