Well scalded with milk and dipped in monkey soap powder…

But first…
Dulltown, UK/Europe: Today’s octopus is the one dominating the night club dance floor with her flamboyant style.

Our doorway into the past smells a little bit fusty. This is because it is a battered well-thumbed old hardback book from 1934 – The Daily Express Enquire Within. Here’s a picture of the title page, nice globe logo eh?

Come on! Let’s dive in and see what nice middle class British folk in the 1930s could look up when they desperately needed information – this book has everything in it. At the head of every page it also provides a few words of wisdom in the form of bible quotations, proverbs, statistics, and such like pithy things. I will include some of these with today’s selection:

Page 25. (It’s never too late to mend.)
Loin of Mutton:
The neck and breast are, in small families, commonly roasted together. The cook should crack the bones of the neck across the middle before they are put down to roast. If this is not done carefully, the joint is very troublesome to carve. The neck takes about the same time as a loin. The breast, when eaten by itself is, better stewed. It may be boned, rolled and then roasted.

Page 443. (He who serves well need not be afraid to ask his wages.)
Cautions for the Preventions of Accidents.
The following regulations should be engraved on the memory of all:
iii. Never point a gun or pistol at anyone in jest, whether it is loaded or unloaded. A loaded gun should never be brought into the house.
x. Never read in bed at night, as besides the danger of an accident, the practice is very injurious to the eyes.
xxi. When the brass rod of the stair-carpet becomes loose, fasten it immediately!

Page 473. (Evil is wrought by want of thought.)
To Fatten Poultry.
Poultry should be fattened in coops, and kept very clean. They should be furnished with gravel, but with no water, except that with which their only food, barley meal, is mixed. Their thirst makes them eat more than they would, in order to extract the moisture from the food.
Ground rice well scalded with milk, mixed with a little coarse sugar is very fattening.

Page 270. (“Putting off” does no work.)
Collyria or Eye Washes.
Acetate of Zinc – Dissolve half a drachm of white vitriol in five ounces of water. Dissolve two scruples of acetate of lead in five ounces of water. Mix these solutions, then set aside for a short time, and afterwards filter.
Use: as astringent wash; this forms a most valuable collyrium.

Page 415. (A clear conscience fears no accusations.)
To Take Stains Out of Knives:
Take some potato parings and some finely-powdered brick-dust. Dip the white portion of the potato paring in the brick-dust and rub the knife with it, when the stains will disappear; or a rag dipped in strong potash or soda may be used (with the brick dust also). Stains may also be removed with a cork dipped in emery powder, or monkey soap powder.

About Dave Whatt

Grumpy old surrealist artist, musician, postcard maker, bluesman, theatre set designer, and debonair man-about-town. My favourite tools are the plectrum and the pencil...
This entry was posted in archeology, books, brain, food, history, humour, information, instruction, learning, reading, serendipity, surrealism, writing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Well scalded with milk and dipped in monkey soap powder…

  1. Dana Doran says:

    I don’t understand “x”…accident? What kind of accident would that be? Setting the bed on fire? … surely the electric light had made its way across the Atlantic…or was it gaslighting? Hoho!

  2. memadtwo says:

    Perhaps best to avoid guns altogether…

  3. ktz2 says:

    Every day can bring a surprize… such as the one today when I read the words ‘monkey soap powder’. Then there is ‘ two scruples of acetate of lead’, apparently something people had laying about at hand back then.
    Your offering of excerpts from Enquire Within 1934 is my favorite semi-regular feature of your lovely blog

    • Dave Whatt says:

      Yes, Kate, you’ve said that before – I always imagine you sitting waiting as I choose them and copy them out – ho ho!
      I wonder if the brand name was ‘Monkey Soap’ or whether ‘monkey soap’ was a name for some naturally occurring mineral…

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