of their doors and windows, while the offences his parents by his eventually marrying both were committed. People were constantly drowned the heroines, for example, à dénouement of in Hong Kong, in the presence of those who which English novelists cannot avail theminight have saved them without any peril to selves,- it will be found full of curious and, themselves, and I was obliged to issue an ordinauce, condemning the boats to confiscation

to English readers, striking touches. whose owners refused to rescue those who had fillen into the water."

From The Spectator. The purely civic civilization of a crowded

THE TRUE DANGER OF TOBACCO. and over-populous empire is sure to end in something like this, at least without the The long struggle between the votaries presence of a strong spiritual power to and the opponents of Tobacco, which has leaven and exalt that secularism of idea raged at intervals for the last three hundred which the Chinese, the English, and the years, is, we suspect, very nearly at an end. Americans seem to exhibit naturally in al- | The world smokes, just as the world eats, and most equal degrees. A reviewer with whom sees as little necessity for defending the one we have had some little controversy lately, practice as the other. It recognizes evils arishas lamented the failure of the Darwinian ing from oversmoking just as it recognizes law of “natural selection in the struggle evils arising from overeating; but is no for existence” in the human world. We more alarmed by stories of paralysis proare not sure that in China it does not operate duced by cigars than by reports of apoplexy with almost the same force as in the lower from roast goose. It sets down the victims world of animal life. The account of the in either case as slightly silly persons, and deaths which take place during the compet- goes on its way with a remark about the itive examinations is a strict result of the uses of moderation. But that the Governtriumph of the Darwinian law :

ments of Europe have seized with natural

eagerness on a new and tempting opportu“ Late newspapers from China give some in- nity of taxation, and that there is but one teresting particulars of the resumption of com- mode of smoking, the narghilé, which looks petitive examinations in Nan King, where they graceful, the women of the West would, we had been long interrupted by the presence of th Tae Ping iusurgents. An Imperial decree di- believe, ere this, have adopted the practice,

as their sisters in the East have done, and rected the ex umination hall to be opened in the the victory of the weed would be complete. ancient capital of China. No less than two Mankind have discovered, in fact, a new thousand students presented themselves as candid:tes for the Kju Jen, or Master of Arts de- pleasure so great that it tempts them to gree, and in consequence of the time which had overcome an instinctive disgust so genuine passed since the list examination, an unusual that the first cigar makes everybody sick, number, not less than 248 students, were pro- do not see any counter-balancing evil, and motel. So severe was the competition, that will not be lectured into giving the pleasure great numbers committed suicide, and many oth- up. Moralists indeed have pretty nearly ers died from over-exhaustion and anxiety. It abandoned their efforts in despair. A man is said that no less than 75 corpses were carried like Dean Close now and then says a harsh out from the examination-halls. They were re- word against an enjoyment which he regards moved by secret, underground passages, lest the great entrance should be profaned by the pressionally makes a fuss about the waste of

as purely sensual, and an economist occaence of the unhuppy deud, who are supposed to


it involves pay this most awful penalty for un divulged of

a waste very curiously fences, which ought to have prevented them from great, if we assume that tobacco has no efentering into the competitive field.”

fect either for good or evil; but as a rule

these austere thinkers have concentrated And to this, mere secularism, however re- most of their attention upon alcohol, a much spectful of the rights of others, bowever less dubious subject for the eloquence of civic and citizenlike in Goethe's sense, nec asceticism. The only serious attacks now essarily tends.

come from the fastidious, who in some counSir Jolin Bowring has produced in this tries have contrived to make it bad taste to translation a very useful as well as amusing smoke in a woman's presence; and from book. Of course of its scholarship we can- physicians, who every now and then are not pretend to be judges in any degree. startled by isolated facts into reviewing the But of its freslmness and interest we are; popular decision. Some such facts seem and quite apart from the features of the tale recently to have come before a well-known which are likely to be thought the most cu- physiologist, who, in St. Paul's Magazine rious,—the reconciliation of the views of for this month, does a little thinking aloud the two rival young ladies, the lover, and lupon the matter, arriving of course, with


some hesitation upon one point to be no- The experience of mankind, which after ticed directly, at the popular conclusion. all is the best guide, is, we need not say, It is, he says, a fallacy to argue that be- in exact accord with this view, and tobacco cause nicotine in the concentrated form, or might be pronounced a harmless luxury but an overdose of ordinary tobacco, is poison- for one exceptional fact, which is noticed ous, therefore a smaller dose must in its by the writer in St. Paul's Magazine, but degree be poisonous too. Quantity alters which is dismissed far too summarily. He quality sometimes, as we see in the cases admits, with a freedom which will please of alcohol, opium, and even flesh meat, all the few resolute opponents of tobacco, that of which can be made to yield a strong poi- its use in excess is very injurious, producson, but in reasonable doses are innoxious ing nervous complaints, hysteria, mental or beneficial. The effect of the doses is weakness, and sometimes 'paralysis, and not cumulative when the smoker is in an or- very justly sets that aside as an evil incidinary state of health, any more than the dent to almost every habit of mankind. effect of daily glasses of wine or cups of Alcohol, coffee, and even ordinary food may tea, either of which may be taken for sev- all be made dangerous by taking too much, enty years with as little consequence at the and “the argument from excess is an exclose of life as at first. There are, no cess of argument ” — the only important doubt, states of health in which a small dose point as to that matter being the limit of may be highly injurious or even poisonous, moderation, which differs with every indiand the essayist in St. Paul's gives, with vidual, and with the state of the digestion characteristic clearness, an explanation of or each separate day, or even hour, tobacco this circumstance, the cause, as he thinks, before breakfast being injurious to many of much of the prejudice against tobacco :- men who can smoke after it with impunity.

But those who use tobacco want an answer, “The stomach is quite capable of absorbing either from the lay physiologist of the St. the poison, but it absorbs it slowly compared Paul's or from the medical profession, to a with the rapidity of the process by which the poison is excreted; and in consequence of this much more subtle question. Has not togreater rapidity of excretion, although all the bacco a property belonging to very few subpoison may be absorbed, yet at no one moment stances which makes its use exceptionally is there sufficient quantity in the blood to pro- dangerous, much more dangerons, say, than duce injury. "Spread out the thunder into its that of alcohol, – the property, that is, minutest tones' says Schiller, “and it becomes a when adıninistered in an overdose, of effectlullaby for children. Spread out the deadliest ing some permanent change, probably in the poison in minute doses, and it becomes a med- spinal cord, which renders the victim for icine - as we know from the daily use of strych- ever after liable to injury from the minutest nine, prussic acid, and other energetic poisons, dose? This writer does not pretend to anin medical practice. Now when a poison is rap- swer that question as it could be answered idly excreted by the skin, lungs, and kidneys, so in the Lancet, but he has had special reason that an accumulation in the blood is prevented, all injury is avoided, a succession of minute to study the action of tobacco, and believes doses not being the same as one concentrated that the following three cases quoted in the dose. But if from any cause the rapidity of ex- magazine, from Dr. Druhen's work on tocretion be arrested, an acemulation takes place, bacco, point to the one real danger arising and thus a small dose comes to have the effect of from its use: a large dose. This is not hypothesis; it has been proved by Hermann of Berlin, who found that “ Case I. M. T., an advocate, aged thirty, of the dose of curare which was quite innocuous athletic frame, began in 1810 to manifest sympwhen injected into the stomach of a rabbit be toms of a spinal affection, which continued till came almost immediately fatal if the vessels of the summer of 1845. These symptoms fluctuthe kidneys were tied, thus preventing the excre- ated considerably, but they resisted all treattion from taking place through the kidneys. ment. At last, Druhen, suspecting that the disHermann also found, - what, indeed, Brown Ši. turbing cause was excessive smoking, persuaded quard had long ago proved, that the dose of his patient to give up this bad habit. All the alcohol which was fatal to an animal when left symptoms disappeared as if by enchantment, exposed to the cold, passed away without serious and at the end of one month the cure was comeffects when the animal was kept very warm, plete. M. T. enjoyed good health for some time, the heat accelerating and the cold retarding the but one day dining with the Doctor he entreated excretion from the skin."

to be allowed to indulge in a cigar. The perinis

sion was refused, but he persisted and smoked. But in the great majority of cases small • No sooner had he finished his second cigar than doses of tobacco are as entirely innocuous I saw him hastily quit the table. I rose also in as small doses of the very dangerous poison some anxiety, and he confessed that all his old contained in tea.

sensations had returned. This indication was

[ocr errors]

decisive. M. T. henceforth entirely gave up his action of calomel swallowed years after-
cigar, took steel tonics for a month, and has ever wards. The old superstition about anti-
since enjoyed robust health.” Case II. M. ob- dotes probably had its origin in facts of the
served that his energies had been declining; he same kind, observed, perhaps, in times
was excessively thin, ate little, and only found when men had a greater capacity for be-
comfort in smoking very strong cigars. He com- lieving what they saw than they have in this
plained of acute abdominal pains every afternoon,
which only ceased at night; trembling of the

century of ours. If this suggestion is cor-
limbs, palpitations, and sometimes sickness. He rect, and no other explains the facts, to-
was advised to relinquish tobacco during one bacco is a permanent danger to mankind,
month; did so, and the symptoms disappeared; important whenever the conditions of men's
but he afterwards declared that he would rather lives or the specialties of their constitution
endure the sufferings than be deprived of tobacco, makes overdoses probable.
He resumed his old habit, and the old pains re- It would be very useful to ascertain, if it
turned.—Case III. A man aged forty-five, of lym- were possible, what those conditions and
phatic temperament, extremely sober, and very constitutions are, an inquiry towards which
regular in all his habits, was troubled by the pre- the writer in the St. Paul's gives us very
monitory symptoms of melancholy mania. He little help. It has been proved by experi-
was perfectly aware of his hallucinations, but ment that inaction of the kidneys make nico-
could not escape them. After two or three weeks' tine additionally dangerous, and the essay-
medical treatment they passed away, and he re- ist lays it down as a proposition that any-
sumed his labours at the bank, where he held the
post of cashier. M. Druhen accidentally learned thing which diminishes excretory action, a
that his patient was a smoker,-a moderate severe fall in the temperature, for example,
smoker,—and that during his treatment the de- creates danger. So probably does any se-
sire for tobacco had not made itself felt, but on

vere reduction in the pulse, if coincident his recovery he again resumed his cigar, and with the overdose; or hunger, or deep deonce more the old symptoms appeared. Warned pression of mind. Constitutions vary so thus by experience, he renounced tobacco en- infinitely that it is scarcely possible to lay tirely, and from that day has had no recurrence down many rules, but most physicians of the symptoms.”

would, we imagine, endorse one or two; as,

for example, that a severe cold is always a There are physicians in London who could hint to diminish tobacco, that it should add greatly to this list. One we know never be taken fasting, and that to most watched a case in which a violent nervous men it is specially, and as it were oddly, inand mental affection, cured by the disuse of jurious during the intervals of sleep. That tobacco, returned after an interval of years last is a caution smokers do not need, - in when the patient had thoughtlessly smoked Europe at least, but snufftakers do, and a few cigars, and disappeared again on the it is one which this writer, without pretendcessation of the habit ; and numbers of ing to understand the reason, offers serioussmokers will testify to occasional “ fits” of ly. One pinch of snuff taken between severe malaise from a smaller allowance of sleeping and waking at night will do more tobacco than usual. Is it not, then, at least to produce the symptoms of nicotine poisonpossible, if the facts are true and every ing than a boxfull taken in the day-time, physician in large practice knows them to will produce in many cases actual vomiting be correct, that almost any devotee of hours after. And finally, it may be laid tobacco may accidentally get an overdose, down as an axiom that men of highly-strung, and may thenceforward be liable to suffer sensitive, nervous organizations, and men more or less severely whenever the ordinary who habitually eat little, are better without dose happens not to be carried off as rapid- tobacco. They need it least, it is on them ly as usual? The poison is then absorbed, that it exerts its worst effects, and they, of all as the writer in the St. Paul's describes, and men, are most liable to become slaves to a permanent, though it may be minute, in the indulgence, which they fancy relieves jury is inflicted on the nervous system. In the dyspepsia it produces. To all sufferers what way the overdose alters the victim's from tobacco, we would add that if the theliability to attack is a question for physiolo- ory we have tried to maintain is correct, gists ; but it may be held to be certain that and we speak as those who know by dreary it does, and though we have called the ac- experience the hold tobacco gets over the tion special, it is not unique. The vaccine affections, — there is no remedy whatever virus permanently alters the liability of except total abstinence. If the mischief has every child in the empire to be poisoned by once been done, one cigar or one pinch of smallpox; there are drugs are there not? snuff is as bad as a hundred. Some of them

which produce a liability to epilepsy, and can act on the advice without an effort, an overdose of mercury will intensify the nothing in the history of tobacco being so

[ocr errors]

curious as the readiness with which many one useful line of advice. Fight the habit confirmed victims give up the habit, a' with your whole will and attention, as if it readiness in part due, it may be, to the fact were a stutter or a twitch. Bear the torthat no consequences follow its disuse such ture of disuse as you would bear a disease; as follow the disuse of opium or alcohol. go to bed, or to sea, and remember that Others could as soon be broken of opium- one cigar or one pinch of snuff will in bad smoking, or hemp-eating, or dram-drinking cases re-arouse, after an interval of months, as of tobacco, and for them there is only the insatiable crave.

PRECIOUS JEWELS. — Colour is never so com- posed of the same material as the emerald, with mercially valuable as in precious stones. For the exception of its colouring matter. This can instance, the ruby, the sapphire, and the Ori- scarcely be called a precious stone, as it is found ental topaz are identically the same so far as the in large quantities. We are told, indeed, that a materials of which they are composed go, but mass weighing five tons was found in America. they differ in value immensely. The ruby is, in It is used in Birmingham, under the name of fact, the same as a red sapphire, but the first- aqua marina, in making cheap jewelry. Rockmentioned jewel is the most precious of stones, crystal is one of many valuable minerals which whilst the blue sapphire is not of any great value. belong to the quartz system. It is very generOf old all blue stones were called sapphires, and ally distributed over the globe in large crystals. extraordinary virtues were attributed to them. Lumps of this mineral, often weighing miny In these days we go to the analytic chemist when hundred weight, are found; and it is used rather we wish to discover if there is any poison in a in the manufacture of articles of vertu than of drink, but our forefathers imagined that Nature gems for the adornment of the person. We meet took the place of science, and attributed to this with it in old goldsmiths' work, and curious cups gem the power of discovering the presence of and goblets are made out of it, which are often noxious matter in any liquid in which it may most delicately cut. Like some of the gems, it have been placed. The ancients believed that was supposed by the ancients to flush with colthese precious gems changed colour on being our when poison was poured into cups made brought in contact with poisonous matters, and from it. Indeed, crystal has always been supthat they even hul the power of killing spiders, posed to possess magical properties. We all have which in past times were considered poisonous. heard, for instance, of Dr. Dee's Crystal Globe, The sapphire is very easily imitated, and there upon looking into which, it is said, he foretold are many sham jewels that are passed off as the events. The Japanese and Chinese use it largely, real thing. Indeed, we do not doubt that this and, among other purposes, as a refrigerator to is the case with many so-called jewels which we cool the hands. A ball of this material may be see on fair necks, and never dream of doubt- seen in the shop window of an establishment in ing. The Oriental emerald is an exceedingly Regent-street, where Japanese nicknacks are exrare jewel, and so is the Oriental amethyst. These, posed to view. The cairngorm, onyx, cornelian, like the ruby and the sapphire, are varieties of amethyst, sardonyx, agate, and chalcedony, all the corunduin, the Indian name by which they belong to the same quartz system as the rockare known. The reader may not be so well ac- crystal. The opal, the most delicate of gems, quainted with what is termed the cat's-eye jewel; cepends for its beauty very much upon the temit has the reputation of being a very lucky stone, perature: its rainbow-like tints — or rather, we and it is soll sometimes for very large prices in should say, its iridescent flashes, like those on the consequence of this supposed quality, for there is breast of a pigeon - — are always the most brilnothing very beautiful in its appearance to re- liant in warm weather; this fict should teach commend it. The ancients, who had not arrived the wearer that it should be worn as a summer at the modern perfection in jewel-cutting, were gem only. There are several kinds of opals, the in the habit of engraving their jewels, and Mr. most valuable being known as the noble opal; King, in his volume on precious gems, has given then there is a more deeply and evenly tinted us some very beautiful examples of this art. red opal; and the Mexican opal, which loses The emerall is principally found in New Gra- much of its lustre upon being exposed to water. nada, but many are also found in Salzburg and Thus it will be seen this jewel is very sensitive to Siberia, principally in limestone rock. This gem atmospheric effects, and possibly this is the reais a great favourite with Mohametans, chiefly, son why it has been supposed to possess some suwe suppose, from the colour. The Orientals be-pernatural gift. The opal is unique in one relieve it possesses marvellous powers of a very di- spect, it cannot be imitated with any success. verse nature; for instance, it is considered capa- This jewel, when large, is very valuable. There ble of endlowing the men with courage and the is one in the museum at Vienna valued at thirty women with chastity; it is supposed to possess thousand pounds. many medicinal qualities as well, but it is not

Cassell's Magazine. necessary to mention them. The beryl is com

No. 1280.- December 12, 1868.

[blocks in formation]



The Month, t. Little SEAL-SKIN,

Macmillan's Magazine, 5. Tue MONCREFF GUN-CARRIAGE,

Examiner, 6. Tue Counter-HOUSE on the Ruxe. Part IV. By

Berthold Auerbach. Translated from the German
for the “ Living Age,”



Blackwood's Magazine, 9. The Sun's DISTANCE,

Macmillan's Magazine, 10. A SWIMMING LESSON,

Gentleman's Magazine, 11. On somE PLEASANT Books,

Gentleman's Magazine, 12. THE PRESIDENT ELECT,

Spectator, 13. THE POET HALLECK,

N. Y. Evening Post,









686 688 690 693 699 701

[ocr errors]

669 671 671




703 704


From G. P. Putnam & Son, New York. GREAT OUTLINE OF GEOGRAPAY FOR HIGH SCHOOLS AND FAMILIES. BY THEODORE S. Fay. In two volumes : 1. A Folio Atlas, beautifully printed and colored; 2. A Text- . book in duodecimo. “A correct opinion of the work cannot be formed by turning over the leaves. It is not a book of reference or reading. It is a teaching, a studying book.". It is highly commended by Alexander de Humboldt, a fac-simile of whose letter to Mr. Fay is given. We have shown our copy to some teachers well qualified to julge, who express their pleasure very heartily. We recommend it as a family book, as well as for teachers. The Atlas is beautiful and useful on the parlor table.

From Sheldon & Co., New York,
THE CHILD WIFE: a Tale of the Two Worl«ls. By Capt. MAYNE REID.

From J. B. Lippincott & Co., Philadelphia. MOSAICS OF HUMAN LIFE. By ELIZABETH Á. THURSTON. We have only had time to admire this as a beautifully printed book. The Boston Transcript says of it:

A volume which possesses a kind of endless interest, for it is a collection of the sayings and sing. ings of the philosophers and poets of the world on the most important eras of human life. Sense, wit, agacity, sentiment, imagination, reason, embodied in pithy sentences, or extended paragraphs, or beau. tiiul verses, are the staple of the work. As a volume for the parlor table, as a book of reference to the fast realms of thought and emotion, it will be found full of suggestion, information, and inspiration. It is for sale in Boston at 80 Washington St.



TERMS OF SUBSCRIPTION. For Eicut DOLLARS, remitted directly to the Publishers, the Living Age will be punctually forwarded for a year, free of postage. But we do not prepay postage on less than a year, nor where we have to pay commission for forwarding the money.

« ElőzőTovább »