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mittee of the House of Commons that he had occasion field, as well as over the surface of the first field, into to make the following remarks; and I give these ob- a clear water channel. The effect produced by the scrvations nearly in his own words, since I well know grass in a short period in purifying the sewage of Croythat they will be useful in places far distant from Croy- don is very satisfactory. It flows on to the fields, of don. The quality of the sewage or other liquid manure that black peculiar colour which ordinary town sewage employed is, of course, the primary question to be de- possesses ; in the course of an hour or two it leaves the termined. Now the strength of the town sewage water meads bright, tasteless, and scentless. The sewage of depends so much upon the system which is carried out, Croydon, when in a very diluted 'state, was examined, that you can form no opinion as to its value unless you in November, 1861, by Messrs. Way and Thomson-1, know the mode in which the sewers are laid, and the as it flowed on to the grass; 2, as it streamed off the nature of the land through which they pass; the strength land into the river Wandle at the opposite extremity of of the sewage water is so different in strength in differ- the fields. ent places, that the quantity applied to the land cannot The following is the result of their analysis of these be determined in any way whatever without a regular waters, the matters they contained being given in grains analysis of the contents of sewer water. At Croydon it per imperial gallon. On the 16th of November, at 11 is a system of pipe house drainage almost exclusively o'clock a.m., a gallon of the sewage of Croydon, as it The consequence of this is, that the sowage water and issued from the mouth of the sewer, contained-foreign its solid matters are delivered in such a very short time matters of all kinds 39.10; this contained of organic into the tanks at the mouth of the sewer that no putre
matter 12.80. As it flowed off the irrigation fields, a faction takes place. At our outfall into the tanks at gallon of the sewage contained, at 12:30—foreign matCroydon the soil and paper are actually delivered with- ters 27.75, organic matters 6.50; at 2:30—foreign out being separated in any way whatever, and the water matters 28.70, organic matters 2.40; at 4:30--foreign is comparatively clear, with a mass of solid matter matters 28.95, organic matters 3.45. suspended in it. In 1857, two-thirds of the sewage of
The solid matters contained in the sewage of towns the town were running on to about 15 acres of land, well supplied with water are not so considerable as in and the sewage of houses containing about 16,000 in- sewage of great cities. In the sewage of Rugby, the habitants. The consequence was, that the whole sur- commissioners found, on an average of 26 samples, 78 face of this land was covered by the soil, not by sewer grains of solid matters per imperial gallon ; that of water only, but by soil, and that was very offensive. Edinburgh, when examined by Cooper, also 78 grains At Croydon, though there are 30,000 inhabitants, per gallon; but that of London is far more impure, at the present time the only part of the sewer water yielding, from two specimens examined by Mr. Way, which we use for the purpose of profitable sewage irri- 209 and 492 grains per agllon. gation is derived from houses containing 18,000 per
The operations continually going on at Beddington In the year 1857, after the sewage had been presents to our view, on considerable scale, one of the put over the land, the land was ploughed up, and a many marvels of vegetable chemistry. We are all crop of mangold-wurtzel was obtained from it. The awaro what alchemical changes are accomplished by mangold-wurtzel roots produced were three feet high, the plants which grow around us—how from the selfand of very large size, showing that the sewage manure same gases, only three in number (the carbonic acid, which was on the land was quite adapted for the pur- hydrogen, and oxygen), the same plant produces sugar, pose of growing roots. By the present system adopted starch, gum, acids, &c. Those phenomena everywhere at Croydon, the water is run into filter-tanks, and present themselves; but they are only partially evident there the solid matter is taken out-not the whole held to our senses. At Beddington, however, we see, as it in suspension, but all the offensive solid matter is taken were, the transmutation going on. At one end of the farm out; it is then run, by means of the irrigation channels,
we behold a foul, noxious stream continually pouring at the head of every field on to the land; the irrigation on to the land, diffusing itself amongst the growing channels are put along the higher surface of the land, grasses ; and at the other end of these meads we find and then there are smaller channels about 40 or 50 this purified stream, joining the Wandle, bright and feet apart leading from these irrigation channels, and sparkling, and tenanted with fish. The gases and amthere are certain stops in these smaller channels so as monia of putrefaction have been absorbed from the drive the whole of the water through the grass and over sewage and assimilated by the grassos; its mechanically the land before it goes into the clear water channels. suspended matters have been deposited, and the water The water is never turned only over one plot of land, thus rendered free from every source of annoyance. and then run into the stream. It is found invariably For very nearly a twelvemonth we have had, at Croynecessary to turn it again over a second plot of land don, the use of 240 acres; it is not all perfectly prebefore it is allowed to fall into the river, so that auy pared for irrigation at the present time. The land ammonia which may be still left in the water, or any irrigated at one time varies from 20 up to 50 acres, of the manuring qualities, should be taken out by turn- according to the rainfall. We find it necessary, during ing it over a second plot of land before it is allowed to heavy rains, to turn the water over a larger quantity pass into the stream. A great deal of the sewage filters of land, so as to purify it, than in dry weather. We into the gravel, and through the gravel into the lower have known, during the last summer (1861), that ten lovel; but a portion goes over the surface of the second acres of land would take the whole sewage-water of
Croydon, amounting to 800,000 gallons a day of 24 system of house-sewerage brings to the surface of the hours, without being perceived at all in any of the land what was formerly allowed to mingle with the lower land, or in the lower irrigating channels ; it will surface or underground waters which we consumed ; absolutely absorb that quantity during dry weather for and thus being brought to the surface of the soil, it & whole day, but the increase of sewage is enormous next became necessary to purify that sewage before it after rain.
was returned to the river. For this purpose all kinds of It is with the agricultural advantages of sewage irri- deodorizers have been tried, almost all of which have, gation that many of the readers of this magazine are for some reason or other, failed; so that it is, indeed, interested. Still it is a question whose success will cer- fortunate for us all, that in the grasses of our fields we tainly promote the public health. The old system of possess invaluable deodorizers, whose operations are house-drainage into miserable cesspools, or into a drain always successful, and who, so far from being expen. having its outlet into some ditch or passing stream, was sive, return us a revenue-turning to food for our live much too disgusting to be continued. The present stock what once diffused around us disease and death.
BY A CROTCHETY FARMER,
For more reasons than one it is “ a good thing to point, as with a well-cleaned seed-bed the plants are have two strings to one's bow.” It is this belief which much more vigorous than if allowed to grow in a foul is giving a growing tendency amongst go-a-head, new-soil. When the seed-bed system is adopted, a considerschool farmers to introduce a greater variety of cul- able saving is the result. To drill turnip-fashion, two tivated crops than has been the wont or usual practice to four pounds per acre will be required : in seed-bed for many years.
In presence, for instance, of the dis- eight ounces will raise a sufficiency of plants for an acre. eases which afflict the turnip crop, and the uncertainty When the plants are sufficiently advanced, the stem which is now attached to it, the cultivation of about the thickness of a quill, they should be taken careother roots for feeding purposes is becoming yearly fully out of the seed-bed, the strongest plants only bemore and more common. Of the roots grown as sub- ing selected, and placed in a basket, the roots all lying stitutes for the turnip I know of none so deserving of one way. If a choice of weather can be had, choose the attention of the farmer as that of KOHL RABI. It moist or damp-after a shower of rain is the best time. is possessed of numerous valuable properties ; it is little so much anxiety, however, for the plants " taking” to liable to disease, stands transplanting well, can bear any the soil need not be entertained as in the case of cabo degree nearly of drought or frost, and, generally speak- bage, as the kohl rabi will be found to droop or fret ing, of extremes of weather, and can be knocked much less. As before stated, it is a hardy plant. In about, cut, or bruised, without going immediately to transplanting, take especial care to see that the dibbledecay. In feeding value it is twice the worth hole is deep enough to permit the root of the plant to go of common turnips, and surpasses that of swedes, freely in without its being doubled up ; and let especial cattle are fond of it, and when I add that dairy cows care be taken to press the earth well round all the parts are also fond of it, and that its consumption by them of the plant in the soil. Some, in transplanting, seem gives no taint to the milk which they produce, I think to be quite satisfied if the earth is pressed, and that but I have given a pretty long list of valuable adjuncts slightly, round the neck of the plant, or at the level of which this root, I am sorry to say unknown to many, the ground. This is, I am convinced from some expepossesses. There are two ways of growing it-in rience, a grand mistake in transplanting ; I consider it “ drill," after the fashion of swedes and mangolds ; or an essential point to have the whole root embraced by in seed bed, and transplanting the plants in drill at an and in contact with the soil. To ensure this, I find it after-stage of their growth. My experience with the the best way, after the root of the plant is inserted in plant, as, I may say, that also of other growers--although the dibble-hole, to press the dibble into the soil as deep not of all—is, that the transplanting system is the best. as the original hole, and at some distance from it. I Nor need one wonder at this, when we consider that it insert the dibbler at an angle, the point nearest the plant, is of the cabbage tribe ; all of which grow best when and the upper end outwards; I then bring the dibbler transplanted from the bed in which the seed has been up to a perpendicular position while still in the soil, or grown. I have had the root grown on the two plans, rather beyond the perpendicular, that is, inclining toand the transplanted plants have in every instance wards the plant. By this means, I find that I make turned out the best; and not only the best, but a very the soil embrace the root fairly, so much so that a good marked superiority has characterized them, as com- pull at a leaf of the plant shows that it is well held down. pared with those sown in the drill, and only thinned This trial, indeed, of the fixity of the plant by pulling ont. The seed, when the transplanting system is at one of the leaves I always make. The operation of adopted, should be sown in a well-prepared seed-bed in dibbling my readers will, I'dare say, think I am making March ; and not later than the last week. This is the most of. But I presume that the end of the work is for the first crop. For a succession of plants, the second to get a good stock of roots, and anything that can crop sbould be sown in the first or second week of April, secure this is surely worth making the most of. I have and for the third crop the beginning of June. The had some experience in the right way and wrong way of plants of tbese successional sowings are to be trans- purting plants in the soil, and I know which is the best. planted in May, June, and July. The seed may be I know that the careful way I have described invariably broadcasted in the seed-beds; I prefer it in drills nine ensures the best roots. They take to the ground inches apart, as facilities are thus afforded to weed the quickest; and taking the lead, keep it. It involves plants during their growth. This is a most important trouble, doubtless ; but what work does not? Besides,
if any work is not worth the trouble of doing well, it is gestiveness in it--suggestire more especially of matters not worth the trouble of doing at all. I may aver that, of physiological interest. We believe that there is truth surely, with all safety, and yet not be considered for that in the saying or proverb we have quoted, when applied reason crotchety. I may remark, en passant, that the to ourselves. We know that there is truth in it; why carefulness in transplanting which I have insisted upon it is so is another thing. We know that there is such a is equally noteworthy in the matter of cabbage cultiva- thing as electricity, but what it is we know not. Life! tion. The distance of the drills for khol rabi should be We can pronounce the word, and as we talk of its 27 inches; the plants being dibbled in at distances of sacredness we act in a thousand heartless cruel ways 15 inches apart.
which show we in reality too seldom believe in it. But As soon as the plants have taken fairly to the soil, and what life is, puzzles our cleverest men to tell. Read started into fresh and vigorous life, I have found it give any work or paper which explaing Professor Tanner's them an amazingly quick development to top-dress, or paper on the breeding of cattle will do it as lucidly as rather to throw along the tops of the ridges or in con- any one you can meet with-the internal organism of the tiguity with the roots, an artificial manure of salt (this ruminating animals, as the cow. From the entrance of is an important part, or should be, of a manure for all the food at the mouth, through a certain number of plants of the cabbage tribe), nitrate of soda, or guano, stages, all the process is clearly stated and easily followed and coal ashes, in equal proportions. Ifavailable, one part up; but, just as we come to the point on wbich we wish of superphosphate will also be beneficial. The after- the fullest information, nothing is left us but conjecture, cultivation of the crop is simple, if laborious—hoeing and but little of that can be offered. At the stage where and weeding. Let these be carefully done; and let the the mechanism, so to speak, of the organism ends, and hoeing be done in dry weather, never in wet.
life begins, we are left to grope in the dark. What is Although I have a strong belief-in which, by the life? We know amongst ourselves, and comparing way, I am not alone-that transplanting from seed-bed notes with this one and that one, that although we all is the best for the kohl-rabi, as it is for all members of live, life is not carried on in the same way with all of the Brassica tribe, still some very successful cultivators
We have all our own peculiarities of form, habits, sow the seed in drills, 27 inches apart. Mr. Bennett, modes of feeling, and different grades mayhap of robust of Cambridge, a well-known agriculturist, drills in May. strength, maylap of a sickly want of it. We are all of He remarks, however, that it might be allowable to sow the same kind; yet we are not similar, but diverse a fortnight earlier. In thinning, Messrs. Lawson re- in everything that gives character and individuality commend them to be thinned by the boe, so as to leave
Tbe same, but yet how different ! the plants in tufts, taking care at the same time to clear Not only in our modes of feeling and of thinking are off all weeds. A twelve-inch space should be left be- we different each from our neighbour, but in our habits hind each tuft. When the plants in the tufts have grown of body is the diversity as apparent. Take, for instance, a little further, the final thinning is effected, one plant the maiter of "living"- -as eating and drinking are, only being left in. In these tufts, I may remark, one oddly enough, distinguished, as if man lived by these plant will always, or nearly always, be stronger than the alone, and this only was life. It would be a comparaothers; this, which is termed the “ king plant,” and tively easy matter for the chemist-taking the result of is of course the one to be left in.
his most careful analysis as the guide to say, “ This Although I have stated that the roots can stand almost food has so much of nutritive matter; this has so any degree of frost-I havo rarely come across a root much ;' and so on through the list of edibles which he unsound through the effects of frost-still they should might choose to confine us to. They all possess the be taken up and stored when at maturity. This will be requisites to build up the body and maintain the waste somewhere about five or six months after planting. But, of its tissues; therefore, what suits one will suit all. if time or circumstances prevent their being pulled up Partake ye of them, my brethren!" But we know that, and stored before winter sets in, the farmer may keep however closely chemistry may thus define the nature of his mind comparatively at ease on this score.
the food, it cannot--and wherever it has tried, it has I have spoken, at the commencement of my note, of failed-define the mode in which it is to act upon all. “ having two strings to one's bow," in the matter of The food which agrees with me so well, just in like decrops for cattle-leeding; I rather incline to think that gree acts as banefully with you. I get lean upon what a third will not be amiss. Perhaps this third will be met fattens you; I loathe at the food you delight in. Nay, with in CABBAGES. This is a most valuable crop for more-the effects change even in single cases; so that dairy farmers; the cows relish it extremely, it increases the food I love to eat to-day, I loathe and turn from the flow of milk, and gives no disagreeable taste to it. with dislike, if not disgust, to-morrow. How is this? Much of what I have said respecting the kohl-rabi is “ It all depends," says a fuent speaker, " upon the applicable to the cabbage. It is sown in seed-bed in state of the digestive organs." Does it? We know March, and transplanted in May. The Drum-head, or what the organs are ; but, not to make light of a serious Cow cabbage, is the variety most useful. I have also subject, we may nevertheless ask, in sober seriousness, grown the Jersey, or Thousand-headed cabbage, with | How are they played? Let me ask the wisest of our mach profit. The distances between the plants should agricultural scavans, How is food assimilated in the be 25 to 30 inches, if the Drumhead is used. The soil system? The wisest amongst them is not ashamed to should be well manured ; and do not neglect to apply a confess- true genius is always bumble that, in truth, dressing of salt before turning in the manure.
we know very little about digestion or assimilation of “What is one man's meat is another man's poison" food, and how taking that, gives life. How is it carried a strong, graphic, if not very "genteel” expression on? What effects it? How is it modified by this truly, and one which has a world of suggestiveness in it, agency and by that? What, in fact, is it? If we do and that too of special interest to agriculturists, as per- not know what it is, we, at all events, know that it haps my readers will accede to before they finish this seriously affects us, and that it is seriously affected by note ; if, indeed, they honour me so far by reading it; us-that is, by what we live upon, and how we live. for it does not at all follow-nay, it is just as likely to Seeing, then, that our farm-stock belong to the same be the reverse—that because I think it worth my while tribe-the mammalia-as we do, and that it is reasonto write, therefore they should think it worth theirs to able to suppose, in the absence of direct proof, that they read what I have to say upon any point I may take up. also have iheir peculiarities of life, their likes and dis
I have said above that the phrase has a world of sug- likes, would it not be as well if we breeders thought a
little more of this than we do? and if variety of sense of the term, are modified by and depend upon the food and tickling of palates are shown to be good relation which they bear to the organism which they at times for us, will they not be equally so for the nourish. It must be so. “Only gross ignorance of phyanimals we lord it over ?
siology''-says Mr. Lewes, in his “ Physiology of ComWe act with our animals as if analyses alone were to
mon Life" (Blackwood and Sons), a work I would like to decide what they should have, and what they should know was more frequently read by agriculturists~" only not bave. "To the chemist,” says an able physiologist, gross ignorance of physiology, an ignorance unhappily "there may be little or no difference between plant and too widely spread, can argue that because a certain flesh as food; to the physiologist the difference is pro- article is wholesome to many, it must necessarily be found. He sees the lion perishing miserably of inani- wholesome to all. Each individual organism is spetion in presence of abundant herbage, which to the cifically different from every other. However it may elephant or buffalo furnishes all that is required. The resemble others, it necessarily in some points differs 0x eats the grass, and the tiger eats the ox, but not the from them, and the amount of these differences is grass. The flesh of the ox may contain little that is often considerable. If the same wave of air striking not wholly derived from the grass. The chemist analyz- upon the tympanum of two different men will produce ing the flesh of both may point out their identity; but sounds to the one which to the other are inappreciable, the physiological question is not, What are the chemical if the same wave of light will affect the vision of one constituents of nutritive substances ? it is, What are man as that of a red colour, while to the vision of anthe substances which will nourish the organism? Ifthe other it is no colour at all, how unreasonable is it to animal will not eat, or having eaten cannot assimilate a expect that the same substance will bear precisely the, certain substance, that substance is no food for the same relation to the alimentary system of one man as animal, be its chemical composition what it may."
to that of another !" Experience tells us that it is not so. Just so! this hits the nail on the right head. And "A glance at the animal kingdom," continues the authis "hit" must commend itself to the common-sense
thor, and on a point closely connected with agrihow tardily this trath has made its way; nay, how almost similating the same substance. There are two species notions of my readers. And it certainly is surprising culture,“ reveals the striking differences manifested by
two closely allied organisms in their capability of asuniversally is its existence, with the value it possesses in & practical point of view, unknown; or if known, ig- of rhinoceros, the black and the white. The black
feeds nored amongst breeders and feeders of farm stock. A
on the graceful but deadly plant, Euphorbia candecertain kind of food, easily cultivated on our farms or
labrum, and converts it into its own substance; but if the easily obtained from other sources, has been established poisoned. The herbivora are divided into two classes,
white species happens to eat thereof, it is inevitably as the food best adapted for our stock; and accordingly the first subsisting on a variety of plants, the second they are fed upon this at all times, and under all circumstances of health and condition, just as if they had no
on one kind only. But even the various feeders will likes and dislikes, no habits of body to be consulted--as
not touch certain plants eagerly devoured by others. if they were, in fact, furnaces, into which a certain Thus the horse passes over almost all the cruciferæ, the amount of fuel had to be pitched, and from all of which
ox all the labiates ; goats, oxen, and lambs refuse almost an equality of results is looked for. Whereas,
all the solaneæ. The poisons are food to many; the it is completely and altogether overlooked that rabbit devouring belladonna, the goat hemlock, and the the animals are in fact animals, and not machines
horse aconite. The dog will feed on bread or biscuit,
which the wolf would starve rather than touch. The or masses of inert matter. It is no use to say that our stock like this invariable food ; remember,
cat, although preferring animal food, will eat bread reader, that with them it is Hobson's choice in the matter
and milk, which the tiger will not look at ;” and yet of food-this or none. It is no use further to say that
the wolf is the congenor of the dog, the tiger of the cat. they thrive well under a uniform style of living ; re- Still further, chemists seem frequently to lose sight of serve this opinion till you try whether under another the important influence which the condition or state in they will thrive better. Begia--if you have not already which the nutritive substances of a food are bas upon begun to do so--to test the likes and dislikes of your its nutritive properties. Thus, for instance, an artificial animals, and you will soon see that these exist, and food may be made, in which all the nutritive substances just in as marked a degree, as with ourselves. Each may be given. Take, for instance, muscular fesh : a animal has got its own peculiarities of life, and these dog will live and thrive upon this ; but as it is known must be studied if we wish to promote its health and that in this gelatine, albumen, and fibrine are combined. maintain it. Seeing, then, that there is a diversity let these substances be given artificially mixed, and amongst our animals, should not there be a diversity of the food thus formed will no longer support life. their treatment? It is not by any means a philosophical What, then, constitutes nutrition in the filesh? The way to have a cut-and-dry plan, which all must give in combination of the artificial food is perfect, chemically, to. Let us, while we admire and give all beed to the and ought to be nutritious: physiologically, it fails. teachings of chemistry in the matter of cattle feeding, There is, therefore, something in the natural combinaremember at the same time that chemistry can only lead tion of substances of food which gives nutrition ; and, us up to a certain point; there, where we need guid- this absent, nutrition is also absent. What this some anco most, it leaves us. Chemistry tells us that the thing is, is a difficult matter to define in all cases. Bat constituents of certain food being so-and-so, they must we know enough to know that we cannot, by any artibe good, and must nourish. Experience in our own case ficial means, concoct a food, from a chemical knowledge tells us another and a very different story; and the voice alone of its component parts, and be able to say posiof opinion gives it forth in the proverb which I have tively that it will be nutritious. We may put the parts placed at the head of my note, and which I now repeat of a steam-engine together; bat, without the steam, we
"What is one man's meat is another man's poison." cannot make it work. So we may put all the subLet ebemistry say what it will--and in stating thus Istances together which chemistry tells us ought to make do not limit its power, but have full faith in it when a nutritive food, and yet be unable to obtain a food working in its own sphere--as to alimentary substances which is really nutritive, because we fail to have in it being valuable in virtue of their containing carbon, nitro- that combination which imparts vitality to it, so to gen, and the like: common sense, if not a higher science, speak. A clever artist may make the semblance of an tells me that these nutritive properties, in the strictest organism-nay, form it of the very substances of which
that organism, in its proper state, is made ; yet he can-condition ; rub the leaves, and the odour is at not impart life to it. The chemist may make a combi. once perceptible. But examples like these of the nation, and say that it ought to do; but he cannot hit truths I have stated above, can be multiplied easily upon that mysterious something without which it will enough ; but sufficient has been given to prove that not do.
a very material difference arises, or may arise, in the That the consideration of the condition, or state, property of a food by a change of its condition or state. in which the substances of food are, is of vital im- Who can say then but what in the mere boiling of a cattleportance, will be more clearly seen further food we may bring into operation a force, 80 to speak, consideration. And let me here allude to the great dis- which makes it infinitely more nutritious to the animal cussion of the tobacco question, which, like other dis- which partakes of it, and which food would have recussions, has ended—but this time, in many instances, mained latent under normal circumstances ? Rapeseed literally-in smoke. Fearful statements have been in or cake is too pangent for cows to eat of it in its ordidustriously promulgated as to the effects of nicotine nary condition. Dr. Voelcker has shown bow, by heat(the essential property of tobacco) on the system ; and ing it with boiling water, it is rendered palatable. How graphic pictures have been drawn of dogs instantaneously difficult is it also to predicate the organic result of a killed by the exhibition of a few drops of it. But, to mixture of food substances ? my thinking, a most important element of the question Further, if artificial changes in the condition of matehas been overlooked in its discussion. Tobacco-smoke rials or substances bring about such remarkable changes may be a very different thing from tobacco-juice, or in their combination, it is difficult to say what the tobacco-essence, which is undoubtedly poisonous. natural changes are which are brought about by the take it, therefore, that the first thing to be done in the action of the organism on a food. And yet these changes matter is, to decide what is the result of the change are probably very great, and decided. The chemist can of form which the tobacco undergoes when being tell what will to a certainty take place when he mixes passed from the solid to the vaporous condition ? two substances in a glass vessel ; and he also knows that Analogy leads me to suppose that a change of a very ma- if he desires the change to be effected, he must have in terial kind is undergone ; and before so unhesitat- the vessel the substances, and those only, which are ingly deciding that smoking is injurious, because the necessary: the presence of all others must be avoided. essence of tobacco is so, it is the truly philosophical But the chemist cannot be sure that in the organism way to determine first the condition of the smoke, this keeping out of extraneous substances is possible ; and how it acts on the system. Of this I am very further, he may guess at, but he cannot be sure what the certain, the smoke of the tobacco is not the same as the effect is of any proposed combination of substances in tobaeco itself. Nicotine, about which so much bas been the organism, where life is an element to be taken into said, is obtained from the whole of the tobacco : can it consideration. On this point one great pbysiological be obtained from the smoke or vapour of it? That is authority bas the following : “ Vital processes go on in a most important part of the tobacco question.
tissues which, so far from isolating the substance introMy readers, I am sure, will at once see the bearing of duced—so far from protecting it from interference, do this digression upon the matter I have now under dis- inevitably interfere, and are themselves involved in, the cussion. Chemistry may point out to us the constitu- very changes undergone by the substances. Thus, while tion of a food in its natural or normal condition, and it is true that an alkali will neutralize an acid out of the may predicate from this analysis of it its effects upon the organism, we must be cautious in applying such a chemisystem; but in view of the change, or probable change, cal principle in the administration of drugs, because the of principle, brought about by a change of circum. alkali may stimulate a greater secretion of the gastric stances, are they prepared to say what that effect will acid; so that, over and above the amount neutralized, be when a simple food is cooked, or a number of foods there will be a surplus of acid free, owing to the intermixed together? We have every reason to believe that
ference of the organism in which the process takes a very remarkable change does take place in the nutri- place.” Living organisms, reader, are not glass vessels tive capabilities of food when cooked ; and it is reason- in which mixtures can be made with a certainty as to able to suppose that a change takes place in the nutritive
the results of the combination. A food turns to acid in effects of each when a number of different foods or my stomach, it does not do so in yours, and yet the substances are mixed together condimental fashion.
food is the same. Yet these conjectures or facts have never, or, at All these consideration points out, I think, very all events, seldom been taken cognizance of, in the clearly that the cattle-food question is not to be decided discussions which have been often made of from chemical dicta alone. Chemistry can give us late on the cattle-food question; and yet I believe chemical facts, but it can give us no information as to they worthy of the fullest consideration. the bearing of them upon the organism. Physiology is Apply these to the condimental food question, now so a matter with which the cattle-feeder has more, I bemuch talked of, and see what the result will be. This lieve, to do with than with chemistry. And when question, at all events, is not to be decided by chemical we know more about this science, we shall then, I firmly theory alone. We know that a change in the conditions believe, have the obscurity cleared up which now enwill cause a change in the manifestation of a force; so shrouds the subject. Amongst other questions which that often what ordinarily takes place in the laboratory will thus be enlightened will be the condimental food will not take place in the organism. Chlorine and already alluded to. However this is to be decided, hydrogen are gases having a powerful affinity for each either pro or con, of this I feel convinced, that it will other that is to say, they will unite when brought to- not be decided, I repeat, by chemistry alone. Whogether in the daylight; but if we change the conditions, ever believes that analysis alone decides the absolute if we bring them together in the dark, their affinity is nutritive value of any food or combination of food, and never manifested. Snow is frozen rain-water. Rain- that the condition or state in which this combination is water drunk allays thirst; snow does not, on the con- placed has no influence upon it, and that the organism trary, allay, but excites thirst when melted in the mouth; moreover in which it is to be assimilated has not also melted in the open air, it does allay thirst. Is the flavour an important influence in the assimilation of the food, I of boiled that of raw peas ? of artichokes, turnips, kohl for one am crotchety enough to say that I do not be
From coal-tar we gain pleasant perfumes. lieve all this. On the contrary, I believe that the body Certain plants give out no odour in their normal l in which the food is to be assimilated does play an ima