Arrack, Arac, or Rack, is a spirituous liquor imported from the East Indies, and used either as a cordial, or an ingredient in punch. It is obtained by distillation from rice, or sugar, fermented with the juice of cocoa-nuts. Goa and Ba-tavia are the chief places from which arrack is exported. At the former, there are three sorts, viz. the single, double, and treble distilled. The double is but a weak spirit, in comparison with that obtained at the latter place; but, on account of its peculiar flavour, it is preferred to all the others.
The arrack now in general use contains but a sixth, and some-times only an eighth part of alcohol, or pure spirit. A spirituous liquor of this name is also extracted by the Tartars of Tungusia, from mare's milk, which is first suffered to turn sour, and then distilled two or three times, between two close earthen pots, from which it runs through a small wooden pipe. It is possessed of the most intoxicating qualities ; so that, according to Prof. Pallas, men, women and children, frequently drink them-selves into a semi-delirious trance, which continues for forty - eight hours,
Various penalties are attached to the sale of arrack, without conforming to the usual duties and lations established by several acts of parliament, with which we shall not trouble our readers, but refer them to the statutes made concerning tins article.
Genuine arrack is said to possess balsamic, softening, and restorative properties, and to be less liable to produce the usual incon-encies of other spirits. It is farther supposed to contain a fine subtile oil, so minute as to incorporate readily with water : hence it is generally preferred in those cases, where repeated debauches have abraded the internal sides of the vessels. Persons who are unfortunately addicted to the use of ardent spirits, as well as those troubled with the gout or rheumatism, and who cannot comply with the rules of sobriety and temperance, may use arrack in preference to Hollands, or brandy. On account of its strong empyreumatic oil, however, it is difficult of digestion, soon turns rancid, causes numerous obstructions, and is con-sequently injurious to individuals of lax solids, and thick or sizy fluids. Happy, therefore, are those who can entirely banish spirituous liquors from, their tables ; as. from their stimulating and pernicious qualities, they have destroyed incalculable numbers of human beings - perhaps exceeding in the aggregate, all the victims that ever fell under the combined scourges of war, hunger, and pestilence.