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"Having for more than twenty years experi"enced the efficacy , of Godbold's Patent Vegetable "Balsam, for the cure of coughs, colds, asthmas, "and consumptions, in their own families as well "as witnessed it in others, particularly recom"mends it to be kept by all persons, to have rt"course to upon the first attack of either of the "above complaints, in which case it never fails of "success, and in hundreds of instances it has "performed cures after patients have been given "over by their physicians, by which means a great "number of the faculty conjoins in the recommend"ation, having admitted it as the first medicine "in the. world for the above disorders.
"Numerous certificates from others of the nobi"lity and families of distinction, as well as from "the above, to whom references may be made, "may be seen at the proprietor's, Bloomsbury"square, which are proofs of its utility, beyond "the power of envy to dispute."
N. B. "To prevent fraud, their name is written "on every label, and printed at full length upon "each stamp that covers the cork of each bottle."
On examining this nostrum we do not discover any property that can possibly entitle it to the appellation of a balsam, but the propriety of the term vegetable, we cannot dispute, as vinegar, sugar, and honey are vegetable productions; we can however positively deny that it possesses the balsamic property of vegetables, and our examination, as well as the trials we have known to be made with it, do not justify our attributing to it any virtues superior to the simple oxymel of the shops, although sold at the very exorbitant rate of 18s. per pint, for which a regular chymist would be ashamed to ask as many pence. Why a patent was granted to the proprietor for
this medicine, we are at a loss to conjecture.—^ It is a sanction which has a great influence with the ignorant, and which we consider it by no means entitled to."
The proprietors in their public advertisements, bring forward the names of a few noblemen * in testimony of its efficacy. The attestation of people unacquainted with medicine, and so ignorant of diseases as not to know a common catarrh froin real consumption of the lungs, can have but very little weight with the thinking part of mankind. One would however have supposed, that such characters would have had a greater regard for their own reputation and that of their family, to have suffered their names to have been recorded in support of empirical practices.
Consumption of the lungs is not a primary affection, but the consequence of some previous disease of the lungs, arising from a variety of causes; it has also different stages, which require as opposite a treatment as any two diseases we are acquainted with. The medicine that is proper in one stage, must necessarily be injurious in another, and which again must be varied according to the nature of the primary complaint and other peculiarity of constitution. The celebrated sauvage has enumerated no less than twenty species of consumption of the lungs, all arising from very different causes. Is it therefore possible, that one medicine can be applicable to all? It requires no medical
* On the most unquestionable authority we can state, that the finest turkey Norfolk can produce, is sent to one of these Right Honorable testifiers, as well as several similar presents in the course of the Tear; we apprehend for the use of his Lordship's name. It is therefore a fair presumption that the rest of the respectable list have thelf share of rewards in proportion to their r?nks in life !!|
skill or pathological knowledge to answer this question.
It has been stated in favor of this nostrum, that if it do no good, it is incapable of doing harm; every person acquainted with the disease that takes place in the lungs, must know that a medicine which has no power of suspending its progress must be productive of mischief, inasmuch as the patient by trusting to it, loses an opportunity never to be regained, Such is the nature of this disease, and the delicate structure of the lungs, as well as their importance in the animal oeconomy, that instead of palliative harmless or doubtful remedies being employed, it requires great experience to discover the real state of the disease, and often a bold and decisive practice to save the life of the patient—the delay of a day is a serious loss to such patients. Dr. John Reid, a physician of great erudition and professional judgment, in a treatise on Consumption of the lungs, just published, makes the following very pertinent observation, "many "consumptive affections have been originally im"planted in the nursery, &c. and made to expand "by infallible remedies for coughs, colds, and con"sumptions, that hardy empiricism however, which "for individual profit occasions perminent and ir-< "reparable injury to the health, and consequent "happiness of either unconscious or unsuspecting
individuals, deserves in an equal degree the seve"rity of reproach, nor can the plea of ignorance "of consequences justly claim anything, further "than a slight mitigation of the austerity of cen"sure'. Consumption is avast pit-fall situated in the "high road of life, empiricism is the treacherous "hand, which under false pretences conducts to its "margin, and precipitates the fatal descent When
w the English nation shall be firmly convinced "that sweeteners ofthe blood, antiscorbutics, reme'' dies for colds, and according to the observation "of the astonished Chinese philosopher, for every "disease to which the human frame is subject, arc "either altogether inert, or highly injurious by "their indiscriminate administration, &c. diseases "in general will be of less frequent occurrence, and "the list of consumptive affections will undergo *4 a very considerable diminution." ,
That able physician, Dr. Fothergill, in the Lon-, don Medical Commentaries states, that it was impossible to'lay down a general rule even for the treatment of a particular species or stage of pulmonary consumption, as he had often known a medicine that proved beneficial in one instance, considerably to aggravate the symptom in another similar case through a peculiar, irritability of the system—even the saline mixture he had found to increase all the febrile s}anptoms. Dr. Reecc in a dissertation on pulmonary consumption, enumerates several species of the disease, for which he recommends very different treatment. This Author states, that from the number of consumptive patients that have applied to him for relief, on an average, nine out of ten were taking quack medicines, this Author's observations on the dangerof advertised nostrums we have taken the liberty of quoting in our notice of the balsam of liquorice. Page 6.
We are surprised that Mr. Godbold has not mentioned the names of those physicians who declared the patients that were cured by his nostrum, to have been irrecoverable, or that the cases' were true phthisis pulmonalis, and that he should omit the names of the members of the medical faculty that have in consequence of those cures adopted its use in their practice. We are persuaded that if this medicine really manifested any specific effects in pulmonary consumption, there is no medical man in this kingdom but what would very readily and gladly come forward to attest the same, which would more powerfully have recommended it to public notice, and be far more honorable to the proprietor, than the testimonies of people who are both ignorant of diseases and medicine.
If those gentlemen really derived the advantages from the use of this nostrum, which the public advertisement intimates, (for we never heard of their being consumptive) their conduct should have been very different to what it has been. They should have first ascertained the real merits of the medicine, and if experience had proved it to possess antiphthisical properties, or that it had in one instance cured a patient, declared by a physician to be really afflicted with consumption of the. lungs, they should have advised the proprietor to have applied for parliamentary reward, instead of suffering their names to appear in favor of empirical practices. If Mr. Godbold, notwithstanding his education and situation in life, had discovered a remedy for a disease that at least destroys 30,000 of his Majesty's subjects annually, he would have been entitled to a very handsome remuneration from his country, and which no doubt would have been granted by parliament. The medicine of course would have been sanctioned by the faculty, and the proprietor might also have had the privilege of making it secure to him by virtue of a patent, which would have tended more to his emolument, and redounded more to his honor. We have known this medicine tried in many very fair