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enveloped themselves in the clothes which these patients have
just quitted, and others again have gone close to them to inhale
their dying breath, yet always without serious consequences.

" Far be from us, however, the rash thought of proscribing
useful precautions, and condemning prudent measures. On
the contrary, these useful precautions, we call for them, we
plead for them with all our energy ; but for the interest of com-
merce and society, we desire that the endeavour should be to
keep these precautions and measures within just limits; we
particularly desire that they should be applied with discretion.
Directed by profound knowledge, and especially by the light

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1832.] Cholera.

of experience, they will profit nations without being a burden
to them. To individual calami ties,, to the eventful misfortune
of disease, they would not add the universal calamities, the
infallible misfortune of poverty, a scourge more formidable
still than the Cholera." pp. 190, 191.

It is too common to speak of sanatory laws and quarantine
regulations, as if they could do no harm even should they be
of no use ; this is certainly a very mistaken notion, and can-
not be too strongly opposed. We have but to reflect on the
immense number of persons thrown out of employment^ by
the restrictions upon a single branch of trade or commerce,
to see that the want these must produce will go far to bal-
ance all the good that might possibly be expected from them.
They prepare the way for the disease by placing hundreds
and thousands in the very situation in which they are the
least able to resist its attack. And what have sanatory laws
done for any of the countries in which they have been
adopted? "The district of Caen, from the first indications
of the disease in the government of Orenburg, adopted the
most particular and severe precautions against its propaga-
tion. Punishment of death was pronounced against every
infraction of the sanatory laws ; yet this district, notwith-
standing, has been ravaged by the disease."

Dr. Granville says, it is " a fact, that neither Austria nor
Russia has been able to keep off from its dominions this
supposed intruder and traveller, although they employed for
that purpose, with augmented vigor 'and severity, the very
quarantine laws which have all along preserved them from
any invasion of the plague, — a disease acknowledged on all
hands, and by the choleric contagionists as well as others, to
be superlatively contagious, infinitely superior in that respect
to Cholera-"

Much may be done in the way of personal precaution.
A strict observance of the rules of health, will avail much to
him who understands and follows them. General instruc-
tions on this head are often given, and are found in all
the works before us. But as what is right and wholesome
for one is not so for another, we should condemn all such at-
tempts to regulate the mode of living of a whole community
at the approach, or during the prevalence, of a pestilence.

One thing we have to observe upon, however, in the in-
structions we have generally met with^ that they all seem to

VOL. I. NO. V. 50

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890 Bigelou^i Technology. [M ajr,

firesame the body to be in a state of comparative debility at
such times, and all recommend ^^ a little wine for the stom-
ach's sake/' and a good deal of animal food to fortify the
system against the invader. This may be right, but not for
all ; and we will only oppose to it the experience of Dr.
Rush, in his interesting Narrative of his state of body and
mind during the prevalence of the Yellow Fever in Phil-
adelphia, in 1793. He says, that he restricted himself
i0 a moderate vegetable diet, leaving off the use of wine
entirely, and found the activity of his mind and body won-
dtfrfiiUy augmented. This Narrative we recommend to our
readers, professional or otherwise, as giving an admirable
Ipsson of the duty of a man and a physician in times when the
strongest characters and the stoutest hearts are in danger of
being wanting to themselves and to humanity.

Abt. VI. — Elements of Technology, taken chitfiy from a
Course of Lectures delivered at Cambridge^ on the Applu
cation of the Sciences to the Useful Arts. Now publish-
ed for the Use of Seminaries and Students. By Jacob
BioBLOw, M. D., Professor of Materia Medica, and late
Rumford Professor in Harvard University, Member of
the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, be. Sec-
ond Edition, with Additions. Boston. Hilliard, Gray,
Little, & Wilkins.. 1831. 8vo. pp. 521.

Dr. Bigelow's " Elements of Technology " ranks high
kmong the number of good scientiGc works to which our
country has ^ven birth. It is the work of one perfectly
acquainted with the subjects upon which he writes. It is
evidently no hasty compilation, but the result of extensive
and accurate study. Its arrangement of topics is philosophi-
cal ; its style neat and agreeaole. It is as pleasant as it is
rare, to find such thorough knowledge, united with such un-
pretending modesty, as this book every where displays.

This work is admirably adapted to the purpose specified
dpon its title-page, '^ the use of seminaries and students."
it should be introduced, as a text-book, into every college
and high school. Too many young men enter into active
life, profoundly ignorant of many very common and simple
(hing$. This Wtot of information, which is mad^ so apparent

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183».] Big^hw'$ Technology. 9H

when they mingle with practical men, often is, as it should
be, a source of mortification. They will find in this ^' Tech-
nology," the means of relieving themselves from their i^or*
ance and its unpleasant consequences.

But this book should not be confined to colleges and stu-
dents. It contains a rich mass of useful and entertaming
knowledge, of knowledge important to every one, knowledge
daily wanted, and daily found wanting. It is surprising to
see the very general deficiency, among people otherwise
well informed, of an acquaintance with the principles asd
the processes of the useful and the fine arts. How few un-
derstand the construction of a watch ! How many know lot
the difference between the mode of engraving oo copper and
on wood ! We have seen intelligent people, who supposi|d
that the ornamental cutting of glass was done with the dia-*
mond. This is discreditable. We should know something
of the arts, the products of which we are hourly using. The
herb of China is not the less |r&grant, because we know how
the porcelain which contains it is manufactured ; a fine paint-r
ing IS not the less beautiful, because we know the manner of
preparing and mixing colors ; a silk or a calico garment is
not the less becoming, because the wearer understands the
mode of weaving the one and of printing the other.

Besides that it is a delightfiil book to read, Bigelow'^
' " Technolc^y " is made, by a full Index, a very convenient
book for reterence. Not one of its least excellences is, that
it gives at the end of each chapter, a list of the best writers
on the subiects treated in it ; thus marking out to those who
would study more closely the application of science to art;
e full and well selected course of reading.
. This second edition is increased bv the addition of about
fourteen pages of new matter, partly incorporated in the
work, partly given in a short Appendix. There are a fe^ir
errors of the press on its handsome pases. We should hardly
mention this if it were not to show bow the addition of a
single letter may destroy the sense, and perhaps puzzle the
reader ; as on pase 35 : — India rubber *^ is insoluble m water
and in alcohol ; but dissolves in either.^*

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399 Oray^s Oration. [May,

Abt. VIL — 1. Oration delivered before the Legislature of
Massachtuetts, at their Request, on the Hundredth An-
niversary of the Birth of George Washington. •By
Francis C. Gray. Boston. 1832. 8vo. pp. 77.

2. An Oration delivered in Newburyport, February, 22,
1832 : at the Centennial Celebration of the Birth-day of
Washington, By Thomas B. Fox. Newburyport. E. B.
& E. L. White. 1832. 8vo. pp. 22.

The enthusiasm with which the hundredth anniversary of
the birth of Washington was celebrated throughout our coun-
try is in itself a grateful subject of contemplation to a patri-
otic mind. It proves that the feeling with which we view
the character of him who was emphatically the Father of his
country, is something far different from the admiration we
give to any other name in history however illustrious. It
partakes of the fervor of personal attachment. Every man
thinks of Washington as he would of some intimate friend,
from whom he had received incalculable favors, and whom
death had torn from his arms, but only stamped his image
more deeply upon his heart. Though most of the genera-
tion who knew him face to face have passed away, yet the
events of his life have a vivid distinctness to those who have
learned them at second hand ; partly because they were in
themselves so remarkable, and partly because their effects
are so abiding.

In another point of view the strong feeling shown on that
occasion is highly gratifying. Quintilian remarks, that an
admiration of Cicero is in itself a proof of good taste ; so it
seems to us that an universal, deep, and ardent admiration of
the character of Washington is, alone, an evidence that the
body politic is sound at the heart, whatever indications of dis-
ease tnere may be at the surface. We cannot but think that
so long as the American people agree in their reverence for the
man to whom, under Heaven, we are most indebted for our
present political blessings, however intemperate the language
used and menacing the attitude assumed by any portion of
the country, that no State will in a rash moment, so far de-
part from the principles acted upon during his life and with
much affectionate earnestness urged upon us in his '^ Fare-
well Address," as to dismember the Union, and snap that

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1833.] Oray'9 Oration. 893

golden chain of fellowship which has hitherto hound us
together into so graceful a fabric. We think that some pub-
lic demonstrations should be shown to the memory of Wash-
ington at least once in twenty-6ve or thirty years. • It is
important, that every generation should be thus led to medi-
tate upon his wonderful character, that the gifted in the land
should be called to portray it in the most lively colors, and to
show how the lapse of time enhances its value as a model
for imitation, and how the flight of centuries extends and
magnifies the blessings which he was the means of first cre-
ating. It is but one step from admiration to imitation. Plato
says, that if we could behold the sensible form of virtue, we
should be so enamoured of her as to forget every thing else ;
and certainly the annals of profane history present no ex-
ample which approximates nearer to perfect excellence, than
that displayed in the life of George Washington.

The Oration by Mr. Gray is worthy of the occasion which
called it forth and of the author's ^reputation. We do not
pretend to give an abstract of it, because of all productions
an oration can least bear to be thus anatomized. The dis-
tinguishing characteristics of Washington are presented to
our view in language of great simplicity and beauty, and
with an animation and eloquence which nothing but a sincere
admiration of his subject could communicate. In one respect,
he has been very successful ; in illustrating the traits of his
character by the prominent actions of his life. In doing this, .
he has not wearied us by the repetition of a thrice-told tale,
but has contrived to give an air of novelty to the events
themselves by the application he makes of them. By thus
connecting principles with conduct, we are thoroughly im-
pressed with the value of the former, and remember the lat-
ter more distinctly. Mr. Gray has not confined himself to
the life and character of Washington alone, but occasionally
is led aside to the consideration of subjects of kindred inter-
est, connected with the growth and prospects of our country,
and the peculiar nature and operation of our institutions.
That he has digressed rather too much is the only objection
we could make to his Oration, and that is no objection to it
as a production to be read. But it must be considered as a
blemish when we recollect that it was written for the pur-
pose of being delivered. It is generally observable that our
orators do not seem to recollect when they ascend the pulpit.

Digitized by


994 Foa?i Oration. [Kty,

that thene is a point beyond whieh the most dazzling elo-
<|uene6 will not carry the patient attention of an audience.
The incidental topics, however, which Mr. Gray treats,
are such as are naturally suggested by the subject, and are
handled in a very interesting manner. The remarks on the
representative system, beginning on the fifty-thiVd page, are
very excellent and striking.

We have not room to introduce any portions of Mr. Gray's
Oration of sufficient length to illustrate the purity of taste
and manly simplicity of style, with which the whole is w^it^
ten ; qualities alike worthy to be recorded, and to be imitated
on similar occasions.

Mr. Fox's Oration is a beautiful performance, full of that
lionest glow and fervor of feeling which the contemplation of
such a character as that of Washington cannot fail of pro-
ducing in the mind of a young man. He does not attempt
any sketch of his Ufe, nor any minute enumeration of all his
qualities, but selects and dwells upon those peculiar traits
which give him his individuality and distinguish him from the
common herd of great men, so called. He shows the foun-
dations of his greatness to be laid in unfaltering principle, in
self-government and self-knowledge, in consistency, in iBrm-
oess, and in that deep religious confidence, which made hjm
feel, when bis enemies seemed about to crush him at once, the
sentiment expressed by Lord Burleigh, when he heard of the
mighty preparations made by the Spaniards to invade Epg-
land : '^ They shall do no moi e than God will suffer them.'^
Thus, his memorable actions were not the spasmodic efforts
of a mind in a state of preternatural excitement, but the
simple and necessary results of its ordinary workings. In
Lord Bacon's sense of the word, he was thrice-ereat ; for
he was bom great, he achieved greatness, and he had great-
ness thrust upon him. From the consideration of the char-
acter of Washington, Mr. Fox passes, by a natural tran»-
tion, to the quality which so remarkably distinguifhe4 him,
his love of country ; and in a strain of great beauty and feel-
ing dwells upon the duties of the true patriot and the neces-
sity of his making his attachment to his native soil a princi-
ple and not merely an instinct He enforces his remarks by
an application to our own case, speaks of the peculiarities of
our system, of some of the dangers that grow out of it, and
the solemn responsibility which presses upon us all in oooff-

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1883.] Lunatic Hospital at Woreuter. 395

quence. He treats of these subjects with the eloquence
which comes from feeling, and which proves that he has that
patriotism which he describes.

Art. VIII. — Report of Qmmisnoners appointed under a
Resolve of the Legislature of Massachusetts to superin^
tend the Erection of a Lunatic Hospital at Worcester,

^ and to Report a System of Discipline and Government
for the same. Made January 4, 1832. Boston. Dut-
ton & Wentworth. 8ro. pp. 32.

The Legislature of 1829 and 1830 appropriated the sum
of thirty thousand dollars for the erection of a Lunatic Hos-
pital of sufficient dimensions to accommodate a Superintend-
ent and one hundred and twenty patients. We learn from
the highly interesting Report before us, that the walls of an
edifice for this purpose have been erected on a beautiful emi-
nence in the village of Worcester, two hundred and fifty-six
feet in length, consisting of a centre four stories high, ser-
enty-^ix feet long, and forty feet wide, and two wings, od
the some line, three stories high, and each ninety feet long
and thirty-six wide. T^e building ^of which a lithoerapbic
drawing is prefixed to the Report^ \9 a huge pile of bricky
without pretensions to architectural beauty, plain to a fault«
From its commanding position, however, it is sure to arrest,
if it does not charm, the eye of the traveller as he wends hiy
way through that portion of the valley of the Blackstone, or
traverses the handsome streets of the village in which it
stands. Judging from the minute description given in the
Report, as well as from some personal observation, we are
satisfied that the arrangements of the interior, which are yet
faicomplete, will be extremely judicious, and well calculated
to answer the purposes of the mstitution.

The laws of this Commonwealth authorize the commit-
ment to prison of lunatics who in the opinion of two magi»^
trates may be judged '< dangerous to the peace or safety of
the good people." Selectmen of towns are also required to
provide for the safe keeping of insane persons who are pau-
pers ; and it is '' the common practice of many towns to
make private contracts with the keepers of jails and houses
of correction to take such persons at a low rate and impriscii

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396 Lunatic Hospital at Worcester. [May,

them in some of their unoccupied cells, where no person has
been held responsible for iher^ treatment, nor has the law
delegated authority to any one to examine into their condi-
tion." There is still another class of lunatics in the commu-
nity, comprising those who are not so furiously mad as to be
liable to imprisonment. It does not appear from the Report
what proportion of the whole number each of the three
classes constitutes ; but from returns made in 1829, from
towns embracing less than half the population of the state, it
was ascertained that one hundred and sixty-one lunatics were
in actual confinement, making the number of more than three
hundred and twenty-two, at the same rate, in the whole
Commonwealth. It is said to be a " source of great com-
plaint with the sherijflfs and jailore that they must receive
such persons, because they have no suitable accommodations
for them."

Details of the condition in which imprisoned lunatics have
been found in this State, are cited from a Report of the Prison
Discipline Society, some of which are unutterably loathsome
and revolting. In extenuation of the rigorous (not to say
brutal) treatment of insane persons in jails and houses of cor-
rection, the Commissioners say, that the proper mode of
treatment is of recent discovery. " A few individuals justly
entitled to a conspicuous station among the benefactors of
their race, have exploded the barbarous doctrine that ciiielty
is the proper antidote to madness, and have discovered that
skill, mildness, and self-devotion to the welfare of the insane,
are the only efficacious means for their restoration." p. 20.
This principle has been carried into so successful operation
at the Connecticut Retreat for the Insane, that a late Report
of the Visitors shows a ratio of recoveries in the old cases
equal to twenty-six per cent., and out of twenty-four recent
cases, twenty-two recovered. The necessity and expedi-
ency of a different system of management on this subject
in our Commonwealth, are thus strikingly shown. Were
there no hope of recovering the victims of this dreadful mala-
dy, a change would still be demanded on the score of human-
ity. And when to this consideration is added the certainty of
a restoration in a large majority of cases, under a mild and pro-
per treatment, the propriety of establishing a hospital for this
purpose, at almost any expense, cannot be doubted for a

Digitized by


I88d:] Lunatic Hoipkal at fFarcester. 397

The actual expense of the insane population to the state
for many years^past, it is estimated, has averaged forty thou-
sand dollars annually. As to the mode of defrayme the
charges of the Hospital, the Commissioners recommend that
there be no alteration in the present law in relation to those
confined in houses of correction, which requires, (as we find
by a reference to the statute,) that the persons committed be
kept at their own expense, if they have estate, otherwise at
the charge of the persons or towns who would have been
liable, had they not been committed. The only change
recommended by the Commissioners is, that lunatics here-
tofore required to be imprisoned under the direction of the
State, be hereafter committed to the Hospital at Worcester ;
and that those now so confined be removed to the Hospital
ais soon as it is ready for their reception. They also recom-
mend that the insane poor be allowed the benefit of the hos-
pital at the least possible expense, that all classes may
be permitted to enjoy advantages now open only to persons
possessing pecuniary means. The expense being thus re-
duced, towns will doubtless be induced to place their pauper
lunatics there, instead of crowding them into the cells of
prisons, or disposing of the care of them to the lowest bid-

We cannot close this brief notice without cordially com-
mending this sensible and well-written Report (which, we
understand, is from the pen of Mr. Mann, the Chairman of the
Commbsioners,) to general perusal, with the hope that the
valuable information and excellent views it contains, in rela-
tion to a subject of great public interest, may lead to a just
appreciation of the practical utility of the institution about to
be established. We would recommend a cheap edition of
the Report for extensive circulation, at least ol those parts
of it which have a general bearing, should it be thought un-
necessary to republish the whole.

VOL. I. NO. V. 61

Digitized by


998 Jackson and AJger^s Sttneralogy and Otology, [May,

Art. IX. — Remarks an the Mineralogy and Geology of
the Peninsula oj Nova Scotia, accompanied by a Colored
Map, illustrative of the Structure of the Country , and by
several Views of its Scenery. By Charles T. Jackson
and Francis Alger. Cambridge. £. W. Metcalf &
Co. 1832. 4to. pp. 116.

This is a feast. We have been professionally called from
it divers times, yet we have always returned to it with a
keen appetite. This is good proof how well the feast is
served up. We will not say ^^got up," for there is no '' getting
up" about it. This volume is published separately from the
'< Memoirs of the American Academy," in which it is to ap-
pear. It is truly a delightful book to the mineralogist and
geologist. It contains the results of the observations of two
young men, on a field peculiarly their own, — a field which
they began to clear and cultivate as early as 1827, when
they gave us some account of its hidden treasures. The
present work contains their labors in 1829, incorporated with
what they had before presented to us in the '< Journal of Sci-
ence." They have examined accurately, and described
minutely, a great mass of facts ; and have avowed honestly,
fearlessly, but very modestly their opinions on some theoreti-
c' I points in geology.

But this sketch is not a mere dry detail of mineralogical
and geological facts, interesting only to those initiatea in
these sciences ; there is to be sure, no sweet discourse of
birds to lure us onward, but our enterprising travellers take
ds on board their little vessel, specially chartered for our ac*
commodation, and we are piloted around the rocky shores of
Acadia ; now threading the narrow passes among islands and
rocky columns, between which the tumultuous tide rushes
like a whirlpool ; and now riding on the broad bosom of
secluded basins, embayed by rocks, the great sea-wall of
Nature, rising in immense perpendicular sheets from the
ocean. We visit the numerous capes, towering high, like the
Giant's Causeway, with basaltic columns, and |aze on scenery
so wildly magnificent, that we almost forget, m the sublimity
of our emotions, that the professed object of our journey re-
lates to earth. We are led over the Province, and visit its
mines of copper and iron and coal ; in the last of which, we

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183fi.] Joekwm and Algtr^s Mkurahgy mid Geology. W99

all feel a warm interast, and know how profitaUe it must be to
be holders of the stock, if not stockholders in the mines. We
are shown immense quarries of limestone and plaster, and are

Online LibraryJoseph Lyon MillerAmerican monthly review → online text (page 41 of 54)