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from home and compel them to walk back. He was said to have performed remarkable cures, but, as his successful cases had always been a considerable time confined to their couch, they were practically cured before he undertook them. By the adoption of systematic nerve rest at an early period of the disease its duration is materially shortened, and, as the muscles are kept in daily exercise by massage or electricity, the otherwise inevitable muscular enfeeblement is prevented. Thus whenever the nerves are able to command the muscles are ready to obey, so that there is little fear of the patient drifting into chronic invalidism. Indeed, it is quite surprising how much walking such persons voluntarily accomplish on quitting their bed of treatment.

During the old haphazard days these invalids frequently showed all the symptoms of starvation in the midst of plenty. Want of exercise diminished appetite and nervous worry hindered digestion. It was from this class that our notorious fasting girls were constantly arising. A part of the present treatment consists in persistent overfeeding. Three substantial meals are given daily, with savoury sops or morsels every two hours between. It might seem as if a sudden transition from the borders of starvation to the centre of repletion would create nausea, but it is not so. The amount of exercise undergone in massage equals a walk of several miles daily, so that there is more appetite in two hours than there used to be after a whole day's fast.

Within the limits of this paper it is impossible to discuss the various means adopted to obtain nerve rest. As there are many degrees of nervous exhaustion, so are there many methods of restoration. What would be pleasant exercise to one might prove laborious exertion to another, and what would he soothing to one might be irritating to another. In all cases, however, complete nerve rest implies the maintenance of agreeable sensation and the avoidance of nervous agitation. It may not be possible to obtain such absolute rest as is here indicated, but the aim of treatment is to secure as near an approach to it as can be attained by legitimate means. No means is used which might injure the general health.

The fact that women are more liable than men to the severer forms of nervous exhaustion is one reason why the cases quoted in these pages are chiefly those of women. Another reason is that, in men, it is rarely possible to study this stage of the disease uncomplicated by the effects of alcoholic indulgence. Most men who find themselves becoming victims of nervousness endeavour to escape the worries of life by taking refuge in drink; so that they usually bring upon themselves other diseases of alcoholic origin. In women this was not formerly the habit, but there is reason to believe that the late increase of inebriety among them is largely due to the spread of nervous exhaustion. On the other hand, there are many VOL. XXII.-No. 129. Ꮓ Ꮓ

cases in both sexes where alcoholic indulgence has undoubtedly been the chief cause of the ailment.

Although the most severe forms of this disease have alone been discussed it must not be supposed that milder forms do not also. require special nerve rest. This cannot be secured without more or less change being made in the ordinary mode of life. Nervous agitation is the chief cause of nervous exhaustion. It is almost impossible even for a healthy man to avoid a certain amount of agitation in connection with his affairs, while for the nervous man it is absolutely impossible. For the latter, therefore, a frequent holiday is essential. The way of spending such a holiday is a matter of urgent importance.

Many nervous sufferers return home worse than when they left. They climb mountains in Switzerland when they ought to be loitering on the sea-shore or lounging on the deck of an ocean steamer. They rise early 'to make the best of to-day' when they had better lie several hours longer to fix the benefits of yesterday. Like the unskilled rider, who dismounts for relief, they are frequently driven to bed to recover from their holiday exertions.

The amount of exercise must be regulated by its effects on head or spine. Mere muscular fatigue may be overcome by regular walking, but nervous fatigue must be entirely avoided. If the patient cannot take sufficient exercise to sustain his appetite and digestion, he had better undergo an hour's massage daily. And when he has once gained the power of walking from five to ten miles a day without fatigue of head or spine, he ought, by constant practice, to endeavour to retain it.

There is no better preventive of nervous exhaustion than regular, unhurried, muscular exercise. If we could moderate our hurry, lessen our worry, and increase our open-air exercise, a large proportion of nervous diseases would be abolished.

For those who cannot get a sufficient holiday the best substitute is an occasional day in bed. Many whose nerves are constantly strained in their daily vocation have discovered this for themselves. A Spanish merchant in Barcelona told his medical man that he always went to bed for two or three days whenever he could be spared from his business, and he laughed at those who spent their holidays on toilsome mountains. One of the hardest worked women in England, who has for many years conducted a large wholesale business, retains excellent nerves at an advanced age, owing, it is believed, to her habit of taking one day a week in bed. If we cannot avoid frequent agitation we ought, if possible, to give the nervous system time to recover itself between the shocks.

Even an hour's seclusion after a good lunch will deprive a hurried, anxious day of much of its injury. The nerves can often be overcome by stratagem when they refuse to be controlled by strength of will.




OVER a considerable portion of the northern hemisphere the remains of man, or his works, have been found in association with bones of the extinct mammalia which characterised the Glacial epoch, and no evidence has been obtained that man at that time differed more from modern savages than they do among themselves. The facts which prove this antiquity were, when first put forth, doubted, neglected, or violently opposed, and it is now admitted that such opposition was due to prejudice alone, and in every case led to the rejection of important scientific truths. Yet after nearly thirty years' experience we find that an exactly similar prejudice prevails, even among geologists, against all evidence which carries man one little step further back into pre-Glacial or Pliocene times, although if there is truth whatever in the doctrine of evolution as applied to man, any and if we are not to adopt the exploded idea that the Palæolithic men were specially created just when the flood of ice was passing away, they must have had ancestors who must have existed in the Pliocene period, if not earlier. Is it then so improbable that some trace of man should be discovered at this period that each particle of evidence as it arises must be attacked with all the weapons of doubt, accusation and ridicule, which for so many years crushed down the truth with regard to Palæolithic man? One would think, as Jeremy Bentham said of another matter, that it was wicked or else unwise' to accept any evidence for facts which are yet so inherently probable that the entire absence of evidence for their existence ought to be felt to be the greatest stumbling-block.

No better illustration of this curious prejudice can be given than the way in which some recent discoveries of stone implements in deposits of considerable antiquity in India are dealt with. These implements are of quartzite, and are of undoubtedly human workmanship. They were found in the Lower Laterite formation, which is said to have undergone great denudation and to be undoubtedly very ancient. Old stone circles of a great but unknown antiquity are formed of it. It is also stated that the distinction between the Tertiary and post-Tertiary is very difficult in India, and the age of

these Laterite beds cannot be determined either by fossils, which are absent, or by superposition. Yet we are informed, 'The presence of Palæolithic implements proves that the rock is of post-Tertiary origin.' Here we have the origin of man taken as fixed and certain, so certain that his remains may be used to prove the age of a doubtful deposit! Nor do these indications of great antiquity stand alone, for in the Nerbudda fluviatile deposits Mr. Hackel has found stone weapons in situ along with eleven species of extinct fossil mammalia.

Believing myself that the existence of man in the Tertiary epoch is a certainty, and the discovery of his remains or works in deposits of that age to be decidedly probable, I hold it to be both wise and scientific to accept all evidence of his existence before the Glacial epoch which would be held satisfactory for a later period, and when there is any little doubt, to give the benefit of the doubt in favour of the find rather than against it. I hold further that it is equally sound doctrine to give some weight to cumulative evidence ; since, when a thing is not improbable in itself, it surely adds much to the argument in its favour that facts which tend to prove it come from many different and independent sources, from those who are quite ignorant of the interest that attaches to their discovery, as well as from trained observers who are fully aware of the importance of every additional fact and the weight of each fresh scrap of evidence. Having by the kindness of Major Powell, the able Director of the United States Geological Survey, been able to look into the evidence recently obtained bearing on this question in the North American continent, I believe that a condensed account of it will certainly prove of interest to English readers.

The most certain tests of great antiquity, even though they afford us no accurate scale of measurement, are furnished by such natural changes as we know occur very slowly. Changes in the distribution of animals or plants, modifications of the earth's surface, the extinction of some species and the introduction of others, are of this nature, and they are the more valuable because during the entire historical period changes of this character are either totally unknown or of very small amount. Let us then see what changes of this kind have occurred since man inhabited the North American continent.

The shell heaps of the Damariscotta River, in Maine, are remarkable for their number and extent. The largest of these stretches for about half a mile along the shore, and is often six or seven feet, and in one place twenty-five feet, in thickness. They consist almost exclusively of oyster shells of remarkable size, frequently having a length of eight or ten inches, and sometimes reaching twelve or fourteen inches. They contain fragments of bones of edible animals, charcoal, bone implements, and some fragments of pottery. The surface is covered to a depth of several inches with vegetable mould, and 1 Manual of the Geology of India, p. 370.


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large trees grow on them, some more than a century old. The special feature to which we now call attention is that at the present time oysters are only found in very small numbers, too small to make it an object to gather them; and we were credibly informed that they have not been found in larger quantities since the settlement in the neighbourhood. It cannot be supposed that the immense accumulations now seen on the shores of Salt Bay could have been made unless oysters had existed in very large numbers in the adjoining waters.' Here we have evidence of an important change in the distribution of a species of mollusc since the banks were formed.

On the St. John's River, Florida, are enormous heaps largely composed of two freshwater shells, Ampullaria depressa and Paludina multilineata, which cover acres of ground and are often six or eight feet thick. Professor Wyman, who explored these heaps, remarks, 'It seems incredible to one who searches the waters of the St. John's and its lakes at the present time, that the two small species of shells above mentioned could have been obtained in such vast quantities as are seen brought together in these mounds, unless at the times of their formation the shells existed more abundantly than now, or the collection of them extended through very long periods of time. When it is borne in mind that the shell-heaps afford the only suitable surface for dwellings, being most commonly built in swamps, or on lands liable to be annually overflowed by the rise of the river, they appear to be necessarily the result of the labours of a few living on a limited area at one time. At present it would be a very difficult matter to bring together in a single day enough of these shells for the daily meals of an ordinary family.'


On the Lower Mississippi, at Grand Lake, are shell banks of great extent which are now fifteen miles inland; while Nott and Gliddon describe similar banks on the Alabama River fifty miles inland, and they believe that Mobile Bay must have extended so far at the time the shells were collected. These beds are often covered with vegetable mould from one to two feet thick, and on this grow large forest trees. Equally indicative of long occupation and great antiquity is the enormous shell mound at San Pablo, on the bay of San Francisco, which is nearly a mile long and half a mile wide, and more than twenty feet thick. Numerous Indian skeletons and mummies have been found in it, showing that it had been subsequently used as a place of burial. Some mounds in Florida have growing on them enormous live oaks from thirteen to twenty-six feet in circumference at five feet from the ground, some of which are estimated to be about six hundred years old, indicating the minimum age possible for the heaps, but not necessarily approaching to their real age.

The extensive shell heaps of the Aleutian Islands have been care

2 Second Annual Report of Trustees of Peabody Museum, p. 18.
Fifth Annual Report of Peabody Museum, p. 22.

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