Up To Snuff

“UP TO SNUFF.”

A volume of Italian Poems lately received in the British Metropolis, furnishes fine amusement for the learned wits. Leigh Hunt has shown himself up to snuff in giving a merry interpretation to some of these effusions. The following is a free translation of the line on Sneezing: —

What a moment! what a doubt!
All my nose, inside and out,
All my thrilling, tickling, caustic,
Pyramid rhinocerostic
Wants to sneeze and cannot do it!
Now it yearns me, thrills me, stings me,
Now with rapturous torment wrings me,
Now says sneeze, “you fool, get through it.”
Shee — shee — Oh, ’tis most del-ishi,
Ishi — ishi — most del-ishi —
(Hang it! I shall sneeze till spring.)
Snuff’s a most delicious thing.

The Peoples Press (Gettysburg, Pennsylvania) Dec 4, 1835

Title: A pinch of snuff, anecdotes of snuff taking, with the moral and physical effects of snuff, by dean Snift of Brazen-nose
Author: Benson Earle Hill
Published: 1840 (Google book LINK)

Images from the “pinch of snuff” book. Also from this fascinating book, a bit of sneezing/plague trivia:

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