Transition Studies 69
most ridiculous ever put forth by man and was cobbled up in the map-room of the Royal Geographical Society. It would have its merit in the eyes of those who collect "romantic geography." A friend of Speke might wonder whether publication or non-publication was the wiser course. Poor Galton, endeavouring to still the fight and be fair to both men, had indeed his Scylla and Charybdis to steer between ! The trials of an editor are manifold, but the trials of an editorial committee must be computed by multiplication not by division. The ship had too many first rank commodores aboard, and no one whose livelihood depended on a successful voyage. It is small wonder that it never reached port. Pereat Lector, Natura resurgatl.
Many years later Galton was again an editor. In 1901 he consented to be "Consulting Editor" of Biometrika, a post, I think, he appreciated 2 though the acting editors did not trouble him much. The `pink sheets' with resumes of the conclusions reached in the papers of each part, which were features of the earlier volumes, were undertaken at his suggestion3.
The contents of this chapter will probably lead the reader to think we must have exhausted Galton's activities and labours during the twenty years that followed his marriage; on the contrary we have hardly considered a moiety of them, and those which remain to be discussed are of the greater importance.
' The Reader expired in 1866; Nature with an almost identical science programme appeared in November 1869, with Norman Lockyer as sole editor. But the introduction was by Huxley ("half a century hence curious readers will probably look at our best, not without a smile"), and Galton, Wallace, Darwin, G. H. Lewes, Sir William Thomson, Tylor, Balfour Stewart, Roscoe, etc., all the crew of the old Reader manned the new vessel and helped to steer its course into smooth waters.
2 He inserts it as an item in his list of memoirs (Memories, p. 330), and included it in a privately printed list of "Biographical Events."
3 Galton's journalistic suggestions were often of surprising originality when they were made, but will now seem commonplaces. Thus his idea of weather charts in the daily press, unthougbt of when he made it (1868); the idea that foreign and colonial books especially were not, but ought to be, adequately noticed in the English press; that new maps ought to be reviewed and criticised; that as to "Blue Books, no notices of them were published except in a list at the beginning and end of the session or very rarely at other times although 50 volumes appeared a year, but they ought to be continually reviewed"; that a list of new publications ought to be issued weekly under a suitable classification (1864, I cite from Galton's suggestions for The Reader); these ideas were practically novelties when Galton propounded them. Like forks and brooms they are such commonplaces of our traditional culture to-day, that not one person in a hundred feels any gratitude to the unknown originator.