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830

AMERICAN JOURNAL OF

PUBLIC

HEALTH

July, 1940

Ankara, Athens, Budapest, and Calcutta. Aid to education of public health nurses is reviewed since its commencement in 1920 and great advancement after the world war. In addition to grants to regular schools of nursing, aid has been given to the Henry Street Settlement and East Harlem Nursing and Health Service of New York City and to health centers in many parts of the world. Special grants were made to schools of nursing at Toronto, Canada, and Zagreb, Yugoslavia, and to a school of midwifery at Peiping, China. Many fellowships and travelling grants were also allocated. IRA V. HISCOCK
The Kosher Code of the Orthodox Jew. Being a literal translation of that portion of the sixteenth-century codification of the Babylonian Talmud which describes such deficiences as render animals unfit for food (Itilkot Terefot, Shulkan Aruk); to which is appended a discussion of Talmudic anatomy in the light of the science of its day and of the present time-By S. I. Levin and Edward A. Boyden. Minneapolis: The University of Minnesota Press, 1940. 243 pp. Price, $4.50. While examining some 10,000 livers in the abattoirs around Boston, one of the authors, Dr. Boyden, learned from " kosher cutters " that such anomalies as he was looking for were described in the Babylonian Talmud (Venice, 1564), hence his interest in the present translation. The reviewer's interest in the subject was awakened by service on two boards of investigation of slaughterhouse practices in the United States, one just after the appearance of The Jungle, by Sinclair Lewis, and one during the administration of President Woodrow Wilson. Fairly extensive correspondence and interviews strengthened the interest but not until the appearance of this book has the matter been presented fully and clearly. Indeed, the Laws of Terefah * have been

translated into a modern languageFrench-but once before (1898), by Pavly and Neviasky, and then only from the standpoint of comparative religion, yet they are full of interest from many standpoints, though for the purpose of this review, those concerning public health are preeminent. There is a Preface by one author, Professor of Anatomy of the University of Minnesota, and an Introduction by the senior author, the Senior Orthodox Rabbi of Minneapolis. In these, two points of view are represented. Rabbi Levin hopes the translation will be of use not only to theological students but to those who are interested in the dietary laws and their origins in the culture of ancient Israel. The Preface shows interest chiefly from the standpoint of the anatomist, though public health is not forgotten. Upon the myriads of animals examined over some 2,000 years for conditions which might make them unfit for food, many anatomical observations have been made, and it is curious that anatomists in general have paid so little attention to this accumulation of valuable anatomical knowledge. In a review of such an unusual book one is tempted to quote at too great length. Perhaps the greatest single contribution made by the Jewish inspectors concerns the gross anatomy of the surface of the lung. In the 3rd and 4th centuries these men were the first to record correctly the number of lobes and to anticipate their conception as outgrowths from a stem bronchus. The first description of the cauda equina was by the physician Samuel (3rd century) more than a thousand years before the classic work of Andreas Laurentius. They also noted adhesions, exudates, and nodules, some of which it seems impossible not to regard as lesions of tuberculosis.
*

unfit.

Terefah, torn by wild beasts; hence ritually

Vol. 30

BOOKS AND REPORTS

831

The digestive system was well described, and from the Jewish terms we have our present word " omasum." We owe to them the earliest accounts of the duplication of the intestines and the cloacal vents of birds. The Talmud also gives one of the earliest descriptions of young human embryos. There are many first accounts of duplication of organs and anomalies. We are told why animals for food must be killed by bleeding (Lev. 1:5), and the reasons for rejecting carcasses under various circumstances are clearly explained. Of interest is the rejection of the hind quarters of animals, based on the story of Jacob, who wrestled with a man at Penuel. The man prevailed against him only by touching the hollow of his thigh, and Jacob ever afterward "halted upon his thigh." " Therefore the children of Israel eat not of the sinew which shrank, which is upon the hollow of the thigh, unto this day: because he touched the hollow of Jacob's thigh in the sinew that shrank" (Gen. 32:24-32). From the practical standpoint the Jewish inspection is in some ways more thorough than that done by official inspectors in the slaughterhouses of the country. In every large city there are shops in which the parts rejected by the Jews can be bought, and one can be sure of a well inspected carcass when buying this meat. The preparation of the animals for slaughter is painful and repulsive, and the reviewer has frequently seen several animals strung up by one leg for an unnecessarily long time undergoing physical torture as well as terror. This is more surprising since so much stress is put on avoiding cruelty to animals. The killing is done with a keen edged knife which usually severs both carotids and both jugulars as well as the trachea. The eyes glaze instantaneously. The slaughterer then feels the edge of his knife and if it is rough, the carcass is

rejected, the reason being the alleged suffering of the animal. Where the animals have horns the head is held by a slaughterhouse attendant with the throat up. At present, since homed animals are not seen to a great extent, a box-like structure of galvanized iron is thrust over the muzzle of the animal so that the head can be twisted into place and held while the throat is cut. The Table of Contents takes up the Laws of Terefah in sections, and the subheadings are so numerous and descriptive that in a few pages one gets the scope of the book. The Appendices give: (A) a Glossary of Hebrew Terms; (B) Rabbinical Authorities Cited; (C) Index of Scriptural and Talmudic Quotations; and (D) General References, in addition to which there is a -good general index. The book should have a place in every medical library and, according to Rabbi Levin, in the library of theological schools. The subheading of the title tells exactly what the book is. Of especial interest are the appended notes by Rabbi Levin which bring the code up to the practices of the present day, " so that it stands as an authentic guide to observers of the orthodox law." In the review of the book, the advice of Professor Isadore Keyfitz, Professor of Semitic Languages, History and Institutions and Old Testament, University of Missouri, has been of much value, and is gratefully acknowledged. MAZYCK P. RAVENAL

Migration and Social Welfare: An approach to the problem of the non-settled person in the community-By Philip E. Ryan. New York: Russell Sage Foundation, 1940. 114 pp. Price, $.50. The practical woodsman, when forest bewildered, climbs a high tree, from which, above the undergrowth, he may determine obscure home trails. This publication offers a similar panoramic