The subject was a technical one, but it was dealt with in a manner which made it clear and interesting to all, the history and results of the researches made by men of science in Italy, France, India, and England being mentioned. The subject of malaria, the speaker said, was, fortunately for the people of New Zealand, merely of academical interest, though throughout the British Empire malarial fever was second only to tuberculosis in its ravages. It was very prevalent and largely fatal in India, and it was quite impossible to state the number who were attacked by and died of this fever in Africa. In Italy whole
districts had been depopulated by it, and the same thing had occurred in America. The subject was one of immense importance to the world, and particularly to our Empire. Some of the guesses in the past regarding the cause of this disease had been singularly near the truth, and modern scientific research had proved up to the hilt that the mosquito grew the germ in its own tissues, carried it to human beings, and infected them with the disease. It was not every kind of mosquito that did this, but only Anopheles. Investigations showed clearly that this was actually the case, and it had been thought possible to stop the disease by destroying the mosquitoes. Some good had been done in this way by draining swamps and otherwise destroying the insects, but it was found that they were not easily dealt with. The speaker explained his subject by means of some very fine diagrams, and also exhibited a number of books and periodicals containing accounts of scientific research into this subject.
A short discussion took place, and a hearty vote of thanks was passed to Dr. Colquhoun for the clear and highly interesting manner in which he had dealt with the subject.