MEDICAL STUDIES 37
legs that nothing could be done with safety to remove it. The other leg was cleaned as well as might be and carefully dressed, and in that state, with one leg cased in pitch, the other bandaged, he was sent to bed. After many days, the leg that was enclosed in pitch ceased to hurt, and the covering became so loose that it was desirable and easy to remove it, when lo and behold l instead of a vast
mupputitting surb4ce, the Ickr was found to be entircly
healed. The other leg, which had been less hurt and carefully dressed, remained much longer unhealed. It seemed clear that the art of dressing was far behind what was possible, and that an application of the dressing before " the air got into the wound " was the thing to be aimed at. The subsequent discovery by Pasteur of the germ theory, and the practical application of it by Sir Joseph, now Lord Lister, has overcome the difficulty.
I was so keen at my medical work, that, being desirous of appreciating the effects of different medicines, I began by taking small doses of all that were included in the pharmacopoeia, commencing with the letter A. It was an interesting experience, but had obvious drawbacks. However, I got nearly to the end of the letter C, when I was stopped by the effects of Croton oil. I had foolishly believed that two drops of it could have no notable effects as a purgative and emetic; but indeed they had, and I can recall them now.
There were histories of occasional outbursts of hysteria in the female wards; one took place whilst I was there. It was a most curious and afflicting spectacle of pure panic. One woman had begun to