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A vinegar of the flowers is used as a revivant in syncope, and as an embrocation. The extract is cathartic in action. The bitter, red berries, Baccæ Lilii convallii, were used in epilepsy and intermittents.

According to Loudan, a beautiful and durable green color may be obtained from the leaves with lime. The extract prepared from the flowers and roots partakes of the bitterness and purgative properties of aloes.

Cultivation has resulted in the production of a red-flowered variety, a double-white, a double-red, and a variegated leaved variety of Convallaria majalis.

Now let me consider for a few moments the researches of modern therapeutists regarding the properties of Convallaria majalis, which has been critically studied by Russian, German and French savants during the last two years. At first it was claimed that the flowers alone acted as a cardiac stimulant; and now the assertion comes that by far the best results have been obtained with tinctures, wines and extracts prepared from the flowers, flower-stalks, leaves and even the roots. Others insist that the flowers and leaves alone make the best preparation for cardiac difficulties, and that it is a safer remedy than Digitalis, and fully as potent in controlling the heart's action.

In Europe it seems an aqueous extract has given the best satisfaction, while here in the Roosevelt Hospital of this city, a fluid extract of the flowers has given entire satisfaction in cases which otherwise would have been treated with Digitalis alone. The dose used has been from five to sixty minims without any unpleasant results, nausea occurring only in a few cases treated.

Several alkaloids have been found in Convallaria majalis. It is claimed that Walz, in 1858, found two glucosides in this plant, named by him Convallarin and Convallamarin.

The Convallarin in doses of three to four grains, acted as a cathartic only, whereas the Couvallamarin, subcutaneously injected into small animals, acted as a decided cardiac poison. The toxic dose for dogs was from seven to ten milligrams; for

cats from three to eight milligrams. Marme conducted those physiological experiments as long ago as 1867.

Convallarin is soluble in alcohol, but not in water. Convallamarin dissolves in water as well as in alcohol, but is insoluble in ether or chloroform.

M. Stanislas Martin is accredited with having found an alkaloid in the fresh flowers, which was by him named Maialine. C. Tauret claims that this body could have nothing to do with the activity of the rest of the plant, as he failed to find it either in the leaves, stalks or roots.

Dr. Hardy is acknowledged to have isolated from the flowers an alkaloid which he called Convallarine, a bitter glucoside, which acted well in enfeebled circulation, in fact resembling Digitalis. Prof. See, of Paris, employed an aqueous extract of the leaves, flowers and of the whole plant. He finds that the aqueous infusion of either the leaves or the flowers gives satisfactory results in cardiac trouble. In cardiac dropsy he finds it an excellent remedy.

You will remember that the Russian peasants centuries ago used it for dropsy. Prof. Botkin, of St. Petersburg, has confirmed the researches made by two other Russian physicians, who recently experimented with it in cardiac disease.

Another medicine has recently been added to the Pharmacopoeia Medica by Prof. See, of Paris, which resembles Digitalis in its beneficial effects with none of the dangerous tendencies of the latter. It is an alkaloid of the common Lily of the Valley, and has been named Convallarine, from the botanical name of the flower, Convallaria majalis. It acts upon the heart, decreasing miraculously the number of beats to the minute.

Dr. B. Stiller, in a medical journal published in Vienna, gives the negative results obtained in using Convallaria majalis for cardiac affections. Out of twenty-one motley cases treated, seventeen were absolutely not benefited by this medicine, and some of the negative cases were afterwards relieved by Digitalis.

While the foreign, and in part our American medical journals, are considerably excited over the action of Convallaria

majalis, the question naturally arises, whether there is really anything new in the discussion of the whole subject. Space does not permit me to copy more extensively from my ancient vellums. But does it not look as though the Old School had only just begun where the ancients, centuries ago, left off?

Two closely allied agents, botanically speaking, are Convallaria polygonatum or Solomon's Seal, and Convallaria multiflora or Giant Solomon's Seal. In regard to Solomon's Seal, John E. Sowerby, an English authority, informs us, that the curious name of this herb is said to be derived from the section of the root exhibiting marks resembling Hebrew charac


The properties of these two species, now classified under a separate genus, that of Polygonatum, appear to be emetic, cathartic, and diuretic, according to the dose used. The roots have long been used by pugilists, in the shape of a poultice, in that peculiar ecchymosis sometimes appearing under the eyes, and to which Gerarde, the quaint old herbalist, refers by saying, that it would remove "any bruise, blacke or blue spotts, gotten by falls, or woman's wilfulnesse in stumbling on their hastie huband's fists, or such like."



By G. HERMANN MERKEL, M. D., Boston, Mass.

Ozone has engaged the attention of the most expert among the savants of Europe for almost half a century. The discovery of oxygen by Joseph Priestly in 1774 had given a soul to chemical science, before that a mere grouping of empirical observations; and the fresh impulse set investigation into active motion all over the continent. The "vital air" which Dr. Priestly had exhibited was made the subject of numerous experiments in the various countries. It was impossible, therefore, that the existence of Ozone should not be foremost

among the demonstrations of the new chemistry. In 1785 Van Marum, of Holland, passed an electric current through oxygen gas, and perceived that it acquired thereby a peculiar odor and the power of oxidising murcury. Cavallo discovered that this electrified oxygen, or "electric aura" as he styled it, had a purifying effect on animal and vegetable matter, and used it as a disinfecting application to fœtid ulcers. Dr. John Davy, in 1826, formally recognised it as a principle in the atmosphere, and thus gave it a place within the scientific household.

Schonbein, of Basle, however, Professor of Chemistry at the University, gave to Ozone its "local habitation and a name," in 1840. He first imagined that it was a body which combined with hydrogen to constitute nitrogen. This was disproved by other experimenters, who showed that the peculiar odor was produced by the decomposition of water alone, and that Ozone was but oxygen in an allotropic form. Berzelius was decided in this judgment. Schonbein was unwilling to believe this, and contended first that it was a hydrogen hyperoxid, HO2, and afterward HO3. This was subsequently shown to be incorrect; and finally Andrews, in 1856, demonstrated that Ozone however found is identical in its nature, entirely distinct from hydrogen; and likewise that oxygen is converted into it by means of the electric spark, and undergoes thereby condensation and reduction of volume.

Dr. Odling propounded the explanation, that Ozone was formed by the molecule of oxygen O2 united with an additional atom, O2 plus O or 03. Its formation, he believed, simply means the condensing of oxygen into two-thirds of its former volume. The oxidising power which Ozone possesses, is thus explained by the well-known fact in chemistry, that molecules part with facility with their superabundant constituents. Housewives using cream of tartar to raise their dough, are profiting from this idea. The heating of ozonised oxygen will cause the oxygen to resume its original molecular dimensions, and part with the additional atoms; which will then in their turn, being in the nascent condition, form new unions readily with whatever substance may be contiguous. In our

present state of knowledge, therefore, Ozone is defined as simply a condensed or allotropic form of oxygen, and that each is convertible into the other.


Many of the former conjectures in regard to this substance are very amusing. Travellers have noticed the peculiar odor during periods of electric disturbance of the atmosphere, and the ancients regarded it as actually sulphurous. Homer repeatedly mentions objects which had been struck by lightning, from which, he declares: "the smell of smoking sulphur rises." The thunderbolt was regarded as constituted of fire and brimstone, and was represented as the weapon of the gods. In the Iliad a bolt is represented "with the flame of burning sulphur" striking a ship. The destruction of Sodom and other cities on the site of the Dead Sea was doubtless thus occasioned; the naphtha-deposit thus set on fire affording a receptacle for the waters of the river Jordan which had before flowed over and to the Gulf of Akiha. The prophet Isaiah also speaks of the tophet or crematory prepared for the King of Assyria, and adds: “The breath of the Lord like a stream of brimstone doth kindle it." In strict accordance with this sentiment sulphur bore the name of theion in Greek, the divine substance.

Phosphorus, however, and even chlorine have been included in the conjecture of being a celestial or atmospheric product. It may add somewhat of plausibility, that these elements were often employed by experimenters in the generating of Ozone.

It has also been conjectured that Ozone rendered atmospheric air unwholesome, and predisposed to epidemics of cholera, yellow fever, etc. The later evidence has proved the exact reverse-that it destroys the causes of contagious and zymotic disease.


The presence of Ozone in the atmospheric air was at first disputed and denied. Professor Andrews, of Belfast, made several experiments in 1867 which seem to have been conclusive. M. Houzeau had declared that Ozone and hydrogen peroxide

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