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varieties ; phagedenic primary syphilis, superficial primary sy. philis, and catarrhal primary syphilis. The latter also comprehends three subdivisions ; indurated primary syphilis, annular primary syphilis, and fungous primary syphilis. For the explanation of these terms, and the definition of each variety, we must refer to the work itself.
The symptoms of primary syphilis are most minutely and accurately described, and this, with the descriptions of the other forms of the disease, constitutes the best part of the work. This statement regarding the length of time which may elapse between the application of the poison and the appearance of the disease is necessarily vague. He thinks, that “perhaps, on the whole, we shall not be far from the truth if we fix the time be.. tween the third and the seventh day, though it may certainly commence either before or after these periods."
The progress of primary syphilis he divides into four stages. “ The first is marked by phlogoses or redness and swelling ; the second by the conversion of a portion of the phlogosed part into a peculiar texture, which soon becoming soft and diffluent, there results a loss of substance ; the third by the regeneration of the part which had been lost by the previous actions; and the fourth by the contraction or consolidation of the new flesh, and by the formation of a covering for its protection.” P. 87. The following are his observations regarding the duration of each stage. « On an average of a number of cases of primary syphilis produced by artificial inoculation, notes of which are now before me, the phlogoses or redness commenced on the second day, the stage of ulceration occupied seven days, that of granulation ten days, and cicatrization six days, making the whole, from the insertion of the virus to the healing of the ulcer, twenty-five days. I should also say from my observation of cases contracted in the common way, and which being uninterrupted in their course, presented the dis-, ease in its most regular form, that the periods just mentioned might be taken as a general average, the period of the origin or commencement of the disease alone excepted, and the difference in this respect may be explained by the difference in the manner of applying the poison.”—Pp. 71, 72.
The treatment which he recommends in all the stages is essentially that of Mr Hunter, with the exception, that he disapproves of all mercurial preparations during the first two stages, whether employed locally or constitutionally, stating, that the most appalling cases of the disease which ever came under his observation were caused by such treatment. He admits that syphilis may be cured without mercury ; but affirms, that, in consequence of the length of time required, and the chance, slight though it be, of secondary symptoms, it ought always to be used, except where the habits or constitution of the patient may render it unadvisable.
Our limits will not permit us to enter on the second division of the subject. We shall merely extract the passage contain. ing his reasons for employing mercury in the cure of gonorrhæa, which is termed by him catarrhal primary syphilis. : « 1st, The power possessed by the catarrhal form of primary syphilis, to produce the ulcerating forms of the disease, points out a similarity in their morbid action, and affords some reason to presume, that they may be combated by analogous measures.
“ 2d, As the catarrhal form of primary syphilis may produce constitutional symptoms similar to those which follow the ulcerat. ing forms of this disease, and as mercury is admitted to have controlling influence in preventing those of the latter, it may be presumed, that it will have a similar influence over those of the former.
“ 3d, As mercury has a remarkable power over the catarrhal form of secondary syphilis, or that form of syphilitic catarrh which results from contamination of the system, we may from analogy conclude, that it is likely to have some power over the catarrhal form of primary syphilis.
“ 4th, If cases of catarrhal primary syphilis occur upon which mercury does not seem to exercise any control, there occur other cases in which we find it to act in the most salutary manner, and others, again, in which the discharge will continue, and be after a time followed by induration and bubo, and most probably by secondary symptoms, unless this medicine be given.
“ 51h, If mercury does not serve any useful purpose in the treatment of catarrhal syphilis, it can do no harm if properly administered, nor will it interfere with the administration of any other remedies.”—Pp. 248, 249.
It is almost unnecessary to state, that these views, though not new, are directly opposed to the experience and opinions of the best surgeons of the present time ; and, until some direct and unequivocal experiments shall be adduced in support of them, we must be excused for thinking them utterly preposterous. In conclusion we would observe, that the best parts of the work are the descriptive. In the rest we find little that is new, save some fanciful hypotheses. Our quotations have exhibited the most favourable specimens of the style. The sentences are in general long and intricate, and the reasoning often difficult to be followed, from the multitude of words in which it is clothed. The work would be much more intelligible if reduced to half its size.
We trust that all these faults will be avoided in the forthcoming portion, and that the illustrations which are to follow will do credit to the taste of the artists and the industry of their employer.
Art. III.-Report of the Experiments on Animal Magne
tism, made by a Committee of the Medical Section of the French Royal Academy of Sciences : read at the Meetings of the 21st and 28th of June 1831. Translated, and now for the first time published; with an historical and explanatory Introduction, and an Appendix, by J. C. COLQUHOUN, Esq. 8vo, pp. 252. Edin. 1833.
UITTLE as what is termed Animal Magnetism has been attended to in Britain, it has twice formed the subject of grave investigation by the Medical Faculty of Paris :-first in 1784, under the authority of a Royal mandate ; and secondly in 1826, by a special committee named by the Medical Section of the Royal Academy of Sciences. - The result of the first inquiry was unfavourable to the pretensions of this new agent in the cure of disease; and the opinion of the commissioners, attributing the whole of the effects produced to imagination, imitation, and attouchement, seems for a long period to have been acquiesced in both by moral and physiological inquirers. The com. mittee of the Academy appointed in 1826, on the other hand, were rather inclined to believe in a specific and peculiar agency, but modestly conclude with observing, “ that they have communicated in their Reports facts of sufficient importance to entitle them to think, that the Academy ought to encourage investigations into the subject of Animal Magnetism, as a very curious branch of psychology and natural history.”
Though many volumes have been written and published in France and Germany on the subject of Animal Magnetism; and though periodical works have for years been in both countries circulated to extend the knowledge and practice of the art, in Britain, we believe, little is known regarding animal magnetism beyond the decision of the French Commissioners of 1784, and the ephemeral success of the metallic tractors of Perkins, the effects attributed to which Dr Haygarth demonstrated to be owing to the Imagination alone. * The public and the profession are therefore indebted to Mr Colquhoun for laying the recent Report of the Committee of the Academy before them in an English dress; and still more for the very curious and interesting historical and explanatory Introduction prefixed. The volume is concluded with an equally interesting Appendix by Mr Colquhoun,“ On the singular phe
and the tes attributed to ination alone. *Mr Colquhacademy bebe owing are therefore of the Committestill more for theroduce
• Of the Imagination as a Cause and as a Cure of Disorders of the Body; exemplified by Fictitious Tractors and Epidemical Convulsions. By John Haygarth, M.'D. Bath, 1800.
nomena of the transference of the faculties from their usual and appropriate organs to the epigastrium and other parts of the nervous system, which has been occasionally observed to occur in cases of catalepsy and somnambulism.” The facts detailed in this Appendix and the preceding Report, supposing them to have been carefully observed, and by competent witnesses, will no doubt excite the “ special wonder” of many, and lead them to conclude with Hamlet and Mr Colquhoun, that
“ There are more things in Heaven and Earth,
Than are dreamt of in our philosophy." “ In proceeding to execute the task” (says Mr Colquhoun) " I have undertaken in the present publication, I am quite aware that I may expose myself to the charge of drawing largely upon the credulity of my countrymen. In my own defence and justification, however, I may be permitted to declare, that I shall bring forward no facts, as such, unless they be sufficiently attested by men of unimpeachable veracity; men abundantly qualified by their scientific attainments, perspicacity, and cautious spirit of research, for investigating the reality of the facts which they profess to have witnessed, and who, besides, could have no conceivable interest in the propagation of falsehood. I may add, that I have myself produced, and consequently witnessed, several of the phenomena described in the following pages, and that under circumstances in which no deception was possible. My object, however, is not so much to force conviction upon the minds of the careless or the blindly incredulous, as to solicit the attention of the inquisitive to a subject of rational and most interesting inquiry; and, if possible, to excite a corresponding spirit of investigation among the friends of truth and science.”—Pp. 3, 4.
In tracing the history of Animal Magnetism previous to the period when Mesmer and his disciples attracted the attention of the European physicians by their novel proceedings, Mr Colquhoun, a firm believer in the beneficial effects of the practice, presses into his narrative every circumstance, however trivial, which he conceives can be brought to bear on the subject. In reference to the manipulations of the magnetisers, for instance, Mr C. alludes to the simple operations in practice among man. kind in the earliest times, and performed as it were instinctively. In all ages a certain medicinal virtue has been ascribed to the touch of the human hand, and rubbing with it the part of the body injured, has in many instances been found to have a soothing influence over pain. The ancient writers are full of allusions to manipulations of this nature in the alleviation of disease ; and the cures effected by the touch of the priests in the Temples of Health, may be explained, Mr C. conceives, by supposing the exercise, in ancient times, of something equivalent to the manipulations of the modern magnetisers. At a subsequent period, he adds, these
singular effects were attributed to the impositions of a crafty priesthood on the ignorance and credulity of the people. But since the discoveries which have been made of the effects of what is termed Animal Magnetism, it has appeared possible that these phenomena depended upon a knowledge of certain principles, afterwards obscured or lost on the decline of those institutions by which it had been cherished.
The following verses of Solon, as translated by Stanley in his History of Philosophy, have been quoted as confirming the idea that something similar to the processes of animal magnetising were known among the ancients:
“ The smallest hurts sometimes increase and rage,
The hand, by gentle stroking, will appease.” In the Amphitruo of Plautus this passage occurs : “ Quid, si ego illum tractim tangam, ut dormiat,” which are thus explained by Taubmann in an edition of Plautus published in 1612." Tractim tangam, ut dormiat. Perbelle videtur ludere, tralatione a nutriculis ductâ, quæ pusiones palma leniuscule demulcent ut dormiant.” And in the following verses of Martial the process is thus described : (B. iii. Ep. 82.)
“ Percurrit agili corpus arte tractatrix,
Manumque doctam spargit omnibus membris." Asclepiades of Bithynia, as stated by Sprengel, recommended frictions, to be continued till the patient fell asleep ; and Tacitus (Hist. iv. 81), and Suetonius (in Vespas. vii. §. 5, 6), are quoted as detailing two remarkable magnetic cures which were performed by the Emperor Vespasian at Alexandria. The Latin words Tractator and Tractatrix, are also referred to as implying the knowledge and practice of some art of this kind among the Romans.
Mr Colquhoun also refers to the immemorial practice of the oriental nations for the early practice of palmar manipulation in the cure of diseases. T'he Chaldean priests are said to have practised this mode of treatment, as also the Indian Bramips and the Parsi. And the accounts of the Jesuit missionaries to China are pointed out as indicating the practice to have prevailed in that country for ages.
But leaving these incidental allusions to a practice which may be explained without any reference to an unseen and unknown agent excited by such manipulations, Mr C. commences his history of modern animal magnetism about the middle of the seventeenth century, and connects it with the appearance in London of a certain gardener of the name of Levret, an Irish