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A New Use of Tobacco.

The uses of tobacco (says the “ Globe ”) after having long been supposed by an ignorant world to be limited to the practice of smoking, chewing, and snuffing, have of late years been found much more extensive and various. No one ought any longer to be unaware of the value of a cigar end, which, in the hands of a skilful gardiner, will help to wash or fumigate a whole nursery of rare plants, and prove destructive to a host of winged and creeping devastators. The art of fumigating with tobacco seems, indeed, to be still in its infancy, and very possibly at some future time may be capable of effecting wonders in the animal as well as the vegetable world. Unfortunately, the gentleman who is most confident as to the merits of the weed, and who lives at Clamart, in France, has gone a little too fast in his anxiety to turn it to advantage. He has developed a theory that the inhalation of tobacco smoke by fowls causes their flesh to assume a wonderfully white color and to become very tender at the same time. He accordingls shut up a chicken in his fowl-house, and sot fire to a store of “ caporal,” which he left burning in the place. The young fowl, so far from being averse to the odour of the narcotic, was inclined to try its taste as well as its smell, and had in a few days’ time consumed so much “caporal” that its flesh was not only whitened, but absolutely “ nicotinised ” with poison. To it as it stood —probably in rather a stupid state—upon its perch entered one night an adventurer named Carouge, who, after belonging to a confraternity of professional chicken-stealers, had started a business of his own at Clamart. The precious bird was carried off, plucked, cooked, and eaten, and a short time after breakfast the thief was seized with violent and intolerable pains. He rushed to the doctor, heedless of the necessity which would arise of disclosing his nocturnal escajmdc. He was found to have been poisoned by the nicotine contained in the flesh of the fowl, and was with some difficulty saved from death. He will be tried for thieving, while the owner of the stolen bird runs some chance of being prosecuted by the Society for the Protection of Animals. This latter gentleman may, however, on the whole, congratulate himself on the ill-success of his intended experiment. Had he been allowed by fate and the thief to carry it to conclusion, he might have eaten the fowl when it had been still more completely nicotinised, and when no doctor could have saved him from the effect of his imprudent meal.

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Bibliographic details

Ashburton Guardian, Ashburton Guardian, Volume 1, Issue 77, 23 March 1880

Word Count

A New Use of Tobacco. Ashburton Guardian, Volume 1, Issue 77, 23 March 1880