Bauhaus-Universität Weimar

to destructive action, as shown by the ensuing blister. The 
larger and more exposed nerve-terminations of the tongue 
render it more rapidly sensible than other portions of the 
body : in other words, the destructive action is probably set up 
there much more instantaneously then elsewhere. Alkalies, 
everywhere disintegrative, specially affect the oral cavity. 
We have no direct evidence as to the action of bitter 
substances, but reasons will be adduced in a later chapter, 
which render it probable that they are similarly destructive 
to the nerve-terminations. Other unpleasant tastes will 
receive more extended treatment in the same place. 
In Smell, the tactual nerves distributed to the entrance 
of the respiratory canal are affected by pungent odours 
(such as ammonia) in the same manner as those of the 
tongue by pungent tastes. If the smallness in amount of 
the irritant seems inconsistent with the notion of disinter- 
ration, we must remember that the special sense-organs 
are collections of specially-unstable nerve-matter, so placed 
as to be specially disturbed by small incident energies, and 
that this indeed constitutes their very essence as specialized 
organs. The case of smells proper will form the subject of 
a separate section later on ; but there is nothing improbable 
in the conjecture that the disagreeable ones destructively 
attack the olfactory cells. 
Touch yields us hardly any Pains; but the unpleasant 
sensation produced by a rough object in contact with the 
skin and chafing against it is evidently a result of slight 
disintegrative tendencies. 
In Hearing, it is clear that very loud sounds, such as the


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