National Geographic : 1914 Jul
THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE "for the sake of peace and harmony in the school." Three years of training and practice are not enough to perfect the ordinary pupil in that exquisitely elaborate and refined Japanese art of flower arrangement, where flowers spring, with their leaves and stems, from vases or basins of shal low water as they grow naturally, but Nature perfected and idealized according to codes of rules made by teachers of such esthetic arts for the past eight and ten centuries. Also the gardens, in which these girls gather for decorous play and games of poetry, are as carefully arranged ideali zations of natural scenery, and the soft colors of their crape and silk kimonos accord perfectly with the unvarying gar den symphony of gray rocks and ever green foliage. A soft, grass sandal, es pecially made for garden wear, protects the precious garden stones and the deep pile mats of fine, soft grass. The indoor ceremonies of receiving, entertaining, and speeding a guest are matters of careful training, for nothing in Japanese life lacks its conventional rules, its elaborate etiquette. The grace ful dress of Japanese women, its sober tones and long lines, is suited to the dainty house interiors, with their fine, satiny straw mats and luxurious crape cushions. The craze for European dress for women, following upon its adoption as the dress of court ceremony 25 years ago, fortunately died out in due time; so that, except at the palace and on most ceremonial occasions where foreigners take part, Japanese women of highest rank wear their own becoming clothes-a rebuke in its unchanging lines and quiet colors to the insane vagaries of the West. Each season has its appropriate ma terial and colors. Each year the fashions change in ways the purblind foreigner does not see. Each year the theme of the Emperor's New Year poem gives sugges tion to designers and dyers, and in this way these varying patterns of sashes and neck folds date them precisely to the initiated. Great patterns and gay colors are for children and babies, and from the begin ning of time the Japanese woman has folded her robe over to the right that she might hold the edge in place when she bent in a deep bow. Only in death is the kimono folded to the left, so that there is always laughter when the self-complacent foreigner has her portrait taken or goes to a fancy dress ball, or a theater manager clothes a whole company in kimonos folded ac cording to the etiquette of corpses. Noth ing else in the world is so funny-not the most luckless attempt of the Japanese woman to wear foreign dress-as the failures and burlesque the foreign woman achieves when she essays Japanese dress. The East has its revenge tenfold at those seasons, and photographers' rooms in Japanese cities are chambers of such horrors. EXPLORERS OF A NEW KIND Successful Introduction of Beetles and Parasites to Check Ravages of the Gipsy-moth and Brown-tail Moth BY L. O. HOWARD CHIEF OF THE BUREAU OF ENTOMOLOGY, U. S . DEPARTMENT or AGRICULTURE HE story of the gipsy-moth and that of the brown-tail moth are two of those geographic happen ings unconsidered in the old geography, but important in the geography of today. They are not normal inhabitants of the United States, but are assisted immi grants. The gipsy-moth (see page 50) was brought to this country by a French professor of astronomy in a New Eng land university in the course of some experimental work which he was doing.