In their issue of yesterday the editors of the Monthly departed from the strict letter of their rule that the leading article in each number should be written by some Harvard alumnus; but they kept to the spirit by getting Assistant Professor Cohn to contribute a short essay on Jules Grevy. Although Mr. Cohn uses English uncommonly well for a foreigner, yet his work has not the same finish which we would demand in the case of a native. Nevertheless, in spite of his disadvantages he has succeeded in giving a very readable account of President Grevy. The career of this famous French statesmen, who has been prominent for so many years, is shown to be most interesting. Mr. Berenson writes a criticism of the comedy, The Revisor, by the Russian author Gogol. In spite of the fact that Mr. Berenson does not grasp his subject with the firmness which might be desired, yet his knowledge of early Russian literature and his thoughtful estimate of the piece in question, The Revisor, make what he says worthy of attention. Mr. W. W. Baldwin has a very sympathetic sketch of southern life, - an old negro's story of the death of a son in battle. The piece has a touch of truth and feeling rare in our college papers. The only other prose article, which is by Mr. H. G. Bruce, is entitled The Confessions of Donald Grant. Mr. Bruce has given us a very strong and subtle study of some of the phenomena of the passion which men usually call love.
This contribution, by far the ablest in the number, is well worth more than one perusal.
The verse in the present number, as a whole, is not as good as in former issues. Mr. H. E. Fraser's lines, In the Night, although not always smooth and musical, show much purity and simplicity, and their genuineness more than atones for any lack of polish. Mr. F. S. Palmer's verses in his Ode to Herrick, are more musical and better tuned. They cannot fail to stir a genuine lover of Herrick. Mr. A. B. Houghton's Ballad of Pleasure Seekers, though far above the average of college verse, is not, we think, quite up to the standard of his former work, in spite of a number of lines more than ordinarily good. It is likely that many will object to the gloomy sentiment of this poem. Yet if an optimist will kindly grant that verse pessimistic in tone is justifiable, he must acknowledge that Mr. Houghton's Ballad has not only strength but unusually deep feeling.