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Page:New observations on inoculation - Angelo Gatti.djvu/57

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disorder[1]; but reasonings are needless, where experience is so sure a guide.

In all countries, and at all times, it has been found that cool air is the most powerful antidote against this disorder; and hot air, on the contrary, the chief cause of fatal accidents too commonly observed in it.

I might quote the observations of the most famous physicians, who taught this doctrine, and to theirs join my own; but it will be sufficient to appeal to Sydenham, that oracle in physic, especially with regard to the small-pox. Read the works of that great man, and you will find, that whenever he treats of this distemper, he insists upon the necessity of breathing fresh air. Compare his various writings, and even the several editions he published, and you will be sensible that he was led to this opinion, not by reasoning or prejudice, but by degrees, and a long train of experiments.

The best writers since his time have added but little to what he said; but one and all confirmed his doctrine as to the benefit of fresh

  1. It might, for instance, be said, that of all the bodily organs, the nerves are most particularly attacked in this disorder, and that cold is the most powerful specific in all nervous affections. This begins to be understood in some parts of Europe, and will be more so in time, as the weakness of these organs seems daily to increase in the polished part of the human species.