صور الصفحة
النشر الإلكتروني
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secretion, and consequent want of narcotic power in that indigenous in colder countries.

In the subsequent article I first endeavour to present an adequate view of what has been recorded of the early history, the popular uses, and employment in medicine of this powerful and valuable substance; I then proceed to notice several experiments which I have instituted on animals, with the view to ascertain its effects on the healthy system; and, lastly, I submit an abstract of the clinical details of the treatment of several patients afflicted with hydrophobia, tetanus, and other convulsive disorders, in which a preparation of Hemp was employed with results, which seem to me to warrant our anticipating from its more extensive and impartial use no inconsiderable addition to the resources of the physician.

In the historical and statistical department of the subject, I owe my cordial thanks for most valuable assistance to the distinguished traveller the Syed Keramut Ali, Mootawulee of the Hooghly Imambarrah, and also to the Hakim Mirza Abdul Razes of Teheran, who have furnished me with interesting details regarding the consumption of Hemp in Candahar, Cabul, and the countries between the Indus and Herat. The Pandit Moodoosudun Gooptu has favoured me with notices of the statements regarding Hemp in the early Sanscrit authors on Materia Medica ;-to the celebrated Kamalakantha Vidyalanka, the Pandit of the Asiatic Society, I have also to record my acknowledgments ;Mr. DaCosta has obligingly supplied me with copious notes from the • Mukzun-ul-Udwieh' and other Persian and Hindee systems of Materia Medica. For information relative to the varieties of the drug, and its consumption in Bengal, Mr. McCann, the Deputy Superintendent of Police, deserves my thanks ;-and, lastly, to Dr. Goodeve, to Mr. Richard O'Shaughnessy, to the late Dr. Bain, to Mr. O'Brien of the Native Hospital, and Nobinchunder Mitter, Sub-Assistant Surgeon, I feel deeply indebted for the clinical details with which they have enriched the subject.


Botanical characters - Chemical Properties- Production. BOTANICAL DESCRIPTION.--Assuming with Lindley and other emi. nent writers that the Cannabis sativa and Indica are identical, we find that the plant is dioecious, annual, about three feet high, covered over with a fine pubescence; the stem is erect, branched, bright green, angular; leaves, alternate or opposite, on long weak petioles; digitate, scabrous, with linear, lanceolate, sharply serrated leaflets, tapering into a long smooth entire point; stipules subulate; clusters of flowers axil. lary with subulate bractes ; males lax and drooping, branched and leafless at base ; females erect, simple and leafy at the base. Calyx downy, five parted, imbricated. Stamens five ; anthers large and pendulous. Calyx covered with brown glands. Ovary roundish with pendulous ovule, and two long filiform glandular stigmas; achenium ovate, one seeded.-v. Lindley's Flora Medica, p. 299.*

The fibres of the stems are long and extremely tenacious, so as to afford the best tissue for cordage, thus constituting the material for one of the most important branches of European manufactures.

The seed is simply albuminous and oily, and is devoid of all narcotic properties.

Chemical PROPERTIES.-In certain seasons and in warm countries a resinous juice exudes and concretes on the leaves, slender stems, and flowers ;—the mode of removing this juice will be subsequently detailed. Separated and in masses it constitutes the Churrust of Nipal and Hindostan, and to this the type, or basis of all the Hemp preparations, are the powers of these drugs attributable.

The resin of the Hemp is very soluble in alcohol and ether; partially soluble in alkaline; insoluble in acid solutions; when pure, of a blackish grey colour; hard at 90°; softens at higher temperatures, and fuses readily ;-soluble in the fixed and in several volatile oils. Its

* The drawing which illustrates this paper has been copied by my accomplished friend Dr. George Wallich, from Roxburgh's unpublished plate.

+ For very fine specimens of Churrus, I have to express my thanks to Dr. Campbell, late assistant Resident at Nipal.


odour is fragrant and narcotic; taste slightly warm, bitterish, and acrid.

The dried Hemp plant which has flowered and from which the resin has not been removed is called Gunjah. It sells for twelve annas to one rupee the seer, in the Calcutta bazars, and yields to alcohol twenty per 100 of resinous extract, composed of the resin (churrus), and green colouring matter (chlorophylle). Distilled with a large quantity of water, traces of essential oil pass over, and the distilled liquor has the powerful narcotic odour of the plant. The Gunjah is sold for smoking chiefly. The bundles of Gunjah are about two feet long and three inches in diameter, and contain twenty-four plants. The colour is dusky green-the odour agreeably narcotic-the whole plant resinous and adhesive to the touch.

The larger leaves and capsules without the stalks, called Bang, Subjee or Sidhee." They are used for making an intoxica. ting drink, for smoking, and in the conserve or confection termed Majoon. Bang is cheaper than Gunjah, and though less powerful, is sold at such a low price that for one pice enough can be purchased to intoxicate an “experienced" person.

According to Mr. McCann's notes, the Gunjah consumed in Bengal is chiefly brought from Mirzapur and Ghazeepore, being extensively cultivated near Gwalior and in Tirhoot. The natives cut the plant when in flower, allow it to dry for three days, and then lay it in bundles averaging one seer weight each, which are distributed to the licensed dealers. The best kinds are brought from Gwalior and Bhurtpore, and it is also cultivated, of good quality, in a few gardens round Calcutta. In Jessore, I am informed, the drug is produced of excellent quality, and to a very considerable extent of cultivation.

In Central India and the Saugor territory and in Nipal, Churrus is collected during the hot season in the following singular manner. Men clad in leathern dresses run through the Hemp-fields brushing through the plant with all possible violence; the soft resin adheres to the leather, and is subsequently scraped off and kneaded into balls, which sell from five to six rupees the seer. A still finer kind, the Momeea or waxen Churrus, is collected by the hand in Nipal, and sells for nearly double the price of the ordinary kind. In Nipal, Dr. McKinnon informs me, the leathern attire is dispensed with, and the resin is gathered on

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