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fear for the issue, as regarded their personal safety, correctly estimating both the force and the disposition of these poor slaves. They ran small risk, therefore, in deliberately allowing 'Daddy • Ruler Sharp, director of the whole,' to gain over as many fol. lowers as he could. But, whatever they feared or hoped for, they did, in fact, deliberately suffer the expected strike on the part of the negroes to take place, which they have converted, by a little poetic colouring, into a notable rebellion. And now, could they but succeed in making the Baptist Missionaries answerable for the whole, and in hanging a few of them as incendiaries, we make no doubt that this consummation, added to the military glory of dispersing the rebel armies, would be deemed an ample compensation for all the mischief which has been effected *.
Our readers are aware, that the insurrection was already at an end, at the date of Lord Belmore's despatch. By the 5th of January, tranquillity had been restored, and the poor negroes were coming in from all directions, anxious to avail themselves of the promise of pardon offered in Sir Willoughby Cotton's proclamation. Proprietors and attorneys were returning to their estates. Every where, Sir Willoughby's presence seems to have wrought like a charm on the minds of the insurgents', not from the terror, but from the confidence it inspired. It is evident, that the slaves look to the Sovereign and Government of this country for protection, for all they have to hope for. Shall they look to Great Britain in vain ? No: this insurrection only supplies one more fatal illustration of the impolicy, injustice, costliness, and wickedness of slavery. What, after all, did these insurgent negroes strike for? THEIR PERSONAL FREEDOM, to which, if there be such a thing as a natural right, inalienable but by criminal forfeiture, they have as valid a right in Jamaica, as they would have in England; and if a right at all, an immediate right, incapable of becoming stronger. And although the principles of Christianity clearly enjoin submission to constituted authorities and existing institutions, notwithstanding these may involve personal wrongs; teaching the slave to be subject and faithful to his master, till he can lawfully obtain his freedom, and discountenancing all insurrection and revolt; still, the claims of the injured to redress are not invalidated by either their submission or their
consisted of less than 200 men: the numbers in the other divisions, I could not judge of, as they were covered by a stone wall fence and the Hill-house; but both divisions appeared to have many fire-arms !!
* We are aware of the extreme illiberality of suspecting Jamaica planters to be capable of all this : the supposition would require no proof, if it related to Baptist ministers or other evangelical sectarians. helplessness, nor do the wrongs of the oppressed cease to be wrongs, because perpetuated by the forms of legislation. If there is such a thing as a social wrong, personal slavery is emphatically the greatest of wrongs; and injustice, which is always impolicy, is sure to entail upon its perpetrators retribution with interest. Slavery must cease.
Art. V. Of Pestilential Cholera ; its Nature, Prevention, and Cura
tive Treatment. By James Copland, M.D. &c. &c. 12mo. pp.
175. London, 1831. " THE pestilence that walketh in darkness.” Than this
scriptural quotation, we cannot imagine any thing more strikingly appropriate as a commencement of the disquisition now to be engaged in. While chemistry has unfolded many particulars of interest respecting the constitution of the atmosphere, and particulars which are not without useful bearing upon medical researches; while physiology has added to the number of its facts, and to the mode of applying those facts to the therapeutic art; while pathology has been advancing in simplicity and truth, and the materia medica has furnished new agents of great efficacy in meeting the exigencies of pain and suflering; scarcely a single step has been advanced towards solving the great problem of contagion ; and medical men of the most enlightened understanding and enlarged acquirements are, to this very hour, disputing on what would seem, as an abstract question, scarcely a disputable one, viz., In what manner are pestilential maladies received and transmitted ?
That this is verily the state of things, our recent controversies on cholera are sufficient proofs. Even the word generally employed to express the aggregate of symptoms characterizing the present epidemic, while it has been received as legitimate by some, is severely objected to by others. Admit all you say and all you think respecting this same cholera, it is, after all, fever, rather than cholera, about which you are disputing; and it ought to be investigated and treated as fever. Such, in some measure, is the language of the very sensible and erudite treatise placed at the head of the present article; and such is the doctrine advanced, and the language employed by many of our orators in the debating societies among which we have recently mixed.
That the above sentiments are the sentiments of Dr. Copland, is not, however, the reason for our selection of his tract. The fact is, that were we to transcribe the whole, or even the larger number of title-pages to works and pamphlets having the discussion on cholera as their avowed object, we should present more
preface tban discussion to our readers, and might fill great part of our monthly number with title-pages alone.
Our main objects in this article, are, to offer a few brief remarks on the subject of pestilence; and the bearing of its laws upon the complaint now prevalent ;-to treat on the pathological circumstances characterizing Cholera, the modes of its prevention and management, and the question of its probable spread among us in a severe and malignant form. It is hardly necessary to say, that our brief disquisition will bear upon the point principally in dispute, whether the disease called Cholera is specifically the same in all its advents and localities.
If it be objected against us, that our pages ought not to be made the arena of medical controversy,- that ephemeral and passing matters are beneath our concern, -and that papers have before appeared in the Eclectic Review on the disorder named Cholera,- the universality of interest which is now attached to the malady, must be received as an apology for our thus again adverting to it.
In looking over the works of antient authors, it is surprising how little we find of information, or even of intimation, on the question of contagion or infection. Indeed, the historians and poets are, strange to say, more full in their animadversions on pestilence, than the strictly medical writers; but even these never seem to have entertained any notion of the communicable nature of distemper, beyond the fact, that, in certain localities and circumstances, where men and beasts have been congregated together,—there, a widely devastating disorder has broken out, and affected in common the human and brute creation.
Πολλάς δ' άφθίμους ψυχάς "Αϊδι προΐαψεν
ΟΙΩΝΟΙΣΙ ΤΕ ΠΑΣΙ: says Homer, and beyond this, very little more is said by any of the earlier writers; most probably because any thing that was out of the customary course of things, was referred to the particular, and immediate interference of Heaven with the concerns of the nether world.
The laws and ordinances of the Hebrews, indeed, are founded upon the principle, that separation of the sick from the sound, was necessary to prevent the spread of some of the more obvious contagions; but we do not meet with any thing more, in the Jewish records, which implies a distinct recognition on the part of the people, that some disorders visit many at the same moment, while others are successively communicated by contact or immediate intercourse with the infected.
Dr. Maclean, who attributes the origin and spread of pestilential affections exclusively to a certain condition of the atmosphere, VOL. VII.- N.S.
and ridicules the notion of communicability by contact, asserts, that the idea of contagion, as now received, was never thought of, till it became an object with the Roman see to translate the Council of Trent to Bologna, which was effected by persuading the Fathers of that council, that a contagious epidemic prevailed at Trent. There does not seem, however, satisfactory ground for accepting this explanation, for the very announcement of the source of danger, implied a previous conception, that sickness might thus pass from one to another in consequence of contact or immediate vicinity. And although Hippocrates, in the whole of his “ epidemics“, does not distinctly refer to this mode of a disorder's conveyance, yet, there are some intimations in Thucydides, in his account of the Athenian Plague, which, though not strictly and directly to the point, and though mixed with the principles and feelings just adverted to, would seem to indicate that he did not more especially allude to it, because he took it for granted as universally received.
But our time and space will not admit, nor perhaps does the present occasion demand, that we should go more minutely into this discussion: sufficient is it that we take for granted the fact of some diseases being at once regulated, as to their continuance and their spread, both by contagious and by infectious principles; that is, they seem to have some dependence upon the atmosphere, and some upon individual communication ;-in other words, they are at the same time infectious and contagious.
Now, how does all this apply to Cholera ? That a disease has for a long time prevailed in the East with such dread malignity as to mow down, we had almost said, millions of inhabitants, in travelling a long tract of country, is a matter of historical truth. That from the East a disease took its course through Persia to the Asiatic side of Russia, and that it made its way through parts of the last-mentioned empire into Poland, visiting several northern provinces, and penetrating to Hamburgh, is likewise generally admitted ; whence, according to some, it extended itself to our shores, and is at present prevailing in our country.
Against this last supposition, many set their opinions in battle array. The disorder, first in Asia, and then in the North of Europe, had been, according to your own shewing, (argue the non-importation men,) a coasting or continental affair. It had not travelled across any sea, nor is it at all likely it would do so, since a mixture of contagion and atmospheric poison is assumed as necessary to its preservation and propagation; and because the combination of these two requisites cannot be conceived to take place when vessels with goods and individuals traverse large tracts of water. Is it not a known fact, too, they ask, that during the prevalence of the most virulent form of Cholera in India, the naval communication between every part of the East and this country has been free and unrestricted ? But, if the transportation across the seas by bales of goods and affected individuals be capable of carrying infection one or two hundred miles, it would, by the same laws, one or two thousand. Again, a degree at least of the same distemper that you now talk of as an imported one, had been epidemic in this country for very many months before this alleged transference; and although the northern visitations were principally, at first, confined to the coast and to parts near the shore, the instances of Cholera which are now, according to the representations of contagionists, principally along the banks of the Thames, are not only on the wrong side of the river to harmonize with the notions of debarking, but in distant parts of the town: here and there, a case of malignant Cholera, without any likely or traceable communication, makes its tremendous attack.
The season too, the anti-contagionist, or rather anti-importationist argues, has been such as is likely to be productive of stomach, and bilious, and spasmodic, and febrile derangement; and what the other party chooses to call Asiatic Cholera, is nothing more or less than a particular modification of fever with arrested secretions, and sympathetic cramps, and congestions of blood. That the low damp districts near the Thames have been its principal London localities, is plainly ascribable to the influence of humidity and stagnant moisture, as assisting causes, with the pestilential condition of the atmosphere generally; and, (con. tinue the advocates of this side of the question,) your cases are, in point of number, by much “ too few and far between ” to justify the contagious inference; and more than half even of these few are probably caused by the alarm excited by your own sagacious, (some go the length of saying, but they have no right to go such lengths,) your own interested enactments.
When these pros and cons are considered together without party bias or prepossession, we cannot wonder that a considerable measure of uncertainty and apprehension is excited in the mind,—and that the “differing of doctors” produces painful indecision on the part of the people. For ourselves, however, we may say, without wishing absolutely to commit ourselves on either side, that we do not join with those who are very full of alarms and apprehensions respecting our present or coming condition. The sources of our hope are taken principally from the following considerations.
Even in those districts where the malignant disorder has been stated to prevail, commencing with Sunderland and reaching to Edinburgh,-an exceedingly inconsiderable proportion of the populace have become sufferers; and when disease has suddenly attacked, and death rapidly succeeded, the victims have, with but very little exception indeed, been guilty of imprudences and irre