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October 22, 1898


JAMA. 1898;XXXI(17):994-995. doi:10.1001/jama.1898.02450170048008

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It is not an uncommon practice in recent years for writers of fiction to attempt to portray the feelings of the dying in the supreme moment when the passage from the known to the unknown takes place, especially in case of violent or so-called instantaneous death. Tolstoi, in his " Sevastopol," was perhaps one of the most successful in this line, but he has many imitators, some of them of very recent date in the literature incited by the recent military operations in Cuba and in the Soudan. It is a curious fact that none or almost none of these imaginative writers have made the feelings of the subject in the instantaneous forms of death to any extent painful. It would seem sometimes that the exaltation or intensification of feeling, the illusions of time and space that they describe were derived from some haschisch reminiscences, or something of the kind, rather

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