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We have already1 described the various kinds of wine, the numerous differences which exist between them, and most of the properties which each kind possesses. There is no subject that presents greater difficulties than this, or, indeed, a more varied field for discussion, it being extremely difficult to pronounce whether wine is more generally injurious in its effects, or beneficial. And then, in addition to this, how very uncertain is it, whether, the moment we have drunk it, it will be productive of salutary results, or turn out no better than so much poison! However, it is only with reference to its medicinal properties, that we are now about to speak of it.

Asclepiades has composed a whole treatise (which has thence received its name2) on the proper methods of administering wine; and the number of commentators who have since written on this treatise, is almost innumerable. For my own part, with all that gravity which becomes a Roman, and one zealous for the furtherance of liberal pursuits, I shall enter into a careful examination of this subject, not, indeed, in the character of a physician, but as a careful investigator of the effects which wine is likely to produce upon the health of man- kind. To treat, however, of the medicinal properties of each individual kind, would be a labour without end, and quite inexhaustible; the more so, as the opinions of medical men are so entirely at variance upon the subject.

1 In B. xiv. cc. 8, 9, 10. It is impossible, with any degree of accuracy, to discuss the properties of these various wines, as they no longer exist.

2 "Cognominatum" appears to be a better reading than "cognominatus," which Sillig has adopted; as it is much more probable that the work received its name from the subject than that the writer did.

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