Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 60.djvu/437

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lowering of the temperature, and even after the immediate action of the injection has passed off the patient experiences relief from the malaise which is so distressing a consequence of high temperature. The drug appears to possess in particular a controlling influence on streptococcic and staphylococcic infection, and it seems probable that its use may be extended to the treatment of other diseases.

Increased light is being thrown on mosquitoes as agents in the propagation of disease. Not only has more detailed information been gained as to the part they play in the causation of malaria, preventive measures based on that information being put in operation with a certain amount of success, but evidence has been brought forward which indicates that the spread of yellow fever also is due to them. That disease, at least, has developed in persons who have been bitten by mosquitoes, while others protected from mosquitoes have escaped, even though they courted infection, according to older ideas, by wearing clothes and sleeping in bedding which had been used by yellow fever patients. In Glasgow there was an outbreak of smallpox in the early part of the year, and plague appeared in one of the large hotels; but, owing to the vigorous measures adopted, neither disease succeeded in gaining any stronghold. In London, too, smallpox is prevalent to a greater extent than it has been for a considerable period, though there can scarcely be said to be an epidemic in the sense in which that term was used twenty or thirty years ago.

In natural history the most interesting discovery was that of a new mammal in the Congo Hinterland. Sir Harry Johnston obtained from the Semliki Forest a complete skin and two skulls, and a reconstruction of the animal may now be seen in the Natural History Museum at South Kensington. At first it was thought to be of a zebra-like character, on the evidence of certain stripes on its skin, but further investigation dispelled that notion, and Professor Ray Lankester has diagnosed it as a giraffine animal. It has been named Okapi Johnstoni.

The men of science who died during the year include three who took high rank among physicists—Professor Tait, of Edinburgh, Professor Fitzgerald, of Dublin and Professor Rowland, of Baltimore. The first-named had reached the age of three score and ten, but the other two were both comparatively young men from whom much good work, in addition to what they had already achieved, might confidently have been expected had they lived. Both education and science were the poorer by the death of Principal Viriamu Jones, of University College, Cardiff, in succession to whom another physicist has been appointed in the person of Mr. E. H. Griffiths. On the other hand, two veterans of science—Virchow in Germany and Berthelot in France—celebrated the completion of fifty years of scientific work.