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The French Revolution was brewing many not insanity; but this opinion is unjust to years before it came to a head, and Marat him. lived in an atmosphere of moral unrest and An important and unquestionable sympintellectual turmoil. But environment, like tom of mental disease was his delusion of all exciting causes, requires a favoring soil persecution. From the time of publishing or it will not produce insanity. The soil is his “Chains of Slavery” till his death, he the protoplasm as it exists in germ cell and was the victim of this delusion. True, he sperm cell at conception. Was the soil of had many real enemies in the Revolution Marat's personality, his protoplasm, favor- who would gladly have killed him, but able to the growth of mental disease? everyone, the English cabinet, philosophers, Undoubtedly, yes. He, as a youth, became men of science, everybody, was, from his saturated with the doctrines of Rousseau. point of view, intriguing against him, preBoys of other types react in other ways venting his success in medicine, stopping by toward such doctrines, most of them merely conspiracy the sale of his scientific works, negatively, not having understanding, while keeping him from political power, just a few, those having real intellectual acumen, because they envied him. Another symptom can see and have sympathy with the portion was his megalomania. Statecraft, which the of truth mixed with Rousseau's emotional wisest men of all the ages have been strugidealism. He had great, indeed, overwhelm- gling to master, he comprehended intuiing ambition, mediocre intelligence, infinite tively, with an infallibility of judgment conceit, was very emotional (like the mur- equal to that of a god. Lacking all power derer who weeps to see a fly killed), had no of reasoning, of examining the facts of any real sense of justice, was a worshipper of the question, weighing them and then drawing god Gab, and was entirely selfish. He had conclusions, he imagined he was a political a little undigested learning, but no power genius, and more, a saviour of the people. of reasoning. He lived in a wild time, when He belongs then among the insane, and is the crooks and the cranks led the imbeciles, an example of paranoia of the political type. of whom there are many in every country, He presents the cardinal symptoms of to wholesale murder. Marat wanted to be paranoia, intense egoism, delusions of pera leader. He believed that he could rule the secution, and an angry grandiosity. He country if only enough people were killed. has a common secondary symptom, viz., He was shrewd enough to know, that if he unlimited verbosity, the matter of his shouted long enough and loud enough that speeches being always the same, the wickedhe was the people's friend, many would ness of his persecutors, his own virtue, wisbelieve and follow him. His creed was dom, and unselfishness. He had the
parasimple--all that the rich own belongs to the noiac's intensity of manner in speaking, poor because they stole it from the poor. and the tremendous verbal diarrhoea which His theory of government was equally
deceives the common man, who, oversimple. If you do not agree with me you are whelmed by the cataract of talk, goes home not a patriot; if you are not a patriot the feeling that the orator must be a profound proper punishment is death. Therefore we thinker because he talks so well. will kill everybody who disagrees with us, His moral code was wrong, and yet like and then we will have the millennium, the all paranoiacs he regarded himself as virbrotherhood of man. So he justified himself, tuous. It was not a hypocritical pose. His and as time went on his murder-Iust in- career was cut short by Charlotte Corday, creased. His creed, thus far, would be inter- but some of his sane contemporaries say he preted by many as indicating criminality, would have been locked up as a madman in a short time had he not been killed. They were right, because his obsession of persecution was growing stronger and stronger every month in the latter part of his life.
The alternative would have been the guillotine, which his political enemies would not have hesitated to use when infuriated by some special act of violence.
GRAVES AT SEA
Here I shall detail an anecdote of value, fate. Springing from his couch, Graves flung as furnishing an insight into the character on his cloak, and, looking through the cabin, of the man, and as it prepares us for under- found a heavy axe lying on the floor. This standing that feature in his after-life for he seized, and, concealing it under his cloak, which he was justly distinguished-namely, he gained the deck, and found that the his collectedness of mind and vigour of captain and crew had nearly succeeded in action in cases of difficulty and danger. He getting the boat free from its lashings. He had embarked at Genoa, in a brig bound for addressed the captain, declaring his opinion, Sicily. The captain and crew were Sicilians, that no boat could live in such a sea, and and there were no passengers on board but that the attempt to launch it was madness. himself and a poor Spaniard, who became He was answered by an execration, and told his companion and messmate. Soon after that it was a matter with which he had quitting the land, they encountered a nothing to do, for that he and his companion terrific gale from the north-east, with which should remain behind. “Then,” exclaimed the ill-found, ill-manned, and badly com- he, “if that be the case, let us all be drowned manded vessel soon showed herself unable together. It is a pity to part good company.” to contend. The sails were blown out of the As he spoke, he struck the sides of the boat bolt-ropes, the vessel was leaking, the pumps with his axe, and destroyed it irreparably. choked, and the crew, in despair, gave up The captain drew his dagger, and would the attempt to work the ship. At this have rushed upon him, but quailed before juncture, Graves was lying on a couch in the the cool, erect, and armed man. He then cabin, suffering under a painful malady, virtually took command of the ship. He had when his fellow passenger entered and, in the suckers of the pump withdrawn, and terror, announced to him, that the crew furnished by cutting from his own boots the were about to forsake the vessel; that they leather necessary to repair the valves. The were then in the very act of getting out the crew returned to their duties, the leak boat; and that he had heard them say, that was gained on, and the vessel was saved. the two passengers were to be left to their
William STOKES (1854).
AN APPRECIATION OF HENRY BENCE JONES, M.D., F.R.S.
made in that subject which was so dear months.” Darwin was also a friend and to this man. He was one of the first men of our present era in medicine to value chemistry as an aid in the explanation and cure of disease.
He was born in England. William Bence Jones, the Irish agriculturist, was a brother. At twelve years of age he went to Harrow and at eighteen entered Trinity College, Cambridge. He graduated with the degree of B.A. in 1836, M.A. in 1842, M.B. in 1845, and M.D. in 1849.
On leaving Cambridge he studied medicine at St. George's Hospital in London, and chemistry with Thomas Graham at University College. In 1841 he went to Giessen and studied chemistry with Liebig, to whom he was always attached by bonds of friendship and respect because of Liebig's wonderful work. He became licentiate of the Royal College of Physicians in 1842, fellow in 1849 and was afterwards senior censor. In 1842 he married his cousin Lady Millicent Acheson, daughter of the second Earl of Gosford. In 1846 he became a fellow
SENCE JONES of the Royal Society and was from 1860 till almost the end of his life, secretary of the Royal Institution. In 1846 he was elected
Pencil sketch of HENRY BENCE JONES from the bust that full physician to St. George's Hospital,
stands in St. George's Hospital, London. resigning in 1862. He died at his home in Brook Street, Grosvenor Square, London. patient. In the “Life and Letters of
Henry Bence Jones was an accomplished Charles Darwin”i the following passage physician and acquired a large and re- discussing Jones's diet treatment is found: numerative practice. He was very well “The year 1865 was again a time of much acquainted with the scientific men at home ill-health, but towards the close of the year and abroad-a warm friend and admirer of he began to recover under the care of the Michael Faraday, whose life he wrote in two late Dr. Bence Jones who dieted him splendid volumes, and the physician and
1 “Life and Letters of Charles Darwin,” vol. ii, friend of Huxley. In Huxley's auto- 215.
severely and as he (Darwin) expressed it ‘half starved him to death.""
Herbert Spencer was also a friend. In Spencer's “An Autobiography,
"2 he states: “Speaking of drugs, Bence Jones said that there is scarcely one which may not under different conditions produce opposite effects.” Spencer also states that Bence Jones approved of the bed for invalids which he had invented.
Helmholtz had a great deal of respect for Bence Jones. In speaking of his trip to London, he says: “In the first place, I went to see Bence Jones, physician, physiologist, and chemist, hoping to get news of du Bois Reymond and of the chemist Hofman. But he had gone off to du Bois' wedding. In the evening I dined at seven with Dr. Bence Jones. Bence Jones is a charming man. Simple, harmless, cordial as a child and extraordinarily kind to me.
Bence Jones was also physician and friend of the celebrated chemist, A. W. Hofman. In the Hofman memorial lecture the following incident was narrated: “One day when Hofman was going his usual rounds in the general laboratory of the Royal College of Chemistry, a student standing not far from him poured a quantity of concentrated sulphuric acid into a thick glass bottle he was holding in his hand which contained a small quantity of water. The consequence was that the heat evolved caused it to crack and the bottom to fall out. Some of the acid splashed up from the floor into Hofman's eye. He had to be kept in a dark room for several weeks and during this time his old friend, Dr. Bence Jones, attended him.”
Jones was also a friend of Benjamin C. Brodie, as is shown by the accompanying reproduction of an autograph of the late Sir Benjamin C. Brodie inscribed in his autobiography which is in my possession.
2 Herbert Spencer: “An Autobiography,” vol. ii, 106 and 174.
3 Koenigsberger: "Life of Helmholtz," 109. * Perkins: Proc. Chem. Soc., Lond. 1893.
I have found an interesting story of consultations held in Bence Jones's time, in a recent book. The anecdote is told by Sir T. Clifford Albutt. “Many years ago in the days of my studentship at St. George's Hospital, a case came under my notice which I see as vividly as if the patient were still before me. A man of some thirty or thirty-four years, of vigorous frame and apparently of vigorous constitution, lay propped up in bed in extreme agony. He complained, when he could whisper to us, of intense retrosternal pain, never absent, indeed, but returning upon him in paroxysms. The pain radiated about the shoulder or shoulders, whether it extended lower down the arm I cannot remember. The respiration was restrained in dread. There were no physical signs to betray the
presence of the disease within. What I vividly recall as if burnt into my mind, is the aspect of the man, bound on a rack in the
presence of death, and yet, for the agony at the centre of his being unable to cry out. Consultations were held but to little purpose, save to certify that the case, if one of angina pectoris, was a strange one, because of its continuous if still paroxysmal character, and because of the fever with it. Bence Jones, whom no man exceeded in brilliancy
In Rance Jouer.
from B e Beodic sitt his kind regaine.
Oxford April 1865
and rapidity of diagnosis, declared for acute aortitis. The patient died suddenly soon afterwards, and the necropsy justified Bence Jones's opinion. On the inner surface of the ascending aorta were groups of gray semitranslucent patches disfiguring the walls of
“The Sensory and Motor Disorders of the Heart," by Alexander Morison, 1914, 91.
the slack and dilated vessel; and let this be carefully noted—no other cause of death could be discovered. The heart and coronary vessels were healthy."
As a physician it has been said that Bence Jones's chief characteristics were, “Scientific truth, accuracy, and a dislike to empiricism."
During the last years of his life he suffered great bodily weakness and at times had a little irritability of manner no doubt due to his physical ailment. As a rule he was cheerful to the last and interested in the progress of the Royal Institute and of science. His bust stands in the Royal Institute and in St. George's Hospital, London.
The catalogue of the Royal Society shows thirty-four scientific memoirs credited to Bence Jones. He was the first to describe the occurrence of xanthine in urine'; the priority of describing alkaloidal substances in animals is claimed by Dupré and Bence Jones. They described an alkaloid which
they separated from the solid and liquid tissues of animals and named it “animal quinoidine.” He was the first to describe that
very interesting substance occurring in the urine, since known as the Bence Jones protein."
Bence Jones's first scientific memoir was “On a cystic oxide calculus.”10 Besides these memoirs, he was the author of the following books: “Gravel, Calculus, and Gout; the Application of Liebig's Physiology to These Diseases,” 1842; “On Animal Electricity, Being an Abstract of the Discoveries of Emil Du-Bois Reymond,” 1852; “The Chemistry of Urine,” 1857; “Lectures on Animal Chemistry in Its Application to Stomach and Renal Diseases,” 1850; “Lectures on Some of the Applications of Chemistry and Mechanics to Pathology and Therapeutics,” 1867;“Croonian Lectures on Matter and Force," 1868; and “Life and Letters of Faraday,” two volumes, 1870.
8 Proc. Roy. Soc., Lond., xv, 73; Ztscbr. f. Chem., 1866, 348.
· Proc. Roy. Soc., Lond., 1843, v, 673; "Animal Chemistry,” 1850, p. 108; Trans. Roy. Soc., Lond., 1848, i, 55.
10 Med.-Cbir.Tr. Lond. 1840.