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BRITISH AND FOREIGN MEDICO-CHIRURGICAL REVIEW,
Analytical and Critical Reviews.
1.—Rolleston on Forms of Animal Life. PROFESSOR ROLLEston's long-promised work has at length appeared. This volume, from its intrinsic importance as well as the distinguished position and reputation of its author, demands special examination and candid criticism.
Our first impression is one of disappointment. We had hoped for a book which, while it faithfully reproduced the accepted results of previous workers, should yet bear the stamp of originality; which should be written in a style of clear composition unburdened by needless technicalities, and which, lastly, should be of use, not merely to members of Professor Rolleston's class, but to all persons who can understand the English language.
Now what do we find ? Professor Rolleston's book can scarcely, even by the most partial Oxford friend, be termed original : its best points are borrowed from Gegenbaur's • Grundzüge der Vegleich ende Anatomie ;' the style bristles with the most recondite terms of Germanic origin; while each sentence, probably from a laudable desire to save space, has been compressed into so narrow a compass that sense is too often sacrificed to brevity.
Finally, as the illustrative specimens exist in the Oxford Museum only, we fear that few but Oxford men can derive much benefit from a perusal of the book.
We now proceed to consider it in detail. In the preface we are informed what amount of previous knowledge the author
1 Forms of Animal Life: being Outlines of Zoological Classification based upon Anatomical Investigations and Illustrated by Descriptions of Specimens and Figures. By GEORGE ROLLESTON, M.D., F.R.S., &c., Oxford. Clarendon Press, 1870. Pp. 436.