Temperance is the only solution!

We’ve been fortunate recently to buy a copy of a book which appears to be the only known copy! It’s called Whiskiana, or the drunkard’s progress.  A poem. In Scottish verse (NLS shelfmark AP.1.211.06), and it was printed in Glasgow in 1812:

August PAs

Whiskiana deals with the “evil of habitual intoxication”.  The author acknowledges the popular Scots poet Hector Macneill as an inspiration but remains anonymous, simply calling himself Anti-Whiskianus.

All we know about him is what he reveals about himself in the preface: he was originally from the village of Ceres in Fife. 

The poem follows a drunkard all the way from inebriation to redemption in order to “counteract the excessive praises lavished on whisky by Burns”. I’m not sure how much Robert Burns can be blamed for excessive whisky consumption, but for Anti-Whiskianus temperance was the only solution to the problem. No half measures then!