Cure for the Ague

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Josiah Warren

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From The Peaceful Revolutionist:

Cure for the Ague

Passing through the New York canal in 1831, I was seized for the first time with a fit of the ague. It was soon stopped with sulphate of quinine. It returned again in '32, on getting wet in a shower. Quinine would now keep it off only a day or two; a little exercise or exposure to the sun brought it back repeatedly till I lost all faith in quinine and resorted to a variety of other prescriptions with little success. A friend referred me to an article in the New Harmony Gazette (3rd vol.) on Piperine, or extract of black pepper, which it described as superior to quinine as a cure for the ague, that it was more effectual and left the patient less liable to dropsy and some other diseases. A medical friend also concurred in this, and added that he had for several months used no other remedy than common black pepper. His common practice was to advise patients to take their pepper box and mix up the pepper with flour and molasses or any thing that will make it into pills, and to take one or two every hour or two. He said he had scarcely ever known this to fail, nor had the disease ever returned as after taking quinine.

I tried this and have not had a fit of ague since. I have also recommended to four of my acquaintance, one of whom had had the ague six months; it succeeded in every case.

How far these facts justify a general rule I leave each individual to judge.