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VENTILATION BY NIGHT ALL-IMPORTANT TO HEALTH.-I speak of the absence of ventilation-of night ventilation in particular - the so pregnant source of disease and death. For I look upon the exclusion of a pure atmosphere by night as the one efficient and acting source of consumption and scrofula. Without a continuous supply of pure oxygen, in the proportion presented by the atmosphere, the effete waste of the body cannot be properly burned off. And if the effete waste be not all burned off, the inevitable sequence, as I conceive, is the deposit of the residue in the guise of tubercle, either internally in the different forms of consumption, or externally in the various aspects of scrofula. Every one knows how the poor are decimated by these maladies. That they are so arises from the insufficient supply of oxygen, whether during working hours, the hours of relaxation, and very especially those devoted to repose. The difficulty of ventilation is enhanced by the evil construction of windows, those in the houses of the town poor especially. They are made to lift, but in order to avoid the pitiful outlay of a few shillings for cords, weights, and pulleys, they are not made as they ought all to be made, to pull down. The little wooden wedge inserted on each side, to prevent the upper sash from descending, viewing it as an impediment to ventilation, has proved the most lethal instrument of destruction in the world. Every window ought to be made to pull down. Instructions should be issued from masters to their workmen, from parents to their children, from householders to their tenants, from doctors to their patients, from divines to their flocks, to pull down the windows of all living and sleeping chambers at all convenient hours during the day, and invariably winter and summer during the night. There is no other way than this, by a door, as it were, direct into the ocean of the atmosphere which subsists about us, to secure an ever fresh supply of untainted oxygen, and, as I maintain, a more or less perfect immunity from the ravages of scrofulous and consumptive maladies.-Dr. M'Cormack in the Builder.
COFFEE IN CEYLON.- A Ceylon planter, now settled in Wynand, thus describes the effect of a few years' coffee cultivation on this district:-"Where hundreds weekly pass along the road, twelve years ago travellers were so rare that when a man was seen coming, the beholder felt certain it could only be a message for himself; and at a much later period a planter had to gallop for his life from a pack of wolves within 1,000 yards of where I am writing this, in the midst of a smiling settlement,' and a dozen European bungalows in sight." There are 10,000 acres in the district covered with coffee.
AGRICULTURAL BRITAIN.-There are 24,000,000 acres under tillage in the United Kingdom, besides 10,000,000 under grass, producing 46,000,000 quarters of grain; whilst on it and on the grass land there are kept 30,000,000 of sheep and 8,000,000 of bullocks, consuming £2,000,000 worth of oil-cake and other feeding stuffs.
To Readers and Correspondents.
FOURTEENTH ANNUAL MEETING OF THE VEGETARIAN SOCIETY.-Our Readers will see, from the advertisement on our cover, that the Annual Meeting of the Vegetarian Society will, at the desire of the Sheffield Vegetarian Association, be held in Sheffield, on Friday the 25th of October. A public meeting will be held in the evening, at which various addresses in favour of Vegetarianism will be given. We trust there will be a good attendance of members from Manchester, Leeds, Birmingham, and other more distant places.
VEGETARIAN SOCIETY.-The Forms of Declaration required for membership can be obtained on application to the Secretary, 12, King-street, Salford, Manchester.
All Communications for the DIETETIC REFORMER should be addressed to the Secretary, the Rev. JAMES CLARK, 12, King street, Salford, Manchester. All articles or notices of meetings, &c., intended for insertion, must be accompanied with the real name and address of the writer, not necessarily for publication, but as a guarantee of good faith.
Advertisements for the DIETETIC REFORMER, received on the following terms:
To be forwarded to the SECRETARY of the VEGETARIAN SOCIETY, 12, King Street, Salford, Manchester.
ALEXANDER IRELAND & Co., Printers, Pall Mall Court, Manchester.
In compliance with the wishes of the Vegetarians resident in Sheffield, the Fourteenth Anniversary of the Vegetarian Society was held in the Cutlers' Hall, Sheffield, on Friday afternoon, October 25th, 1861. There is, doubtless, great advantage in occasionally holding the annual meeting in other large towns instead of restricting it to Manchester, although it is undeniable that the greatest number of Vegetarians are to be found there, and that many of them are unable to attend the meetings at distant places. But as Vegetarians from other localities have visited Manchester, to attend the annual meeting on previous occasions, they may fairly enough ask their friends in Manchester to visit them in return. This interchange of visits tends to strengthen the several associations, and to bring Dietetic Reform more prominently before the public. We are happy to congratulate the Sheffield Association on the completeness of their arrangements, and rejoice that the evening soirée afforded an opportunity of presenting our views on Dietetic Reform before so large and intelligent an audience, some of whom will no doubt carry on the inquiry commenced, and sooner or later become adherents of the movement.
As many Vegetarians were unable to be present, who are desirous of becoming acquainted with the proceedings, we depart a little from the ordinary arrangement of articles in the DIETETIC REFORMER, in order to give a full report of the business transacted at the Conference, and the speeches delivered at the Soirée.
The visitors from a distance were so much pleased with the Cutlers' Hall that we think a brief description may be interesting to our readers. This hall is the property of the corporation whose name it bears, and is used for their periodical meetings and their celebrated annual feast. It is a noble stone building, in a central situation, near the Parish Church, and contains a large hall, an entrance hall and several ante-rooms, together with the offices required in a large establishment used for public entertainments of a superior class. The entrance hall is graced with exquisite marble busts, raised on short columns or pedestals, of the Right Hon. Earl Fitzwilliam, Sir Walter Scott, Right Hon. George Canning, James Watt, C. E., Dr. Play fair, James Montgomery, William Jeffcock, Esq. (the first Mayor of Sheffield), Sanmel Hadfield, Esq., Thos. Hanley, Esq., J. Haythorp, Esq., G. Bennett, Esq., E. Rhodes, Esq. (author of "Peak Scenery").
The large hall will seat 500 persons, and is handsomely fitted up with mahogany chairs and tables. At the upper end is a gallery adapted for orchestral purposes. A large dome and other roof windows of ground glass admit a subdued light in the daytime, and in the evening the hall is brilliantly illuminated with handsome
gasaliers. On the walls, in richly-carved gilt frames, elegantly surmounted with tapestry and gold, hang full-length portraits of the following noblemen and gentlemen:- -His Grace the Duke of Wellington, His Grace the Duke of Norfolk, Right Hon. Earl Fitzwilliam, Right Hon. Stuart Wortley, Rev. Joseph Hunter (author of a History of Hallamshire), Dr. Sutton (late vicar of Sheffield), Dr. Young, and Hugh Parker, Esq. The remaining decorations consist of the arms of the Corporation of Cutlers (three pairs of crossed swords), this device being worked on the wall at the upper end of the room, and also on the backs of the chairs.
In the Cutlers' Hall many important festive and political gatherings have from time to time been held, in addition to those more immediately connected with the corporation whose name it bears. Stormy and warlike utterances have not unfrequently been heard within its walls, but on the present occasion it was used for the promotion of a peaceful and philanthropic movement, designed to bless and raise humanity, and which also includes within its mission kindness and mercy to the animal creation.
The attendance at the business meeting was somewhat limited, several persons who intended being present having been unavoidably kept away. Amongst those present were the President of the Society (Mr. Alderman Harvey, of Salford), the Secretary (the Rev. J. Clark, Salford), Mr. James Gaskill, Mr. P. Foxcroft, Mr. William Hunt (Manchester), Rev. W. Sharman, Mr. T. H. W. Morris (Birmingham), Mr. E. Collier (Huddersfield), Mr. Gates, Mr. Travis (Barnsley), Mr. W. W. Castle (Honley), Mr. Sully (Market Harborough), Mr. T. Chapman, Mr. J. Bishop, Mr. J. T. Bishop. Mr. Mills, and Mr. Richardson (Sheffield), &c.
The PRESIDENT having taken the chair, called on the Secretary to read the Annual Report for 1860-61.
The Executive Committee rejoice to meet their friends to celebrate the Fourteenth Anniversary of the Vegetarian Society; to give an account of their stewardship, and to resign the functions with which the confidence of their fellow members had invested them during the long official year* now closed.
Their first duty will be very brief. The operations of the Society during the year have not been very extensive, yet they have not been uninteresting or unimportant. Through the Secretary, many inquiries have been received and answered; much information as to the nature of the principles advocated by the Society, and encouragement to new beginners and others, have been afforded. By this means also inquirers have been directed to the literature in which vegetarian principles are expounded. Some tracts and pamphlets have been distributed gratuitously, a few have been sold to friends for a like purpose, and in this way many seeds of truth have been scattered which may reasonably be expected to take root and flourish.
There has been more than an average sale during the year of vegetarian literature of other kinds, and a spirit of inquiry has been exhibited which shows that the publications of the Society are read with increasing care, and receive a more candid consideration than in past years. Your Committee are, however, conscious that the great bulk of the community remain inert upon the matter, and that the utmost efforts of the Society and its individual members are necessary to arouse this indifference even more than to combat the hostility of opponents: they, therefore, urge upon their friends the duty of providing themselves with the tracts and cheap publications of the Society, to scatter broadcast over their several districts.
Favourably contrasting with this indifference of the general public, may be here noticed the incidental and direct discussions of the diet proper for man in medical and scientific circles, evincing the careful study which the subject is receiving amongst the creators of opinion in the country. Having a firm conviction that the principle of vegetarianism is based upon eternal truth, your Committee hail with satisfaction this disposition to search after and to find out the truth. Nor do they
regard with indifference the prosecution of other dietetic inquiries, bearing upon the physical, moral, and social well-being of the human family. They have, therefore, watched with interest and attention the discussions at the Social Science Congress, held this year in Dublin, upon the subject of "Food and the Intellect," when the action of animal food and intoxicating drinks were fully considered. On that occasion our esteemed friend, James Haughton, Esq., very worthily represented the views of this Society. In relation to recent discoveries, the medical journals and reviews have been compelled to re-open the discussion regarding the value of stimulants for dietetic purposes, and present physiological knowledge is admitted to ✦ be conclusive against the old opinions. This discussion, taken in relation to alcohol, has a significance as affecting all artificial stimulants used as food.
Again, at the meeting of the British Association, Mr. Craufurd, the learned and able President of the Geographical and Ethnological Section, treated the question of "Food and Climate in their effects upon Civilisation" in a manner highly favourable to the Vegetarian cause, and most effectually demolishing the common objection taken against a fruit and farinaceous diet, from its supposed insufficiency for the wants of man in the frigid zones. Mr. Craufurd says: "Mere intemperance of climate, independent of any other obstacle, is sufficient to prevent man from making any advance towards civilisation, and to hold him permanently in the savage state. The condition of the Arctic, sub-Arctic, Antarctic, and sub-Antarctic regions are examples. The Esquimaux is the most striking: dwelling where the year consists but of one day and one night, where snow and glaciers are substitutes for the green earth, where no plant yielding food for man will grow, and, save the dog, no domestic animal live, advancement seems impossible." And further, speaking of Australia, he says: "It contained no native plant available to cultivation for the food of man, and no native animal amenable to domestication, the dog excepted, of small value in such a climate. Under such discouragements, and without communication with strangers, any advancement in civilisation would have been impossible, even had its native inhabitants been of the most highlygifted races of man."
Agreeable with this valuable testimony is that of Dr. Hoffman, a man of European reputation as a chemist, who in a lecture delivered at the Kensington Museum, showed that the cause of the wars between the red aborigines of the American continent, of their low civilisation, and of their decay, might be found in their custom of subsisting upon animals killed in the chase. The testimony of Captain Kennedy, who has had ample opportunity of observing, proves that there is no natural defect in the red men whom he has known; that they are capable of following agricultural pursuits, and the several trades common in agricultural districts; showing that their mode of life has been the cause of their decay and their inability to compete with the white man.
Dr. Lankester, whose hostility to our views seems established, has made several attacks in his public lectures, and in his book on Food, which have been refuted in the Dietetic Reformer. The dietetic sophistries of this writer have called forth rejoinders from several quarters, and have been ably exposed.
Your Committee have pleasure in reporting that meetings have been held during the year, in connection with several local associations, which have not been unproductive of actual results; as in London, Sheffield, and Andover, whilst in Manchester the subject has been ventilated through the public newspapers and local improvement societies. These societies are often composed of young men who are more than ordinarily impressionable to truths, whether new or old, and might be made available by our friends for the purposes of the agitation. Mr. Beach at Colchester, and Mr. Horsell in London, have done good service in this way during the year. Your Committee have been anxious to do more in this direction, and have, indeed, opened negotiations with that view some time since, but the limited means at their disposal have not allowed them to take wider action. inquiries have, however, led to the discovery that several competent persons are willing to undertake lectures, and it remains for the annual meeting to determine how far the Committee for the ensuing year shall be enabled to prosecute this branch of the agitation during their term of office.
The attention of the Executive Committee has been mainly engaged with the establishment of the new organ of the Society-the Dietetic Reformer, and on its behalf a measure of success has been attained which fully realises their expectations,
and will, they trust, prove satisfactory to their constituents. The first quarterly part appeared on the 1st of January in the present year, and the Committee were gratified to receive from numerous friends the expression of their high approval. A further indication of its popularity with the members is seen in the generous aid which has been afforded to the Editor by our ablest friends, who have contributed freely to its pages. Your Committee would bespeak for their successors the same hearty co-operation and support, which has secured success for the four issues now before the public.
One thousand copies of each of the four numbers have been issued.
As might be expected, from the bulk and quality of the Dietetic Reformer, a pecuniary loss has been sustained by the undertaking, which has been borne by the Society, and shows the necessity of the special provision made for that purpose at the last annual meeting. Your Committee anticipate that the sense of the meeting will be with them in the opinion that this money has been wisely and profitably expended.
It is desirable that increasing efforts be made by our friends to maintain and extend the influence of the new organ, so that it may reach all classes and sects of the community, and extend the knowledge of those beneficent principles which constitute the bond of union amongst Vegetarians. In the coming year, the Executive Committee would also be glad to see a reprint of the excellent and valuable paper by Dr. Trall, of New York, which appeared in Nos. 1 to 3, of the Dietetic Reformer. They conceive much good would accrue from the circulation of this production at a low price and in a neat form.
A few members have been enrolled during the year, and many others have begun to try the system. It is also known to your Committee that many persons have adopted the system, and are satisfied with the result, who have not connected themselves with the movement. They do not, therefore, regard the number of new members admitted as the evidence of actual progress made.
Looking to the public operations for the ensuing year, your Committee would urge their fellow-members to avail themselves of the organisations now existing in their neighbourhoods where practicable, such as the mutual improvement societies already alluded to; essay and discussion societies; book clubs, &c. Where an impression is made, the Executive should be invited to send a lecturer to address a public meeting, especially if it be a large centre of population. The public press should also be carefully watched with a view to introduce the peculiar views of the Society, or to strengthen the hands of persons tending in that direction. Such a plan of agitation would not involve a large expenditure, and the influence it would have in forwarding the movement would be very considerable.
Thus briefly, the Executive Committee have presented to their fellow-members a statement of their labours and of their views, and now, in resigning their trust, they commend the good cause which they have, all too unworthily, represented, to the guardianship of Him on whose blessing depends their hope of the future triumph of this and every good undertaking.
Begun in, and founded upon, the love of God and man, they trust and believe that a time will come when men universally will have adopted those habits of life which are most harmonious with the will of the Creator.
WILLIAM HARVEY, Chairman.
The General Report having been read and adopted, on the motion of Mr. James Gaskill, seconded by Mr. W. Hunt,
The CHAIRMAN requested the Local Secretaries to furnish local reports from their several districts. Reports or letters were read from London, Glasgow, Manchester, Herefordshire, Padstow, Colchester, Leamington, Whitehaven, &c.
The SECRETARY remarked that in the absence of the gentlemen writing from these more distant places, the hearty expression of their continued interest in the success of the society was most encouraging.
Mr. T. H. W. MORRIS (Birmingham) stated that they expected to do something in Birmingham this winter. Their funds were small, but they had offered free lectures to several literary and mutual improvement societies, on the condition that they should be provided with rooms and audiences. He had been a Vegetarian about