A pleasant time and a pleasant tomorrow

  We all have those Facebook friends - you know, the ones who make it clear what a wild, fun and edgy life they lead by announcing that they're, like, sooooo hungover lol. Well, perhaps...

Live Lizards Found in Girl’s Stomach

CLEVELAND, O., Dec. 23—.Two live lizards three and a half inches long, several smaller ones, and a number of lizard eggs, were taken from the stomach of Lovel Herman, nineteen, four days before she...

Valentine’s Meat-Juice

  The Quack Doctor is not a hearts and flowers kind of person, so was interested to learn of a dark side to this product's history. Brought into production in Richmond, VA, in 1871, Valentine's Meat-Juice...

Ali Ahmed’s Treasures of the Desert

Between March 1852 and September 1853, monthly instalments of Bleak House tempted readers with their eyecatching illustrated covers and affordable price of one shilling. Within these covers, the ‘Bleak House Advertiser’ promoted commercial products, from...

The Voice of the People

Why would you visit The Quack Doctor to read about the famous Beecham's Pills, when five seconds of Googling will give you more information than you could possibly read in a lifetime? Well, obviously you...

A Wife is the Peculiar Gift of Heaven

This advertisement for Eno's Fruit Salt appeared in the special Royal Wedding Edition of the Penny Illustrated Paper on 8 July 1893. The edition commemorated the nuptials of Prince George, Duke of York and Princess...
John Gardner, Image Courtesy of Wellcome Library, London

The Worm-Doctor of Shoreditch

It's a while since we last heard from our old friend Ascaris lumbricoides, so it's time he made another appearance on The Quack Doctor together with a few of his helminthic chums. I'm putting together...

Smith’s Live-Long Candy

Sometimes, patent remedies killed people. The Live-Long Candy did manage to get mentioned at an inquest, and there'd be a particular irony in a product of this name carrying someone off – but I...

The Worm Has Returned

Regular readers of The Quack Doctor might remember that back at the end of September last year, I blogged about a news story surrounding the National Archives' Surgeons at Sea project. The Archives' press...

Paul Gage’s Tonic Antiphlegmatic Elixir

Source: The Liverpool Mercury, 30 December 1851 . Phlegm is generally white, greyish, or of a yellow colour, with streaks of black; its consistency varies from the limpidity of water to the thickness of jelly. This vivid...