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transatlantic view of American civilization. Whereas in the English work the political element is accentuated, in the German the emphasis is laid first on the geographical conditions, and from these as a basis a wide range of questions embracing race, population, politics and culture is ably discussed. Ratzel sees in the United States a new country and a youthful nation filled with the spirit of enterprise, working with the indomitable energy of a people in whom repair still exceeds waste, having conceptions which in their scope reflect the greatness of the territory in which they were born. Our civilization is to him highly instructive, because it means European ideals carried out under peculiarly fortunate circumstances, with no restriction of space or means, and with a minimum of interference and disturbance from outside influences because of the comparative isolation of the United States and its natural leadership among the nations of the Western Hemisphere.
Faithfully to portray this civilization in all its phases, to analyze the factors in it, to establish the laws of their combination and estimate their reciprocal influence,-this is the task which the author set for himself and which he has performed with astonishing completeness and truth. He is in turn geographer, ethnographer, sociologist and political economist, and in whatever character he writes, he is always the scientist. He brings to his work a German integrity of mind, the broad judgment of a man learned in many lines, a familiarity with our history even in its remote and local features, and a critical insight into our national character born of knowledge and sympathy.
The standpoint of the author is essentially that of the geographer. He fiuds in geographical position, boundaries and area the fundamental elements, the known quantities in the equation of a country's development, and he therefore devotes to these the detailed treatment which their importance would demand. He shows that particularly in the case of the United States the young republic struck its roots deep into the soil of the country, that every extension of its territory meant the planting of a new cornfield, that what it gained politically it held industrially, and that the continued intimate connection of these two factors accounts for the wholesome character of our national growth. Geography in his hands throws some strong side-lights upon questions of historical development, public policy, race intermixture, and social tendencies; so to the student of American history and economics his book offers many profoundly suggestive thoughts.
ELLEN C. SEMPLE.
The Financial History of Virginia, 1609-1776. By WILLIAM ZEBINA
RIPLEY, PH. D. Columbia College Studies in History, Economics and Public Law. Vol. IV, No. 1. Pp. 170. New York: 1893.
This publication, like Douglas' “Financial History of Massachusetts,” in the same series, * is a careful collection of material from sources available only to one on the ground. It is an excellent example of the proper line of work for a doctor thesis. A carefully made compilation of the best authenticated facts from the original records is always welcome. It is doubly so in this case because of the importance of Virginia in the financial history of America.
We scarcely expect to find in the early financial history of any of the colonies very much uniformity, or many well established principles. The people, as Dr. Ripley points out, were “too fully occupied in conquering a wilderness to spin fiscal theories.” They “wanted simply to support their incipient government in the easiest possible way.” It is natural that the early history should consist of a number of disconnected efforts. Fixed habits of financial management were not really formed in colonial times.
The article treats of the different sources of revenue which were direct and indirect taxes, quit-rents and later some few forced loans in the form of paper money, it takes up in connection with each of these the principle objects of expenditure for which they were intended. For a considerable time the government was largely supported by granting officials the use of certain lands. The distinctly royal officials were also partly supported by the revenue received from quitrents. But these payments were practically abandoned before 1720 although they were theoretically recognized as late as 1755.
The first real tax in Virginia was a poll-tax in 1619. Its object was the support of the officers of the colonial assembly. This tax was continued in 1623 as a commutation for military service. It remained throughout the first century a chief source of revenue. Toward the end of the century it declined in importance and indirect taxes took its place. Called iuto use again in 1756 by the French and Indian War it yielded, in 1763, a larger revenue than all the other taxes together.
of the customs duties the most important was the tax on tobacco exported. This tax began as a part of the general colonial policy of England. It came to be one of the mainstays of the colonial treasury. Other duties were the import duty on liquors, and one on slaves and an export duty on hides, together with tonnage dues.
“Local (county) expenditures were invariably met by means of a poll-tax levied upon the male inhabitants of the county,” rated by * See ANNALS, Vol. iii, p. 379, November, 1892.
the justices in county court. Later church tithes were collected in the parish for the support of the minister.
As the early operations of the treasury, here as well as elsewhere in the colonies, were hampered by the poor condition of the currency, the author very correctly adds two chapters to the account of the finances proper on the two subjects, hard money and paper inoney. In regard to the scarcity of the former it is urged as an important consideration that it was due in part to the personal influence of the early governors, who found it to their interest to encourage the use of tobacco or tobacco notes in place of hard money. But it is not clearly shown how this influence was made effective. I am inclined to think that it added but little to the natural effects of the economic dependence on England and the non-existence of credit. It is shown quite conclusively that there was more coin in circulation in Virginia during the eighteenth century than is generally admitted. But as tobacco was also used as money and was constantly falling in value, payments were made in that, whenever possible. It was a sort of double-standard system, coin and tobacco, in which the ratio was constantly changing as tobacco fell in value.
In the discussion of paper money the author is led into an occasional trifling error by a failure to understand the use of the word “bank” by the colonists to mean, not an institution, but merely a large sum of money.
C. C. PLEHN.
Darwin and Hegel, with other Philosophical Studies. By David G.
RITCHIE, M. A. Pp. xv., 285. London : Swan, Sonnenschein & Co.; New York: Macmillan & Co. 1893.
This is a "magazine made" book. The nine scholarly articles comprising its several chapters, "Origin and Validity,” “Darwin and Hegel,' “What is Reality,” “On Plato's Phaedo," “What are Economic Laws,” “Locke's Theory of Property," "Contributions to the History of the Social Contract Theory,” “On the Conception of Sovereignty,”* and “The Rights of Minorities,” have all been published at various times in philosophical or political science journals in England or in this country. The author's vindication for giving such a miscellany of detached studies this title-and it the heading of the second chapter—lies in the fact that “the diverse subjects are looked at from a common point of view;” and that it indicates his
* ANNALS, Vol. i, p. 385, January, 1891.
purpose to set forth the grounds of reconciliation between the “idealist” philosophy, growing up, mainly, out of Kantian criticism, as expounded by Hegelians, and the “materialistic” philosophy resulting from the introduction of the historical and comparative methods into the studies of race ideas and institutions and the influence of the doctrine of evolution and natural selection. From the standpoint of the “Idealist Evolutionist,” Mr. Ritchie believes that we shall best be able to consider the concrete problems of politics and ethics, in the solution of which philosophical criticism finds its test and greatest usefulness. It is in the latter regard that the truly profound metaphysical analyses and the close scrutiny of the subtilties of dialectics and definition in the first four chapters of this volume will be found of really great interest and importance to the students of the economic, political and social sciences. Few American students of these sciences, and, we venture to say, few professors, appreciate the fundamental necessity of sound “metaphysical” postulates, as a basis of correct reasoning and construction in their sciences. Metaphysical," as commonly applied by them to doctrines, is a term of reproach. But those most given to deriding the term, are usually dominated by meta-physical notions, pure and simple, and which are, as Mill long ago pointed out, not only erroneous, but fruitful parents of evil in the transactions of daily life. Thus the perversions in politics and philosoplıy that have resulted from the "Nature" theories and “Innate Ideas.” Mr. Ritchie shows how immediate and practical is the bearing of the most abstract of abstract discussions upon the settlement of current political, social and industrial problems; and he rightly protests against the illegitimate distinction, so constantly made by men of affairs, and by men of “the profession” as well, between the “practical" and the “theoretical” treatment of subjects, always, of course, to the detraction of the latter. In the essay
“What are Economic Laws?" there is an able and lucid exposition of the nature of scientific laws, of the position of economics among the sciences, and of the meaning of "laws” in historical sciences. There are set forth the distinctions, too often forgotten by economic writers, between physical laws and biological laws, the differences between the latter and economic and sociological laws. The content of the term “law," where we have to deal with self-conscious and contriving moral agents as in economic activity, is expounded most convincingly. Mr. Ritchie does not believe that economics as a science has anything whatever to do with laying down moral "precepts" or practical rules; and he protests against the proselyting propensities of many economists who presume impartially and scientifically to investigate and to expound the laws of
industrial life and institutions. “The protest is necessary, both in the interests of science and in the interests of practical politics. The student of economic science, as such, does not provide social precepts; it is his business to study the phenomena in the same spirit as that in which the physiologist and pathologist study the phenomena of health and disease.” The scope and method of economics, as presented here, correspond with the limits and modes of investigation set forth by Professors Keynes, Marshall and Nicholson.
In “Contributions to the History of the Social Contract Theory," the students of political science, and especially those interested in the history of the development of political theories, will find a scholarly essay dealing with this interesting and important phase iu the evolution of opinion regarding the nature of society and the State. The notion that society and government arose or had its beginning in a “social contract" played a great part in the revolutionary politics of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries in England and France; and we have the course of its history traced here. The doctrine as such was first clearly discernible in the mediæval writers. The Greek Sophists, however, advanced philosophical ideas that anticipated the later developments. The individualism of Epicurus made the contract theory fit in with the philosophy of pleasure. Greek thought, nevertheless, as represented by Plato and Aristotle looked upon society as a “social organism.” In the Middle Ages the notion took hold of the political and ecclesiastical writers, the authority for which was found in the Bible and Roman law. Many interesting passages from original authorities are quoted, showing how widely prevalent the doctrine was, not only in philosophical but in practical politics in the seventeenth century. The different phases which the contract theory assumed in the writings and times of Thomas Aquinas, Hooker, Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau and Kant, are dwelt upon at some length.
FRANK I. HERRIOTT. Philadelphia.
I Primi Due Secoli della Storia di Firenze, Recerche di PASQUALE
VILLARI. Vol. I. Firenze: G. C. Sansoni. 1893.
Although during the last decade much has been done by such men as Capponi, Del Lungo and Hartwig toward giving us a clearer insight into the early history of Florence, there still remains so much to be done that this volume of Mr. Villari will be welcomed by all students of Italian history. What we need most is the economic and social history of the city. Burckhardt's work on the “Civilization of the