[EDITOR'S NOTE: This item has not been previously republished elsewhere. It is included in this collection because of its potential to be the work of Clemens and is deserving of further research and consideration.]
Dr. Richardson has found that one good Havana cigar will yield, when its smoke is condensed, a sufficient amount of poisoned matter to induce active convulsions in a rabbit, and six pipes of common shag tobacco will yield sufficient poison to destroy a rabbit in three minutes.
- California Youths' Companion.
The deduction is plain and simple: It is very unhealthy for rabbits to smoke good Havana cigars, especially if it aggravates its folly by "condensing" the smoke -- a thing which must infallibly produce "active convulsions" of laughter, or some other kind of convulsions, the author of the above treatise being in a manner obscure on this point. Also it would be in the last degree fool hardy and absurd for a rabbit to indulge in more than five pipes of "common shag tobacco" unless circumstances rendered it an object with the rabbit to destroy itself "in three minutes" and the advantages to accrue from that object would be impaired by procrastinating to the extent of a minute or two. The moral of the treatise is palpable -- rabbits should indulge in tobacco only in the strictest moderation and it would even be good judgment in them to abstain from its use altogether. But we will remark here casually, in a spirit of friendly consideration for the editor of the California Youths' Companion, that articles written for the instruction of rabbits ought always to be accompanied by the most explicit explanations because of so inferior an order is their intellectual capacity that they might otherwise fail to understand even the simplest preposition, notwithstanding it contained information of the utmost importance to their well being. We are compelled to offer this suggestion inasmuch as it will be impossible for us to supply omissions of this nature in future, unless they occur at long intervals. We have done the favor this time at considerable inconvenience, and we must protest against such an office being imposed upon us with any degree of frequency.
[transcribed from microfilm]
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