Punch,  39 (1860), 99.

The Terrors of Table Turning



Essay, Drollery


Spiritualism, Domestic Economy, Mental Illness, Psychology, Mechanics, Observation

    Argues that, given the extraordinary movements of furniture caused by spirits, 'great pains should be taken to avoid the chance of accidents resulting from its [i.e. furniture] getting into an excited state'. Noting the observations of 'living witnesses', who use their eyes but not their 'common sense [...] to test the "truths" to which they testify', expresses concern about the effect of leaving a family in the presence of 'strange furniture'. To secure the 'peace of mind of parents', suggests that furniture dealers will have to make sure their wares are 'warranted as sound and safe from spirits'. Adds that 'while the Spirit mania lasts', precautions will also have to be taken with bedroom furniture which will also need to be certified as free from spirits.

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