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CRITICISM.-An Experimental Inquiry into the Chemical Properties and
Medicinal Qualities of the principal Mineral Waters of Ballston and Saratoga, in the state of New-York. With directions for the use of those walers in the various diseases to which they are applicable, and observations on diet and regimen. To which is added an Appendix, conlaining a chemical analysis of the Lebanon Spring in the State of NewYork. By William Meade, M. D. Philadelphia, Harrison Hall. 8vo. pp. 195. 1817.
This is a book containing not only a good analysis of our mineral waters at Saratoga and Ballston, but a very accurate and useful account of their virtues, and the disorders wherein they may be exhibited with safety or otherwise.
"Hitherto no regular analysis has been made of any mineral springs, excepting those of York county, and Carlisle, in Cumberland county, by Mr. Cutbush and judge Cooper. The Bedford springs have not yet been analyzed, nor any of the springs that attract our citizens in Virginia; such as the Warm Springs, the Sulphur Springs, &c. Hence it is manifest, that whether the use of them be pernicious or salutary, is mere matter of accident; for no physician can safely prescribe them, until he accurately knows their contents, and is thus able to apply them in proper doses to the proper disorders they are adapted to relieve.
In these respects Dr. Meade's book is extremely useful, and may serve as a model for publications of this kind, as it not only exhibits with chemical accuracy the contents of the waters examined, but treats also with medical accuracy of the disorders wherein they are calculated to do good or harm. Beside these parts of his plan, he has given us a mineralogical and geological description of the country where the springs in question are situated; a necessary part of such a book, because the mineralogy of the country is a key to the contents of the springs that rise in it, and forms an essential part of their natural history.
Our readers will be gratified by the following synoptical table, extracted from Dr. Meade's work, which contains, in a small compass, much useful information.
A Synoptical Table, exhibiting the Contents of the Waters of Ballston and Saratoga, compared with others which they resemble. Cubic Inches.
Number of Grains in one Quart of Water. NAMES of the Specific Carbonic Azotie Sulphurat. Muriat of Muriat of Muriat of Carbonat Carbonat Carbonat Sulphat of Sulphat of Sulphat of
Gravity, acid gas. gas. ed hydro- soda.
43 44 22 13 73
34 13 91 112 1
103 37 414 27 17 3
4 153 104 *
11 80 40 10
There are two handsome views, of Ballston spring, and the Congress spring at Saratoga, neatly engraved in aqua tint, that are useful ornaments to this publication; for which the inhabitants of those places, and the company that resort thither, are under obligations to the author. The book is neatly printed; it is sold at a moderate price, and may be recommended to the patient as well as the physician.
THE AMERICAN LOUNGER,
BY SAMUEL SAUNTER E.Q.
“Procrastination is the thief of time." There is a strong tendency in the heart of every man to contemn the evil that is afar off, and to bend only to the storm that howls around him. It is to this impulse that we may attribute the carlessness we feel about another world, and the tenacity with which we observe the forms of this. The failure of a favourite speculation, or the loss of an hour's pleasure, affect us with the deepest chagrin; while the comfort and bappiness of our latter days are regarded as matters of comparatively but little moment. We are deeply affected at having unintentionally injured a friend, we are awed by the anger of a parent, or intimidated at the threats of a fue, while the idea of a future state affords us but little uneasiness.
We are all ready enough to blame the neglect or indolence of others, but there are few of us who do not defer until to-morrow many things which ought to be done to day. The spirit of procrastination pervades all ranks, and is every day to be seen like a powerful opiate, arresting the foot of enterprise, enervating the hand of industry, and lulling to rest, the visions of ambition. Like the downy bed of repose it becomes dearer the longer it is enjoyed, and cannot be forsaken without a vigorous exertion.
To indulge this propensity we eagerly catch at every change in the natural season or the political hemisphere, and at every revolution in our own affairs or those of our neighbours. A lady will defer visiting a sick friend one day because it rains, the next
i because it shines, and the third because it is cloudy; and the news of a victory, or the occurrence of a public festival, is a sufficient cause for a man's neglecting his own interest or the duties he owes to his country.
A few years ago, the embargo furnished an admirable excuse to the timid, the indolent, and the procrastinating. The youth who had finished his college exercises defered the choice of a profession because the times were unpropitious; and the tender maid, who had given the long withheld assent, could not think of yielding her hand during the embargo! Nay, so rigid were the ladies in observing the system of non-intercourse, that I have known one of them absolutely discharge a lover who had been dangling for years; politely inviting him however to call again at ós a more convenient season.” The trader who had become involved by his imprudence, or the mechanic who longed for an idle or a riotous hour, eagerly seized upon the same apology for de. fering the payment of debts or the fulfilment of contracts. A very honest country gentleman of my acquaintance, when exhorted by his clergyman to have private worship in his family, declared that he could not pray with any kind of comfort during the em. bargo. In short, we began by blaming the embargo first with our sins of omission, and then with those of commission, until the poor embargo was at last loaded with all the transgressions of the nation.
By and by however the embargo law was repealed_but then there was “ a speck of war in the horizon,” and of course all affairs of moment, such as marrying and christening, making money or saving our souls, must be deferred until it was ascertained whether we were to have war or peace. This interregnum of suspense was even worse than the embargo itself-but it was soon followed by the war. Here was ample food for the genius of procrastination. The lawyer defers his client from term to term, be. cause justice could not be expected during the troublesome times of war; the client in turn draws his purse strings and declares he can get no money while the war lasts; and every old woman who wishes an excuse for laziness or improvidence thinks it unnecessary to set,her hens until the war is over.
I knew a grave personage who having read of “ wars and rumours of war” in her Bible, and having observed that the former had suspended works even of necessity and mercy, exclaimed, “ if this is war, what will become of us when the rumours of war come.”
The war was over-but then the times were hard; the Banks refuse to pay their notes, debtors disappoint their creditors, and very good church-going christians neglect important duties be
charity begins at home,” and—the times are hard. This then must certainly be the time anticipated by the old lady above mentioned, for if what every body says is true, the times are harder now than during the war, therefore, say the procrastinators, if we might have many things undone then we may surely do it
Thus it is that we can always find an excuse for postponing that which we do not wish to perform. Although our minds are convinced-although conscience urges, we have not resolution to obey her dictates. To wisdom we say « almost thou persuadest me;" to religion " at a more convenient season I will call on thee;" and to the needy “ go and come again-to-morrow I will give.” The fallacy of such reasoning soon becomes exposed. Any one who will seriously reflect upon the shortness of time, and the mutability of fortune, will readily perceive the necessity of grasping at every moment, and the folly of losing a single opportunity, for the improvement of the one, or the attainment of the other. The golden hours of youth pass away “ as showers upon
that tarrieth not for man, nor waiteth for the sons of men;" and unless they have been properly improved they carry off with them the fond visions of fancy, the aspiring hopes of ambition, and all the delusive speculations of the heart. We see a few who had listened to the precepts of wisdom rising into opulence and esteem, around us, and we begin' to regret the days rioted away in luxurious pleasures, or wasted in idle pursuits. But to repine at that which is lost, is as idle as to sport with that which we possess. He who is prodigal of time is misspending that which is not his own, and for which he must one day render an account. We have duties to ourselves, our friends, and our country sufficient to employ every hour.