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The masses of men, women, and children in these Barracks, is another cause of the unhealthiness experienced generally in them by the troops. There are no separate accommodations for the women and children. The doors and windows are jealousied.
The cold weather here was generally ushered in by severe hepatic and dysenteric affections. And in the hot season there were severe ardent fevers, very sudden in their operation, and often terminating in apoplexy.
In His Majesty's 13th Light Infantry for the period of two years, for 1830 and 1831 last, at Dinapore, the average proportion of deaths to strength was,
The facility with which the men could obtain toddy, and deleterious liquors in excess, was one great source of disease and mortality, as also the difficulty of confining the men within bounds, there being no enclosure to the Barrack compound.
The 13th being a Light Infantry corps, their movements were more likely to expose them to profuse perspiration, and consequently to more frequent alterations of heat and cold, with the usual bad effects.
In the Station of Boglipore the Barracks formerly occupied by His Majesty's 3rd Buffs, were merely a set of buildings erected temporarily in 1825 as stables for some Native Cavalry, and were very inimical to health.
The Station of Ghazeepore appears to hold a middle station as to healthiness. The soil is readily permeable by the rain falling on its surface, which sinking down to a very considerable depth before it finds a hard bottom to detain it, is soon out of reach of superficial evaporation, and cannot afford the constant supply of moisture necessary in cooperation with other agents to produce the maturity of marsh miasmata. From the continuation of these circumstances it might a priori be thought that the Station possesses to a great degree an immunity from marsh miasmata.
For the period of four years, from 1830 to 1833, the average proportion of deaths to strength is,
In the Station of Kurnaul the locality of the Barracks for His Majesty's Regiment is the best the place afforded.
The soil generally is
light and sandy on the surface, but at the depth of 12 or 15 inches it is a stiff clay; in some parts however it is calcarious, (and of which the natives make lime). The large canal in the immediate vicinity forms an irregular semicircle near the Station, and tends in a great measure to drain that part.
For the period of three years, from 1831 to 1833, inclusive, in which it has been occupied by a King's Regiment, the average proportion, of deaths to strength per cent is,
In the Station of Agra the cantonment for His Majesty's troops is stated to be elevated about 170 feet above the level of the river Jumna, from which the distance is about the same as from the Fort, that is 1 mile. The immediate banks of the river are deeply indented with water-courses, which serve to convey the rain water into the river.
The 13th Light Infantry Regiment has been healthy ever since its arrival there, a period of two years, in which there died 29 men; but almost all of them had the foundation of their disease laid in Dinapore. This comparative healthiness, as far as locality is concerned, arises from the cantonment enjoying constant ventilation, the water running immediately off, the drainage being good, and there being no stagnant pools, or sources of malaria in the vicinity, and especially that the troops are well accommodated, and so are the sick. Setting aside intemperance, which is the cause of so many diseases of the soldier in India, they may be said to have enjoyed a state of health at Agra almost equal to what a Regiment would be found to do in the healthiest parts of Europe.
For the period of two years, for 1832 and 1833, in which there has been a King's Regiment in Agra, the average proportion of deaths to strength per cent is,
Inspect. Gen. Hospitals H. Majesty's Forces in India.
ART. VIII. Observations on the Burmese and Munipoor Varnish Tree, Melanorrhoea usitata," which has lately blossomed in the Honorable Company's Botanic Garden. By N. WALLICH, M.D.
When I published my account of this tree in 1830,* I had only met with it in fruit, and was obliged to confine the description of the flower to what could be gathered from a few decayed and not very perfect samples in my possession. The generic character was chiefly derived from specimens of another species, Melanorrhea glabra,+ a native of the coast of Tenasserim. As I have recently had a tree of M. usitata in flower in this garden, I am able to furnish the following details, accompanied by a lithographic sketch of a flowering panicle, from a drawing made by one of the painters of the establishment.
The individual tree to which I allude is one among several which were raised from Munipoor seeds presented by Mr. George Swinton. The seeds were sown in July 1827, and began germinating exactly a fortnight afterward. About the same period some seeds that had been procured from Martaban, being more fresh, sprang up seven days after being put into the ground. The tree which has blossomed is the largest among the seventeen individuals which we at present possess. It measures in height about 22 feet, with a clean stem of seven feet, having a circumference near the base of 14 inches. It has not many branches, and is now very scantily furnished with leaves. It began opening its flowers on the 20th of January last, and continued nearly one whole month in flower. There are at present a small number of fruits on the tree, which I expect will ripen in the course of next month.
* Plantæ Asiat. Rar. 1. p, 9. tab. 11 and 12.
+ Ibid 3. p. 50 ab. 283.