arise, merely from a difference in the size of drops. This however might
be the case, where the tinctura thebaica is by accident taken for the
tinctura meconii. To such mistakes, however, it was feared that the analogy
of the articles, as well as the caution necessary with respect to both,
might lead ; and it was upon the whole reckoned safer to have but one
liquid laudanum only. It is, however, much to be regretted, that the liquid
laudanum of the London and Edinburgh colleges, which by the former is
now styled Tinctura oppii, by the latter Tinctura thebaica,
should differ so much from each other in point of strength.
TINCTURA OPII CAMPHORATA.
Camphorated tincture of opium.
Hard purified opium,
Flowers of Benzoine, of each one dram ;
Camphor, two scruples ;
Essential oil of aniseed, one dram ;
Proof-spirit of wine, two pints.
Digest for three days.
Flowers of benzoine,
English saffron, of each three drams ;
Opium, two drams ;
Essential oil of aniseeds, half a dram ;
Vinous spirit of sal ammoniac, sixteen ounces.
Digest for four days in a close vessel, and strain.
THESE two, though differint
nor merely in name, may yet be
considered as agreeing very nearly in their nature.
The most material difference in the last formula from
the first are the substitution of the vinous spirit of sal ammoniac to
the proof-spirit of wine, and a larger proportion of opium ; the vinous
spirit of sal ammoniac is not only, perhaps, a more powerful menstruum,
but in most instances coincides with the virtues of the preparation ;
but as the opium is the ingredient on which we place the principal dependance,
so its proportion is increased, in order that we may give it such a dose
as that the acrimony of the menstruum shall not prove hurtful to the stomach.
The London formula is taken from Le Mort, with the
omission of three unnecessary ingredients, honey, liquorice, and alkaline
salt. It was originally prescribed under the title of ELIXIR
ASTHMATICUM, which it does not ill deserve. It contributes to allay
the tickling which provokes frequent coughing ; and at the same time is
supposed to open the breast, and give greater liberty of breathing : the
opium procures (as it does by itself) a temporary relief from the symptoms
; whilst the other ingredients tend to remove the cause, and prevent their
return. It is given to children agaist the chincough, &c. from
five drops to twenty : to adults, from twenty to an hundred. In the London
formula, half an ounce by measure contains about a grain of opium : but
in the Edinburgh formula, the proportion of opium is larger.
Tincture of Rhubarb.
Rhubarb, sliced, two ounces ;