Billeder på siden

research is his theory as to the nature of the corpus niger in the eye of the horse, which has caused so much speculation among scientists. This structure is found in nearly all tropical animals-the camel, onega, and antelope-and fulfills the function of protecting the eye from the sun's rays. Its presence in equinæ affords a possible means of tracing the ancestry of the horse.



(Continued from page 44.)

Apropos of the intimate relationship existing between the sturv of nature and the healing art, we find that the Romans as early as the time of Cicero called a natural philosopher physicus, while the science itself was called physica, both words having been borrowed from the Greek physikos, that which pertains to nature, from physis, nature, in the somewhat restricted sense of the term as used in antiquity. But in medieval Latin physica had become the equivalent of medecina and physicus that of medicus. In the older English, physic means both natural philosophy, the modern physics, and the medical art as well as drugs. The restricted signification 'to purge' and 'a purge' is comparatively recent.

Shakespeare uses both doctor and physician, the former generally in the sense of teacher. Doctor also occurs in Middle English and later Chaucer speaks of a 'doctour of Phisik.' In classical Latin the term doctor means teacher, a sense in which it is used by Cicero, Horace and others. It had no connection with medicine. In modern French physicien means one who occupies himself with physics, but in the older language it had the signification of the English physician. The French médecin, physician, is evidently from the Latin medicinus, a derivative from medicus, while our medicine, a remedial drug, is from the same word in the feminine gender. In German the connection with the English physician is preserved by Physikus alone, a term used to designate an official whose functions correspond in the main with. our health-officer. Here too the term Doktor has long since usurped the more specific Artst, and Doktorei is occasionally used for medicine, 'doctor's stuff.' The Gothic word lèkeis, which is the Anglo-Saxon laece and the English 'leech' has nothing in common with either except the meaning. This term doctor again brings to the physician the same title that is borne by the scholar. Although it is given in several departments such as law, theology, music, philosophy, and so on, to the common man both in German and in English countries the doctor represents only the physician. This is explained by the fact that in most communities the only man or men bearing the title were physicians. Of late years, however, especially in the United States,

doctors of divinity have become so common, not to mention other doctors, that the designation has reached the stage of painful uncertainty. What it now represents can only be determined by an investigation of each individual on whom it has been conferred.

No more convincing testimony to the small progress made in the healing art from the earliest times until a little more than a century ago need be asked for than is offered by a comparison of the average length of human life as given by Herodotus and that currently accepted until quite recently-three generations to a century. In fact most life insurance associations have not yet learned that this average is above forty years. Anatomy had made great progress and the structure of the body was minutely known, but until the germ theory of disease and antisepsis were established, therapeutics was largely a matter of tradition and routine; of empiricism and individual skill. When one reads of the incessant wars that kept a portion of the male inhabitants constantly occupied in military enterprises, directly or indirectly, one is inclined to believe that the average of human life must have been shorter than it was held to be twenty or twenty-three centuries ago. There is no room to enter upon a discussion of the problem here; suffice it to say, the loss from disease was probably no greater, and the losses in the armies probably much less relatively than in modern times. For it is well known that the killed in battle are but a small portion of those whom war deprives of life. It is probable that never before or since has any country suffered such ravages as did Germany during what is called the thirty years war. That the sanitary condition of ancient Greece must for the most part have been fairly good is attested by the rapid recuperation of most of the citystates after a disastrous war. But then there were no large cities like those of modern times, in which the population increases much faster than the adoption and enforcement of sanitary measures.

It will hardly be considered surprising that disease in any form should early have stimulated men to reflection. This is true at least of those living under conditions where there was more or less freedom of action and where affairs had not yet settled down into the lethal routine that characterized the social life of most of the people of the ancient world anterior to the appearance of the Greeks. The succession of day and night; the changes of season that follow each other regularly, and the meteorological conditions that accompany them, would be taken as a matter of course. But the vicissitudes of the human system, whether gradual, rapid or sudden, when not the result of accident or attributed to the malevolence of evil spirits, naturally led to inquiry as to their causes. The next step was in quest of prophylactics and curatives. This sort of reasoning, of philosophy, was not obnoxious to the charge that Socrates brought against the philosophy of his day, namely, that it was concerned wholly with things that were of no benefit to any one and with problems to which no answer could be found.




DOCTOR ZIEGLER, whose death occurred recently, was born in the neighborhood of Berne, Switzerland, in 1849. He studied medicine in his native city and also at Würzburg, and received his doctor's degree at Berne in 1872. He qualified as privatdocent at Würzburg, occupying this position for three years, when he went to Freiburg in Breisgau as assistant and later became extraordinary professor. In 1881 he filled the chair of pathology and morbid anatomy at Zürich, in 1882 he went to Tübingen in a similar capacity, and in 1889 returned to Freiburg, where he remained as professor of pathology until the time of his demise. Doctor Ziegler was a prolific writer and investigator, and contributed articles on inflammation, tuberculosis, rickets and neoplasms to various periodicals, but the greatest expression of his work is embodied in "Ziegler's Pathology," which was first published in 1881, and through which he is chiefly known to American students and physicians. Besides being professor and author he was likewise editor of two of the most important German publications on pathology-the Beiträge zur allgemeinen Pathologie und pathologischen Anatomie and the Zentralblatt für allgemeine Pathologie und pathologische Anatomie. He was engaged in the revision of his text-book at the time of his death and had so far progressed with the work that with slight further revision it may be accepted as the final expression of his opinion on pathology. He was highly esteemed as a man, and his ability as a lecturer has been attested for long by students from many climes.


A BILL has been introduced in the Massachusetts legislature to prohibit the publication of advertisements referring to sexual diseases.

A LATE ordinance of the city of Toronto provides that the houses of persons succumbing to tuberculosis shall be disinfected by the local health officers.

MILAN, Italy, is designated as the next meeting place of the Third International Congress of Electrology and Radiology, which will convene in Sptember, 1906.

THE Protestant missions have been instrumental in establishing the Union Medical College, of Pekin, China, which institution was opened for instruction February 13, 1906.

A BILL has been introduced in the New York legislature forbidding the marriage of imbeciles, epileptics, insane, or feeble-minded persons. The measure also prohibits the marriage of sound persons to feebleminded.

THE announcement is made that Karl von Noorden has been appointed to fill the chair at the University of Vienna made vacant by the death of Professor Nothnagel.

QUEEN Amelie, of Portugal, who is a doctor of medicine, will be honorary president of the Fifteenth International Medical Congress, which meets in Lisbon, April 19, 1906.

THE Health Department of Havana reports that three patients, suffering from mild attacks of yellow fever, are still confined in Las Animas Hospital. No new cases have recently been reported.

THE Iowa State Board of Medical Examiners has made a ruling to the effect that diplomas granted by schools which allow advanced standing for work done outside of medical schools shall not be recognized.

THE City of Mexico is in the throes of an epidemic of typhus fever. The disease is attributed principally to bad sanitary conditions in the city, and stringent measures toward remedying them are being enforced.

THE plans submitted for the new army hospital at Washington have been approved by Secretary Taft. The estimated cost of the building is $300,000, Congress having limited the appropriation to this


THE Chicago Women's Club has inaugurated a campaign against venders of impure milk, and the various female organizations of the city will be asked to subscribe $1,500 annually to provide a salary for a competent milk inspector.

DOCTOR LEHMAN H. DUNNING, of Indianapolis, a well-known gyne cologist and for several years professor of gynecology and abdominal surgery in the Indiana Medical College, died at his home on January 4, 1906, aged fifty-five years.

DOCTOR CLARA MARSHALL has resigned the Chair of Materia Medica and Therapeutics in the Woman's Medical College of Pennsylvania. The doctor has been connected with the teaching force of the institution for over thirty years.

A SITE has been chosen in the town of Pittsford for Vermont's new tuberculosis sanitorium. The institution is a gift to the state from Senator Redfield Proctor, and the projectors anticipate the completion of the buildings by next winter.

THE passage of a bill in the New York Assembly, on March 6, provides for the appointment of two more health commissioners for the city-one for the Boroughs of Manhattan, Richmond, and Bronx, and one for the Boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens.

THE will of the late Doctor George S. Hyde provides that $50,000 be turned over to the Harvard Medical School upon the death of E. P. Hyde and Mrs. An ie M. Sargent, brother and sister of the deceased. The doctor was connected with this institution prior to his demise last year.

AT the twenty-ninth annual meeting of the Illinois State Board of Health, which was held recently at Springfield, Doctor George W. Webster, of Chicago, was elevated to the presidency, and Doctor James A. Egan, of Springfield, was reelected to the secretaryship.

DISSENSION exists between the physicians and druggists at Bayonne, New Jersey, because the latter persist in counter prescribing. A state law prohibits any person except a physician from prescribing for the sick, but the druggists have engaged counsel and will institute a test


A SUM of $8,000 has already been subscribed toward the erection of a $10,000 memorial to the late Doctor Joseph Leidy in consideration of his invaluable contributions to the natural sciences. The monument will be presented to the city of Philadelphia, the field in which the scientist worked and died.

REPORTS recently submitted to the Mississippi legislature by the State Board of Health disclose an expenditure of over $43,000 during the past year in consequence of the yellow fever epidemic. Fifteen localities were infested, the total record showing eight hundred thirtyseven cases and sixty-one deaths.

THE sum of $13,000 was realized from the New York German charity ball which was held in January. Of this amount $2,300 was given to the German Hospital and Dispensary, and smaller amounts were donated to Saint Mark's Hospital, the West Side German Dispensary, and Saint Francis' Hospital.

DOCTOR SAMUEL R. WOOSTER, late president of the Grand Rapids Academy of Medicine, died from the effects of a surgical operation on February 6, aged sixty-six years. Doctor Wooster was a graduate of Yale and during the Civil War was connected with several Michigan regiments in the capacity of army surgeon.

THE will of Charles L. Yerkes, the deceased street railway magnate, bequeathes $800,000 for the purchase of a site and erection of hospital buildings thereon in the Borough of Bronx. Provision is also made for the maintenance of the institution. The income arising from a sum of $5,000,000 will be utilized for this purpose.

[ocr errors]

PROFESSOR ERNST VON BERGMANN, the eminent German physician, has been raised to life membership in the upper house of parliament by the German Emperor. Professor von Bergmann is the author of the work on surgery which bears that name, and is the first physician to be elevated to the dignity of membership in the German parliament.

THE next meeting of the Association for the Advancement of Science will be held in New York City on December 27, 1906. At the recent meeting in New Orleans the following officers were elected for the ensuing year: President, William H. Welch, of Johns Hopkins; general secretary, John F. Hayford; secretary of council, F. W. McNair.

« ForrigeFortsæt »