UP to the year 1889, the Science and Art Department of South Kensington required that candidates for the examination in hygiene should at some previous time have passed the Departmental test in physiology. Since that date, however, the Science and Art authorities have decided that the hygiene paper shall contain questions on physiology, embracing the general structure of the human body, the forms, positions, and uses of the more important organs, more especially the construction and action of the circulatory and respiratory systems, and of the digestive and excretory organs; and that a separate examination in this subject shall be dispensed with. Dr. Newsholme's “Lessons on Health” is a manual designed to cover the requirements of the elementary stage of the hygiene examination under the altered regulations. Writing for elementary readers, the author wisely begins by devoting a chapter to the chemistry of the chief elements which enter into the composition of the body. The next four chapters are taken up with histology and physiology, but here we do not think the author has entered sufficiently into detail to enable beginners to-grasp the full meaning of what they are reading. Our objections have special reference to the histology. For example, the author tells us that the tissues, when examined microscopically, are found to consist of cells, which, in the case of muscular and connective tissues, have become transformed into fibres; and that the original appearance of cells is best seen in the cells of connective tissue, brain, and epithelium. No explanation, however, is given as to what is meant by a cell; nor even a brief account of the appearances and structure of the other tissues of the body; so that, when the reader comes to learn such facts as that the stomach is composed of four different coats, or that there are three layers in the wall of an artery, the latter differing from a vein in possessing more elastic tissue, he cannot form any adequate idea as to the meaning of these words. Again, in the description of the skeleton, the sterno-clavicular articulation is mentioned, but no allusion is made to the joint between the clavicle and scapula; the ulna is said to articulate with the humerus, but no mention is made of the fact that the head of the radius enjoys the same privilege.
Lessons on Health.
By Arthur Newsholme (Univ. Lond.). (London: W. H. Allen and Co., 1890.)
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