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to the pangs of hunger and responds more readily to its call than to any other stimulus. When the body is insufficiently nourished, both the mind and body become abnormal; the child in the schoolroom is unable to respond to the demands of the teacher; the statesman is unable to hold firmly the reins of government; and the worker in the fields, in the store, or in the factory is unable to render efficient service. When the weakening organs begin to call for support and the life currents begin to draw heavily on the stored up energy of the body, all the native habits of the individual are greatly exaggerated or undergo a sudden change. Upon the lower animals, whether it be the worm of the earth or the lord of the forest, the effect is the same. Among the races of men the instinct is identical in the most beastly cannibal that feeds on the captives of war and in the most exalted ruler of nations. Hunger takes away a mother's love and drives her to devour her own child. It fills the slums of our cities with thieves and thugs, nullifies all laws, and destroys all order. It turns men into demons. The feeding instinct is the great motive power that drives all life and that makes all living things active.
ANCIENT KNOWLEDGE OF COOKING.
It has ever required great skill to convert the corn of a country into a wholesome food. Bread is very ancient in its origin, and baking is older than history itself. Man learned from experience that bread supports life better than any other single food except milk, and thought was devoted to its preparation, even in the very earliest times.
Sarah, the venerable wife of Abraham, knew well how to mix flour and water into a shapely pone, which she baked in hot ashes in her tent. The most ancient Egyptian knew how to make a light, wholesome bread, which they called "leavened bread"; and the Hebrews carried the art with them into Palestine. The Greeks enjoyed a mixture of flour, wine, pepper, oil, and milk, and the ladies of Greece delighted their friends with puff cakes of exquisitely perfumed flour kneaded with the precious honey of Mount Hymettus. The Roman patrician ate bread made by mixing flour, salt, oil, and milk. When the white man came to America, the Indian taught him to make an ashcake from Indian corn. Not only has the world been studying breadmaking since the earliest recorded time, but, as time advanced, the real differences in the value of foods were observed. Many centuries before the Christian era Moses taught his people the superiority of clean over unclean food. The Greeks, clever students of life and of living, studied the influence of food on the mind and body, and to this day the world is the better because of their wisdom.
ANCIENT USE OF VEGETABLES
It was a belief of the Cherokee Indians that all disease came from animals, but that plants contain a cure for every ill which beasts brought to man. Many vegetable foods found on our tables first came into use as medicinal plants, and it is probable that the majority of them thus originated. The cabbage was once regarded as a remedy for drunkenness and various diseases. The Greeks thought asparagus a good remedy for intestinal trouble, and that the beet had very fine medicinal qualities. The cucumber was supposed to have all sorts of healing properties, and lettuce, the favorite plant of Adonis, according to their ideas, possessed narcotic virtues. Garlic incited warriors to courage, and was avoided in time of peace. Parsley excited the brain to agreeable sensation; water cresses gave a very refreshing effect, and onions were good for preserving the health. Hyssop renewed and purified the blood, thyme was an antidote to the venom of a serpent; pennyroyal was taken to facilitate digestion, mint prevented milk from curdling, ginger was a cure for scurvy, and asafetida was in ancient times the chief seasoning for food, since it was supposed to promote digestion. All these vegetables were in use long before the Christian era. In fact, it is impossible to go back to a time when they were not in use. Patroclus probably peeled onions; Achilles washed cabbage; and many centuries before the Trojan war the chief baker for Pharaoh fell into disrepute, probably because of the poor bread that he served.
THE BREAD OF THE WORLD.
It has been well said that the quality of bread made by the inhabitants of any country is a fair measure of their civilization. Of all the cooking processes now in use by civilized man, the cooking of bread is the most important. The kind of bread that is used in any country has always depended upon the kind of corn or grain or foodgiving plants found in that country.
Wheat bread is probably the most widely used in the world's history, because wheat is indigenous in the most fertile valleys of the Old World and could be easily produced in those countries in which it is not indigenous. Rye bread is next in importance, and, though it has not had such long continuous use as wheat, it is used extensively, especially in Germany, France, Spain, and Greece. Buckwheat, or black wheat, is the staple bread flour in Russia, Siberia, and Brittany. Soya bread is eaten in some places, especially by the inhabitants of China and Japan. It is made from an oily pea that is native to those countries. Millet -flour produces a wholesome bread that is eaten by the inhabitants of India, China, Egypt, Italy, Spain, and Portugal. Bice constitutes the staple food of a majority of the inhabitants of the world; it is eaten less in America than elsewhere. Barley bread was an ancient food of note, but it is not used now to any great extent except in portions of Russia. Oats was originally the grain food of Europe. It has been eaten in Germany for 1,000 years, but it is eaten to-day more in Scotland than in any other country. Arrowroot flour is derived from a tropical plant grown in both East and West Indies, and when made into a bread is eaten by the inhabitants of these countries. Tapioca flour makes a wholesome bread that is eaten by the inhabitants of Central and South America. The flour is made from the roots of the plant. It is becoming popular in Europe and America. Sago is derived from the pith found in the stem of several varieties of the palm in Sumatra, Java, and Borneo, and makes wholesome bread for the people of those and adjoining islands. /celand moss also is used as a food. The Eskimos purify it by washing, and then make a fine flour of it that is easily made into a bread. Indian corn, or maize, was the chief bread plant of American Indians. In Mexico it is still the principal food, and the cakes made of it are called tortillos. In Italy it is called polenta; in Roumania, mamaliga, and in Transcaucasia, hukurus. In North America it is made into corn pone, johnnycake, ash cake, griddle bread, and corn bread.
Bise of the baker.—The preparation of food for the dignitaries of the world has always been an important matter. You will recall that when Joseph was serving in the house of Potiphar he was cast into prison. Later the royal baker offended his lord, the king, and was cast into prison, where he had a dream which Joseph interpreted. His dream is interesting. "Behold, I had three white baskets on my head, and in the uppermost basket there was all manner of baked meats for Pharaoh." But in his dream he let the birds pick the food and it foretold his doom. The Hebrews on leaving Egypt took with them their knowledge of breadmaking, but they discarded the leavened bread of Egypt and made specific regulations concerning the preparation of bread in "the ovens and in the frying pans."
The baker, however, became an important person when the people stopped their tribal wanderings and settled down to fixed ways of living. Greece had the most skillful bakers in the world. From that country they went to Rome, and the Greek baker, like the Greek school-teacher, became an important person. It is a significant fact that he who could prepare food after the most approved manner for those who followed intellectual pursuits held almost equal honor with him who trained the intellect of the youth. The bakers of Rome formed an association, and sometimes one of them was raised to the dignity of senator.
In the fourteenth century a baker was required to go through a four years' apprenticeship, after which he was licensed to pursue his occupation. Bread was supposed to contain properties according to its mixture and preparation. Hence the baker's art was important. Different kinds of bread were prepared for different people. The slave had a special kind that would keep him humble and submissive; the athlete another kind that would make him strong and supple; princes and senators another kind, and fashionable ladies still another kind. Each kind was expected to give to the individual eating it a character appropriate to his station in life.
—Selected from Brooks' " Story of Corn."
Clear the brown path, to meet his coulter's gleam!
First in the field before the reddening sun,
Still, where he treads, the stubborn clods divide,
Up the steep hillside, where the laboring train
At every turn the loosening chains resound,
These are the hands whose sturdy labor brings
This is the scholar whose immortal pen
—Oliver Wendell Holmes.
God Almighty first planted a garden; and indeed it is the purest of human pleasures. It is the greatest refreshment to the spirits of man, without which buildings and palaces are but gross handiworks; and a man shall ever see that when ages grow to civility and elegancy, men come to build stately, sooner than to garden finely, as if gardening were the greater perfection.
THE SOWER'S SONG.
Now hands to seed-sheet, boys!
We step and we cast; old Time's on wing;
Fall gently and still, good corn,
Old earth is a pleasure to see
In sunshiny cloak of red and green;
Fall gently and still, good corn,
Old earth, receive this corn,
The son of six thousand golden sires;
Fall gently and still, good corn,
Lie warm in thy earthy bed,
Now steady and sure again,
And measure of stroke and step we keep;
Fall gently and still, good corn,
And I must work thro' months of toll,
I will not vex my bosom: