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Gout So it is! You philosophers are sages in your maxims, and fools in your conduct.
Franklin. Ah! how tiresome you are!
Gout. Well, then, to my office; it should not be forgotten that" I am your physician. There!
Franklin. O-o! what a physician 1
Gout. How ungrateful are you to say so! Is it not I, who, m the character of your physician, have saved you from the palsy, dropsy, and apoplexy? one or other of which would have done for you long ago, but for me.
Franklin. I submit, and thank you for the past, but entreat the discontinuance of your visits for the future; for in my mind one had better die, than be cured so dolefully. Permit me just to hint that I have also not been unfriendly to you. I never feed physician or quack of any kind, to enter the lists against you; if, then, you do not leave me to repose, it may be said you are ungrateful too.
Gout. I can scarcely acknowledge that as any objection. As to quacks, I despise them; they may kill you, indeed, but cannot injure me. And as to regular physicians, they are at last convinced that the gout, in such a subject as you are, is no disease, but a remedy; and wherefore cure a remedy? But to our business. There!
Franklin. O! O! Leave me, and I promise faithfully never more to play at chess, but to take exercise daily, and live temperately.
Gout. I know you too well. You promise fair; but after a few months' good health, you will return to your old habits; your fine promises will be forgotten, like the forms of the last year's clouds. Let us, then, finish the account, and I will go. But I leave you, with an assurance of visiting you again at a proper time and place; for my object is your good, and you are sensible now that I am your real friend. Franklin (abridged).
CLXVIII. MISCELLANEOUS POEMS.
1. On The Death Of A Friend. — Halleck.
Green be the turf above thee, friend of my better days!
And I, who woke each morrow to clasp Ihy hand in mine,
Who shared thy joy and sorrow, whose weal and woe were thine,
It should be mine to braid it around thy faded brow,
But I've in vain essayed it, and feel I cannot now.
While memory bids me weep thee, nor thoughts nor words are free,
The grief is fixed too deeply that mourns a man like thee.
2. Woman's Mission. — Ebenezer Elliott.
What highest prize hath woman won in science or in art? What mightiest work by woman done boasts city, field, or .mart? "She hath no Raphael," Painting saith; "no Newton," Learning cries;
"Show us her steamship, her Macbeth, her thought-won victories!"
Wait, boastful man! though worthy are thy deeds, when thou art true,
Things worthier still, and holier far, our sister yet will do;
O, not for wealth, or fame, or power, hath man's meek angel striven,
3. The Lee-shoke. — Thomas Hood.
Sleet! and Hail! and Thunder! and ye Winds that rave,
4. The Rhine. — From the German.
No, they shall never have it, the free, the German Rhine!
They shall never have it — never! — the glorious German Rhine,
While on its storied borders shall grow the oak and vine;
No, they^hall never have it, the free, the German Rhine,
5. Beauty And The Dawn. — Arndt.
I said unto the dawn, " Why art thou bright
With amber glow, and tints of rosy light?"
I said unto a maid, as morning fair,
"Why wreathe with smiles thy lip, with flowers thy hairl
Beauty and morn! ye quickly must decay,
Soon lade your tints, and flit your smiles away!
Therefore adorn not!"
"I deck myself," the Dawn replied, " in light,
"I deck myself," replied the beauteous maid,
In Him I trust, and mourn not!"
CLXIX.— THE COMPLAINT OP A PAIR OF LUNGS.
1. As you have given place to the recital of the grievances of a Stomach,* we claim the privilege of being heard in regard to some of the abuses to which we, a respectable pair of Lungs
* See page 157.
are subjected. If our worthy cousin, the Stomach, digests food, we ha ve to digest air; and our province is quite as indispensable as his to health and life. We belong to a young lady, whom we have always endeavored to serve faithfully; but the trials, the injuries, the privations, to which she has exposed us, surpass al1. calculation.
2. Our principal business,- as everybody knows, is to purify the blood by subjecting it to the action of the Oxygen of the atmosphere. It is upon the blood that the body depends for its existence, from moment to moment; and it is Oxygen which gives
•to the blood its healthy properties and bright color, and removes from it its impurities. The combination of the carbon of the blood with Oxygon in the Lungs produces the evolution of heat; the necessary warmth of the body is thus maintained and distributed, by means of the circulating blood, from the Lungs to every part. Besides this important function as expurgator of the blood, we have to cany off an incalculable quantity of waste animal matter and superfluous moisture, which, without our agency, would be productive of disease and pain.
3. How we accomplish all this we shall not stop to describe.
There are books enough which will explain to your satisfaction
the whole process, and which will prove to you some wonderful
facts in regard to the tasks that we are put to. What will you
say, for instance, when we tell you that the amount of blood sent
to us, to refine and vitalize, at every pulsation of the heart, is
about two ounces? Will you believe it when we tell you that,
with every breath, we inhale about one pint of air; making
eighteen pints of air inhaled every minute? Such is the fact;
and a little ciphering will show you that, every twenty-four
hours, we inhale sixty hogsheads of air, and give passage to
thirty hogsheads of blood!
° . . . . .
4. After this assertion (which you can easily verify), we hope
yDu will listen to what we have to say with a little attention and respect. You need not be told that the act of breathing is essential to organic life. Exclusion of atmospheric air from the lungs for the space of three minutes will generally cause death. Breathing consists of two actions: inspiration, or drawing in the air; and expiration, or forcing out the air. Now, why is breathing essential to life? Simply because the blood could not be so purified as to be rendered lit to support life without being subjected to the action of the air continually pumped into our resorvoirs by the act of respiration. The blood comes in from the heart of a purple color, and in a heterogeneous" state, unfit for the nutrition of the animal body. We send it back to the heart, purified and transmuted by the Oxygen of the air into a homogeneous" fluid of a bright-red color.
5. But if the air we inhale is thus made to part with its Oxygen, has the air we exhale undergone no change in our service? Of course it has — a very important change! You may easily test the fact. Put a piece of quill into the nozle of a pair of bellows, cause the bellows to blow into a cup of lime-water, and you will find no change in the appearance of the latter; for through the bellows the same kind of air which we require to iwhale is blown in. But put the quill into your mouth, and blow into the lime-water, and you will see it become turbid and. white, and, if allowed to stand, a fine white powder will fall to the bottom. The reason is, the air which you have blown into the water has passed through your Lungs, and parted with its Oxygen, and its place has been supplied by another and a compound gas, known as Carbonic Acid.
6. We hope we are not growing tedious; but we here wish you to be distinctly impressed with the fact that the air which we take in is a very different article from that which we give out. The air we take in is a compound gas, of whose weight Nitrogen forms four-fit'ths and Oxygen one-fifth. The air we give out contains about eight per cent, more Carbonic Acid than it had when we inhaled it, and its Oxygen is diminished in the proportion necessary to form this acid. If the same air be respired over and over several times, all its Oxygen is consumed, and the air becomes loaded with Carbonic Acid gas.
7. Wow, pray remember this: unmixed Carbonic Acid gas when inhaled is a deadly poison; and even when mixed with a large quantity of atmospheric air, it is pernicious to health in proportion to its amount beyond a certain quantity. Thrust a lighted candle into a jar full of it, and the flame will be extinguished. An ignorance of its poisonous quality, and of the importance of continuous fresh supplies of Oxygen, has often led to the destruction of life. In the year 1797, the master of a small vessel belonging to Southampton, in England, had seventy passengers collected in the hold during a storm. Thinking to make them more secure, he spread a tarpaulin" over the hatches and battened it down. On opening the hold, all the passengers were found dead! The air being shut out, all the Oxygen had been consumed, and the deadly Carbonic Acid had been generated in its place. The master who had brought about this immense loss of life, through ignorance of the effects of foul air, became mad, and died soon after.
8. The same catas'trophe was repeated, December 22d, 1848, on board the steamer Londonderry, from Sligo, bound for Amei*