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POPULAR MISCELLANY.

nace we had perfect control over the heat. I did not wish to have it too hot at the time of placing the body in it for fear of an excessive generation of gases, but I believe we would not have gained anything by having the heat any more intense; from my observation I am convinced that the heat required is not so great as generally supposed: the action of the heat on the lime gives it the appearance of being intensely hot, but at the same time I noticed that the end of the plate where the flame turned was barely altered—just scored a little, as if it had approached nearly to the melting point.

"The furnace did not cost $100, and I suppose about 1,000 pounds of coal were consumed."

Signs of Advance in Medical Science.—A significant communication has appeared in the English medical journals, namely, a letter to Dr. B. W. Richardson, from George Wyld, M. D., Vice-President of the British Homœopathic Society, in which the latter pleads for a reconciliation between homœopathists and practitioners of the regular school of medicine. Dr. Wyld in effect maintains that the art and science of medicine, as understood by the homœopathists, so called, of England, and by the regular profession, are now the same. Hahnemann, in his famous essay, entitled "The Medicine of Experience," had made no mention of homœopathy, and the doses there recommended were tangible, not infinitesimal. But, as his views were scornfully rejected by the medical profession of the time, Hahnemann, in his turn, became intolerant of the views received by the medical profession, and, "out of spite," as one might say, adopted the doctrine of the efficacy of infinitesimal doses. But everything is now changed, according to Dr. Wyld. "The so-called homœopathists," he writes, "have almost entirely abandoned the use of globules, and have substituted doses in a tangible form. Further, whereas the early homœopathists denounced all auxiliaries in the treatment of disease, it is now the practice to make frequent use of all remedies of a simple kind, such as occasional aperients, anodynes, opiates, anæsthetics, galvanism, hydropathy, Turkish baths, and mineral waters. In short, we define our practice as rational medicine, including the application of the law of contraries, but plus the application of the law of similars." Dr. Wyld adds that the sentiments he expresses are held by a large number of homœopathic practitioners. He believes that were physicians of his school to be admitted to the regular medical societies and to the pages of regular medical journals, it would not be long before all sectarianism in medicine would be at an end. He demands the same liberty of opinion in medicine as in religion or politics, and an amalgamation with the regular profession on equal terms. Dr. Richardson asks his brethren to "accept this intended message of peace and goodwill in the spirit in which it is written and offered."

Experiments with Viper-Poison.—In the Zeitschrift für Biologic, Valentin states the results of his researches on viper-poison. The particular species of vipers employed was the V. aspera of Linnæus. Only one viper out of twenty could be made to bite by external irritation. One viper was made insensible under the influence of ether, and Valentin took the opportunity of squeezing out some of the poison on squares of Swedish filtering-paper; he also obtained some of the transparent mucus which had collected on the palate near the apices of the poison-fangs. A fragment of this paper a few millimetres square placed under the skin of the back of a frog generally caused death in from six to twenty hours, the cause of the fatal results, the author thinks, being due to the admixture of some of the yellow, oily secretion of the poison-gland with the saliva. Paper impregnated with the poison retained its activity for six months or more, and enough was obtained from one animal to saturate twenty pieces of filtering-paper presenting twenty to thirty-five square millimetres of surface. It was found that a quantity of the poison not exceeding 0.00037 of a gramme is capable of producing, when inserted beneath the skin of a frog, well-marked and persistent symptoms of poisoning and death in thirteen days; and quantities varying from one-half to one milligramme killed a frog in from eight to twenty hours.