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DROOPING BUDS.

IN Paris, Berlin, Turin, Frankfort, Brussels,
and Munich; in Hamburgh, St. Petersburgh,
Moscow, Vienna, Prague, Pesth, Copenhagen,
Stuttgard, Grätz, Brünn, Lemberg, and
Constantinople; there are hospitals for sick
children. There was not one in all England
until the other day.

No hospital for sick children! Does the
public know what is implied in this ? Those
little graves two or three feet long, which are
so plentiful in our churchyards and our
cemeteriesto which, from home, in absence
from the pleasures of society, the thoughts of
many a young mother sadly wanderdoes the
public know that we dig too many of them?
Of this great city of Londonwhich, until a
few weeks ago, contained no hospital wherein
to treat and study the diseases of children
more than a third of the whole population
perishes in infancy and childhood. Twenty-
four in a hundred die, during the two first
years of life; and, during the next eight
years, eleven die out of the remaining seventy-
six.

Our children perish out of our homes: not
because there is in them an inherent
dangerous sickness (except in the few cases where
they are born of parents who communicate to
children heritable maladies), but because there
is, in respect of their tender lives, a want of
sanitary discipline and a want of medical
knowledge. What should we say of a rose-tree
in which one bud out of every three dropped
to the soil dead? We should not say that this
was natural to roses; neither is it natural
to men and women that they should see the
glaze of death upon so many of the bright eyes
that come to laugh and love among themor
that they should kiss so many little lips grown
cold and still. The vice is external. We
fail to prevent disease; and, in the case of
children, to a much more lamentable extent
than is well known, we fail to cure it.

Think of it again. Of all the coffins that are
made in London, more than one in every three
is made for a little child: a child that has not
yet two figures to its age. Although science
has advanced, although vaccination has been
discovered and brought into general use,
although medical knowledge is tenfold greater
than it was fifty years ago, we still do not
gain more than a diminution of two per
cent. in the terrible mortality among our
children.

It does not at all follow that the intelligent
physician who has learnt how to treat
successfully the illnesses of adults, has only
to modify his plans a little, to diminish the
proportions of his doses, for the application
of his knowledge to our little sons and
daughters. Some of their diseases are peculiar
to themselves; other diseases, common to us
all, take a form in children varying as much
from their familiar form with us as a child
varies from a man. Different as the ways are,
or ought to be, by which we reach a fault in a
child's mind, and reach a fault in the mind of
an adult; so, not less different, if we would
act successfully, should be our action upon
ailments of the flesh. There is another
thing, also, which puzzles the physician who
attends on children. He comes to us when
we are ill, and questions us of this symptom
and of that; and on our answers he is
taught, in very many cases, to base a large
part of his opinion. The infant can only
wail; the child is silenced by disease; or,
when it answers, wants experience, and
answers incorrectly. Again, for life or death,
all the changes in the sickness of a child are
commonly very rapid: so rapid, that a child
which suffers under an acute disease should
be seen at least every five or six hours by its
medical attendant. He knows this quickness
of action; he knows how swiftly and how
readily the balance may be turned upon which
hang life and death. He may have been to
Paris or to Vienna, and have studied in an
hospital for children; and, out of his
experience, he may know how to restore the child
whole to the mother's bosom. But all English
students cannot go abroad for this good
knowledge; nor is it fit that they have need
to do so. They have need at present. In a
rough way, English practitioners of medicine
no doubt administer relief to many children;
but, that they are compelled to see those
perishing continually whom a better
knowledge might have saved, none are more ready
than themselvesthe more skilful the more
readyto admit and to deplore.

The means of studying the diseases of
children in London have been confined to one
dispensary, and the general hospitals. In these,

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