Bauhaus-Universität Weimar

A N 
A C C O U N T 
O F 
Some EXPERIMENTS made with Opium on Living and 
The ancient phyficians imagined that opium extinguiflied the 
flame of life in animals by its exceflive cold ; and in later 
times, there have not been wanting thofe who deduced its effets 
from a quite oppofite quality, whereby it was thought to rarify the 
blood and to comprefs the brain or origin of the nerves. Thefe 
falfe notions, however, of the nature and aCtion of opium, have been 
refuted by feveral of the moderns, whofe writings have thrown con- 
fiderable light upon this fubjeCt. 
The following experiments were made with a view (till further 
to illuftrate the manner in which this wonderful drug produces its 
effeCts, and particularly to fliew its influence upon the motion of 
the heart. 
I. Having injeCted a folution of opium in water into the flo- 
mach and guts of a frog, I obferved, that in little more than half 
an hour it feemed to have loft all power of motion, as well as feel¬ 
ing ; for there was no contraction produced in the muicles of its 
limbs and trunk by irritating them. I opened the thorax an hour 
after the injection, and found the heart, inftead of between 60 and 
70, making only 17 pulfations in a minute. The auricle, which 
was much diftended with blood, always contracted firfl, and after 
it the ventricle.


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