The grape juice, which by fermentation makes wine, contains chiefly grape sugar, together with one part of fruit sugar, also albuminous matters, and the acids (principally tartaric, and tannic). This juice is obtained by crushing the grapes, usually by treading, so as to avoid squeezing the stalks, and stones too thoroughly. Hock is a Rhine wine, originally produced at Hockheimer, on the right bank of the Maine, but now the name is applied to any white German wine: it means literally "high home." Hocks are pale wines, and contain scarcely any sugar; they are really not more acid than claret. In Butler's Hudibras we read of this wine as having restored the high and mighty when faint:-

"And made 'em stoutly overcome With baokrach, hockamore, and hum".

The rosined wine which is served in the South of Europe has an admirable antiseptic virtue; though a British pedestrian, when he first quenches his thirst at a Tuscan farm, or rustic inn, is apt to exclaim that the landlord has drawn the wine in a varnish pot, and to sneer accordingly at this balsamic "Vino Vermuth." But the taste is well worth acquiring by thirsty souls in warm climates, and merits the patronage of philanthropists, for it cannot be doubted that the wholesomeness of many Greek, and Italian native drinks is due to their being preserved from decay and secondary fermentation, by their rosin, in place of fiery and fuselly spirit. The large quantity of this wine habitually consumed without prejudice by its admirers is very remarkable. Six years ago there was living, and perhaps still lives, at Menidi, near Athens, a priest, over ninety years of age, who from early manhood had drunk a dozen bottles of wine every day, partly at meals, and partly at odd times. The American Consul ascribes this venerable toper's toughness to the special quality of his liquor.

The ethers of wines are volatile, and fixed; they confer much of the bouquet, particularly the oenanthine, or oenanthic ether. Port wine contains a large proportion of such ethers, especially the "fixed".

The colour of red wine is due to a pigment in the skins turned red by the acids of the grape juice, whilst the colour of white wines is caused by the oxidation of tannic acid in the cask. Different yeast plants adhering to the skin of the grapes distinguish different wines, which are first put into cask for some years and then bottled, the formation of ethers still going on. But it is a mistake to think that wine will continue to improve for an indefinite length of time; it is liable eventually to decay by the slow process of complete oxidation. Nevertheless "what magic there is in an old bottle of red wine! How beautiful it looks as the light shines through it! An old bottle of red wine! For years it has lain in the darkness, and rest of the cellar. For years there has been ripening within it a slow, soft life-warmth; a magical, fine spirit that will evoke for you dreams, and half-dreams of an entrancing sort. This old bottle of wine holds imprisoned within it a kindly genie which will transport you back to the balmy past - a past from which the bitterness has vanished.

This kindly genie will soften for you the present; and he will show you the glimmer, and the wonder of the future! An old bottle of red wine! It is a precious gift that comes from out the divine essence of the earth! A fine elixir! It cheers and befriends, and soothes. It awakens in man his larger and more potent self. It unravels, and unweaves before him fine thoughts - strange, curious thoughts. It unlocks the mind's marvellous, and mysterious recesses. It enriches, and enripens the personality. Under its genial spell a man becomes gay; a man becomes wise with the profound wisdom of tolerance; he laughs; his wit sparkles; a power new, and exalted is given unto him; he feels the glow of fraternity: he is brought within the circle of a benignant kindly magic; the cares of yesterday are gone; the cares of to-morrow have not yet come; the present is full of rare, and beautiful colour! Wine! Give me, I beseech you, an old bottle of choice red wine".

But, as some persons persist in supposing, far more durable and sentimentally refined is the bouquet of the purer liquor at a temperance banquet: -

"We bid you to a wineless feast, And string our noble lyre. Our blood is warm enough at least, Without the vintage fire: Affection's subtle alchemy Repeats with touch divine The miracle of Galilee, - Turns water into wine!"

Respecting which miracle, as runs an Eton tradition, the single line was found written on the paper of a schoolboy (Tierney) who had failed to accomplish further verse-composition: -

"Gonscia lympha Deum vidit, et erubuit".

"The modest water saw its Lord, and blushed".

"Sherry,' 'according to Sir Wm. Roberts, "as used dietetically, frequently exercises an important retarding effect on the digestion of food in the stomach. Half-a-pint of such wine is no unusual allowance at dinner with many persons, this being in proportion to the whole meal (at an estimated total of two pounds in its quantity by weight) about 25 per cent - a very obstructive proportion! In the more common practice of taking two, or three wineglassfuls of sherry with dinner we may notice probably a double action, - both a stimulating effect on the secretion of gastric juice as well as on the muscular contractions of the stomach, and a slight retarding effect on the speed of the digestive chemical processes, especially at their early stages. In still smaller quantity (a wineglassful, or so) sherry acts as a pure stimulant to digestion; though in connection with any such dietetic use of sherry remembrance must be held that it exercises a strong arresting effect (by its free sugar, and its acidity) on the conversion of bread, and other farinaceous foods by the saliva into dextrose. But sherry is superior to the other fortified wines as to the rapidity with which it develops the volatile ethers.