Sounds like good, Victorian nonsense, but we are still experimenting with this stuff, only we don't call it Mesmerism anymore. We call it remote influence.
This is a brilliant work, not only for its depiction of the anarchists and their awe-inspiring Professor, but also in the way the mind of the constabulary is disected.
When I first read this story back in 1966 it was unpleasant, but just too damned weird to take seriously. Fast-forward 41 years and surprise--it's coming true! I have friends that I have never seen and I even give short lectures on youtube!
People talk by interphone and webcam.
It will make your hair stand on end, no question about it.
Political philosophy well masked as a rollicking adventure story. Anyone who thinks that there is something sacred about democracy will get a healthy shock from this book.