THE beginning of a new volume is necessarily a time for reflection. Our journal is now forty‐four years old and has appeared without intermission, always with the purpose, enunciated by its founder, James Duff Brown—to furnish librarians of all kinds and ages with a thought‐exchange and a medium of expression independent of any other control than the editor's conviction that what was published was sincere in intention and likely to be of use to the profession. This does not mean, as our pages to‐day witness, that matters of controversy or even of severe criticism of those who lead the profession officially are excluded. On the contrary, we believe that the best spur to advance is a critical vigilance. Thus it has occurred occasionally that our writers have been at variance with some current policy of the Library Association, some phases of its examinations or its conference policy. Occasionally, too, there have been criticisms of library authorities which an official journal might hesitate to make because those authorities may be in membership of the Library Association. Such criticism was never more necessary than now. The library movement has to be kept alive under the greatest strain in history; indeed, it should progress.
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