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NOTICES OF NEW BOOKS.
[** Only three pages!" Our readers may judge of our dismay when our printer announced that we had that space to insert about fifty MS. pages of notices of books. To meet the wishes of our friends, and have as great a variety as is at all consistent with the object of our Review, we accepted seven articles, and as the result have crowded out our books. We hope this attempt to please will be taken in good part, and in future we will try to compromise, so as to attain variety, without sacrificing our notices. We can here only give the titles of the books, reserving our brief reviews of most of them until our Spring number.] I. A History of the Division of the Presbyterian Church in the United States of America. By a Committee of the Synod of New York and New Jersey. New York: M. W. Dodd, 1852. pp. 278. An extended Review of this book in our next number. II. Sermons on Various Subjects. By Joel Parker, D. D. With a portrait of the Author. Philadelphia : Lippincott, Grambo & Co.
1852. pp. 361. III. The Three Great Temptations of Young Men. With several
Lectures addressed to business and professional men. By Samuel
W. Fisher. Cincinnati: Moore & Anderson, 1852. pp. 336. IV. The Path of Life. By Henry A. Rowland, author of a work
“On the Common Maxims of Infidelity.” Second edition. New York: M. W. Dodd, 1851. pp. 194.
Light in a Dark Alley. By the same. Same publisher. 1852. pp. 188. V. The Nature and Importance of a Natural Rhetoric; an Address,
delivered on the occasion of his Inauguration to the Chair of Sacred Rhetoric and Pastoral Theology, in the Theological Seminary at Auburn, June 16, 1852. By Rev. W. G. T. Shedd. Auburn:
J. C. Ivison & Co., 1852. pp. 32. VI. Recollections of a Journey through Tartary, Thibet and China
during the years 1844, 1845 and 1846. By M. Huc, Missionary Priest of the Congregation of St. Lazarus. Two volumes. pp. 245,
248. New York, 1852. VII. The Life and Services of Professor B. B. Edwards. A Discourse delivered June 25, 1852, in the Chapel of the Andover Theological Seminary. By Edwards A. Park.
VIII. Ancient Christianity exemplified in the private, domestic, so
cial, and civil Life of the Primitive Christians, and in the original Institutions, Offices, Ordinances and Rites of the Church. By Lyman Coleman. Philadelphia : Lippincott, Grambo & Co., 1852.
pp. 645. IX. Essays on the Progress of Nations, in Civilization, Productive
Industry, Wealth and Population. By Ezra C. Seaman. Second
edition. New York: Charles Scribner, 1852. pp. 631. X. Maine Law Literature.
We have the titles at length of the works on this subject. XI. The World's Laconics; or the best Thoughts of the best Authors. , By Edward Berkeley. In Prose and Poetry. With an Introduction
by William B. Sprague, D. D. New York: M. W. Dodd, 1853. pp. 432.
One feels a compunction of conscience in dismissing casually a book that has cost the compiler great labor, and in which he has hived the hoarded honey perhaps of years. It is a book to lay upon your study-table and look into when this working, every-day world has wearied you, that you may feed your mind with thought. We are pleased to find extracts from Raleigh, Montaigne, Sir Philip Sydney, Montesquieu, Burton, Quarles, Walsingham, Massinger, Webster, Ford, as well as authors more commonly read. Some of these, indeed, fine as is their genius, are better read in extracts. Let one man fish out the bright scaly swimmers, without filling every man's net with filth. XII. The Early Days of Elisha: Translated from the German of F.
W. Krummacher. With an Introduction by Gardiner Spring, D. D. New York: M. W. Dodd, 1853. pp. 382. We are delighted to see again a work by Krummacher. His peculiarities and excellences are too well known to require us to dwell on them. We commend the book to our readers, and should be pleased to make some extracts if we could possibly find room. XIII. The Eclipse of Faith : or a Visit to a Religious Skeptic. Bos
ton : 1852. pp. 452. XIV. The Ladies (should be Women) of the Covenant. Memoirs of
distinguished Scottish female characters, embracing the period of the Covenant and the Persecution. By Rey. James Anderson, 1851.
The Martyrs, Heroes and Bards of the Scottish Covenant. By George Gilfillan, M. A. New York: 1853. pp. 264.
The Scots' Worthies, containing a brief historical Account of the most eminent Noblemen, Gentlemen, Ministers and others who testified or suffered for the Cause of Reformation in Scotland, from the beginning of the Sixteenth Century to the year 1688. By
John Howie of Lochgoin. Illustrated. New York : 1853. pp. 632. XV. Outlines of Moral Science. By the Rev. Archibald Alexander,
D. D. late Professor in the Theological Seminary, Princeton, N. J.
New York. pp. 272. XVI. Beecher's Works, Vol. I. Lectures on Political Atheism and
Kindred Subjects; together with six Lectures on Intemperance. Dedicated to the Working-men of the United States. By Lyman
Beecher, D. D. Boston : 1852. XVII. History of the United States from the Discovery of the Ame
rican Continent. By George Bancroft. Vol. V. Boston: 1852.
pp. 459. How Great Britain estranged America, 1763–1774. XVIII. Churches of the Valley; or Historical Sketches of the old
Presbyterian Congregations of Cumberland and Franklin Counties in Pennsylvania. By the Rev. Alfred Nevin of the Presbytery of Carlisle. Philadelphia: 1852. pp. 338.
This book is of a kind that interests us much; but we are bound to say that the execution falls far short of the design. It is exceedingly meagre. Let Mr. Nevin be advised by us. Instead of a dry congeries of records, names and dates, let him give the spirit of Presbyterians in the Cumberland Valley; the people; their origin; their character; style of preaching; modes of piety; a living and breathing picture of Scotch-Irish Presbyterianism, “the very age and body of the time, its form and pressure." None but physicians and medical students care about skeletons. For the style and manner of doing this work read Washington Irving, George Bancroft, William Prescott, Daniel Defoe, John Bunyan, Oliver Goldsmith, Hugh Miller, the author of Piccioli, Mackenzie, Addison. No man on earth need want a finer subject than the Presbyterians in Pennsylvania of Scottish descent, and if the side of the house to which most of them belong, cannot write their history better than any of them have done it yet, our side will have to do it for them.
1. Commentary on the Apocalypse. By Moses STUART. Andover:
Allen, Morrill & Wardwell. 1845. 2. Hints on the Interpretation of Prophecy. By MOSES STUART.
Andover: 1842. 3. Exposition of the Apocalypse. By DAVID N. LORD. New York:
Harper & Brothers. 1847. 4. Theological and Literary Journal. Edited by David N. LORD. 5. Dissertations on the Prophecies Relative to the Second Coming of
Jesus Christ. By GEORGE DUFFIELD, D. D. New York: Dayton
& Newman. 1842. 6. The Coming of the Lord; a Key to the Book of Revelation. By
James M. MACDONALD. New York: Baker & Scribner, 1846. 7. Millenarian Views, with the Reasons for Receiving Them. By
ALFRED BRYANT. New York: M. W. Dodd. 1852. 8. Horce Apocalypticæ. By Rev. E. B. ELLIOTT, A. M. London:
1847. Four Volumes. 9. Apocalyptic Sketches. By Rev. John CUMMING, D. D. London:
1852. 10. Notes on the Book of Revelation. By ALBERT BARNES. New York: Harper & Brothers. 1852.
THE “ Apocalypse," as the word signifies, is a revelation from God, an unveiling of the future. Not a few, however, treat the book as if the Apo were dropped, and a veil, thicker than that which hid the holy of holies, shrouded its mysteries from all human curiosity. They regard all attempts to decipher its hieroglyphics as labor lost; and a course of lectures on the Apocalypse, especially from the pulpit, about as edifying as a similar course on mesmerism or spirit rappings. Like Hobbes' locks, while offering a premium for success, it is supposed to defy all, even the most ingenious operators.
Yet it is called by its infinite Author a “Revelation,”— “the revelation of Jesus Christ;" and unless the word be here used out of all analogy with the rest of Scripture, it implies a manifestation of the truth, intelligibility, a book not beyond the intellectual apprehension of the prayerful student.
The place it occupies, at the close of the volume, as the Omega of Revelation, the farewell message of the Spirit, a professedly important prophecy, giving us our latest and nearest vision of the Church's triumph, one would naturally suppose would give it the same special interest as is attached to Genesis. For what inquiring mind does not love to contemplate the beginning and the end of things ?
Besides, on what other book of the sixty-six composing the sacred volume, is such a special blessing promised to the faithful reader ? “Blessed is he that readeth and understandeth the words of this book;" as if while special difficulties would attend its study, special discoveries would reward the diligent.
The experience of Mr. Barnes has doubtless been the experience of many. “I had a prevailing belief that it could not be explained; and that all attempts to explain it must be visionary and futile. I read it, as I suppose most others do from a sense of duty, yet admiring the beauty of its imagery, the sublimity of its descriptions, and its high poetic character, and though to me wholly unintelligible in the main, finding so many detached passages that were intelligible and practical in their nature, as to make it on the whole attractive and profitable, but with no definitely formed idea as to its meaning as a whole, and with a vague general feeling that all the interpretations which had been proposed were wild, fanciful and visionary.”