Punch,  47 (1864), 47.

Traps to Catch Fools



News-Commentary, Drollery


Quackery, Medical Treatment, Adulteration, Charlatanry, Imposture, Commerce, Periodicals, Reading

    Describes some of the lessons that can be learned from quack doctors about the 'art of getting money', notably the fact that a 'penny-worth' of worthless substances and a 'five-shilling advertisement, is a failure if it only produce five or six sovereigns'. Describes how such a principle can be adopted in other forms of trade, including how an 'unscrupulous printer' can circulate a book which contains a mixture of such unsavoury ingredients as 'mendacity' and 'indecency' and yet count on sales to 'lunatics'. Concludes by lamenting the 'utter failure' of the 'Medical Act' which was designed to protect the public, and presents Dr Punch's warnings to his 'credulous friends' who might be duped by the 'jack-puddings [buffoons] of 1864, whether the latter advertise themselves as "registered" or "non-registered practitioners", or resort to newspapers of apparent respectability'. Notes that the 'very best tonic for nervousness can be obtained in Fleet Street, every Wednesday, for three-pence'—i.e. Punch.

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