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as it possessed before this æra be discovered, the profit of working it would be only as, though at that time it would have been double, hence the more these rich mines have been worked the nearer approaches have been made to poverty; the gain was at all times fi&titious, the loss certain at first as at last : piles of gold and filver, heavy and burden. some representatives, instead of labouring to increase them ; the mines, those gulphs that fwallow up mankind thould be closed, in order to lessen the quantity, especially as their product is scarce sufficient for the support of the wretches, that are hired or condemned to them. But the nations will never be brought into a confederacy by the prospect of conferring a general blessing on mankind. We have nothing to console us but a well grounded hope that in a few ages, perhaps sooner, it will be necessary to abandon this pernicious labour, which gold itself, grown too common, will be no longer able to recompense.”
By such resting places, properly disposed, the general reader may be allured into a path before avoided as uninviting and wearisome. Had the author but been able to satisfy the philosopher by exactness of chymical knowledge and cautiousness of conjecture ! But the niceness of chymical investigation he disdains, “ because chymistry oftner confounds than separates the component parts of bodies;" and how often have the Hights of his imagination hurried him to the very summit of hypothetical extravagance !
Notwithstanding his acknowledged skill in the arts of Composition, it would be difficult to defend his present work from the charges of prolixity and repetition. His former productions are by no means totally free from this latter fault, and old age is not likely to correct it.
To these specimens and observations it would be unjust not to add that in his accounts of the situation of mines, he is copious, entertaining and instructive, and that the ample quotations from the late mineralogical travellers, with many original communications, render this natural history highly valuable to the English reader, who cannot always gain access to the productions of foreign obfervers.
One fingularity observeable in these quotations, and which the work of none but a Frenchman could have exhibited, is too eurious to be overlooked. The number of quotations perhaps, equals, if it does not exceed, the number of pages ; and yet among fo many, there is not one from any author who has not either written in French, or been translated into French, if we except two or three references to Latin authors,
ART. XVII. Guftavi Orrei, M. D. Defcriptio Peftis, &c. A De.
scription of the Plague which raged at Jaffe in 1770, and in Mol
cow in 1781. By Dr. Orræus. 4to. Petersburgh. 1784. THIS "HIS interesting work is divided into two sections, the
first comprehending the history, cure, prophylaxis with cases and other supplemental matter ; the second containing the general deductions flowing from the facts on the theory, The author was physician to the Rusian general Romafzow; and as he was present, while the plague raged in both cities, his account would seem entitled to considerable attention. The first fifty pages are filled up with the general narrative of its rise, progress, and termination. This agrees pretty exactly with that which we have already received from others, and especially from Dr. Merter's, many copies of whose book have been imported into this country. For this reafon, as well as because more curious matter attracts our attention, we shall pass on to the subsequent divisions, observing only that it appears from a table given by the author that at least 56,000 persons were cut off by the plague alone in Moscow during the course of 1771, of whom 21,401 are allotted to September.
The remainder of the work (near 200 pages) confifts of general propositions arranged under different heads, and con firmed and explained by a commentary subjoined. In the present article we shall select a number of the most curious and important of these observations, omitting all remarks upon them, that as much space as possible may be allotted to a work which will probably not be procured without great difficulty in this country. In the present ardour of inquiry about fevers, information coming from so good authority cannot but be acceptable. Under the title of Experientia we meet with various propositions relative to the diagnofis treat, ment and cure of the plague, with other collateral subjects.
The plague first broke out in houses and hospitals where the air was moift, tepid and impure. When it appeared in better fituations, it was capable of being easily suppressed.
At first it generally assumes the form of a petechial fever, and does not exhibit its pathognomonic symptoms.
It exerts its chief violence on the common people, com, paratively few of higher station being seized with it. Ten individuals anly among the numerous nobility at Moscow perished, and not a fingle physician notwithstanding their frequent intercourse with the infected.
Among the occasional causes the most efficacious seemed to be, 1. Close and imprudent intercourfe with the infected. 2. The handling of things infected with the nuisance, especially such as had been that up from the air. 3. Baths and all
tepid vapours. 4. Rancid fat, either much handled or used for food. s. Errors in diet and violent pallions.
Leucophlegmatic and cachectic 'habits, persons affected with cutaneous diseases; those advanced in years and children at the breast were leaft expofed to the contagion. Fat per. lons, though in other respects in perfect health were infe&ted in greater number and recovered with more difficulty than those of a spare habit.
The fame person has often been known 10 have repeated attacks. -- It prevailed most in spring and autumn, especially in warm, rainy weather. On the contrary, as foon as the wea. ther became dry and settled, and at the same time the wind blew from the north, it was, if not quite fuppreffed, much mitigated : and on the approach of winter, the contagion was sensibly impaired, and when a constant cold came on, was totally destroyed.
Some obfervations seem to indicate that birds and infects during the prevalence of the plague seldom appear in places highly infected. The author tells us that he could find few insects at Jasse at the time of the plague, though afterwards they appeared in great abundance. When the infected army removed into a vineyard, the insects were at first numerous but soon quitted the place. At Moscow scarce a crow.or jackdaw could be seen, though at other times they are in great abundance. An apothecary whose fyrups used to be infested by ants could not observe one at this time, though the next summer they returned as formerly.
The plague is sometimes sporadic, and then very maligo nant fevers of a pestilential nature (quasi peftilentiales) prevail and spread to a considerable distance.
While the plague rages, no other epidemics prevail, and in other acute diseases the plague unexpectedly supervenes.
During the time of the plague, pimples, angina, rheumatic pains, a gravative pain where buboes, wounds, &c. had for. inerly been situated, ftrangury, nocturnal pollutions, the nettle rash, pustules with an acrid lymph, fweating and ex. coriation of the toes, urine of a deep colour and with lateria tious sediment, were very common occurrences.
The small pox, intermittent fevers, especially quartans and dropfies portended the extin&tion or at least the remiffion of the plague.
It is distinguished from other diseases by its highly contar gious and deleterious nature, as well as by the bubocs, care buncles and other eruptions which accompany it. : The various appearances it assumed are all referable to the four following heads 1. The period of infettion, in which
evident marks of the disease, but without fever, appeared. 2. The fow type, in which after a long period of infection, it affumes the form of a malignant fever, both with respect to the mildness of the symptoms and length of period. 3. The acute. 4. The very acute type, in which last the symptoms are not only very violent, but very angmalous.
The signs of a less virulent contagion during the period of infection, are flying pungent pains in the glands and muscles, heat of urine, drowsiness, abundant secretion from the sebaceous glands, especially in the face and hands, costiveness with copious pulpy and viscid excrement, heaviness, lassitude and fainting, a glandular swelling, attended with little pain and dark-coloured spots indicated a more virulent contagion, and the transition to one of the species was pointed out by depravation of the taste and viscidity of the faliva ; anorexia, whiteness and foulness of the tongue, and head ache.
The miasma is often thrown off by the insensible perspiration; but after the abovementioned fymptoms have made their appearance, it cannot be expelled but by speedy and sufficient sweating produced either by exercise or diaphoretics. Remedies adapted to the most urgent symptoms, were used with success..
A long period of infection generally terminates in the flow type of the disease, if no remedy be applied. The infected person being hitherto without pyrexia, is seized with shivere ings, very various in different persons in vehemence and duration, which are succeeded by very moderate heat and a febrile, weak, irregular, and often intermitting pulse. There is a constant gravative pain of the head; the urine is crude and turbid without depofiting any sediment, the tongue moist and foul; no thirst, dejection of spirits, belly at first bound with tumour of the hypocondria and borborymi; but the abdomen feels foft; nausea and vomiting of a viscid greenish naburra recur at irregular intervals during the first days. Various eruptions appear though not indeed in all cases, The rudiments of buboes and carbuncles increase but without occasioning any violent pain, and others arise in new places, and if they suppurate in five, fix, or seven days, the patient recovers. On the contrary failure of suppuration and other bad fymptoms, as great debility, diarrhæa, and low delirium, indicate certain death, which sometimes does not happen before the fourteenth day.
In this, which is the most dangerous and incurable species, neutral falts and analeptics early exhibited in sufficient quantity, and at the later period corroborants and aftringents seem ço be the most efficaciqus of the numerous remes:
dies that were employed. But the suppuration of the buboes and carbuncles was promoted by every possible effort, as being the true falutary crisis.
The acute type is preceded by a shorter period of infection, and often suddenly attacks persons in health. The order of the symptoms is nearly as follows: bad taste, viscid saliva, acute head ach; redness of the eyes and face; fout and sometimes dry tongue; thivering, considerable heat: pulse fuller, stronger and more frequent, than in the flow type, urine higher coloured and greater thirst, Belly bound; buboes and carbuncles soon appearing, much vomiting at first, delirium generally low. When a resolution or fuppuration of the buboes and carbuncles take place on or before the fourth day, the patient recovers. But if suppuration does not come on, these eruptions increase very much, the delirium continues, the vires vitæ with the pulse fink, and hæmorrhages and pituitous excretions occur. After death, which happens on the third, fourth, or fifth day, and while the body is yet warm, new exanthematæ appear; and the corpse is observed to be uncommonly pale, somewhat tymid, flexible and wiTHOUT ANY FOETOR.
The acute species was perfectly cured by sudorifics early employed, after which the resolution or suppuration of the buboes and carbuncles took place. At a later period emetics, faline preparations, corroborants and aftringents were used with the most evident success in many cases, while the utmost endeavours were employed to bring about the maturation of the buboes and carbuncles. It was sometimes necefsary to use repellents, when they were growing to a large fize.
The varieties of the very acute type may be referred to two heads. !. A person without any previous sign of infection is suddenly seized with alternate hot and cold fits; but the heat soon vanishes and the surface of the body feels cool. Pulse hard and very frequent violent headachs; great anxiety about the præcordia, furious delirium; tongue smooth and dry, and at length livid ; laborious respiration; the eyes much protruded, very red and having an appearance of ferocity, turgenency of the face and neck, which are at first red and then turn livid : spontaneous vomiting feldom occurs ; this violent state seldom continues twenty four hours. Most die, apparently, apoplectic or suffocated; fome expire more casily. After death the places where the buboes were breaking out turn livid, and dark fpots are feen in various parts.
2. Debility fupervenes at the very first onset and increases, being attended with anxiety; the patient never recovers from this Itate unless seasonable affiftance be administered. The