Paste, a composition of flour, mixed to a certain consistence with milk, water, or other fluids. It is. used to form the crusts of pies, tarts, and similar articles of pastry. -Confectioners also employ it for a preparation of various fruits, that are baked and dried in a peculiar manner, which it would, in this place, be superfluous to detail ; such as almond, apple, cherry, and currant pastes; as well as those of pears, lemons, plums, peaches,-etc. As we are no advocates for such artificial compounds, we shall briefly observe, that the eating of iminoimmoderate quantities of pastry, and confectionary, is always attended with pernicious effects on the organs of assimilation, especially in children : hence the almost incredible mortality among these innocent victims, in towns, may be easily accounted for ; because parents are often so obstinately blind to their own Interest, as well as the welfare of their offspring, that nothing less than direful experience will convince them of their error. Thus, glandular obstructions of the mesentery, indigestion, scrophula, and other affections, are induced, which gradually undermine the constitution of the child ; and, after a succession of colds or catarrhs, occasion a state of atrophy, which sooner or latter terminates a lingering existence.-See Mesentery.
Paste, likewise denotes a preparation of wheaten flour, boiled up and incorporated with water, till it acquire a viscid consistence. It is used in various trades, as a substitute for size, or glue, in pasting or cementing papers, books, etc. If the composition be intended for paper-hangings, or for other purposes where a considerable degree of adhesion is required, one fourth, fifth, or sixth part in weight, of pulverized resin is added ; and, if the paste is to be still more tenacious, gum-arabic, or any kind of size,may be dissolved in the liquid, while the mixture is boiling.-As this viscous compound, unless it be preserved in a damp place, is apt to dry speedily, it has been recommended to dissolve a little sublimate of mercury (in the propor-tion of one dram to a quart), in the water employed : thus, it will not only retain its fluidity, but will also be secured from the depredations of rats, mice, and other ver mm.
There are, however, various and less expensive vegetable substances, that may be aptly substituted for flour, a valuable article, of which considerable quantities are annually consumed for paste :-on this and similar occasions, we request the reader to consult the General Index of Reference, subjoined to the last volume of this work.