Venner.   Tho.    
VIA RECTA AD Vitam Longam.
OR, A Treatise wherein the right way and best manner of living for attaining to a long and healfull life, is clearly demonstrated and punctually applied to every age and constitution of body. Much nore enlarged than the former Impressions. By THO. VENNER Doctor of Physick in Bathe. Whereunto is annexed by the fame Author, A very necessary, and compendius Treatise of the famous Baths of BATHE. WITH A Censure of the Medicinall faculties of the Water of St. Vincents- Rocks neer the City of Bristoll. As also An accurate Treatise concerning TOBACCO. All which are likewise amplified since the former Impressions. LONDON. Printed by James Flesher, for Henry Hood, and are to be sold at his Shop in Saint Dunstans Church-yard in Fleet Street. 1650. With a second part -- THE BATHS OF BATHE OR A necessary compendious Treatise concerning the Nature, Use, and Efficacy of those famous Hot-Waters. Published for the benefit of all such as yearely, for their health, resort to those Baths. With an Advertisement of the great utility that cometh to mans body, by the taking of Physick in the Spring, inferred upon a Question moved, concerning the frequency of sickness, and death of people more in that season, than in any other. Whereunto is also annexed a Censure concerning the Water of Saint Vincents rocks near Bristoll, which is in great request and use against the Stone. By To. Venner Doctor of Physick in Bathe. LONDON. Printed by James Flesher for Henry Hood, and are to be sold at his shop in Saint Dunstans Churchyard in Fleetstreet, 1650. With a third part -- A Briefe and Accurate TREATISE CONCERNING The taking of the Fume of TOBACCO, Which very many, in these dayes, doe too too licencously use. In which the immoderate, irregular, and unreasonable use therof is reprehended, and the true nature and best manner of using it, perspicuously demonstrated. By TO. VENNER Doctor of Physick in Bathe. LONDON, Printed by James Flesher for Henry Hood, and are to be sold at his shop in Saint Dunstans Church-yard in Fleet Street, 1650
4to. Pp. Title Page. 2pp Preface. 6pp 'The Table' (1-342) There is a mis-pagination of 10 pages. It jumps from page 331 to 342 without loss of text. - THE 2nd PART; Pp. Title page. (345-393) There is a mis-pagination of 9 pages. It jumps from page 382 to 391 without loss of text - THE 3rd PART; Pp. Title Page. (397-417). Fully bound in contemporary brown calf with original boards and blind tooled borders. Original spine with blind tooling, a red label with gilt lettering and lines. The board on one side has split by the spine but still holding strongly due to re-inforced guttering on inside cover. A clean copy with minimal staining. Overall paper quality browned with age, particularly the title page. A scarce item.
- One of the most popular books on regimen of the period, with much information on diet and nutrition. Venner (1577-1660) Physician and writer. Graduated from Oxford in 1599 with a BA, and started as a medical practitioner and later was made a proper MD. He had a practice in Peterton, Bridgewater and Bath. He advocated moderation in smoking, but tears down some of the contemporary superstitions on the evil of the habit. Also, his writings did much to popularize the therapeutic waters of Bath. He was the first to use the word 'obesity' to describe people who are very overweight. In the bibliography ‘Old Cookery Books and Ancient Cuisine’ by William Carew Hazlitt, he brings our attention to Venner’s wide-ranging advice on various meats. “ He was evidently a very intelligent person, and affords us the result of his professional experience and personal observation. He considered two meals a day sufficient for all ordinary people; breakfast at eleven and supper at six (as at the universities); but he thought that children and the aged or infirm could not be tied by any rule. He condemns "bull's beef" as rank, unpleasant, and indigestible, and holds it best for the labourer; which seems to indicate more than anything else the low state of knowledge in the grazier, when Venner wrote: but there is something beyond friendly counsel where our author dissuades the poor from eating partridges, because they are calculated to promote asthma. "Wherefore," he ingenuously says, "when they shall chance to meet with a covey of young partridges, they were much better to bestow them upon such, for whom they are convenient!" Salmon, turbot, and sturgeon he also advises, is hard of digestion, and injurious, if taken to excess; nor does he approve of herrings and sprats; and anchovies he characterises as the meat of drunkards. It is the first that we have heard of them. He was not a bad judge of what was palatable, and prescribes as an agreeable and wholesome meal a couple of poached eggs with a little salt and vinegar, and a few corns of pepper, some bread and butter, and a draught of pure claret. He gives a receipt, possibly the earliest seen in print, for making metheglin or hydromel. He does not object to furmety or junket, or to custards, if they are eaten in the proper seasons, and in the middle or at the end of meals. But he dislikes mushrooms, and advises you to wash out your mouth, and rub your teeth and gums with a dry cloth, after drinking milk. The potato, however, he praises as nutritious and pleasant to the taste, yet, as Gerarde the herbalist also says, flatulent. Venner refers to a mode of sopping them in wine as existing in his time. They were sometimes roasted in the embers, and there were other ways of dressing them. John Forster, of Hanlop, in Bucks, wrote a pamphlet in 1664 to show that the more extended cultivation of this root would be a great national benefit.” - How true! But one wonders just how vocal he would be today when he sees obese children eating daily, large quantities of fried potato chips, loaded with over-used toxic frying oil.

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Antiquarian category
ref number: 10922