Books Received | Published:

Guide to the Analysis of Potable Spirits

Nature volume 70, page 269 (21 July 1904) | Download Citation



THE analysis of potable spirits has within recent time acquired increased importance on account of the attention now given by medical men and others to the characters of potable alcohol, and also on account of the action of inspectors under the Sale of Food and Drugs Acts in connection with the attempts which are being made by various local authorities throughout the country to put a stop to the misdescription of spirits. The Acts under which the Excise authorities work unfortunately contain no adequate definition of such articles as whisky and brandy, and this omission has undoubtedly facilitated the manufacture of factitious spirits. At the present time there is practically no official control over the sale of ardent spirits beyond ensuring to the customer, solely in the interest or the Revenue, that their alcoholic strength shall not be below a certain minimum. The Revenue authorities arc not concerned to know whether what is called whisky is a pot-still or a patent still spirit, whether it is made from raw grain or malt, or whether it is old or new. To them it is a matter of little moment whether what is called brandy is genuine grape spirit, or whether it is a rectified spirit obtained from maize cr potatoes, flavoured with so-called essence of brandy and coloured with caramel.

Access optionsAccess options

Rent or Buy article

Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.


All prices are NET prices.

About this article

Publication history





    By submitting a comment you agree to abide by our Terms and Community Guidelines. If you find something abusive or that does not comply with our terms or guidelines please flag it as inappropriate.

    Newsletter Get the most important science stories of the day, free in your inbox. Sign up for Nature Briefing