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HEALTH.
281
soon or late begets dyspepsy and a perpetual craving for active stimuli. Early coffee drink­ing, in a climate like ours, subject to extremes and sudden changes, will often result in habi­tual drunkenness. That which has been im­agined to be hereditary predisposition to intem­perance, has frequently been nothing more than the craving of a diseased stomach, engendered, under a mother's eye and with a mother's ap­probation, by the early drinking of strong tea or strong coffee.
It is perhaps needless to add that ale, beer. cider, wine and spirits are unnecessary to chil­dren, for they are probably unnecessary to all. But, connected with the subject of stimulating drinks, there are two questions for the parent to consider: the one as to health, the other as to morals. There cannot be a doubt that if a person desires to enjoy the highest vigor of body and mind, the most perfect exercise of his physical and intellectual powers, that his true policy is to avoid all stimulating drinks, except so far as they may be occasionally pre­scribed in sickness or decay by the physician. Experience and wisdom sanction this view of the matter. Why. then, do we not reject them? The simple answer is that we have got into the habit of using them, and this habit is so fixed 24*
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