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view. Dr. Macnish observes: “ Malt England rum; for as long as the laws of the liquors, under which title we include all system and the properties of alcohol remain kinds of porter and ales, produce the worst as they are, so long will he not be exempt species of drunkenness; as, in addition to from paying the full penalty of indulgence; the intoxicating principle, some noxious in- a twinge of gout will revenge itself on a gredients are usually added, for the purpose glass of champagne with greater certainty of preserving them, and giving them their than on a glass of whiskey." bitter.” And again : “ The effects of malt The following remarks of Mr. Henderson, liquors on the body, if not so immediately on the peculiar qualities of wines, are interrapid as those of ardent spirits, are more csting and to the point: “ It is not to the stupifying, more lasting, and less easily re- brandy alone that the noxious effects of moved. The last are particularly prone to certain wines are to be ascribed. If the produce levity and mirth, but the first have original fermentation has been imperfect, a stunning influence upon the brain, and in or if they contain an excess of acids, para short time render dull and sluggish the ticularly the gallic or malic acids, their use gayest disposition.” Much the same becomes highly prejudicial, especially to opinion is expressed by Dr. Charles A. Lee, persons of weak stomachs. When such of New York: “As a general rule, I hesi- wines are placed within the temperature of tate not to aver, as my settled conviction, the human body, a renewal of the supthat malt liquors are more deleterious in pressed fermentation will take place, and their effect on the system than ardent what little alcohol they have will rather spirits. The latter are simply alcohol and assist than counteract the accidifying prowater, perhaps slightly flavoured ; the cess. Hence the unwholesomeness of most former are deleterious compounds of alcohol, of our domestic wines, which are in general narcotic poisons, and mineral substances. but imperfectly fermented, and contain a Besides, as the fermentation which malt large portion of malic acid and free sacchaliquors undergo is imperfect, being stopped rine matter, and to many of which brandy is to prevent its change into vinegar, in weak added to increase their strength. Perhaps, stomachs it will probably be renewed, thus too, the predominant acids may undergo impairing still more the powers of digestion.” some transmutation in the stomach, which A similar view is taken by the same physician renders their presence still more detrimenon the nature and operation of wines: “I tal.” And again: “ The gallic acid of port know that it will be doubted by many that wines renders them unfit for weak stomacbs. pure wine is as injurious as the same amount The excitement they produce is of a more of alcohol diluted with water; but my own sluggish nature than that attending the experience and observation, and the opinion use of the pure French wines, and does of many reformed wine-drinkers, support not enliven the fancy in the same degree. me in this belief. I could relate numerous As a frequent beverage they are unquescases, where wine of any kind could not tionably much more pernicious.". In addibe taken in any quantity, but where pure tion to these, Dr. Henderson adds the folwhiskey, or brandy-and-water, if nearly the lowing judicious observations :
66 When same strength, could be drunk without introduced into the stomach, vinous liquors causing the same unpleasant effectsand may be considered as acting in two ways; why should it not be so? In the one case, either by their chemical affinities, as they we have simple alcohol and water; in the become mixed with the food, or by their other, alcohol and water, volatile oils, ex- stimulant operations on the nervous and tractive and colouring matters, acids, &c. muscular systems. Now, there is every If the latter do not prove more difficult of reason to believe that in the former point of digestion than the former, then it requires view they will not assist the digestion ot less strength to carry one hundred than it proper nutriment in the healthy subject, but does fifty pounds.
will have a directly contrary effect, espe“Most people know how speedily, compa- cially if they contain much spirit or acid.ratively, the effects of gin or whiskey pass If they undergo decomposition, a portion of
and they also know how permanent the saccharine and mucilaginous matter are those occasioned by a debauch on fer- may, perhaps, enter into the formation of mented liquors; and if the wine-drinker chyme, and a small quantity of the alcohol suffers less than the whiskey-drinker, it is may be taken up by the absorbents; but because the amount of alcohol he takes is this principle constitutes no part of the less. Some flatter themselves that, by par- blood, and cannot therefore remain in the ticular care in selecting their wines, they system. The neutral salts will, of course, can avoid the evils which by this very act exert their specific actions on the alimentary they allow do attach to the use of some canal, or they may enter into partial comwines; but let not the convivial possessor of bination with the food. In weak stomachs, ample cellars, stored with the choicest pro- however, where the muscular action is slow, ducts of the vine, flatter himself with this even the purest wine is apt to generate a belief; let him not, indeed, consider himself deleterious acidity; and the stimulant power more fortunate than the poor man who is of the alcohol, which, in persons of sounder confined to whiskey, gin, brandy, or New- habits, is sufficient to overcome its anti
septic tendency, is thus completely lost. But now universally acknowledged to be the that in persons of the strongest frame product of vegetable decomposition. Hence, wine does not directly forward the process it is not eliminated from any living or of digestion, is proved by the derangement natural process. On the supposition that of the alimentary organs, which always the formation of alcohol is the result of succeeds excessive indulgence in its use. natural laws, it may pertinently be inquired Great drinkers, it is well known, are small why man interferes with and disturbs the eaters, and usually terminate their career operations of nature at a particular period, by losing their appetite altogether." that is, exactly at the commencement of her
“ The beer-blbber,” remarks Dr. James object, and thus prevents that ultimate Johnson, "has probably little reason to action which otherwise would inevitably exult over the dram-drinker. If he escape take place. The answer is simple and deciascites, or dropsy of the abdomen, he runs sive. He arrests the operations of nature the risk of hydrothorax, or water of the exactly at that period when he can supply chest, a much worse disease! If he have himself with a product calculated to gratify an immunity from disorder of the liver, he his depraved and vitiated appetites. Hence becomes predisposed to derangements of the the multifarious and complicated inventions heart! If he experience not emaciation and of the wine-maker and brewer. tremors, he too often becomes over-loaded This branch of our inquiry may be better with fat, and dies apoplectic! If he is not understood by a slight review of the active so liable to maniacal paroxysms of fury, laws of animate vegetable creation, so far, from the fire of ardent spirits, his intel- at least, as they have connexion with the lectual faculties become sodden, as it were, present object of our investigation. The and stupidity ensues!"
constituent principles of vegetables consist Mr. Macnish very properly comments on of carbon, oxygen, and hydrogen. The the inconsistency of those societies which poisonous upas and the nutritious grape, allow their members to drink wine and the fragrant rose and the nauseous assafoemalt liquors, while they debar them from tida, the refreshing foliage and the delicate ardent spirits. “ They do this," he re- tints of the vast arcana of vegetable nature, marks, “on the ground that on the two first each owe their peculiar quality to these a man is much less likely to become a simple substances. So wonderful, indeed, drunkard than upon spirits—a fact which is the laboratory of nature, that even from may be fairly admitted, but which, I believe, the same trunk, and from a mass of sap, arises in some measure from its requiring apparently homogeneous in its character, more money to get drunk upon malt liquors substances of a very opposite nature are and wine than upon spirits. In abandoning produced, An oil, bland as that of the the latter, however, and having recourse to olive, is eliminated from the poppy, which the others, it is proper to state, that the in some parts of the globe is extensively person often practises a delusion upon him- employed for dietetic purposes. From the self; for, in drinking wine, such at least as same plant is extracted the milky juice it is procured in this country, he, in reality, from whose substance is produced the poiconsumes a large proportion of pure spirits; sonous opium. The delicious pulp of the and malt liquors contain not only the alco- peach also is well known to enclose in its holic principle of intoxication, but are often kernel a poison of a most deadly character. sophisticated with narcotics." Again: “I Olive oil is another instance in point. Its know several members of the Temperance chemical constituents approach near to those (Moderation) Society, who are practising of alcohol ; how materially, however, do upon themselves the delusion in question. these substances differ in their operation on They shun spirits, but indulge largely in the human system! These facts are suffiporter-to the extent, perhaps, of a bottle cient to convince us how profound, and yet a day. Nobody can deny that, by this how simple, are the operations of Nature, practice, they will suffer a great deal more and how boundless she is in her resources than if they took a tumbler or so of toddy to supply the wants and to gratify the lawdaily; and the consequences are the more ful pleasures of man. pernicious, because, while indulging in these The knowledge that the whole of this libations, they imagine themselves to be all variety in vegetable creation is occasioned the
while paragons of sobriety.” simply by a very slight variation in the
VI. Is alcohol a good creature of God ?" combination of three simple substances, af-It is frequently urged, in opposition to fords to us a distant idea how the elementary one of the fundamental principles of the principles of alcohol may exist in nature, temperance reformation, that alcohol is the without the actual existence of alcohol itself
. product of nature, and therefore “a good No human investigation has, as yet, nor increature of God," and to be received with deed have we any reason to suppose it ever thanksgiving. The fallacy of this propo- will, discover the slightest trace of native sition admits of ready proof. Alcohol is alcohol in any part of the creation of
One or two familiar examples will place * Anatomy of Drunkenness, pp. 230-31. these positions in a still clearer light. Nitric
acid, well known to be an active and fatal dissolution of the proximate elements of poison, and the air which we breathe, are food, and the re-union of its ultimate prinboth composed of two simple gases, nitro- ciples in a totally different, innutritious, and gen and oxygen, united, of course, in dif- destructive form. Flour, or flesh, we again ferent proportions. A slight chemical affirm, in their baked or roasted state, are operation may, however, alter the natu- simple human modifications so far as their ral arrangement of these forms, and pro- proximate constituent elements are concernduce a new substance of an essentially ed, and remain in an unaltered condition the different character. Few persons, however, natural production of an all-wise and benewould be bold enough to assert, that nitric volent Creator. Alcoholic liquors, on the acid is contained in the atmosphere; or, other hand, are the production of human inthat air, when it comes in contact with the vention—the results of a tortuous process or Jungs, is productive of the same fatal ef- chemical change, by which the “good creafects as would result from contact with the tures of God are converted into unnatural former potent and corrosive substance.- and destructive poisons. Sugar, acknowledged by all to be a nutritious Alcohol then is not produced in the orsubstance, may by chemical manipulation dinary course of nature, and has no claim, be resolved into oxalic acid, a deadly and therefore, in the true sense of the word, to destructive poison. An old piece of linen be entitled “a good creature of God.” It may, in like manner, be converted into is an unnatural combination of natural sugar. Alcohol, by a simple process, can elements manifestly not in accordance with be produced from sugar; and yet, what the will of the Creator. When used for the rational being would maintain that alcohol purpose, and in the manner prescribed by is contained either in the linen or the sugar, fallible man, it is productive of injurious or that either the one or the other would, results both to the health and morals. The in any quantity, produce intoxication? elements of which alcohol is formed are in
The application of this argument is fa- the strict sense of the word the creation of miliar and clear. Many persons assert that divine power; but that peculiar combination alcohol is contained in grain and fruit, and or form of these elements, which constitutes in every part of vegetable creation, and that alcohol, is the result of decomposition or therefore it is intended by the Creator for decay induced or directed by human the use of man. Such, however, is not the agency.
The elements of alcohol, indeed, are " Alcoholic wine,” remarks Dr. C. A. Lee, to be found throughout the whole of vege- “ does not exist in nature. It is an artifitable creation, and so are the elements of cial product, and requires great skill in its other deleterious substances, but not a par-manufacture, and great care in its preserticle of alcohol itself. So long as the chemis- vation; for, if left to the operation of the try of life retains its sway will the constituent laws of nature, it would soon change into materials of vegetable matter hold together in vinegar, and from that run into the putrethe relation in which nature has placed them. factive fermentation. We maintain that Death, however, or, in other words, decom- wine as well as beer is, quoad hoc, a creaposition, subverts this natural arrangement, ture of art, and not of nature; ard those dissolves its connexions, and new and to- who say it is not must point us to it existtally different combinations are thereby ing in nature without man's supervention."* formed. So it is with alcohol. In wines, VII. Alcohol not ready formed in ferthis poison undergoes evolution during the mented liquors.-Another class of objectors decay or decomposition of the juice of the urge that alcohol does not exist ready grape; in malt liquors, man destroys the formed in fermented liquors, but that it is vital principle of the barley, by converting generated by the heat used in the proit into malt; and then subjects it to another cess of distillation. The fallacy, however, artificial process, which produces results of this view is manifest from several consimilar to those which take place in the siderations, and by none more than by production of wine.
the following decisive experiment made by The same class of objectors urge, that Mr. Brande, and subsequently confirmed alcohol is as much the creature of God as by other distinguished philosophers: Add beef or bread, and differs only in the to wine a solution of the acetate of lead, form in which it was created by divine and the colouring and extractive matter wisdom, as the flesh of animals differs after will be precipitated. The further addition it has been submitted to the process of of a small portion of dry subcarbonate of cookery, or flour, in the form of dough, after potassa separates the alcohol from the it has undergone the operation of heat in Huid which floats on the surface, and will the oven. Herein lies an egregious error. ignite on coming in contact with a lighted Cooked food is a mere modification of sub- taper. By this means we decisively deterstance, which, as experience shows, renders mine that distillation merely separates the it more useful to man, and consequently alcohol, which had been previously evolved more in unison with the design of the Crea- by the process of fermentation ; its contor. Alcohol, on the other hand, is a new product or new combination-the result of al
* Bacchus, American ed., note, p. 241.
stituent parts being thereby extracted, in facture and sale of intoxicating liquors.their elementary forms, from the saccha- Evidence, however, of the most conclusive rine juices of the grain or fruit, and com- character, demonstrates that the practice, bined under a new, a potent, and a delete- although not universal, is very general, and rious form.
that it is carried on to a most alarming exArguments like these are interesting, tent. and even necessary to remove such objec- This deleterious system has two objects tions as are urged in proof that alcohol is in view, viz., Ist, to substitute an artificial “a good creature of God.” The great point compound at a cheaper rate in the place of however to be ascertained is, the effects of the genuine article. This is effected by these liquors on the moral and physical various means adapted to imitate the copowers of man.
Let it be admitted, for the lour, taste, and intoxicating quality of the sake of argument, that alcohol is a crea- liquors professed to be prepared; and, 2ndly, ture of God, and no advantage will be de- to prevent these liquors from going into rived by its advocates from the concession. peculiar states or conditions, termed, by Many of our most powerful poisons are the some, diseases, and thence popularly decreatures of God. The poisonous upas nominated the art of “doctoring.” This and the deadly hemlock are each of them practice will be explained in its proper creatures of God ; yet, the Creator no- place. where authorizes his creatures to make use I. Adulterations of wines. The wines of of them as habitual articles of diet.
He the ancients were frequently adulterated.has given to man the power of distinguish - The writings both of Greek and Roman ing between moral good and evil; and authors acquaint us with numerous receipts although the scientific knowledge of the for this purpose. Their genuine wines precise character and quality of articles were rendered more potent by the admixture generally used for dietetic purposes may be of wines of a stronger kind, or, as was limited in a great measure, to professional commonly the practice, articles were added men, it is every man's duty, as it is ob- with the view to impart to them an artificial viously his interest, to acquire by experi- flavour, as well as to render them more ence all the knowledge he can upon that durable. important subject, and conscientiously to In a passage of the “ Æsopus” of Alexis abstain from every indulgence which is allusion is made to the practices of the calculated either to affect his moral cha- Athenian wine merchants, who, as is huracter or to injure the exquisite texture of morously described, in order to spare the his intellectual or corporeal frame. In this heads of their customers, put it out of their respect he is clearly responsible to his power to drink unmixed wine at their meals, wise and benevolent Creator.
by selling it ready diluted from the carts. *
Some allusions in the writings of Horace and Martial lead us to the conclusion that the manufacture of fictitious wines was not
unknown among the ancients. Chian wine, SECTION III.
so greatly esteemed in those days, would appear to have been imitated in Rome. Horace speaks of “Chian wine that had never crossed the seas; ” Martial alludes to
this practice no less distinctly,How can wine possibly prove innoxious, when it Thou, Phamphilus, Setine and Massic serv'st up, is mixed with so many destructive ingredients :- But rumour thy wines has accurst. PLINY.
In England, there are early notices of this Root of hemlock, digg'd i' the dark,
practice. In the 2nd year of Edward the Form a charm of powerful trouble,
III., the king, in a letter to the mayor and Like a hell-broth, toil and bubble;
sheriffs of London, complains of the adulDouble, double, toil and trouble,
terations of wine merchants: “They do Fire burn and cauldron bubble.-SHAKSPEARE. mingle corrupt wines with other wines, and
are not afraid to sell the wines so mixed and
corrupted at the same price as they sell 1. Adulterations of Wines.—II. Adulterations of the good and pure, to the corrupting of the Malt Liquors.--III. Adulterations of Spirits. bodily health of those that buy wine by The adulterations of intoxicating drinks imposing penalties on adulterations, and di
retail.”+ In this reign, a law was enacted, forms an interesting and important subject recting that an essay of all the
wines imof inquiry. The value of the traffic led to ported should be made, at least twice a year an early adoption of this injurious practice. Ancient writers distinctly allude to the sub
in every town. ject of adulteration.
In 1426, Sir John Rainewell, mayor, re
ceived information that the Lombard merThe observations contained in the present chapter must not be understood to impli
Athenæus, x., 8. cate all who are engaged in the manu- † Maitland's London, b. i., p. 81.
ADULTERATIONS OF INTOXICATING LIQUORS.
chants were guilty of mal-practices in the They can squeeze Bourdeaux out of the adulteration of wines; upon inquiry, he as- sloe, and draw Champagne from an apple.' certained that the charge was well founded, Virgil, in that remarkable prophecy, and ordered that the noxious compound, to “ Incultisque rubens pendebit sentibus uva, the quantity of 150 butts, should be thrown seems to have hinted at this art, which into the kennel.*
can turn a plantation of northern hedges In the sixteenth century, a similar enact- into a vineyard. These adepts are known ment was passed in the 5th year of Mary. amongst one another by the name of wine Much dread is expressed of adulteration of brewers; and, I am afraid, do great injury, good wine, either with inferior wines or not only to her Majesty's customs, but to water, the penalty on discovery being the the bodies of many of her good subjects. loss of their whole stock: “And besyde the The present race of “chemical operators samin sic wynes as are sould in commoun are no less ingenious than those to which tavernis ar commounlie mixt with auld cor- Addison alludes. Wine merchants' guides rupt wynes and with watter, to the greit abound in recipes for the preparation and appeirand danger and seikness of the byaris, adulteration of fictitious wines. The preand greit perrell of the saulis of the sellaris.” sent state of the wine trade, indeed, is such,
In the seventeenth century, the practice that it is almost impossible to procure genuof adulterating intoxicating liquors appears ine wine of any description. It would apto have been very prevalent. It was com- pear that the quantity professed to be exmon at that period to mix burnt lime or ported from Oporto, as pure port wine, is gypsum with dry Spanish wines. Shak- many times greater than the produce of that speare alludes to this prevalent custom:-country. Dr. Lee, of America, confirms "You rogue, there is lime in this sack too. this remark: “It is believed,” he observes, There is nothing but roguery to be found that the annual importation of what is in the villanous man!”. Sir William Hawkins called port wine into the United States far makes the following remarks, in his “ Ob- exceeds the whole annual produce of the servation on a Voyage into the South Sea, Alto Douro.” A.D., 1622:”.
-“Since the Spanish sacks Contrast the following table of exports have been common in our taverns, which, from Oporto to the Channel Islands, with for conservation, are mingled with the lime the imports from the Channel Islands to in the making, our nation complains of London:calentures, of the stone, the dropsy, and
From Oporto to
From Channel infinite other distempers not heard of
Channel Islands. Islands to London. before this wine came into common use. 1826
293 Besides, there is no year that it wasteth 1827
99 not two millions of crowns of our subs
75 stance, by conveyance into foreign coun- 1829
147 In the 12th Car. II., c. 25, sec. 11, certain
143 restrictions are found in regard to the 1832
363 mixing and adulteration of wines. The 1833
862 guilty persons were subjected to heavy pen
“ According to the custom-house books alties on conviction. The fictitious preparation of wines has Henderson, “135 pipes and 20 hogsheads of
of Oporto, for the year 1812,” says Dr. been thus satirized in an old song:
wine were shipped for Guernsey. In the One glass of drink I got by chance,
same year there were landed at the London 'Twas claret when it was in France,
Docks alone, 2545 pipes and 162 hogsheads But now from it moche wider.
from that island, reported to be port I think a man might make as good, With green crabbes boil'd in Brazil wood,
wine.” And half a pinte of cider.
About 1812 some strange facts came
before the notice of the public, which exAddison, in “The Tatler," seems to have hibit the practices of the craft, as well as been well aware of the practice of palming the vitiated tastes of those by whom these fictitious wine on the public:-“ There is wines are consumed. Some complaints were in the city a certain fraternity of chemical made respecting the method then commonly operators, who work under ground in holes, adopted of adding brandy to wine, in caverns, and dark retirements, to conceal order, as it was affirmed, to bring it to a their mysteries from the eyes and observa- state of perfection. The correspondence tions of mankind. These subterraneous took place between the agents and factors philosophers are daily employed in the of the Oporto company, and may therefore transmutation of liquors, and, by the power be considered as authentic.
The agents of magical drugs and incantations, raising make the following observations, in reply under the streets of London the choicest to a letter of the factors, who defended the products of the hills and valleys of France.
* Dr. Hughson's London, p. 94.
* Remarks on Wines, by Charles A. Lee, N.D. † Henderson on Modern Wines.