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it, seem to open a prospect that really curative, that is, antidotal agents may be discovered, not simply for drugs, but for the effects induced by drugs, and also for the changes which constitute disease; and the observation that morphia, chloroform, and some other substances produce different and sometimes opposite effects, according to the doses in which they are given, renders it not improbable that poisonous agents may, in some instances, be antidotal to themselves, and that the word ' homoeopathy' may be rescued from its position as the expression of a fallacy, and may yet take its place in the etymology * of scientific medicine."
Professor Humphrey is a man of thought and science. But his qualities seem to fail him here, confused in the "lumen madidum " which the prejudice against homoeopathy never fails to diffuse. Let us analyse his paragraph into its component propositions.
1st. Antidotal agents are the really curative ones.
2nd. Some substances are found to produce opposite effects, according to the dose in which they are given.
3rd. Hence it may be that in some instances a small dose of a poisonous agent may antidote, i. e., cure, the effect of a large dose of the same, or a like change when occurring in disease.
4th. This would truly be "homoeopathy," and such practice, denoted by this appropriate name, would take its place unquestioned in " scientific medicine."
What, then, is the "fallacy" of which this word is at present the expression? Simply this,—that a meihodus medendi confessedly applicable to certain cases, and here suggested as possibly of wider range than we at present know, is asserted by some to be of universal application within its own sphere,—such assertion being based upon experiment and observation carried on widely and continuously since the beginning of this century. Wherein is the '' fallacy" here? The induction may be disproved or superseded; but at the most it can only be demonstrated to be partial; there is no "fallacy" about it. To assume it as already discredited is surely unworthy of a man of Prof. Humphrey's reputation. He should rather, by precept and example, encourage those who look up to him to "prove all things" in medicine, before they allow themselves to "hold fast * We suppose Prof. Humphrey means " vocabulary."
that which is good." Which is the more philosophical course, to test such a method by experiment, Op to reject it as a "fallacy P" All we are doing is to adopt the former course, allowing the doctrine to dominate our practice just so far as.it becomes verified by fact, and no farther.*
But, alas! Professor Humphrey could not recommend this more philosophical course, even if he approved of it. He would be imperilling the future career of his pupils. Let us recall the following:
"On the 4th of January, 1856, under the presidency of Professor Cruveilhier, were expelled from the Anatomical Society of Paris with the unanimous consent of the members,' Drs. J. P. Tessier, Gabalda, Fredault, and Jousset, as authors of homoeopathic publications, and M. W— an account of an infamous and felonious act already punished by the law.'" (See VArt Midical, December, 1873.) Such a concatenation would seem to bear with it its own shame. But it is to be feared that such expulsion well expresses the medical mind of Great Britain at the present day. The name of Reith has to be added to those of Tessier and Henderson as instances of the utter intolerance of the most liberal and honest investigation, if its results happen to tend in a certain direction. Who then can dare to advise, and who dare to imitate, the "rescue" which Professor Humphrey anticipates? Suppose it leads, as it has already led in the case of such men as these, to a conviction that no rescue is needed, and that the word " homoeopathy" is even now the expression of no fallacy, but of a large body of ascertained and sifted truth. Were Professor Humphrey himself to follow (as he need not be ashamed of following) Tessier and Henderson to this conclusion, his place in Cambridge would know him no more. He would doubtless be above any such terrors when Truth invited him. But can he tolerate their existence? Can he doubt their benumbing effects on weaker minds? Is it not time that he, and such as he, spoke out for liberty of thought and removal of disabilities in medical as in political life? Is it not time for withdrawing the unjust stigma which rests upon those whose only fault is their free carrying out of the very investigations which have raised the hopes here expressed?
* A good instance of the comparative fruitfulneS of such a course is seen in the case of the action of lihus on the skin. In the London Medical Record of Aug; 27tb, Dr. Ringer cites from the New York Medical Journal some observations on the power of Rhus toxicodendron and Rhus venenata to inflame the skin. The facts are recorded: but there they remain absolutely barren. To us, on|the contrary, who use the method of Hahnemann, they have long ago suggested the use of the Rhus in such cutaneous affections, and with the distinguished success to which we all can testify. Which is the Medicine of the future, that which can utilize all pathogenetic facts, or that to which at least one half of them has no signification?
Compulsory Vaccination: its Wickedness to the Poor. By J. J. Gabth Wilkinson. London: Pitman.
Sir James Paget on Changes produced by Vaccination.
Disasters from Vaccination. By Edward Ballabd, M.D.
On the Evil Consequences of Impure Vaccination. By Edwaed Hattghton, A.B., F.C.D., M.D., M.E.C.8.E., Ac.
The Danger and Injustice of Compulsory Vaccination.
Vaccination and the Vaccination Act. By Rev. Mundefobd Allen.
On the Best Method of Medicating Pilules. By Isaac C. Thompson.
Annual Record of Homoeopathic Literature for 1873. By C. G-. FiAtTE, M.D. Boericke and Tafel, New York.
Albany Weekly Times, Nov. 27, 1873.
The Dublin Journal of Medical Science.
The New Zealand Homoeopathic Gazette.
The Monthly Homoeopathic Review.
The Hahnemannian Monthly.
The American Homoeopathic Observer.
The Western Homoeopathic Observer.
The Chicago Medical Investigator.
The North American Journal of Homoeopathy.
United States Medical and Surgical Journal.
The Western Homoeopathic Observer.
The New England Medical Gazette.
The American Journal of Homoeopathic Materia Medica.
El Criterio Medico.
The Calcutta Journal of Medicine.
The Food Journal.
The Chemist and Druggist.
The New York Journal of Homoeopathy.
The Medical Union.
Compendia di Materia Medica Pura. Par Dr. B. Dadea.
THE CLIMATE OF MADEIRA, IN THE TREATMENT OF PHTHISIS AND OTHER AFFECTIONS OF THE RESPIRATORY ORGANS.
By W. B. A. Scott, M.D.
Little more than a quarter of a century ago the Island of Madeira was, unquestionably, the favourite winter resort of all phthisical invalids from this country whose resources and circumstances permitted them to visit so distant a shore. The writings of Sir James Clark, Dr. Gourlay, Sir Thomas Watson, Dr. Scott Alison, and many others, all described the climate of Madeira as that which was incomparably better suited than any other to consumptive patients. The sufferers themselves, in many cases, echoed the encomiums bestowed on that beautiful island by their medical advisers, and the prevailing opinion of the public, no less than that of the profession, rose so high in its favour that a visit of longer or shorter duration to that favoured spot was deemed an all but infallible cure for consumption in its earlier stages, a certain means of securing prolonged existence, or, at least, euthanasia, at a more advanced period, and an effectual prophylactic measure in cases where the disease indicated its approach
VOL. XXXII, NO. CXXVIII. APRIL, 1874. N
by premonitory symptoms, without having as yet established itself in the constitution.
A very different opinion on this subject prevails at the present day. The name of Madeira, indeed, is still found in works dealing with medical climatology, but it occurs merely as one among a host of others, and to which no special recommendation is accorded; while our more accurate knowledge of the topographic, thermometric, barometric, hygrometric, and other physical conditions of the various health resorts now in vogue has enabled us to institute comparisons between them with greater precision, and has led, in many cases, to very unexpected results. It will be an interesting task to endeavour to find out the causes of this former popularity, in which we shall readily perceive the reasons of its subsequent decline, while, at the same time, we shall be doing a good service both to the island itself and, what is of far greater consequence, to the interests of suffering humanity, if our investigation shall enable us to point out the nature of the cases to which the climate of Madeira is likely to prove of real benefit.
In order to understand the circumstances under which Madeira acquired the high reputation it formerly enjoyed as a resort for phthisical invalids, it is necessary to bear distinctly in mind the views entertained until a comparatively recent period upon the etiology, pathology, and treatment of phthisis. This formidable disease was supposed to be chiefly, if not entirely, confined to damp, cold, and variable climates, and its origin was mainly ascribed to these hygrometric and thermometric conditions. It was imagined to be a local disease affecting the lungs, at least primarily, and even in some cases to run its course without materially implicating any other organ. The former of these ideas derived some confirmation from the general pulmonary symptoms, as cough, dyspnoea, sanguineous and purulent expectoration, and so forth, while the latter seemed to be supported by the fact that in some cases death supervened without the previous occurrence of the profuse diaphoresis, troublesome sickness, and colliquative diarrhoea,