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Maxim Kovalevsky, who, beginning his career in Harkoff, taught in Moscow and Paris and concluded his eventful life in Petrograd, made a masterly contribution to comparative jurisprudence by his work on the customary law of Caucasian tribes, besides surveying the general course of economic development in Europe and investigating the influence of economic conditions and political theories on the French Revolution.'
I am of course far from having exhausted, in these short remarks, the material I could and ought to use in an attempt to describe the state of scientific enquiry in Russia. But I think that I have said enough to show you the direction which humane learning has taken in Russia, and the results which it has achieved.
Not being a specialist, I have no right to speak of what has been done by Russian scholars in the domain of Mathematics and of Natural Science. But, like every educated man, I know the great names of the renowned Russian mathematicians, Lobachevsky and Chebysheff ; of the physicists and chemists, Lomonossoff, Mendeleieff, and Lebedieff; and of the physiologists and physicians, Pirogoff, Metchnikoff, Pavloff, and others. I cannot undertake to describe what they have done, but I will venture to bring before you the testimony of some of your own most eminent specialists regarding them. The number of such tributes could be multiplied at will. This is what one of the most distinguished scholars of the age, Sir Joseph Thomson, writes to Prof. Sir P. Vinogradoff about the late Prof. Lebedieff of Moscow :
*I think Lebedieff's investigations on the pressure of light, involving as they did the measurement of extraordinarily minute effects, are among the most striking triumphs of Experimental Physics. The results he arrived at are of firstrate importance in the general theory of radiation.'
It is to the kindness of one of the most eminent contemporary physiologists, Prof. C. S. Sherrington of Oxford, that I owe the following testimony to the works and personality of the two stars of Russian PhysiologyMetchnikoff, who was first a professor in Odessa and then Director of the Pasteur Institute in Paris; and Pavloff, formerly Director of the Institute of Experimental Medicine in Petrograd, and now Professor in the Medical Academy and member of the Academy of Science.
“So far as I, as a biologist, am competent to judge of the achievements of the great contemporary figures E. Metchnikoff and Ivan Pavloff, I venture to say that, though individually very different, both have striking traits in common, especially a certain transcendent daring and penetration of spirit. I will treat Metchnikoff as a contemporary, although he has recently passed away, because his thoughts and their influence are still as living forces as ever in the biology of to-day. By training a zoologist, he presents the unusual history of a master in one discipline turning from the field in which his earlier laurels ce won to enter another-Pathology, to which, as it seemed then to ordinary minds, his own was but remotely related. In Pathology he rapidly opened a whole new region of theoretical and practical discovery. The scope of his work there may be indicated by saying that the new era which Pasteur had initiated from the chemical side obtained a complemental development on the “cell-theory” side at the hands of Metchnikoff. Metchnikoff showed an elemental factor in bacterial disease to be the defensive reactions and powers of the individual structural life-units, the cells composing the attacked animal organism. In short, he brought the cell-theory into relation with Pasteur's bacteriology, and, thus and in so far, he founded the scientific Pathology of the present time. The present generation of pathologists are his exponents.
'In Ivan Pavloff one meets a similarly bold and penetrative spirit, applied, however, to another biological field, namely the physiology of healthy animal life. His earliest work attacked the then obscure problem of the nervous control of the body by actions of “arrest,” as complemental to actions of “incitement.” His genius turned next to the study of digestive processes. He revealed their hitherto unrecognised delicacy of adjustment and the fitting of the successive organsecretions to the varying requirements of the altering diet of animals and man. Such regulation he showed to be largely nervous in its mechanism and, though mainly unconscious in its operation, yet influenced by nervous reactions to which conscious, especially emotional, attributes attach. His work in this domain made his name a household word wherever physiology is studied.
• His genius has been attracted more recently to investigation of the nexus between unconscious reflex nervous action, with its invariable and therefore predictable results, and
those most complex nervous acts called "willed,” where stimuli evoke end-effects so variable as to be largely unpredictable. Between these end-terms of the series there lay, prior to Pavloff, a "no-man's-land," hardly ventured upon either by physiology or psychology. From this limbo he rescued, by study from the purely mechanistic standpoint, the reactions which he has called “ conditional reflexes,” eschewing methodically from his descriptions of them the psyche of animals, but, unlike Descartes, not denying its existence, though leaving it unpredicated. He had begun to fill a new Institute, specially erected for such work by the Government in Petrograd, with further extensions of this line of research, when the war
His mode of perimentation and observation and the great results achieved by them had already attracted universal attention and enlisted followers in all civilised countries, especially, perhaps, in the laboratories of North America. The two names of Metchnikoff and Pavloff exhibit eminently the inalienable share of Russia in the Biology of our time, and the capital and indispensable importance of its co-operation in the progress of theory not less than of practical result.'
I think these remarks will suffice to show how high is the standard of Russian work in the domain of scholarship. I hope that, although my sketch is neither exhaustive nor comprehensive, it will be successful in convincing you that Russian learning has done and is doing its share in building up our common treasury of culture. It remains for me to express a hope that, in these sad times, Russian scholars will, in spite of their dreadful sufferings, retain faith in themselves, in learning, and in the future of civilisation,
Art. 3.-SOME ASPECTS OF THE ITALIAN SETTE
1. Collezione Settecentesca. Edited by Salvatore di
Giacomo. Cagliostro nella Storia e nella Leggenda, by Enzo Petraccone; Aneddoti e Profili Settecenteschi, by Benedetto Croce; Epistolari Veneziani del Secolo XVIII, edited by P. Molmenti; Carteggi Casanoviani,
edited by P. Molmenti. Milan: Sandron, 1914, etc. 2. Il Giorno. By Giuseppe Parini. Edited by Paolo
Bellezza. Milan : Cogliati, 1917. 3. Studies of the Eighteenth Century in Italy. By Vernon
Lee. Second Edition. Fisher Unwin, 1907. 4. La Storia di Venezia nella Vita Privata. By P. Mol
menti. Bergamo: Istituto Italiano d'Arte Grafica,
1908. 5. Venice in the Eighteenth Century. By Philippe Monnier. Chatto & Windus, 1910. And other works.
THE “Settecento' (18th century) in Italy was long the Cinderella among the centuries. Its more fortunate sisters, basking in the smiles of popular favour at home and abroad, were hardly even expected to acknowledge it as a member of the family. So long as all her energies were absorbed by the national movement, Italy could not afford to dwell upon a period when she was considered to have reached the lowest depths of degradation, political and moral. Even the 17th century, when Spain dominated the peninsula, was redeemed by an air of masculine vigour, in spite of its brutality and violence, combined with intellectual servility. But now that Italy has vindicated her place among the nations, and all that went before has passed beyond the sphere of active controversy, the fairy godmother, Fashion, has touched the •Settecento' with her wand and sent it to the ball, where it not only holds its own, but outstrips more than one of its rivals in general favour.
The war has helped to bring home to many of us the truth of Carducci's beautiful lines :
'L'ora presente è invano, non fa che percuotere e fugge; Sol nel passato è il bello, sol nella morte è il vero.'
Not a few English readers have learnt to seek relief among the cool shades of our own unemotional age of reason who had never suspected the soothing influence it possessed, long though this had been appreciated by its genuine devotees. The tide turned in favour of the
. • Settecento' some years ago, as was proved by the growing number of books that were published concerning it; and the war seems, if anything, to have stimulated the growing interest. All the volumes of the valuable Collezione Settecentesca' have been published since 1914.
Nor is this surprising when we remember how much that is most characteristic in the life of that age was deliberately planned by those who had the misfortune to live in the first half of the century, as a refuge from the miseries of the world around them. Before the peace of Aix-la-Chapelle in 1748, Italy, parcelled out among a number of foreign rulers, was the scene of a succession of dynastic wars with which she had no concern, though she experienced to the full the horrors of the fighting. The marching and countermarching of the armies was regarded by the Italians with the most complete detachment. Goldoni thoroughly enjoyed the spectacle of a battle between the troops of Savoy and the Austrians as 'a sight which few persons can boast of having witnessed, though there were twenty-five thousand dead to be buried on the morrow. But his enjoyment was marred by some deserters, who plundered him of his baggage; and the Austrians subsequently captured the whole of his own and his wife's slender property, which, however, he was fortunate enough to recover.
Economically things were not much better. Trade was everywhere decaying. Spanish influence had taught the upper classes to look down upon it as derogatory, even in Venice. The free port of Leghorn was used almost entirely by foreigners. Genoa alone remained true to the old merchant traditions and grew rich accordingly. Agriculture was equally neglected. Estates were rarely visited by their owners, who regarded them merely as sources of revenue to be spent in the towns, and left them almost entirely to the care of their stewards. One remembers the horror of Gaspare Gozzi