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November 16, 1889


JAMA. 1889;XIII(20):708-709. doi:10.1001/jama.1889.02401160022005

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We have somewhere seen a story of a young mother who, seeing her baby smiling in its sleep, exclaimed: "The little darling! The cherubs are talking to it." "Oh, no mum," replied the nurse, "'tain't the cherubs—it's the colic!" It is to be feared that the progress of science has tended, for the time, to detract from the poetical feeling with which dreams were regarded when they were supposed to be supernatural warnings, portentous of the fate of individuals and of nations. Still, although we may no longer hope to learn the way to fame and fortune while sleeping off a Christmas dinner, and even the divination of one's future partner for life by dreaming over wedding cake sometimes fails, the mental phenomena of sleep are by no means unworthy of study, not only for their intrinsic interest, but on account of their affinity to the various morbid psychical states.

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