The fruit of the Vine (Vitis vinifera) has already been treated of
here under the heading Grapes, as employed medicinally whether
for the purgation of the bilious--being then taken crude, and scarcely
ripe,--or for imparting fat and bodily warmth in wasting disease by
eating the luscious and richly-saccharine berries.
It should be added that the fumes exhaled from the wine-presses
whilst the juice is ferm
nting, prove highly beneficial as a
restorative for weakly and delicate young persons (an example
which might be followed perhaps at our home breweries).
Consumptive patients are sent with this view to the Gironde, where
the vapour from the wine vats is more stimulating and curative than
in Burgundy. Young girls who suffer from atrophy are first made to
stand for some hours daily in the sheds when the wine pressing is
going forward. After a while, as they become less weak, they are
directed to jump into the wine press, where, with the vintagers and
labourers they skip about and inhale the fumes of the fermenting
juice, until they sometimes become intoxicated, and even senseless.
This effect passes off after one or two trials, and the girls return to
their labour with renewed strength and heightened colour, hopeful,
joyous, and robust. The  vats of the famous Chateau d'yquem
are the most celebrated of all for the wondrous cures they have
effected even in cases considered past human aid.