Inspection 1892

     During the past twelve months the inspector in the St. Sepulchre district, London, has seized and destroyed under margisterial order, as unfit for human food, 85 "bodies" of beef, 172 quarters and 1,999 stone of pieces of beef, 35 bullocks' livers, 22 heads, 72 hearts, 33 calves, 236 stone of veal, 173 sheep, 673 heads, 862 plucks, 70 stone of mutton, 15 lambs, 2 quarters of lamb, 37 pigs, 72 heads, 780 stone of pieces of pork, 60 barrels of pigs' plucks (Irish), 2 barrels of pigs' kidneys, 3 goats, 150 rabbits, 6 cases of eggs, 1 box of tomatoes, half a barrel of skate, 12 boxes of smelts, and 3 boxes of Dutch plaice.

September 22, 1892 EJW, PTUK 302.27


     The Echo, referring to Dr. B. W. Richardson's proposal that sheep, calves, and pigs be slaughtered by electricity, or else that they be rendered insensible to the knife by means of a mixture of chloroform and coal gas, says: "But is not the whole thing, from beginning to end, from conception to execution, a huge mistake? The system of breeding animals to slaughter them-and to slaughter them to eat them-grew out of barbarism, and will pass away with barbarism, as sure as cannibalism was first condemned, and then abandoned. In proportion as men and women are cultured, refined, elevated, the slaughter-house will be avoided." We agree with the sentiment, although we do not believe the slaughter of animals for food will ever cease in this present world. On the contrary the slaughter of animals will increase, and, in the same proportion, human life will be lightly regarded.

June 15, 1893 EJW, PTUK 192.10


"An Unclean Beast" 

     Anyone who will look at the list of clean and unclean animals and fowls as given by the Lord through Moses (Lev. xi. and Deut. xiv.) will see that the distinction was not an arbitrary or ceremonial one. Some animals were called clean, others unclean. Amongst the former were the ox, goat, sheep, etc. The list of clean fowls is not given, but the list of unclean fowls shows the distinction. Some unclean beasts were named, as the camel, the swine, etc., while the unclean fowls named are the eagle, the vulture, the owl, and others. 

     When the Lord says the vulture, the mouse, the lizard; the camel, and (by the descriptions given) the dog, the horse, the rat, and each like are not good for food, that they are unclean, who in ordinary communities does not naturally recognize the fact that such things are unclean for food? Yet when the Lord included the swine in the list, along with the camel, the vulture and the mouse, what reason is there to suppose that He made a mistake? 

     Some time ago, before a medical congress, a sanitary authority gave the following description of the habits of the swine from ancient times to the present. It shows why the swine is physically unfit for human consumption:- 

     The most careful diet and thorough breeding has failed to eliminate certain disorders which are a constant menace to good health to consumers of pork; of these disorders we will mention two-scrofula and trichinosis. 

     From remotest antiquity the unclean habits of the hog have challenged man's aversion and disgust. The Egyptians, the Ethiopians, the Libyan, the Comani, the Scythians, the Galatians, the Zabbi, the Hindus, and the Phoenicians abominated and detested the dirty, mire-loving swine. Mohammed denounced its use as food, and the Bedouins consider it the only object whose touch is pollution. The Egyptian priests inveighed against it declaring that it engenders many superfluous humours. The Talmud, or general code of Jewish laws, states that "ten measures of pestilential sickness were spread over the earth, and nine of them fell to the share of pigs."  

     Plutarch and Tacitus speak of the detestation in which the hog was held by the people of their time on account of the "leprous emanations appearing upon his belly." Herodotus and a host of more recent chroniclers unite in ascribing various disorders to the use of pork as food. What the hog was 2,000 years ago he is to-day. No animal has such filthy habits. No place exists so foul and loathsome that will exclude him. Animal carcasses, undergoing decomposition and filling the air with pestilential odours, are sought after by trim with epicurean gusto. He will leave a repast of nuts in the Southern woods to dispute with the buzzard the possession of the putrid remains of a defunct mule. He is the scavenger of the shambles. He is voted the freedom of our village streets, to act as a sanitarian in removing the filth and garbage therefrom. 

     These filthy habits are natural, not acquired, and no amount of careful breeding will ever modify them. Is it, then, surprising that among all nations and in all ages the flesh of the hog has been supposed to "engender many superfluous disorders"? The derivation of the terms "scrofula," and choiras," applied to a disease alarmingly frequent-the former from the Latin scrofula, meaning a "breeding sow," the latter from the Greek-indicated that the ancients had good reasons for excluding the flesh of the hog from their dietary regime.

February 20, 1896 EJW, PTUK 126 E. J. Waggoner


     Seizures of bad food are becoming numerous, perhaps on account of the warm weather, but that a great deal food unfit for human consumption escapes the Inspectors is evident from the deaths reported as due to eating tinned rabbits, etc. Last week seventy-eight large barrels of "mixed liver's" were destroyed by magisterial order. The inspector described the contents is a filthy, slimy mass, consisting of livers of pigs, sheep, oxen, and horses also, which appeared to be diseased, and were certainly putrid. The slime was most offensive. The importers, on whose premises extracts were being made from similar stuff, described themselves as "manufacturers of preserved provisions, soups, and all kinds of table delicacies."

September 8, 1898 EJW, PTUK 574.23

     One hundred and fifty-six cases of alleged unwholesome condensed milk were found in the possession of a man in Bermondsey, by the chief sanitary inspector. When asked to what use the defendant put the bad milk, the reply was, "For feeding pigs and making caramels and pastries." He was fined ?78 and ?10 costs. To say the least, this revelation is not very pleasant to consumers of sweets.

January 18, 1900 EJW, PTUK 46.20

     Cases of ptomaine poisoning are getting to be a frequent occurrence. Deaths are still reported from the pork pies, to which reference has already been made; and now comes a case of poisoning at Fulham, from eating Australian frozen rabbit. An entire family was made seriously ill, and a little child, who had only a little of the gravey, from its grandmother's finger, died. The doctor who attended, testified before the coroner's jury that death was due to come from gastric-enteritis and congestion of the kidneys from bacteria and ptomaine poisoning from the rabbit. He said also that it was quite possible for the ptomaine to have developed after the rabbit was cooked, and that if it existed before, cooking would not destroy the poison. It should not be overlooked that in both instances the poison has developed in animals that the Scripture expressly points out as unfit to be eaten. Yet people will continue to eat pigs and rabbits. We shall call attention to this matter again.

October 2, 1902 EJW, PTUK 637.3

     Lovers of Irish bacon have doubtless read with interest of the sudden death of seven pigs, fed in a Cork workhouse, and the allegation of one of the guardians that the pigs had been fed on linseed poultices from the fever hospital. This would, of course, mark the extreme of economy, but those who have lived in the country know that very little is wasted where a pig is kept. It is in the nature of things that the pig should discharge the functions of a scavenger, but that human beings in turn should render him the same service is contrary to the laws of health and the will of God, who forbade His people to eat swine's flesh. The next day after the news came from Cork, a Birmingham pork salesman was fined for exposing tuberculous pork for sale, one thousand pounds of it having been seized on his premises. In his appointed work and place the pig is all right, but forced into an unnatural existence, and then deprived of is to gratify an unnatural appetite, it is not unusual for those who bury his remains to find that the unnatural offence carries with it its own punishment.

April 16, 1903 EJW, PTUK 253.10

     It is said that an English scientist has been making experiments by which he concludes that the effect which alcohol has upon a person is determined by the amount of brain that he possesses. He made his experiments upon pigs, which have very small brains, and found that alcohol had very low appreciable effect on them. Hereafter when a man boasts that whiskey has no effect on him, the people will know the reason.

July 7, 1887 EJW, SITI 416.2