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A common custom prevails of warming the bed be: 1 net-work. Some persons wear worsted, or flannel capely fore going to sleep. This enervating practice should but these are never proper, except in old or reumatic be abandoned except with delicate people, or when the subjects. The grand rule of health is to keep the head cold is very intense. It is far better to let the bed be cool, and the feel warm; hence, the night-cap cancer chased by the natural heat of the body, which, even in be too thin. In fact, the chief use of this piece of severe weather, will be sufficient for the purpose, pro- clothing is to preserve the hair, and preserve it from vided the clothing is abundant.
being disordered and matted together. We ought never to sleep overloaded with clothes, Sleeping in stockings is a bad and uncleanly habit. but have merely what is sufficient to maintain a com- By accustoming ourselves to do without any covering fortable warmth.
upon the feet, we shall seldom experience cold in these When a person is in health, the atmosphere of his parts, if we have clothing enough to keep the rest of apartment should be cool; on this account, fires are the system comfortable ; and should they still remain exceedingly hurtsul, and should never be had recourse cold, this can easily be obviated by wrapping a warm to, except when the individual is delicate, or the weather flannel cloth around them, or by applying to chern, for intolerably severe. When they become requisite, a few minutes, a heated iron, or a bottle of warm walct. smoke must be carefully guarded against, as fatal acci The posture of the body must be attended to. Tho dents have arisen from this cause.
head should be tolerably clevated, especially in plethoThe window-shutters ought never to be entirely ric subjects; and the position, from the neck downclosed, neither ought they to be kept altogether open. wards, as nearly as possible horizontal. The half-sitIn the first case, we are apt to oversleep ourselves, ting posture, with the shoulders considerably raised, is owing to the prevailing darkness with which we are injurious, as the thoracric and abdominal viscria are surrounded ; and in the second, the light which fills the thereby compressed. aud respiration, digestion, and cirapartment, especially if it be in the summer season, may culation, materially impeded. Lying upon the back is disturb our repose, and waken us at an earlier hour also improper, in consequence of its tendency to prothan there is any occasion for. Under both circum-duce nightmare. Most people pass the greater part of stances, the eyes are liable to suffer; the darkness in the night upon the side, which is certainly the most the one instance, disposes them to be painfully affect comfortable position that can be assumed in sleep. Aced, on exposure to the brilliant light of day, besides di- cording to Dr A. Hunter, women who love their husrectly debilitating them-for, in remaining too much in bands generally lic upon the right side. This interest the gloom, whether we be asleep or awake, these or- ing point I have no means of ascertaining, although, gans are sure to be more or less weakened. In the doubtless, the ladies are qualified to speak decidedly other case, the fierce glare of the morning sun acting upon the subject. I have known individuals who could upon them, perhaps for several hours before we get up, not sleep except upon the back; but these are rare cases. does equal injury, making them tender and easily affect I have mentioned the necessity of a froe citculation ed by the light. The extremes of too much and too of air. On this account, it is more wholesomo to sleep little light must, therefore, be avoided, and such a single, than double, for there is then less destruction of moderate portion admitted into the chamber as not to oxygen; and the atmosphere is much purer and cooler. hurt the eyes, or act as too strong a stimulus in break For the same reason, the practice, so common in pubing our slumbers.
lic schools, of having several beds in one room, and During the summer heats, the covering requires to two or three individuals in each bed, must be deleteribe diminished, so as to suit the atmospheric tempera When more than one sleep in a single bed, they ture ; and a small portion of the window drawn down should take care to place themselves in such a position from the top, to promote a circulation of air ; but this as not to breath in each other's faces. Some persons must be done cautiously, and the current prevented have a dangerous custom of covering their heads with from coming directly upon the sleeper, as it might give the bedclothes. The absurdity of this practice needs rise to colds, and other bad consequences. The late Dr Gregory was in the habit of sleeping with the win Before going to bed, the body should be brought into dow drawn slightly down during the whole year: and that state which gives us the surest chance of dropping there can be no doubt that a gentle current pervading speedily asleep. of too hot, its temperatun: ought to our sleeping apartments, is in the highest degree essen be reduced by cooling drinks, exposure to the open air, tial to health.
sponging, or even the cold bath; if leo cold, it must Nothing is so injurious as damp beds. It becomes be brought into a comfortable state by warmth ; for cvery person, whether at home or abroad, to look to this both cold and heat act as stimuli, and their removal is matter, and see that the bedding on which he lies is necessary before slumber can cnsue. A full stomach, thoroughly dry, and free from even the slightest moist- also, though it sometimes promotes, gencrally prevents ure. By neglecting such a precaution, rheumatism, sleep; consequently, supper onghe to be dispensed colds, inflaminations, and death itself may ensue. In- with, except by those who, having been long used to deed these calamities are very frequently traced to this meal, cannot sleep without it. As a general rule, sleeping incautiously upon damp beds. For the same the person who cats nothing for two or three hours bereason, the walls and floor should be dry, and wet fore going to rest, will sleep better than he who does. clothes never hung up in the room.
His sleep will also be more rosreshing, atid hair senisaWe should avoid sleeping in a bed that has been oc tions upon waking much more gratifying. The Chinese cupied by the sick, till the bedding has been cleansed recommended brushing the teeth previous to lying and thoroughly aired. When a person has died of any down : this is a good custom. infectious disease, not only the clothes in which he lay, Sleeping after dinner is pernicious. On awaking but the couch itself ought to be burned. Even the from such indulgence, there is generally some degree bed-stead should be carefully washed and fumigated. of febrile excitement, in consequence of the latter stages
Delicate persons who have been accustomed to sleep of digestion being hurried on: it is only useful in uld upon feather-beds, must be cautious not to exchange people, and in some cases of disease. them rashly for any other.
The weak, and those recovering from protracted illOn going to sleep, all sorts of restraints must be re nesses, must be indulyed with more sleep than such as moved from the body; the collar of the night-shirt are vigorous. Sleep, in them, supplies, in somo mea: should be unbuttoned and the neckcloth taken off.
sure, the place of nourishment, and thus becomes a With regard to the head, the more lightly it is covered most powerful auxiliary for restoring them to bealth. the better : on this account, we should wear a thin cot- Much repose is likewise necessary to enable the system ton or silk night-cap; and this is still better if made of I to recover from the effects of dissipation.
Too little and too much sleep are equally injurious. At whatever period we go to sleep, one fact is cerExcessive wakefulness, according to Hippocrates, pre- tain, that we can never with impunity convert day into vents the aliment from being digested, and generates night. Even in the most scorching seasons of the crude humours. Too much sleep produces lassitude year, it is better to travel under the burning sunshine, and corpuleney, and utterly debases and stupifies the than in the cool of the evening, when the dews are mind. Corpulent people being apt to indulge in ex- falling and the air is damp. A case in support of this cessive sleep, they should break this habit at once, as, statement, is given by Valangin in his work on Diet. m their case, it is peculiarly unwholesome. They ought Two colonels in the French army had a dispute to sleep little, and that littlo upon hard beds.
whether it was not most safe to march in the heat of The practice of sleeping in the open air, cannot be the day, or in the evening. To ascertain this point, too strongly reprobated. It is at all times dangerous, they got permission from the commanding officer to especially when carried into effect under a burning sun, put their respective plans into execution. Accordingly, or and the damps of night. In tropical climates, where the one with his division marched during the day, althis custom is indulged in during the day, it is not un though it was in the heat of summer, and rested all usual for the person to be struck with a coup-de-soleil, night--the other slept in the day-time, and marched or some violent sever; and in our own country, nothing during the evening and part of the night. The result is inore common than inflammations, rheupatisms, and was that the first performed a journey of six hundred dangerous colds, originating from sleeping upon the miles, without losing a single man or horse, while the ground, either during the heat of the day, or when the latter lost most of his horses, and several of his men. evening has set in with its attendant dews and vapours. It now becomes a question at what hour we should
18 respects the repose of children it may be remark retire to rest, how long our rest ought to continue, and ed that the custom of rocking them asleep in the cra when it should be broken in the morning. These dle, is not to be recommended, sanctioned though it be points I shall briefly discuss, in the order in which they by the voice of ages. This method of procuring slum- stand. ber, not only heats the infant unnecessarily, but, in It is not very easy to ascertain the most appropriate some cases, disorders the digestive organs, and, in hour for going to bed, as this depends very much upon most, produces a sort of artificial sleep, far less con the habits and occupation of the individual. Laborers ducive to health, than that brought on by more natural and all hard wrought people, who are obliged to get up means. According to some writers, it has also a ten betiines, require to go to rest early; and in their case, dency to induce water in the head, a circumstance nine o'clock may be the best hour. Those who are which I think possible, although I never knew a case not obliged to rise early, may delay the period of reof that disease which could be traced to such a source. tiring to rest for an hour or two longer; and may thus the cradle, then, should be abandoned, so far as the go to bed at ten or eleven. These are the usual mocking is concerned, and the child simply lulled to re- periods allotted among the middle ranks of life for this pose in the nurse's arms, and then deposited quietly in purpose; and it may be laid down as a rule, that to bed Sleep will often be induced by gently scratching make a custom of remaining up for a later period than or robbing the top of the child's head. This fact is eleven must be prejudicial. Those, therefore, who well known to some nurses, by whom the practice is habitually delay going to bed till twelve, or one, or two, had secourse to for the purpose of provoking slumber are acting in direct opposition to the laws of health, in in restless children. For the first month of their ex so far as they are compelled to pass in sleep a portion istence, children sleep almost continually, and they of the ensuing day, which ought to be appropriated to should be permitted to do so, for at this early age they wakefulness and exertion. Late hours are in every cannot sluniber too much: calm and long.continued respect hurtful, whether they be employed in study or sicep is a favourable symptom, and ought to be cher- amusement. A fresh supply of stimulus is thrown ished rather than prevented, during the whole period of upon the mind, which prevents it from sinking into infancy. When, however, a child attains the age of slumber at the proper period, and restlessness, dreamthree or four months, we should endeavour to manage ing, and disturbed repose inevitably ensue. Among so that its periods of wakefulness may occur in the day- other things, the eyes are injured, those organs suffertime, instcad of at night. By proper care, a child | ing much more froin the candle-light, to which they are may he made to sleep at almost any hour; and, as this necessarily exposed, than from the natural light of day. is always an object of importance, it should be sedul With regard to the necessary quantity of sleep, so ously attended to in the rearing of children. Until much depends upon age, constitution, and employment, about the third year, they require a little sleep in the that it is impossible to lay down any fixed rule which middle of the day, and pass half their time in sleep. will apply to all cases. Jeremy Taylor states that Every succeeding year, till they attain the age of seven, three hours only in the twenty-four should be devoted the period allotted to repose should be shortened one to sleep. Baxter extends the period to four hours, bour, so that a child of that age may pass nine hours or Wesley to six, Lord Coke and Sir William Jones to thereabouts, out of the twenty-four, in a state of slcep. seven, and Sir John Sinclair to eight. With the latter Children should never be awakened suddenly, or with I am disposed to coincide. Taking the average of a noise, in consequence of the terror and starting which mankind, we shall come as nearly as possible to the such a method of arousing them produces : neither truth when we say that nearly one-third part of life should they be brought all at once from a dark room ought to be spent in sleep: in some cases, even more into a strong glare of light, lest their eyes be weaken- may be necessary, and in few, can a much smaller portion ort, and permanent injury inflicted upon these organs. be safely dispensed with. When a person in young,
The position in which children sícep requires to be strong, and healthy, an hour or two less may be sufficarefully attended to. Sir Charles Bell mentions that cient; but childhood and extreme old age require a still the encuresis infantum, with which they are so often greater portion. No person who passes only eight affected, frequently arises from lying upon the back, 1 hours in bed, can be said to waste his time in sleep. and that it will be removed or prevented by accustom If, however, he exceeds this, and is, at the same time, ing them to lie on the side. It is also of the greatest in possession of vigor and youth, ne lays himself open importance, that they be kept sufficiently warm. I be to the charge of slumbering away those hours which lieve that many infantile diseases arise from the neglect should be devoted to some other purpose. According of this precaution. Children have little power of evol to Georget, women should sleep a couple of hours ving heat; on this account, when delicate they should longer than men.
For the former he allows six or never be permitted to sleep alone, but made to lie with seven hours, for the latter eight or nine. I doubt, how. the nurse, that they may receive warmth from her body. ever, if the female constitution, generally speaking, re
quires more sleep than the male; at least it is certain in truth, is almost every one distinguished for energy that women endure protracted wakefulness better than and indefatigability of inind. men, but whether this may result from custom is a Every circumstance contributes to render carly question worthy of being considered.
rising advisable to those who are in the enjoyment Barry, in his work on Digestion, has made an inge- of health. There is no time equal in beauty and nious, but somewhat whimsical, calculation on the ten freshness to the morning, when nature has just parted dency of sleep to prolong life. He asserts, that the with the gloomy mantle which night had flung over het, duration of human life may be ascertained by the num and stands before us like a young bride, from whose ber of pulsations which the individual is able to per- aspect the veil which covered ber loveliness, has been form. Thus, if a man's life extends to 70 years, and withdrawn. The whole material world has a vivifying his heart throbs 60 times each minute, the whole num appearance. The husbandınan is up at his labour, ibe ber of its pulsations will amount to 2,207,520,000 ; but forest leaves sparkle with drops of crystal dew, the flowif, by intemperance, or any other cause, he raises the ers raise their rejoicing heads towards the sun, ihe birds pulse to 75 in the minute, the same number of pulsa- pour forth their anthems of gladness; and the wide tace of tions would be completed in 56 years, and the duration creation itself seems as if awakened and refreshed from of life abbreviated 14 years. Arguing from these data, a mighty slumber. All these things, however, are liid he alleges, that sleep has a tendency to prolong lise, as, from the eyes of the sluggard ; nature, in her most gloduring its continuance, the pulsations are less numerous rious aspect, is, to him, a scaled book; and while every than in the waking state. There is a sort of theoreti scene around him is full of beauty, interest, and anima. cal truth in this statement, but it is liable to be modified tion, he alone is passionless and uninspired. Behold by so many circumstances, that its application can him stretched upon his couch of rest! In vain does never become general. If this were not the case, it the clock proclaim that the reign of day has commenced! would be natural to infer that the length of a man's In vain does the inorning light stream fiercely in by the life would correspond with that of his slumbers; chinks of his window, as is to starlle him from his rewhereas it is well known, that too much sleep debili- pose! He hears not-he sees not, for blindness and tates the frame, and lays the foundation of various dis- deafness rule over him with despotic sway, and lay a eases, which tend to shorten rather than extend the deadening spell upon his faculties. And when he does duration of life.
at length awake--sar on in the day—from the totpor of Those who indulge most in sleep, generally require this benumbing sleep, be is not refreshed. He does the least of it. Such are the wealthy and luxurious, not start at once into new life-an altered man, with who pass nearly the half of their existence in slumber, joy in his mind, and vigour in his frame. On the conwhile the hard-working peasant and mechanic, who trary, he is dull, languid, and stupid, as if half recoverwould seem, at first sight, to require more than any ed from a paroxysin of drunkenness. other class of society, are contented with seven or eight stretches himself, and stalks into the breakfast parlour, hours of repose-a period brief in proportion to that ex to partake in solitude, and without appetite, of his unpended by them in toil, yet sufficiently long for the refreshing meal-while his eyes are red and gummy. wants of nature, as is proved by the strength and health his beard unshorn, his face unwashed, and his clothes which they almost vniformly enjoy.
disorderly, and ill put on. Uncleanliness and sluggishFor reasons already stated, more sleep is requisite in ness generally go hand in hand ; for the obtuseness of winter than in summer. Were there even no consti- mind which disposes a man to waste the most precious tutional causes for this difference, we should be disposed hours of existence in debasng sleep, will naturally to sleep longer in the one than in the other, as some of make him neglect his person. the circumstances which induce us to sit up late and rise The character of the early riser is the very reverse early in summer, are wanting during winter ; and we of the sloven's. His countenance is ruddy, bis eye consequently feel disposed to lie longer in bed during joyous and serene, and his frame full of vigour and acthe latter season of the year.
tivity. His mind, also, is clear and unclouded, and free The hour of getting up in the morning is not of less from that oppressive languor which weighs like a nightimportance than that at which we ought to lie down at mare upon the spirit of the sluygard. The man who night. There can be no doubt that one of the mos: riscs betimes, is in the fair way of laying in both bealth admirable conducives to health is early rising. • Let and wealth ; while he who dozes away his etistence in us,' says Solomon, go forth into the fields ; let us unnecessary sleep, will acquire neither. On the con. lodge in the villages ; let us get up early to the vine- trary, he runs every chance of losing whatever portion yards ; let us see if the vinc Aourish-if the tender of them he may yet be in possession of. and of sinking grape appear—if the poinegranates bud forth.' fast in the grade of society--a bankrupt both in person
Almost all men who have distinguished themselves and in purse.* in science, literature, and the arts, have been early ris The most striking instances of the good effcets of ers. The industrions, the active-minded, the enthu- early rising, are to be found in our peasantry and farmsiast in the pursuit of knowledge or gain, are up be ers, whose hale complexions, good appetites, and vigtimes at their respective occupations ; while the slug. ourous persons, are evidences of the benefit denred ga wastes the most beautiful period of life perni- from this custom, conjoined with labour ; while the cious slumber. Homer, Virgil, and Horace are all re wan, unhealthy countenances and enfeebled frwnes or presented as carly risers : the same was the case with those who keep late hours, lie long in bed, and pass the Paley, Franklin, Priestly, Parkhurst, and Buffon, the night in dissipation, study, or pleasure, are equally conlatter of whom ordered his valet de chambre to awaken him every morning, and compel him to get up by force
* In the will of the late Mr James Sergeant of the botrich or if he evinced any reluctance : for this service the valet
Leicester, is the following clause relative to early raing :
• As my nephews are fond of indulging in bed of a mothing, and was rewarded with a crown each day, which recom as I wish them to improve the time while they are young. I dipense he forfeited if he did not oblige his master to get
rect that they shall prove to the satisruction of my erecutors out of bed before the clock struck six. Bishops Jewel
that have got out of bed in the morning, and either employed
themselves in business, or taken exercise in the open air, from and Burnet rose regulariy every morning at four o' five o'ciock every morning, froin the 5th of All to the clock. Sir Thomas More did the same thing ; and so
10th of October, being three hours each day, and from seven convinced was he of the beneficial effects of getting up
o'clock in the morning from the 10th of October to the Sth
April, being two hours overy morning for two wbole yea;this es, that, in his · Utopia,' he represented the inha to be done for some two years during ihe first seven years, the bitants attending lectures before sunrise. Napolcon satisfaction of my executors, who may excuse them in tem of was an early riser; so was Frederick the Great and,
illness, but the task must be marle up when they are well and Charles XII ; so is the Duke of Wellington ; and so
if they will not do this, they shall not recure aby share of my property.'
clusive proofs of the pernicious consequences resulting to be ascertained by which system the eyes are least from an opposite practice.
likely to be affected.
Dr Franklin in one of his ingenious Essays, has some Early rising, therefore, is highly beneficial ; but care
fine observations on early rising; and makes an amusing should be taken not to carry it to excess. It can never
calculation of the saving that might be made in the city be healthful to rise till the sun has been for some time above the horizon ; for until this is the case, there of Paris alone, by using the sunshine instead of candles. is a dampness in the air which must prove injurious to £4,000,000 sterling. This is mentioned in a satirical
This saving he estimates at 96,000,000 of livres, or the constitution, especially when it is not naturally very vein, but probably there is a great deal of truth in the strong. Owing to this, early rising is injurious to most
statement. Indeed, if people were to go sooner to bed, delicate people ; and, in all cases, the heat of the sun should be allowed to have acquired some strength be- and get up earlier, it is inconceivable what sums might
be saved; but according to the absurd custom of polishforc we think of getting out of doors. No healthy man
ed society, day is, in a great measure, converted into in the summer, should lie longer in bed than six o'clock. If he does so, he loses the most valuable part night, and the order of things reversed in a manner at of the day, and injures his own constitution. Persons
once capricious and hurtful. subject to gout, should always go to sleep early, and desire for food, also governs sleep. As we indulge in
To conclude. The same law which regulates our rise early. The former mitigates the violence of the evening paroxysm, which is always increased by wake: sleep to moderation or excess
, it becomes a blessing or fulness; and the latter lessens the tendency to plethora, 1 ture, and diffusing vigour alike over the mind and
a curse--in the one case recruiting the energies of nawhich is favoured by long protracted sleep.
frame : in the other, debasing the character of man, It is common in some of the foreign universities to stupifying his intellect, enfeebling his body, and rendergo to bed at eight, and rise at three or four in the ing him useless alike to others and himself
. The glutmorning; and this plan is recommended by Willich in ton, the drunkard, and the sloven bear the strictest afhis · Lectures on Diet and Regimen.' Sir John Sin-finity to each other, both in the violation of nature's clair, in allusion to it, judiciously observes, • I have no laws, and in the consequences thence entailed upon doubt of the superior healthiness, in the winter time, of themselves. What in moderation is harınless or benerising by day-light, and using candle-light at the close ficial, in excess is a curse ; and sleep carried to the latof the day, than rising by candle-light, and using it ter extreme, may be pronounced an act of intemsome hours before day-light approaches. It remains perance almost as much as excessive eating or drinking.
TO THE PHILOSOPHY OF SLEEP.
Abercrombie, Dr, case related by, of the veri-
his distinction between
his remarks on concentrativeness, 47
4 ment of, in inducing abstraction,
Cook, Captain, extracted from his • Voyages,' 37
method recommended by, to
, case of sleep-talking described
nature of the dreams induced by, 18
-on spectral illusions,
Bacon the sculptor, anecdote of,
curious anecdote of,
, case spoken of by,
lism related by,
determination of blood to the, induces
tion and sleep,
to produce dreams at will,
to Brutes, accounted for,
supposes sleep to be the pe-
lady under the magnetic influence,
directions regarding the sleep of,
> sleep from,