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From The London Review. be moonshine. As far as accidents go, railTHE INFLUENCE OF RAILWAY TRAVEL- way travelling has been shown to be far LING ON HEALTH.
more secure than any other mode of conNo great social change was ever yet veyance. In 1859 there were altogether effected without violent opposition. Let us fifty-six railway accidents in the United add that we trust none ever will be. For Kingdom ; in these, thirteen persons lost this conservative opposition to novelty has their lives and three hundred and eighty-six a good side as well as a bad one. It acts were injured. In that same year, in London as an elective filter, and though it retards alone, no less than seventy persons were the advance of useful schemes for a time, it killed and nine hundred and ten injured by allows them eventually to pass, while it coach and carriage accidents. In spite of presents a permanent barrier to pernicious this, a suspicion has sprung up of late that innovations. No amount of opposition can railway travelling is not so free from danger long prevent a really advantageous change as these figures would seem to indicate. from carrying the day. When tea was in- Accidents may be comparatively few, and troduced some two centuries ago to super- the evils originally anticipated may have sede twopenny ale at our breakfast tables, been chimerical, yet there is a vague but nothing could be fiercer than the outcry increasing impression in the public mind raised against it. Our women were to lose that railway travelling exercises, from some their beauty and our men their vigor. But unknown cause, an injurious influence on the change was a salutary one, and we are the health. So widely spread is this feelnow consuming some unknown number of ing, that to it, in all probability, is to be millions of pounds erery year. In later ascribed the perceptible diminution which times, when Jenner made his inestimable has taken place in the number of railway discovery, press and pulpit alike rang with season-ticket holders. In 1859 there were invectives against vaccination. Yet we all in England and Wales, as shown by the vaccinate our children now-a-days, and not government returns, 35,222 persons holding one of them to the best of our belief has yet these tickets. In 1860 the number had been heard, as was prophesied, to low like sunk to 30,500. Here is a falling off in a a cow, nor has been transformed into the single year of nearly 5,000. A considerable likeness of a beast. There are those still proportion of this class of persons is comliving who can remember the outcry which posed of men who, for pleasure or economy, was raised against the greatest change of live with their families in the country, and this generation—the conversion of the stage- travel daily to and from the town where coach into the railway-carriage. The dan- their business is carried on.
These persons, gers with which the public were threatened it is said, find that their health suffers from were countless. To breathe would be an the constant journeying, and the falling off impossibility, when rushing through the in the number of season-ticket holders is air at the enormous velocity of fifteen, or, supposed to be due to their abandoning this as some rash speculators had hinted, even mode of life. How far is this view right? twenty miles an hour. The carbonic acid Is railway travelling really injurious to the generated from the fuel would destroy the health ? And if so, what is the reason, and atmosphere in the tunnels, and suffocation how is the evil to be met? These are clearly be the inevitable doom of every passenger, very important questions; and in order to while boiling and maiming were to be every- get as good answers as possible to them our day occurrences. Yet less than forty years medical contemporary, the Lancet, recently have passed since the first carriage was appointed a scientific commission, whose slowly dragged along the fișst railway from report is now published separately as a small Stockton to Darlington, aad we have already pamphlet
. The result of the inquiry tends, in Great Britain more than eleven thousand in great measure, to confirm the popular immiles of railway, and the distance daily pression. Excessive railway travelling is travelled by our passenger trains is more prejudicial to the health. But the amount than six times the circumference of the of harm resulting from it varies greatly whole earth.
with the age and constitution of the person The prophesied evils have turned out to affected. The young and strong suffer little.
INFLUENCE OF RAILWAY TRAVELLING ON HEALTH. 137 The old and unsound suffer much. The best dence to the city gentlemen with houses data are furnished by the travelling employés down the Brighton line. And we presume of the post-office and of the companies. It that the “ leading physician” kept his name is found that, in order to stand the wear dark from fear of the wrath of his premaand tear of constant travelling, a man must turely aged acquaintances. not only be of strong constitution, but he The causes which lead to these injurious must begin young. He then gets acclimatized results are several. First there is the bad to it, and not unfrequently even improves ventilation. We all know what a stuffy in condition. After thirty or thirty-five, carriage is. Dr. Angus Smith has analyzed men are no longer able to acquire this nec- the air of a closely packed railway carriage. essary tolerance. To quote the words of an He found that it was exactly equivalent to old engine-driver, They can't stand it, the air of his laboratory at the time when lose their heads, and get old in no time.” the strong smell of a sewer was entering it. The companies have, therefore, been forced So foul is this atmosphere, that the smell of to limit their engagements to young and it clings to the inmates of a carriage some healthy men.
time after getting out. Dr. Angus Smith The season-ticket holders, to whom refer- states that he himself, without unusually ence has already been made, are as a rule acute sense of smell, can perceive this odor men past the middle point of life. They after a lapse of twenty minutes. Bad ventihave not gone through the necessary train- lation, however, is not peculiar to railway ing in youth, and consequently suffer much. carriages. The old stage-coach was just as It is said that they, like the railway em- bad. We should have proposed as a remedy ployés, age rapidly. The following is the to open the windows; but we are afraid of evidence of “one of the leading physicians Dr. C. J. B. Williams. This physician, beof the metropolis," whose name, however, ing specially concerned with the chest, has is not given in the report:
turned his attention to the injurious in“ Travelling a few years since on the fluence of draughts of air encountered in Brighton line very frequently, I became railway travelling. He is all for shutting familiar with the faces of a number of the the windows, for footwarmers, and railway regular passengers on that line. Recently rugs. We hardly wonder at this, considI had occasion to travel several times on the ering the formidable list of diseases which same line. I have had a large experience he has traced to cold caught on railways. in the changes which the ordinary course of
Here is the catalogue :
- The various catime makes on men busy in the world, and I know well how to allow for their gradual tarrhal affections of the respiratory organs, deterioration by age and care. But I have sore throats, earache, toothache, pleurisy, never seen any set of men so rapidly aged pneumonia, and various forms of rheumaas these seem to me to have been in the tism, particularly lumbago and sciatica. It course of those few years. This was an in- is rery remarkable how many cases of seridependent observation made without refer- ous pulmonary diseases, in my experience, ence to any investigation then or at any have dated their origin to cold caught in future time to be carried on. The change was so rapid that it forcibly arrested my railway travelling." The rapid motion of a attention, and I must say that it gave me a train of course increases the draft of cold strong impression adverse to the practice of air, and the liability to chill. But pleurisy such habitually long journeys. It is idle to and pneumonia, lumbago and sciatica, are say that journeys from one end of London to be got in other conveyances than railway to the other occupy as long or a longer pe- carriages. We pass on to a cause of disease riod of time; for, as you know, and no which belongs specially to these latter. This doubt have carefully made out, the hurry, anxiety, rapid movement, noise, and other is their peculiar motion. The rough joltphysical disadvantages of railway travelling ings of an ordinary stage-coach are conas peculiar to that mode of conveyance; verted on the rail into a rapid succession of and a railway journey of an hour, at the short, sharp vibrations. These follow each rate of fifty miles an hour, is almost as other at the rate of some twenty thousand fatiguing as half a day's journey on the an hour, and their number increases in proroad."
portion to speed. The constant vibration This must be an unpleasant bit of evi- | acts on the body like the motion of a ship,
and causes nausea and sickness. This is obliged to stare out of the window, nor to particularly the case with persons of a bil- read small print. If he be prudent, he will ious temperament; and consequently Dr. abstain from so doing. But the shaking is Lewis, the medical superintendent of the another matter ; this is beyond his control, post-office, considers all such persons as un- and we must look to the companies for a fit for the travelling service, and rejects such remedy. Either the rail and carriages must candidates for that employment. Physiolo- be constructed on some better principle, 80 gists attribute this unpleasant sensation to that there may be absolutely less vibration; the shaking of the stomach and diaphragm, or, if 'this cannot be done, means must be and to the consequent irritation of the vagi adopted for preventing the vibration of the and phrenic nerves. A tight bandage round carriage causing corresponding vibration in the abdomen and a little chloroform are the the bodies of the passengers. There are best remedies; the former steadies the some simple expedients by which this can stomach, and the latter lessens the irrita- be done in part. The natural antagonist of bility of the nerves. Nausea and sickness jerk is, as the report well states, elasticity. are, however, by no means the worst result It is by this that nature protects our bodies of this vibration; it acts most injuriously from harm. There is an elastic pad under upon the brain and the spinal cord. The our feet, elastic plates of cartilage in all our effect of a violent concussion on these organs joints. Were it not for this, every time we is well known; it annihilates their func- jumped down from a gate we should have tions. The series of slight concussions spinal concussion. In a carriage there are which constitutes railway motion has not, of also elastic appliances. There are the course, this terrible result; yet it gives rise springs, and, in the first-class carriages, in a lower degree to nervous symptoms, and there are the elastic horsehair cushions. “leads up to disease, which, after remaining But these are insufficient; there is still too for a long time latent, may still ultimately much vibration, and to diminish this there end in paralysis.” Such at least, we are is only one method. There must be more told in this report, is the case, and it is con- elasticity. A simple plan for providing this firmed by what has been observed abroad. has been adopted in the post-office departM. Devilliers, the chief physician of the ment of the railway; the officials are furParis and Orleans Railway, found that one- nished with mats made of thick sheets of fifteenth of the drivers and firemen on that india-rubber, on which they stand. This line were suffering from affections of the expedient has been found to be of great brain and nervous system. All the mischief benefit. If a person stand with one foot on done is not, however, attributable to the such a mat and the other on the floor of the vibration. The ear and the eye are also carriage, he will at once perceive, from the avenues through which the brain is affected. different sensations in the two legs, how The constant rattling is most distressing to greatly this contrivance diminishes the unsome delicate organizations. The rapid suc- pleasant vibration. On the same principle cession of new impressions on the retina, the new royal carriage has been fitted with and the effort to adapt the sight to the ever- an elastic floor of cork. There is no reason changing distances of objects, produce a feel- why some such device should not be adopted ing of fatigue and even of giddiness, which in our ordinary railway carriages. So long shows how great is the strain. As to these as this is not done, the companies can hardly two latter sources of mischief, the remedy is complain if the passengers, instead of keepin the passenger's own hands. If he is dis- ing their feet on the vibrating floor, .place tressed by the noise, a little cotton wool will them on the horsehair cushions in front of effectually protect him. Neither is any one them.
From The Saturday Review. cially on India. The real investigation of ir EAST AND WEST.
the ways of thought of the natives cannot, THERE are a great many books written of course, be attempted by any one who does about India, but they are seldom very en- not know India personally, but it may, pertertaining. Or, if they supplied a want that haps, be worth while to notice a few points was once felt, the want exists no longer. in which it is not difficult to see that India We have had some tolerably written books is influencing us, or we are producing someof Indian travel, and a few readable sporting thing like an impression on India. memoirs, and at least one sketch of the ma- Perhaps the notion which, among those chinery of government in India. But there we have gained from our intercourse with are many Indian subjects, on which Indian the East, is the one of the greatest practical writers never touch, but which would be full importance, is that of the numerousness of of interest to people here who care about mankind. It seems very simple and very the East. We never get near the natives in familiar to speak of a hundred or a hundred Indian books. There is plenty about the and fifty millions of people in India, and four servants of the writer, about ayahs and grass- hundred millions in China. We have grown cutters, and there have been numerous de- accustomed to the thought that all these scriptions of Sepoys and other native sol- people are going on, with religions of their diers. But the habits and thoughts and own, with a certain amount of civilization, feelings of the great body of the people re- and with an amount of happiness which is main undescribed. It is, for example, very not so very contemptible. But although difficult for Englishmen here to make out this thought seems so simple, it exercises a the position of the Mahomedans in India much greater influence over our way of how it is that caste has spread among the thinking than would at first sight appear. Mahomedans, and that at one period of In- If the East was barbarous, if the inhabitants dian history large bodies of Hindoos became of India and China were simple savages, like Mabomedans. The most we could find in a the inhabitants of the interior of Africa, they printed book would be the statement that in would not be near enough to us to affect us the reign of one of the Great Mogul mon- much. We should do little more than bearchs, force, or the royal persuasion, induced stow on them that sort of passing wonder several leading families to make the change. which the condition even of brute beasts may But this only satisfies our curiosity very easily awaken in any one who begins to think partially. We want also to know the rela- over the mystery of animated nature. But tion between these Mahomedanized families the Buddhist or the Mahomedan is not to be and the other Hindoo families, whether they treated in this way. These people force on have adopted the Mahomedan ways of think- us the consideration of the sufficiency, for ing, and how far they are affected by caste. many purposes of life, of creeds and philosoStill less have we any estimate of the rela- phies so lifferent from our own. The simtions of the East and the West, and of the plest mode of treating this thought is to say action they are exercising, or are likely to that these creeds and philosophies are worth exercise, on each other. Many men must nothing—that ours are right—and that we have turned this subject over in their minds must make them think as we do. However while in India, and have speculated on the true this may be as an aspiration of a reresults which the bringing together of the mote and indefinite future, the fact remains ends of the earth is carrying with it. They that they do not think as we do, and do not must have pondered over the powers and show any signs of wanting to learn new capabilities of the native mind, and over the thoughts. It is not that they hate our teachthoughts which the native mind, with its ing, or are deaf to our appeals, or consider strange activity and limitation, naturally that they have gone through all which we suggests to the mind of a western thinker. have to suggest as new. All this we might But no one has tried to give us the benefit have expected. But these Orientals manage of his meditation, or to write anything like to make their thoughts, their foolish fatala book of general philosophy, or, if that is ism, their washings, and their metaphysical too pretentious a word, a book of observa- reveries fill up the void in their hearts. We tion and reflection on the East, and espe- cannot remain unimpressed by this. We
are compelled to a kind of reluctant tolera- | sarily prevail. One thought does not lead tion by the sight of these multitudes of think- to another. As Hindoo philosophy, and ers, thinking thoughts that are not ours. Hindoo sacred observances, and the Hindoo We are moved to a feeling, which may be conception of heaven and earth satisfied the noticed to be gradually increasing in West- Hindoos two thousand years ago, so do they ern Europe, that we cannot push our beliefs satisfy them now. The mind of India has too far in judging of and dealing with the not perished. The Hindoos have not ceased world. Many other causes contribute to fos- to think.. But they think forever in the ter this feeling, which is a necessary step, same groove. There are still learned and perhaps, in the education of the West, al- wise men among the natives after the native though it brings with it many counterbal- type. There are natives who still follow up ancing evils ; but it is unquestionable that Hindoo philosophy, and learn to read and our intercourse with the East tends to pro- write Sanskrit on purpose to know the mote what, for the sake of convenience, is knowledge of the ancients, just as we learn called by the vague name of toleration. The Greek to read Plato and Aristotle. They root of toleration is uncertainty, or, rather, even sometimes go so far as to write to the a peculiar combination of certainty with un- great Sanskrit scholar naturalized in Engcertainty. If there were general disbelief, land, in order to have the best possible help or absence of belief, there could scarcely be in the examination of the great bases of their toleration, for there would be nothing to tol- speculation. But they always nove in the erate. Toleration requires a belief, but a same circle, and follow the same purposeless, belief perceived to be encompassed with dif- unending path of what we should call the ficulties either in its acceptance or its appli- most barren metaphysics. The notion of cation. The East very slightly affects our activity without progress, when brought acceptance of our belief, but it tells silently fairly home to us, suggests many things to but surely on our views as to its application. which we might otherwise be blind. In We regard the Orientals with whom we have their anticipations of the future of the huto do in a very different way from that in man race, most sanguine speculators assume which the Spanish conquerors regarded the that, because a thing is true it will make its Mexicans, or the early European settlers in way in the world, and that gradually all men Asia regarded those whose possessions they will come to think alike. It appears, so far coveted or appropriated. We have learned as the short experience of the modern world to take them in, as it were, into the horizon enables us to guess, that in all nations where of our speculation, and to give them a place thought is really progressive, there will be in the scheme which we conceive to be de- a constant approximation to something like signed for the human race.
unity of thought; for this is the necessary Another idea, of less practical importance, result of the perpetual interchange of thought perhaps, that the East brings home to us, that goes on, now that the vehicles of combut one full of significance, is that of the munication have been so largely increased possible stagnation of human thought. We and improved. But that thought will be have seen in the West the growth, the ma- everywhere progressive appears by no means turity, and the decay of many trees of knowl- certain. We should not probably have anedge. We have had Greece, and Rome, ticipated what we find to be the fact, that in and mediæval Europe all full of genius and a vast proportion of the human race thought thought, and beliefs that have passed away. can exist, but exist without advancing. Still, We know that the march of man's intellect as the fact is so, we must recognize it, and has not, as a matter of fact, been in a straight the recognition of it will tend greatly to mitline. It is only through many wanderings, igate the ardor of expectation with which and after many haltings and much retrogres- sanguine minds, accustomed only to the sion, that a substantial advance has been growth of thought in the West, hail the immade. But the East supplies us with a new pending enlightenment of mankind. phase of human thought-that of standing Among the subjects connected with India still after a certain progress has been made, which we should like to see treated by a comand standing still tranquilly and compla- petent person, is that of the impression which cently. We see that truth does not neces- our teaching produces on the eastern mind,