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Edited by Edwin E. Slosson

EVERYDAY MYSTERIES

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Secrets of Science in the Home

BY

CHARLES GREELEY ABBOT, D.Sc.

Assistant Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution

New York
THE MACMILLAN COMPANY

1923

All rights reserved

PRINTED IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

0163

Educa

COPYRIGHT, 1923,
BY THE MACMILLAN COMPANY.

Set up and electrotyped. Published September, 1823.

Gift
Publisher

EDUCATION DEPT.

THE FERRIS PRINTING COMPANY

NEW YORK

M, N. W.

INTRODUCTION

TO

THE YOUNG PEOPLE'S SHELF OF SCIENCE

The great naturalist Agassiz used to say that a student did not know his subject until he could present it successfully in four different forms: first as a technical monograph, second as a scientific lecture, third as a popular lecture, and fourth as a simple child's tale. Probably the scientific men of our day would flinch or flunk the fourth of these tests. Yet it is possible to put the fundamental fact of any science into a form to be comprehended by the juvenile mind if one knows the knack and takes the trouble to make things plain and interesting.

And nothing is better worth while, for when the attention of a boy or girl is once directed toward the wonders of nature, and when once he gets the habit of looking for the meaning of what he sees, he has gained an aptitude of mind that will last through life and bring continuously new ideas and inspiration.

The new views of science that sometimes seem difficult and disconcerting to us elders who have been brought up on the old-fashioned theories, are often clearer and simpler than the old when they are presented directly to the fresh and unbiased minds of the younger genera

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