The Art of Fiction

The Art of Fiction

Walter Besant and Henry James

A lecture on the art of fiction, given by the English critic Walter Besant on April 25, 1884, and an answer to the lecture by American writer Henry James in the same year. For example, Besant insisted that novelists should confine themselves to their own experience, whilst James argued that a sufficiently alert novelist could catch knowledge…

The Art of Magic

T. Nelson Downs

If you’ve ever wanted to learn how to do card tricks, then read this book and learn from the Master himself. Known as the King Of Koins, Downs explains in this book everything you need to know. He covers Flourishes and Fancy Sleights with Cards, Card Tricks with Unprepared Cards and Not Requiring Sleight of Hand, Card Tricks Involving Sleight of…

Dreams, Their Scientific and Practical Interpretations

Gustavus Hindman Miller

Also known as 10,000 Dreams Interpreted, Or, What’s in a Dream? Apart from a lengthy preface, this book is an alphabetical list of dreams and what they mean. It actually seems to be a mixture of an attempt at dream interpretation and a claim that dreams can be prophetic. For example, if a woman dreams of painting a picture, “she will be deceived…

The Great Navigators of the 18th Century

The Great Navigators of the 18th Century

Jules Verne

Casting a visionary eye over the 18th century, Jules Verne traces navigation to the first astronomers and cartographers in this monumental history of early expeditions.

A History of the Precious Metals

A History of the Precious Metals

Alexander Del Mar

The plan of the present work embraces a history of the precious metals in each important country by itself, from the earliest times to the present. After this, the subject is treated from a general standpoint; the produce of the world at various epochs is brought together, the consumption in the arts and for coinage is shown, together with the resulting stocks on hand in the form of coins and bullion. This is the…

Illustrated Nautical Dictionary

Howard Patterson

The title is quite self explanatory I suppose. It says on the title page, ‘From Keel to Truck. From Stem to Sternpost. From Zenith to Nadir. From Bedplate to Funnel. From Torpedo Boat to Battle Ship.’ So there’s a bit more info. A dictionary for all things nautical; with five thousand descriptions and five hundred illustrations.

Mazes and Labyrinths

W. H. Matthews

With over 140 Plate illustrations, this book covers mazes in literature and history. Chapters include; The Egyptian Labyrinth; The Cretan Labyrinth; The Etruscan Or Italian Labyrinth; The Labyrinth In Ancient Art; Church Labyrinths; Turf Labyrinths; The Origin Of Turf Mazes; The Floral Labyrinth And The Dwarf-Shrub Maze; The Topiary…

The New Word

The New Word

Allen Upward

The term Scientology was first coined in this book by Allen Upward although the philosophy which Upward expounds in The New Word has nothing to do with any of the ideas of the latter-day Scientologists. In fact, Upward uses it here as a disparaging term, to indicate a blind, unthinking acceptance of scientific doctrine…

One Thousand Secrets Revealed

C. A. Bogardus

The full title of this book is One Thousand Secrets of Wise and Rich Men Revealed. And it is a gold mine of hints, tips and tricks to make YOU rich and wise too. The author is ‘Champion Quick Shot of the World’ as well, so you can be sure he knows what he’s talking about. Seriously though, this is a fascinating book packed with things like how…

Stokes’ Encyclopedia of Music and Musicians

L. J. De Bekker

Covering the entire period of musical history from the earliest times to the season of 1908-09. A very comprehensive reference book which includes definitions of musical terms simply expressed; biographies of all musicians worthy of remembrance; explanations of the theory of music, without technicalities; the stories of…

The Stories of the Months and Days

The Stories of the Months and Days

Reginald C. Couzens

Takes you through all the months and days of the week, explaining the meaning behind the name of each. ‘The first month was called Januarius by the Romans, after Janus, the god of doors and gates. We see the same word in janua, the Latin for a gate or opening. From the idea that a door is a way in, an entrance, it became a custom among…

The Story of Utopias

Lewis Mumford

This is a survey of the development of the concept of Utopia, by one of the foremost urban planning theorists of the 20th century. This was Mumford’s first book. He starts with a survey of the major utopias, some well-known, others less so. We look at Plato’s Republic, More’s Utopia, Andreæ’s Christanopolis, Bacon’s New Atlantis…