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Nature
(Thursday, November 4, 1869)

Societies and academies,   pp. 29-30


Page 29


Nov. 4, 1 869)
NItA TURE
Relations to Cholera and Typhus " (Boden und Grundwasser in
ihren Beziehungen zu Cholera und Typhus) in which he developes
at length his views. To many these are probably now well
known, but still, it may be perhaps as well to state that they are
somewhat as follows.
  The phenomena of Cholera result from the introduction into
the animal system of a cholera poison, which is possibly an
organic being, and which we may call z. Now, 2 is non-repro-
ductive; does not of itself multiply or spread. But there is
another distinct thing, the cholera germ (originating in India),
which we may call x. x of itself will not produce cholera
symptoms. It may remain, and probably may multiply in the
human body, and be carried in or on the body from place to
place without of itself producing cholera. Cholera symptoms
can only be brought about by z, and x can only give rise to
cholera, indirectly, by generating z. But x, in order that it may
generate a, must come in contact with and act upon another
substance, which we may call y. That is, x cannot germinate
into z unless it meets with the substratum y; or we may use
the idea, thrown out we believe by Dr. Farr, and imagine x and
y to be the male and female parents of the offspring z, which is
either sterile, or can only reproduce x.
  Thus, then, x originating at certain times in India, and meeting
with y at once gives rise to z, and an outbreak of cholera is the
result. The quantity of z is probably more than sufficient to
account for all the cases that occur; the surplus may even
perhaps be carried about, and so spread the epidemic; but there
being no reproduction of z, the stock would soon be exhausted.
With z, however, a quantity of x is also carried about, more
particularly by the excrement; x, in fact, clings to its products
just as yeast cells cling to a fermented liquid. And whenever x
meets with fresh y, it generates fresh z; and so the epidemic
travels on, x making itself felt by 2 whenever it falls upon a
store of y. For the existence of y, certain things are necessary,
to wit :-
  i. A soil which, like alluvium, is permeable to air and water
for several feet deep.
  2. A rise and fall of sock-water. A soil which is permanently
dry, or one which is always filled with sock-water, are equally
unfavourable for the development of v. The change of level of
water is absolutely necessary.
  3. The presence of organic and mineral matters on which the
variations in the amount of sock-water may act, and out of them
produce y.
  4. A temperature suitable for such processes of organic
evolution.
  All these points and many others are fully discussed in a
series of chapters with such headings as " Porous and Compact
Soils "; " The Soil and the Immunity of Wirzburg "; "
Influ-
ence of drinking Water on Cholera epidemics"; "Considerations
on the Cholera epidemic of 1866 in East London, in reference
to Soil and Sock-water conditions"; "Apparent evidences against
the 'Soil and Water theory' and for the theory of ' Contact
and Idiosyncrasy,"' &c. &c. It concludes with a series of aphor-
isms, "On the Origin and Spread of Cholera"; "On the
Influence of Variations in Sock-level on the Enteric Fever of
Munich "; and, " On the Causes of the Immunity of Lyons."
SOCIETIES AND ACADEMIES
  Zoological Society.-The first scientific meeting for the
session will be held on Thursday the iith inst., when Prof.
Flower, F. R. S., will read a paper on the Anatomy of the Aard-
Wolf (Proides cridtatus). The following communications have
been received since the last meeting :-Dr. J. Anderson: Letter
received from, describing a living specimen of the Pigmy hog ot
Terai (Porcila salvania).-Mr. P. L. Sclater: Remarks on the
condition of various Zoological Gardens on the Continent recently
visited by him, and on new and rare animals observed in those
establishments.-Dr. B. Simpson. Notes on Ailunrsfulgens-
Mr. John Brazier: Note on the Egg of a species of Mgrapodius
from Bank's Islands.-Surgeon Francis Day: Remarks on fishes
in Calcutta Museum. -Mr. John Brazier: Notes on the Localities
of two Species of Land-Shells.-Mr. R. B. Sharpe: Additional
Notes on the genus Ceyx.-Dr. George Bennett: Letter received
from, on the habits of the Wood Hen of Lord Howe's Island.-
Dr. J. E. Gray: On the Guemul or Roe Buck from Tinta, South
Peru.-Dr. A. Gunther: Report on two collections of Indian
Reptiles.-Mr. Morton Allport: Letter received from, on the
introduction of Salmon into the Australian Colonies.-Rev. 0. P.
Cambridge: Notes on some Spiders and Scorpions from St.
Helena, with descriptions of new species.-The Secretary: On
additions to the Menagerie during June, July, August, and
September.-Mr. W. T. Fraser: Lctter received from, respect-
ing the Existence of the Rhinoceros in Borneo.
                       MANCHESTER.
  Literary and Philosophical Society, October.-Mr. E. W.
Binney, F. R. S. in the Chair. The following extract of a letter
from Dr. Joule, F. R. S., dated Southport, October 5th, 1869,
and addressed to the Chairman, was read :-" I enclose a rough
drawing of the appearance of the setting sun. Mr. Baxendell
noticed the fact that at the moment of the departure of the sun
below the horizon, the last glimpse is coloured bluish green.
On two or three occasions I have noticed this, and also near
sunset that just at the upper edge, where bands of the sun's
disk are separated one after the other by refraction, each band
becomes coloured blue just before it vanishes."
                           PARIS.
  Academy of Sciences, October 25. - M. L. Pasteur
communicated a note relative to the dispute which has arisen
between him and AM. Thenard on the subject of his patented
process for preserving wines by the application of heat. A
paper was read by M. Phillips on the Movement of similar
solid Elastic Bodies, supplementary to a memoir on the equili-
brium of such bodies, read in January last.
  A memoir on the fundamental Equations of the mechanical
theory of Heat, by Ml. F. Reech, was presented by M. Regnault.
In a note on the illumination of transparent bodies by polarised
Light, Al. A. Lallemand described some new experiments with
transparent solids. On passing a ray of polarised light horizontally
through a polished cube of glass in a direction perpendicular to
two of its faces, the maximum of illumination is horizontal, the
light emitted is white, is entirely polarised in a horizontal plane,
and gives the principal lines of the solar spectrum. When viewed
vertically, the illumination is nil, unless the glass be fluorescent.
The light observed in a vertical direction in the latter case is
more or less coloured, is neutral to the polariscope, and gives
none of the lines of the solar spectrum. The author noticed
the behaviour of various other substances, such as crystal, fluor
spar, Iceland spar, &c., AM. Dumas communicated a letter from
M. P. Volpicelli on the Heat of the Lunar Radiation containing
an historical sketch of the researches upon this subject, and showing
that both Melloni and Herschel have demonstrated the calorific
action of the Moon. M. H. Marie Davy, whose previous state-
ment (September 2o, 1869) that the calorific effects of the Moon's
rays were inappreciable called forth M. Volpicelli's remarks,
now communicated a note on the Calorific Power of the Lunar
Rays, in which, after noticing that Melloni was the first to demon-
strate the existence of such a power, and that his results had been
confirmed by Prof. Piazzi Smyth; he goes on to describe his own
recent experiments, in which, by the employment of the thermo-
electric pile, he has been able to obtain a series of results perfectly
confirmatory of those of his predecessors. He found that the heat
furnished by the moon is quite appreciable, and that its amount
increases rapidly as it advances towards the full. M. C. Dareste
communicated a memoir on the notion of Type in Teratology,
and on the distribution of monstrous type in the division of
vertebrate animals; the argument of which is, that the type of
monstrosities is correlated with the type of organisation, so that
if uniformity of type occurs in monstrosities throughout any wide
range in all classes of the vertebrata, for example, the origin of
such monstrosities dates from a very early period of embryonic
development, and the more limited the range of a monstrosity,
the later in the life of the embryo will be its origin. A paper was
read by M. P. P. Deherain on the influence exerted by dif-
ferent luminous rays upon the decomposition of carbonic acid and
the evaporation of water by leaves.  The author states that,
with equal intensity, the yellow and red rays act more energeti-
cally than the blue and violet rays, both in producing evaporation,
and in causing the decomposition of carbonic acid; in the latter
respect he found that the leaves of Potamogetos crispus emitted
26-2 cub. cent. of gas under yellow light; they gave off only
5 -8 cub. cent. in the same time under blue rays of equal intensity.
M. E. Decaisne communicated some remarks on the various con-
ditions of the production of goitre; M. Landrin, a note on the
physiological action of Chloral; M. Jaliwski, an account of a
process for bronzing iron; M. Delaurier, a note on the manufac-
ture of manganate of calcium, and M. Mehay, a note on the
Infinitesimal Calculus.
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