« AnteriorContinuar »
the several gentlemen who had not before had an opportunity of so doing. After he had been restored to consciousness,
Mr Turner expressed himself as being fully convinced that there was something real in the mesmeric trance, as he had seen effects produced in a fellow pupil of his, and who could not be relieved from them for some considerable time, when it was desirable that the effects should have been immediately got rid of; as it was, the master of the two had discovered that they had been playing at mesmerising with each other, instead of minding their business ; but as to its curative effects he had doubts; there appeared to be no theory on which its power of healing could be accounted for. People used Holloway's ointment, and got well sometimes during its use, but he did not think that the ointment produced the cure, and the same thing might be said with regard to mesmerism. He thought weak-miuded and superstitious persons were more easily influenced by it than others. He had known cases produced against the will, in India, after frequent operations. Again, if mesmerism was intended as a curative, the great majority of persons would be influenced by it; but such was not the case, it was only in isolated cases where the influence was felt.
Dr Purland said that he had seen children of all ages mesmerised. Mr Davies, from Yorkshire, stated that he knew a case of atrophy in a woman, of thirty years' duration, who had been restored to health by mesmerism; and also related a case of a young female who was mesmerised against her will.
On the motion of the chairman, a vote of thanks was unanimously passed to Dr Purland for his paper, after which the meeting adjourned.
SPECIAL GENERAL MEETING. A SPECIAL General Meeting of the Members of the College was held on the 16th March, at the rooms of the Institution, Cavendish square, in pursuance of the following requisition.
February 22nd, 1859. TO THE COUNCIL OF THE COLLEGE OF DENTISTS OF ENGLAND,
We, the undersigned Members of the College of Dentists of England, being of opinion that the original principles on which the College was founded in the late unfortunate attempts at amalgamation, and the differences arising in consequence) have been departed from, greatly to the disadvantage of the College, beg that the Council will convene an early Meeting of the Members, for the purpose of taking into consideration the present position of the College, and to determine what course shall be pursued with regard to its future management.
R. THOMSON. H. T. KEMPTON.
The Chairman, in opening the business, said that his remarks should be very brief, for no doubt they had all received a Circular from the Secretary, convening the Meeting. They would remember that at their last Annual Meeting he suggested that they should call a Special Assembly in order to take into consideration the present position of the College ; and he had no doubt that it was in consequence of the observations which he then made that the present meeting had been summoned.
Mr Rymer (Hon. Sec. to the Council) then read the Circular convening the Meeting.
Mr THOMSON rose and said: Mr President and Gentlemen, Some of the members having thought it advisable that a meeting should take place, to take into consideration the present position of this College, and to deliberate upon what course it may be thought best to pursue for future action, and as my name heads the list of those members who have signed the requisition for this meeting, I may be expected to bring forward some plan, or make some propositions under existing circumstances; but I have been so much engaged otherwise, that I really have not had time to devote to it; this I regret, because of the great importance attached. My reason for first joining this movement was not to support the actual promoters, but the principle, as I conscientiously believed that something was necessary to be done, if the British Dentist is to maintain his position with other nations. There are no people in Europe, or perhaps the world, like the noble and wealthy classes of England, for extending their patronage to foreign in preference to native talent, when there are circumstances that lead them to believe that such is the most efficient, and this is too often supposed to be the case when there is no reality. This results from prejudice, and prejudice is a subtile agent not easily subdued or overcome. In early life I was situated so as to be cognizant of the bad effects of prejudice in favour of foreign talent and against native, however mean the former, and superior the latter. This was in a very beautiful line of art, that no man could follow unless he was possessed of genius, and great abilities generally ; there were hundreds of very superior men employed in it, many of their names were not only household words, but they were worshipped by those who required their services; but the Government of a sister foreign nation established an institution for the systematic education of this line of art. As soon as this became known in England a cry arose, which soon became universal, that that nation having this institution, how greatly the men of that country must excel, and it had the effect, in the course of a few years, of bringing many of the most eminent professors of the art from affluence to penury. Those advanced in years and most experienced went to the wall, while the younger men turned their attention to other pursuits. There has since been a reaction in favour of native talent in that line ; but it was not brought round till our Government established similar institutions. The present position of the Dental Profession appears to be much analogous. Since the establishment of a Foreign College for Dentists I have observed a strong tide setting in from across the Atlantic, that will overwhelm many, unless there is something done by union to raise a breakwater to stem the swelling torrent and keep it within bounds, and the gentlemen who are likely to be affected as any are they who have been fostering this devastating element. The prevailing principle with the English Dentist has been, since the establishment of the Baltimore College, to praise and exalt the foreign Dentist, and to condemn or deprecate their fellow-practitioners at home, forgetful that they themselves, in their turn, may be lessened, along with the whole body, in the eyes of the British public, to whom it is now so well known that the Americans have a College, and of which it is believed that every American Dentist is a member. But this appears to be far from being the case. But they have the name of having a College, and that is enough, and that is wherein lies the grand secret of their success. For having established a College and other Dental Institutions, they are to be commended, and all they say in their own praise, or of each other, is perfectly justifiable. Yet, when any attempt is made to emulate them, the majority hold aloof, and others use all the means in their power to crush the efforts that are being made. This College must be supported by all who study their future advantage. Notwithstanding all the opposition, there are still good funds, an interesting museum, and a respectable number of members. A school of Dental Science is about to be established, but is it probable that Dentists who have been in practice perhaps for twenty years will join it as students ? I say no. Then let this College be supported for those who have long been in practice, and have conducted their professional duties efficiently and creditably to themselves, and satisfactorily to those who have patronised them; and let the school be for young men who are about to enter the Profession. It is expected that the College of Surgeons will grant Dental diplomas to those who study at that school; should this be the case, they will soon come in opposition to those now in practice, and all that the older practitioners can have will only be, perhaps, hospital certificates, which, if the possessor thinks it advisable to have framed and hung up in his surgery, would have but a poor look in comparison to this intended Dental diploma from the College of Surgeons. And that is not all, there is the foreigner, with his name, which has been sounded before his arrival for perhaps the last fifteen years, come, backed by a diploma as a doctor of Dental Surgery; and again, a few Englishmen, who, leaving home for a short period, return, boasting of the same qualification, a D.D.S. ; such qualification, if genuine, seems to be easily obtained in America, for we hear of those who have their diploma giving a London Dentist a fee for tuition after their return. This position is very humiliating to the English Dentist; why should it be so much of a boast to have visited America, it is only because they have a college. Then I say we ought to have a college, there is as much talent, genius, and perseverance in England as anywhere else. (Hear, hear.) Then why lag behind any other nation? The body of English Dentists are equal to any that can be brought against them, if prejudice is set aside. Some of the American Dentists certainly excel in gold stopping, for which they deserve great credit. But then they are not all first-class stoppers, any more than that English Dentists are not all good practical men. If we are to maintain our position, we must support this College, and keep up its character by having first-class lectures, such as are given by Dr Richardson, and eventually we will command respect. Our cause is a good and just one, and if united, it shall ultimately prevail, and finally triumph. (Applause.)
I regret that the many claims upon my time have prevented my submitting to the Meeting such a series of well digested measures as the emergency of our present position would seem to demand ; but I hope that my omission in this respect will be supplied by some of my co-requisitionists. (Hear, hear.)
Mr WEISS, who had been requested by the requisitionists to embody their views in a resolution, rose to move :
That this Meeting, being now in possession of all the facts relating to the present position of the College, and feeling that the College, by departing from its original objects and intentions, has been deprived of much of its usefulness to the Dental body at large; resolves that the regulations passed September 22nd, 1858, be now rescinded, and that the Council be empowered to frame such bye-laws as shall carry out the principles on which the College was founded, and to submit the same to a future meeting of Members. Further—that such bye-laws shall include provisions for granting Diplomas of Membership, without examination, to those Members of the Profession now in
practice; to institute an examination for those who have not commenced practice, but who may hereafter desire Membership; to open a Reading Room and Library for the use of Members, and to appoint Lectureships on subjects relating to Dental Science.
He thought it necessary, in reviewing the present aspect of affairs, that they should go back to that period when the present Council entered upon office. The difficulties of their position at that time had been so often discussed that it was unnecessary to dwell upon them now. There was every desire to continue the College upon its original foundation, but it was thought important that an effort should be made to unite all parties, and with that view, and with the hope of raising the Dental Profession generally, the regulations were agreed to, which were confirmed on the 22nd of September last. It was needless to remark what no doubt they had most of them discovered, that it would be impossible to carry out those regulations. They had discussed the matter so frequently that they had long since determined that if they were to continue as a College, and there was no reason why they should not, they must do so as an independent body. It would be perfectly competent for them, after the ratifi. cation of the resolution which he had read, to guard against any person who might hereafter wish to become a Member of the College practising who did not hold a diploma from a licensing body. That was a matter, the details of which might be settled hereafter, but that it should be imperative upon Dentists to hold the diploma of any other licensing body than their own appeared to him to be simply preposterous. (Cheers). He contended that it was unnecessary that they should ever allow any blanks to occur in the officers of their College; although he admitted that they had suffered severely of late, not so much by opposition from without as by desertion from within, and he could not but feel surprised that men who professed to have a common object with them should have left them at the most critical period of their career. (Hear, hear.) There was no doubt that they had suffered severely from the desertion of those who had no excuse to offer for their withdrawal, and who could neither say that they disapproved of the object of the College, or of the means by which those objects were sought to be maintained. He urged, therefore, that it was of prime im, portance that they should fill up all the offices of the College, even although in the first instance it might be at some little inconvenience to themselves. He would only further add that in their future proceedings they had now arrived at a position when mere externals must not be considered at the expense of more solid advantages, and when the most stringent economy must be practised in the management of their funds, and the general direction of their affairs. (Hear, hear.)
Mr PERKINS begged most cordially to second the resolution,