Simon Paulli (1603-1680) was the first court physician to Frederick III of Denmark and a famous botanist who thought tobacco, tea, coffee, and chocolate were the worst things in the world. In his Treatise on tobacco, tea, coffee, and chocolate, translated into English by a “Dr. James” in 1746, Paulli goes to several lengths to explain why consuming these products will ruin your health. This volume also contains fold out diagrams of tea accoutrements. Paulli quotes from Benzon “that Chocolate has a somewhat bitterish Taste, and refrigerates, or dries the Body, without producing the smallest Degree in Intoxication” (166). A previous owner notes in the back of the book that Paulli tried to convince the King of Denmark that drinking tea was “unwholesome” and Frederick replied: “Credo te non esse sanum.” Meaning something along the lines of: “I believe you are not sound.” or “You’re crazy!” (Latin scholars please feel free to correct me!).
Iowa alumnus Michael Mast and his brother Rick Mast would perhaps disagree with Paulli on the evils of chocolate. These chocolatiers extraordinaire have just released a cookbook, Mast Brothers Chocolate: A Family Cookbook, which takes chocolate beyond the dessert realm and into main dishes. You can hear them speak tomorrow evening at 6:30PM in the Shambaugh Auditotium, Main Library. The first 100 people will be able to sample some of the Mast Brothers’ craft-chocolates. See the Iowa Now article for more on the Mast Brothers and come join us!
-Jillian P. (who just happens to have both tea and chocolate at her desk. Take that Paulli!)