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Essay I. Lapis calaminaris, blende, zinc, brass; containing the natural history of the iwo first-mentioned substances, the history of the discovery of their being ores of zinc, the methods of extracting zinc from them, the preparation of them for the brassmaker, the manufacture and commerce of brass, &c.'
JI. On Orichalcum ; an enquiry into the orichalcum of the ancients; from which it appears, that the art of making brass was known to the Romans, but was derived to them from some other country; that brass was made, in the moft remote ages, in India and other parts of Asia, of copper and calamine, as at present; and that in the early ages, when iron was little known, it was valued higher than gold *.
III. Of gun metal, fatuary-metal, bell-metal, pot-metal, and Speculum-metal. The compactness of a mixture of copper and tin, which adapts it for making speculums, is attributed, with great probability, to the thinness of its fufion. I have observed' (says the Author) at Sheffield, that the same weight of melted iteel will fill the same mould to a greater or less height, according to the degree of fusion the steel has been in ; if it has been in a strong heat and thin fusion, the bar of cast steel will be an inch in thirty-fix shorter than when the fusion has been less perfect. On breaking one of the bars made from steel in an imperfect fusion, its inside was full of blebs; a fhorter bar of the same weight and diameter, which had been in a thin fufion, was of a closer texture.'
IV. Of tinning copper, tin, pewter.
VI. Of gilding in or moulu. Or the use of quicksilver in extracting gold and filver from earths. Boerhaave's experiments on quicksilver, Silvering looking-glasses; and of the time when that art was discovered. Though this art is commonly suppored to be of modern discovery, we here find it to have been, known, probably in the firft century, and with certainty in the second. A passage in Pliny gives good ground to believe that it had been discovered before his time, by the Sidonians.
VII. Of the tranfmutability of water into earth. The facts and arguments on both sides are stated, but the point is left undetermined.
VIII. Of Westmoreland flate, and some other forts of flones.. From a particular examination of the gravities of different forts of the Nure, and a comparison with lead and copper as ufed for covering buildings, it is concluded that 42 square yards will be covered by 4 hundred weight of copper, 26 of fine date, 27 of lead, 36 of coarser Lase, and, 54 of Lile. ;. By strong fire, the flate was reduced into a black cellular glass, so hard as to strike
ta * This Essay is similar to that in the Manchester Transactions; , see our Rev, for Oct. Iaft, p. 252.
fire with steel. Very good glass, the Author observes, might probably be made from the late alone, for the cellular texture would disappear by continuance of fire; • but certainly it might be made from the flate mixed with fern alhes, or with kelp ashes, or with other substances containing fixed alcali.' We hope, with the Bishop, that this hint will not be given in vain; and we beg leave to fint also, that if the certainty of vitrification with alcalies has been only inferred from the known effect of those falis upon some other earthy bodies, such conclufion cannot be depended on. There are earthy compounds, fusible by themselves, which relure to unite with alcalies: we have mixed vicrescible stone with glass itself, and found the vitrification impeded, and the alcali of the glass fpued out. Whether the Westmoreland flate is, or is not, of this nature, can be ascertained only by trial; but, in either case, we persuade ourselves that the candid Author will be rather pleased, than offended, with our remark.
To this volume is added a very useful appendage,-a general Index to all the four.
ART. VII. A System of Surgery. By Benjamin Bell, Member of
the Royal College of Surgeons, one of the Surgeons to the Royal Infirmary, and Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. Vols. III. and IV. 8vo. 125. Boards. Illustrated with Copperplates. Elliot, Edinburgh; Robinsons, London. 1786. THE continuation of this useful work, fully supports and
I confirms the reputation Mr. Bell had acquired by the two preceding volumes.
The third volume contains, in the former part of it, the theory and practice in affections of the brain from external violence. The very intricate nature of these disorders has excited the attention of practitioners from the time of Hippocrates downward ; but although some material improvements have been introduced into this branch of practice, by the induitry and observations of modern Surgeons, yet whoever is accustomed to the treatment. of these complaints, must allow that our knowledge of them is still very deficient. Our Author, sensible of the great difficulties of attaining a certain knowledge concerning the nature and treatment of them, points out the means best calculated to extricate this part of practice from such uncertainty; but before he proceeds to do so, he gives a concise anatomical description of those parts which are more apt to suffer from injuries done to the head.
Mr. Bell considers all the symptoms of diseases of the brain from external violence, to originate from one of these ehree circumstances, - from compreffion of the brain, from commotion or concussion, or from inflammation. Of these he treats in D 2
separate feations, and, as far as the intricate nature of the sube jeat will admit, he considers them, as diftin&t and unconnected with each other. The appearances which are induced by their various combinations, can be'known only from praaice; but an accurate knowledge of them, as they occur in a separate and unconnected state, will contribute much in diredling the proper treatment of them, under whatsoever form or combination they may appear.
The compreffion of the brain can only be caused by a depres. fion of the skull, or an extravasacion of Auids between it and the brain. In the former case, the elevating the depressed bone, and in the latter, the evacuation of the extravasated fluid, are indications for perforating the skull. The operation is accurately described, and several judicious remarks are added, which tend to render it much more fimple, rafe, and successful, than we remember to have met with in any former work. The
Trepan is, for evident reasons, preferred to the Trephine ; and the Levator of Mons. Petit is recommended before any other. Several useful observations concerning the propriety of performing the operation, or not, are here laid down, which merit peculiar attention.
The concussion and commotion are next considered. We ad. mire the Author's diagnostics; and though ibe event of his method of cure is not always attended with success, yet it is rational, and ought not to be neglected, especially fince no other seems calculated to afford more relief.
An inflammation of the brain may arise from depressed portions of the cranium irritating the dura-mater, from contusion of the head, from simple filTures or fractures of the skull without depreffion. The firft and last of these are removed by the tre. pan; in the treatment of contufions, the indications are, To employ those means which are known to prove most effectual in preventing inflammation; when this is found to be incffe&tual, To attempt che resolution of the inflammation by general remedies and topical applications; when the inflammation cannot be carried off by resolution, or when suppuration has taken place, a free vent ought to be procured for the matter.
The subject of the next chapter is the treatment of the eye, and the parts immediately connected wich it; hence it comprebends the confideration of those affections to which the lachry. mal paTages are liable. Mr. Bell begins with an anatomical defcription of the eye and the parts adjacent; and, in order to render it more intelligible, he has added a very accurate delineation of the parts described. We have, on former occasions, had reason to mention the Edinburgh engravings in an unfavourable manner; but we must in justice acknowledge, that there are executed by a masterly hand.
Inflammation of the eyes so frequently occurs, and is productive of so many disorders to which these organs are liable, that it cannot be too much insisted on Our Author has cherefore fully treated of it; pointing out its various causes, the indications of cure, and the most rational method of performing the various operations required. He afterward proceeds to the confideration of the following diseases and operations; namely, Wounds of the eye-lids and eye-ball;- Tumours of the eyelids, such as absceses, melicerous and stearomatous collections, waris, &c. ;-Inversion of the eye-lids ;-Eversion of the eye. lids ;-Concretion of the eye lids ;-Fleshy excrescences on the cornea ;-Abscesies in the globe of the eye;-Dropsical swellings of the eye. ball;- Blood effured in one or both of the chambers of the eye ;-Ulcers on the cornea ;-Specks ur films on ibe transparent part of the eye ;- Protrusion of the globe from the socket ;-Cancerous affections of the eye, and the extirpation of the eye-ball;- Artificial eyes ;-Cataracts, and the creatment of them by the different methods of depression and extraction;-Obliteration of the pupils by the concretion of its fides, and the adhesion of the iris to the capsul of the cryftalline and vitreous humours;-and lastly, the Fiflula lachrymalis. These are all fully explained, and the manner of operation requisite for curing them is accurately and minurely described. It would much exceed our limirs, to follow the ingenious Aushor through the whole description ; we must, therefore, refer our Readers to the book; in which they will not fail to receive full satisfaction with respect to every particular relative to operations on the eyes. This volume abounds wiib inventions and judicious remarks, nor are the old methods of treatment rejected without Newing sufficient cause why o her more rational ones are preferred.
The fourth volumę begins thus : • In the last volume of this work I treated so fully of the diseases of the eyes, that it was not my intention to say any thing farther opon them : but, fince the publication of that volume, a foreign oculift, M. Jean François Pellier, having appeared in this country, where be has already acquired much reputation, I consider it as a neceffary addition to the chapter on these diseases, to communicate such parts of M. Pellier's practice as appear to be of importance. Postelling the advantages of a liberal education, a found judgment, and much experience, M. Pellier has been enabled to fuggeit improvements in the weatment of almost every disease to which the eyes are liable; and an un ommon degree of tłeadiness, conjoined to a quick eye-light, gives him a command of himself and a facility of operating, which is not often atrained. I think it proper likewile to remask, that M. Pellier communicated his knowledge of the dircases of the eyes in the most candid manner; which puts it in my power to lay his observations before the Public, he also having given
me permission to do so. While, by giving an early account of his material improvements, I thus acquit myself of an obligation to the Public, I at the same time embrace, with much satisfaction, the opportunity which it affords of announcing the merits of an operator, who, although a stranger, and as yet not much known in this country, is perhaps one of the best oculists in Europe.'
Such recommendations from a man of Mr. Bell's experience and judgment have great weight; and from the account he gives of M. Pellier's methods of extracting the cataract, and curing the fiftula lachrymalis, we fee sufficient cause for bestowing praise on a man, who, if he has not brought these operations, especially that for the fiftula, to their utmost perfection, has at least greatly improved them. We ought, in justice to our Readers, to lay before them M. Pellier's method of operating for the fiftula; but as it, in a great measure, depends upon the new in vented apparatus he makes use of, we fear it would be unintelligible without the plates.
Mr. Bell next considers the diseases of the nose and fauces, after having, as is usual with him, given an anatomical description of the parts. The subjects treated of in this chapter are, Hæmorrhages of the noftrils; the Ozæna ;-Imperforated nos. trils ;-Polypus's;-Extirpation of the Amygdalæ and Uvula ;scarifying and fomenting the throat.
Diseases of the lips are few : the Hare-lip, and cancerous affections, being the only ones described by our Author. In the operation of the former, he justly rejects the new method of ufing the uniting bandage, and recommends the old and sure method of futures; the successful event of the operation being certain by this means, while by the other it is frequently doubtful; and, in many inítances, the surgeon, after having failed by the bandage, has been obliged to perform afresh, making use of sucures at Jait.
Our Author next proceeds to the confideration of the diseases of the mouth; and, after some useful anatomical remarks, explains Dentition, and treats fully of the causes producing a derangement of the teeth, fhewing at the same time how they may be either prevented or removed. Gum-boils, Excrescences on the gums, and Abiceftes in the Antrum Maxillare, are particularly attended 10; the proper method of treating ulcers of the mouth or tongue is also laid down. But the greatest part of this chapter is employed on the diseases of the ceeth, and the different operations that are necessary to be performed on them. Here the Surgeon will meet with a number of judicious observations and useful directions concerning the Tooth-ach, and the various methods of extracting, fastening, cleaning, and transplanting the teeth. This last operacion, however, is not admisible in every cale ; yet the advantages of a sound set of teeth are so confia derable, both with repeat to beauty and utility, that it ought