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or blue. In no instance have I observed the lungs and glands, here spoken of, so black, and from which I separated so much charcoal, as in those of a person forty-two years old, whose death was occasioned by most extensively diffused tubercles, many vomicæ, and a considerable condensation of the pulmonary organs. I now recollect, that this subject had been a Smoker of tobacco, generally several times, but always once a day, for perhaps more than twenty years. Future observations must determine more satisfactorily the state of the pulmonary organs, according to the impregnation of the air with sooty vapours. If, hereafter, it be shewn, that the lungs of persons living remote from sources of such vapours, are still greatly impregnated with coaly matter, the just conclusion can only be, that such matter is more extensively diffused through the atmosphere, than is apprehended. This being the fact, it would also afford a proof that it is only the invisibly small particles which are absorbed, for the larger particles remain unabsorbed, entangled in the mucus lining the air vessels, and never get farther, but are rejected from time to time by expectoration. Accordingly, in a morning, healthy people, after the night's rest, very commonly hawk up mucous matter of a bluish colour with black streaks, owing to charcoal; and persons in a diseased state, especially by great exertions in coughing, frequently expectorate matter spotted and streaked with black particles. The quantity of coaly matter in the pulmonary organs is not entirely according to the age, for I was disappointed, on finding the lungs and glands in a woman of seventy-five years of London, not more deeply coloured, than is usual at the age of fifty. At present, I am unable to state any connection between certain diseases, and the presence of coaly matter.
Farther investigation has shewn, that this coaly matter does exist in domesticated brute animals; but as they die, or are killed generally before they attain to twenty years, or even fifteen years
organs in question are seldom seen blackened. However, in diseased conditions, the cases are
cording to this rule. With the approbation of Professor Colman and Mr. Sewel, several of the worthy students of the Veterinary College have frequently obliged me by furnishing, for my examination, the lungs of horses and asses. In general, the bronchial glands were merely white, or reddish; but now and then they were partially black. In one instance of an ass, only six months old, these glands were black from coaly matter; but the lungs were uniformly red. The animal had died of peripneumony. In no instance have I seen, in
any brute creature, the lungs marbled and streaked with black lines as in the human. There is seldom an opportunity of inspecting horses which die from their natural
age viz. of thirty to forty years: for I am informed they mostly die or are killed in London before they are fifteen or sixteen years old. I have not seen coaly matter in the lungs, or glands of the ox kind, sheep, and hogs. The black appearances produced by distended blood-vessels and by ecchymosis, should be recollected, to avoid the error of ascribing them to charcoal. The absence of this matter in human creatures, at the ages just mentioned, when animals are slaughtered or die, affords a proof, although not a decisive one, that the exemption is more reasonably ascribable to the circumstance of time, and living in the open air, than to the peculiarity of the economy of each species of live being. Consistently with this observation, in the instance of a cat, known to have lived in Mr. Thomas's family, at least eighteen years, the bronchial glands were quite black from coaly matter, and the lungs were uniformly red; but in all other examinations of much younger cats, I found these glands either white or red.
The blackness of the lungs from charcoal remains, although hæmorrhage to occasion death has occurred. It is not removable by ablution, or maceration in water, nor by acids, nor alkalies, nor by the early stages of putrefaction. I have not met with a similar coaly substance in any parts of the animal economy, except the lungs. The glands of the meso-colon are sometimes black, similarly to the bronchial; but the colour soon disappears on immersion in nitric or muriatic acids, no charcoal being separable. The black, or more truly the dark brown tingeing liquid of the sepia, I have ascertained by experiments, does not contain uncombined charcoal; this matter existing there only as a constituent ingredient of animal matter.
As I have represented, it is conceived that the coaly matter is
very slowly absorbed by the mouths of the lymphatic vessels in the innumerable air tubes and cells.
To determine whether or not this matter exists in these lymphatic vessels, and is the occasion of the black maculæ, streaks, and areolæ, or marbled appearance of the surface of the lungs, I entreated Mr.WHARRIE, of St. George's Hospital, whom I knew to be a skilful anatomist, to inject these vessels with quicksilver. In some trials, the injection passed without interruption, in the usual manner; but in others it was apparently obstructed, by meeting with the black lines on the surface. Mr. GEORGE EWBANK also, at my desire, very dexterously dissected out about one inch in length of one of these black lines, supposed to be a lymphatic vessel. Being put into a glass capsule, full of nitric acid, the black line immediately was contracted in all dimensions; but it retained its forın after digestion, for several days, at a high temperature: afterwards on gently shaking the capsule, the black line was broken into a number of indissoluble particles. In the interior of the lungs, it is not unusual to see black spots in the middle of tubercles, although these substances consist apparently of self-coagulated lymph probably secreted in the cellular substance, and therefore very likely to envelope the coaly matter in the air tubes by the coalescence of numerous minute tubercles.
It has been objected, that the nitric acid may develope the constituent or combined ingredient charcoal of all animal substances; and consequently no proof will be thereby afforded of this matter being 'extraneous ; but on many trials, I have never by this means obtained charcoal from any animal mucilage.
I have no reason to believe, that any of the coaly matter under investigation, is dissolved by this acid, for on distilling a pint measure of it, from ten grains of the black powder of the bronchial glands, there was no sensible diminution of it, whether it was so treated before ignition, or subsequently: on evaporation to dryness, nitric acid, in which the coaly matter had been boiled, afforded no black sediment. Hence, I conceive, that this menstruum may be employed to determine, more accurately and speedily, the proportion of the coaly matter, than
any other agent. Sulphuric acid does dissolve a certain portion of this charcoal, affording a transparent liquid, even on dilution with water.
XXIII. Experiments on the Alcohol of Sulphur, or Sulphuret of
Carbon. By J. Berzelius, M. D. F. R.S. Professor of Chemistry at Stockholm; and Alexander Marcet, M. D. F.R.S. one of the Physicians to Guy's Hospital.
Read May 13, 1813.
HERE has been, of late years, much discussion respecting the nature of a singular oily liquid, which was first noticed by Mr. LAMPADIUS,* who procured it by distillation from a mixture of pyrites and charcoal, and gave it the name of alcohol of sulphur, on account of its very great volatility.
LAMPADIUS considered this liquid as a compound of sulphur and hydrogen; but Messrs. CLEMENT and DESORMES, † who obtained the same substance by subliming sulphur through red hot charcoal, were led by their researches to conclude, that the alcohol of sulphur was a combination of sulphur and charcoal, and that hydrogen was not one of its constituent principles.
Doubts, however, were entertained respecting the chemical nature of this compound. Mr. BERTHOLLET believed it to be a triple combination of sulphur, charcoal, and hydrogen. I Messrs. VAUQUELIN and ROBIQUET,S from a joint enquiry on the subject, considered it as a binary compound of sulphur and
| Ibid. p. 286.
* Crell's Annals, 1796. II.