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was to be exhibited. Is this Mr. Trotter's meaning? But, if so, how did it happen, that at the very time when he' scarcely knew the nature of the decision ;' when he did not know that the new medicine was one of powerful and extraordinary effects, he yet
thought that alleviation of the disease was more desirable than the impracticable attempt of the physicians ; yet heard of the decision with dissatisfaction and sorrow; yet trembled for the effect of that decision upon the life of Mr. Fox? and how does it happen, that Mr. Trotter, who now tells us, thạt he ? scarcely knew the nature of the decision,' has told us scarcely twenty lines above, the precise nature of this decision ;-hat he heard of this decision; and that it was the cause of his dissatisfaction and sorrow? I am aware, that Mr. Trotter also talks of his dissatisfaction and sorrow as what he could not well account for,' but this is only an humble attempt to follow Mrs. Radcliffe.' Mr. Trotter, who has his corridors and boudoirs at p. 451, and vehemently hones after a ghost, has seasoned his whole book with pathetic insinua, tions of occult , causes, presentiments, and omens. It remains then for me, to account', for the unaccountable dilemma in which we here fod 'Mr. Trotter, and which I hope to do, to the satisfaction of every reader, who will accompany me through the entire paragraph. That paragraph will be found to have for its object to unite three distinct ideas; and, in the amalgamation, Mr, Trotter has evidently lost himself. He begins by stating, that a most powerful and extraordinary medicine was to be administered to Mr. Fox. He adds, that he knew it to be powerful and extra. ordinary', that he dreaded the risk; and even anticipated a fatal result. Here, we are amazed with Mr. Trotter's sagacity; and, so far, all is well but Mr. Trotter, in this part of bis discourse, suddenly perceives, that he is liable to be asked by his reader, what all those allied by blood or affection to Mr. Fox, what Mr. Fox himself, and what even Mr. Trotter, were about, while the physicians were uninterruptedly making their impracticable attempt? This question he proceeds to answer, and does it in a way which would be 'highly satisfactory, if it were not, that unfortunately his invention outstrips his memory, and places him in the luckless situ. ation, of having made two assertions, both of which cannot be true. The persons, whom he now sets about to exculpate, are, Lörd Holland, Mr. Fox, Mrs. Fox, and Mr. Trotter. Lord Hollaud, whom he charges with having been a party to the act which caused the immediate death of Mr. Fox, he brings off, by saying, that his · Lordship suffered so much at this period, that he could not decide with the requisite calmness. Mr. Fox's opinion, he thinks, was not taken; and, as to Mrs. Fox, and Mr. Trotter, they were so much exhausted, and worn out with constant cares',
Fort, what ibe pune This that they scarcely knew the nature of the decision i' and they did not know that the decision was, to exhibit the most powerful medicine, &c.—This, to be sure, is utterly at variance with all that precedés, but shall we accuse, on such an oecasion, of deliberate falsehood, a man, whose ideas were not,' and we may: safely say, are not,' well developed, even to himself?'' . v. · But, as I have already intimated, these are things far more cus. rious than important. Mr. Trotter's main story is unaffected by any of the inaccuracies above noticed, and that main story a few words will tell. Mr. Trotter's physicians (God pardon them!) after discovering that his case was " hopeless,' propose to give himr : a strong remedy,' in the shape of the medicine - most efficacious in desperate cases. It is unpleasant to talk of these things, but : we all know, what must be a physician's 'strong remedy? in a hopeless case. When men are starving at sea, the efficacious: remedy, in this desperate' case, is to scuttle the ship, and drown. Mr. Fox's physicians saw things in this view, and it was decided to administer the most powerful medicine ... it was decided that this should be administered to Mr. Fox.' Mr. Trotter · heard of. this determination with dissatisfaction and sorrow ... He wished life to be preserved as long as possible... He thought that alleviation of the disease was more desirable. But the physicians decided upon the point of administering a strong remedy.'...They were tender-hearted men, and yet they took the medical and not the moral view of the case (Mr. Trotter is of opinion, that, a medical and a moral view of a patient's case may clash),...the importance of Mr. Fox's existence, to the utmost length which 'nature would permit, was not weighed with the anxiety and veneration it inerite ed:' and Mr. Trotter, with his own hand, reluctantly obeying an
Mr. Trotter, whose skill in composition must have delighted the friends of truth', as much as his adherence to truth must have edified them, has here intro duced, by a hocus-pocus of the most extraordinary kind,' the Cabinet itself. Mr. Trotter begins his paragraph with the names of Mr. Fox's physicians, and with remarks on the strong remedy' which they had decided on administering, and therefore he might well excuse his readers, if they should profess themselves wholly unable to comprehend the meaning of the word “Cabinet,' used in such a connection. Allowing, however, for courtesy sake, that I, for one, do una derstand it, I must be suffered to offer such an emendation of the text as every English critic (from Lowth to Lindley Murray) will pronounce, I believe; to be necessary for the due expression of the author's ideas. The emended text will stand as follows: "The humanity and feeling evinced by all the physicians, and peculiarly by Dr, Pitcairn, and Sir Henry Halford (then Dr. Vaughan), left no room to imagine but that they had considered the case, not only with judgment; but great tenderness for their patient: I incline to the opinion, however, that the strong political and moral, as well as medical view, was not taken, and that the importance of Mr. Fox's existence, to the utmost length which mature would permit, was not weighed with the anxiety it merited, either by those playsicians, on by the Cabinet itself."--Memoirs, p. 458. 2 B 2
order at which his whole mind revolted, administered, the fatal medicine.' (p. 459.) Had hat fatal me dicine' bot been administered, • it is true, only a few montis might bave been gained ; perhaps six or eight; rechaps less. After receiving the medicine several times,' Mr. Fox' grew alarmingly worse.' Mr. Fox died. Mr. Fox's body was opened, and the liver was found irretrievably diseased.' This haviog been the state of the liver, Mr. Trotter is inclined to thinks that the most viulent medii ne' (of which description was the medicwe adminis tered) was improper. (p. 473 ). In fact, the physicians, though, so doubt, they considered the case' with what judgment nature had blessed then ; the physicians mistook their tinie. - When Mr. Fox's disorder nade its tirst appearance, that was the time to have applied 'powerfui remedies ;' (p: 475.). but these 'hope ful physicians applied powerful remedies when the time was pasty and a very pretty conclusion their ' impracticable attempt' attained ! As Mr. Fox's age was not more than tify-seven, and his constitution a very vigorous one, there is some reason to think he might have enjoyed a meliorated, and not very distressing state of heaith, if the pailiative, rather than experimental course, had been pursued.' A creditable retlection, truly, for the physicians, aud a soothing one for my Lord Holland, who, Mr. Trotter understood, was a party to the experiinent upon his uncle's life; ' ?! +
... his kinsman and his hosts That should against the murderer shut the duor,
Not bear the knife hinsi lf! and whom Mr. Trotter's charity has only been able to acquit, from the consideration, that he was in a state of too much suffering at the time, to decide with the requisite calmness! Mr. Trotter, baving tinished his story, concludes with a reprimand to the physicians, in the justice of which all his readers must concur: In ordinury cases,' says this profound statesman and philanthropist, 'it may be right to try the most powerful medicine, if a case seem hopeless, because it may be a beneficial erpériment, and be little prejudicial to.any one, but in this instance of Mr. Fox, the prow longation of his invaluable existence was so incalculably important, that the welfare of the community, in a political view, should have superseded medical experiments and its chances.' Alas! that it did not. But who knows but the physicians are Pittites--fellows that had never found out the incalculable importance of Mr. Pox's .invaluable existence?' and, if so, what difficulty is there in accounting for their medical experiments ? I say, that such peu (proverbial for their infatuatio) might mistake Mr. Fox's
case for an ordinary case;' and in ordinary cases,' says Mr. Trotter, it may be right for physicians to try the most powerful medicines, if a case seem hopeless, because it may be a beneficial experiment, and little prejudicial to any one. I should add, that Mr. Trotter expresses an opinion, that that most powerful me- : dicine,' which, he asserts, was administered, was no other than digitalis, or foxglove.
Sir, I confess, that I have a longing desire, to say a word or tto, in behalf of John-a-Noakes, and Thomas Styles, and other ordinary men, like myself, who may one day fall into the clutches of Sir Henry Halford, and Doctor Moseley, and become the subject of medical experiments,' even with the approbation. of Mr. Trotter, who will say, that they are beneficial experie. ments ;' that the case of such a person as the author of this letter must have been long hopeless, and that the issue of any experiment: upon him can be little prejudicial to any one !' But my letter is. already so immoderately long, that I hasten, with what speed I am. master of, toward its conclusion. Well, then, this round, undarnished tale of Mr. Trotter's has called forth a tale by the physicians, and, strange as it may appear, the physicians fully and distinctly contradict all that is asserted by Mr. Trotter, from beginning to end. Sir Henry Halford, in a letter to Lord Holland, writes, “I assure you, my Lord, Mr. Fox never took a particle of the digitalis, during his illness, because neither Dr. Pitcairn, Dr. Moseley, nur myself, thought it would be of use to him; nor was any other potent medicine of doubtful ethcacy administered to him, by which his dissolution could possibly be accelerated. In fact, during the last fortnight of Mr. Fox's life, he took cordial medi.. cines only, such as were likely to sustain the Tonstitution as long as possible. In a letter to Dr. Moseley, the same physician remarks,
Mr. Trotter states, at least he more than insinuates, that Mr. Fox's death was hastened by the use of digitalis. Now, I believe, that digitalis was never administered at all in Mr. Fox's case...In fact, as far as my recollection goes, we abandoned all hope of a cure when we found the fluid accumulate again so rapidly after.the first operation; and, after Mr. Fox had been tapped a second time, we prescribed no other remedies than cordials, to sustain his frame as long as possible.' To Mr. Tegart, he says, I think Mr. Fox took nothing but cordials after the last tapping. Whep we found that the fluid accumulated again rapidly after the second puncturing, then, I believe, we abandoned all hope of doing good by further active attempts to cure his disease, and determined to protract life as long as we could, by measures calculated to give him power, and to sustain his system. Mr. Tegart replieswor haver exarqued, with great diligence, the several prescriptions written
by the late Dr. Piteairn, Dr. Moseley, and yourself (the attending physicians), and that I find no one of them contains a particle of the medicine alluded to, in any shape or forn. After the second tapping, which took place on the Sist of August, up to the 13th of September, 1800, the day of Mr. Fox's dissolution, the me dicines exhibited to him were entirely of the tonic and cordial kind, and were given then, solely with a view of supporting his sireilgth Lord Holland, whom Wr Trotter represents to have been consulted by the physicians, confirms this part of. Mr. Trotter's story, by undertaking to pronounce, as he does pronounce, for the aceuracy of Mr. Tegart's statement ::. You will further oblige me,' says his Lordship, in reply to Sir Henry. Halford, .by conveying my acknowledgments to Mr. Tegart for the accuracy of his statement:'--Thus is Mr. Trotter met at every corner, and at every coreer defeated.
But, in this happy state of the author's affairs, his bookseller sets about to cover his retreat.. Sir Richard Phillips has published a letter, in which he tells us, · That nothing is gained by this contradiction of the physicians, as that is only pretended jo be contradicted, which has not been asserted.': Mr. Trotter asserts, that a' most powerful medicine,' a ' fatal medicine' (which he concluded to be digitalis), was administered to Mr, Fox; and Sir Henry Halford, supported by the other names which have been mentioned, distinctly contradicts this assertion, assuring, us, that
Mr. Fox never took a particle of the digitalis during his illness, and that no other potent medicine was adminstered to him, by which his dissolution could possibly be accelerated;' and yet Sir. Richard Phillips says, that that only is pretended to be contradicted, which has never been 'asserted !!, Mr. Trotter asseris, that some course of medical treatment was pursued in regard to Mr. Fox, but for which,' there is reason to think, he might have lived a considerable time;' and, on the part of the physicians, this assertion is contradicted by the statement, that the treatment resorted to had no other object than that of protracting life. But Sir Richard says, that that only is pretended to be contradicted, which has never been asserted.'-That this letter of Sir Richard Phillips's deserves no further answer is certain; but that Mr. Trotter's book ought in like manner to be neglected, is a position which seems very questionable. Can men be more scandalously and maliciously libelled, in either their moral or their professional character, than are Mr. Fox's physicians in Mr. Trotter's book? Can a professional man make out a stronger case of probable damage, than from the currency of such a libel? If I believed Sir Henry Halford or Dr. Moseley capable of making me, or any one that is mine, the subject of a medical experi