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BEACON LIGHTS OF HISTORY, VOLUME XIV
THE NEW ERA
A Supplementary Volume, by Recent Writers, as Set Forth in the Preface and Table of Contents.
BY JOHN LORD, LL.D.,
AUTHOR OF "THE OLD ROMAN WORLD," "MODERN EUROPE," ETC., ETC.
In preparing the new edition of Dr. Lord's great work, it has been thought desirable to do what the venerable author's death in 1894 did not permit him to accomplish, and add a volume summarizing certain broad aspects of achievement in the last fifty years. It were manifestly impossible to cover in any single volume--except in the dry, cyclopaedic style of chronicling multitudinous facts, so different from the vivid, personal method of Dr. Lord--all the growths of the wonderful period just closed. The only practicable way has been to follow our author's principle of portraying _selected historic forces_,--to take, as representative or typical of the various departments, certain great characters whose services have signalized them as "Beacon Lights" along the path of progress, and to secure adequate portrayal of these by men known to be competent for interesting exposition of the several themes.
Thus the volume opens with a paper on "Richard Wagner: Modern Music," by Henry T. Finck, the musical critic of the _New York Evening Post_, and author of various works on music, travel, etc.; and then follow in order these: "John Ruskin: Modern Art," by G. Mercer Adam, author of "A Precis of English History," recently editor of the _Self-Culture Magazine_ and of the Werner Supplements to the Encyclopaedia Britannica; "Herbert Spencer: The Evolutionary Philosophy," and "Charles Darwin: His Place in Modern Science," both by Mayo W. Hazeltine, literary editor of the _New York Sun_, whose book reviews over the signature "M.W.H." have for years made the _Sun's_ book-page notable; "John Ericsson: Navies of War and Commerce," by Prof. W.F. Durand, of the School of Marine Engineering and the Mechanic Arts in Cornell University; "Li Hung Chang: The Far East," by Dr. William A. P. Martin, the distinguished missionary, diplomat, and author, recently president of the Imperial University, Peking, China; "David Livingstone: African Exploration," by Cyrus C. Adams, geographical and historical expert, and a member of the editorial staff of the _New York Sun_; "Sir Austen H. Layard: Modern Archaeology," by Rev. William Hayes Ward, D.D., editor of _The Independent_, New York, himself eminent in Oriental exploration and decipherment; "Michael Faraday: Electricity and Magnetism," by Prof. Edwin J. Houston of Philadelphia, an accepted authority in electrical engineering; and, "Rudolf Virchow: Modern Medicine and Surgery," by Dr. Frank P. Foster, physician, author, and editor of the _New York Medical Journal_.
The selection of themes must be arbitrary, amid the numberless lines of development during the "New Era" of the Nineteenth Century, in which every mental, moral, and physical science and art has grown and diversified and fructified with a rapidity seen in no other five centuries. It is hoped, however, that the choice will be justified by the interest of the separate papers, and that their result will be such a view of the main features as to leave a distinct impression of the general life and advancement, especially of the last half of the century.
It is proper to say that the preparation and issuance of Dr. Lord's "Beacon Lights of History" were under the editorial care of Mr. John E. Howard of Messrs. Fords, Howard, and Hulbert, the original publishers of the work, while the proof-sheets also received the critical attention of Mr. Abram W. Stevens, one of the accomplished readers of the University Press in Cambridge, Mass. Mr. Howard has also supervised the new edition, including this final volume, which issues from the same choice typographical source.
NEW YORK, September, 1902.
BY HENRY T. FINCK.
Youth-time; early ambitions as a composer.