From my eBooks – Cole’s Funny Picture Book No. 1


First published in 1879!

Read more on the source linked to that.

His book arcade was always full of colour, motion, entertainment and activity. You could watch the costumed jugglers, buy food and drink, or find a quiet corner to curl up with a book. But all the time he was a man with a message. His Coles Funny Picture Books contains ideas that were quite subversive. His attitudes on religion, racism, social organisation and many other things were all politically incorrect at the time, but he managed to give it all a humorous sugar coating that enabled them to creep under the defences of otherwise closed-minded people. If you get a chance to pick up a copy of Coles Funny Picture Book at a fair or market, check to see when the particular edition was published. His family took over the business and the publishing, and over the years Coles ideas were bowdlerised and watered down. It is interesting to watch how by the later 20th century the descendants are finding Cole’s attitudes too radical and start to water them down with unfunny politically correct views from the present.

See also Cole, Edward William (1832–1918).


Smoking Does Some Good, but More Evil

Smoking soothes and comforts millions of the worried and the weary, and brings much pleasure to the habitual smoker, but it always more or less injures the health of the smoker and sometimes kills him. The vast majority of the medical fraternity condemn smoking, especially by the young.

  Smoking injures multitudes of boys in many respects.
  Smoking often leads to boys into bad company.
  Smoking often makes them precocious, undutiful, impudent and callous.
  Smoking often ruins the health.
  Smoking generally stunts their growth.
  Smoking generally sallows their complexion.
  Smoking often leads them to lying.
  Smoking often leads them to stealing.
  Smoking often leads them to drinking.
  Smoking degenerates the boy physically, mentally, and morally.
  Smokers cannot excel in athletic sports, such as boating, cricket, cycling.
  Smokers are always at the bottom of the class in school and college, and backward at all kinds of study.
  Excessive smoking causes mental and physical laziness in boys and men.

The following organs, fluids, functions, etc., of the body, especially of the young, are frequently more or less affected by the use of tobacco:—The blood, the heart, the nerves, the brain, the liver, the lungs, the stomach, the throat, the saliva, the taste, the voice, the eyes, the ears, the nose, the mouth, the tongue, the palate, the pancreas, the lips, the teeth, the bones, the skin.

Medical men and observing experts affirm many diseases are caused or accelerated by the use of tobacco, among which are the following:— Heart disease, consumption, cancer, ulceration, asthma, bronchitis, neuralgia, paralysis, palsy, apoplexy, indigestion, dysentery, diarrhoea, constipation, sleeplessness, melancholia, delirium tremens, insanity.

  Smoking frequently leads to prolonged suffering.
  Smoking often destroys the appetite.
  Smoking sometimes weakens the will power.
  Smoking sometimes leads to loss of memory.
  Smoking often leads to despondency.

  Smoking sometimes leads to suicide.

Smoking frequently leads to loss—loss by bad health and waste of valuable time—direct loss in money required for other purposes, and immense loss through reckless, thoughtless, or unfortunate smokers being the cause of partial or total destruction by fire of buildings, ships, factories, homesteads, crops, stores, and property of many kinds; also loss of life and property by explosions in mines, explosive factories, powder magazines, explosive stores, etc.

  Tobacco using is an unclean habit, and offensive habit, an enslaving habit, often it is an intensely selfish habit.
  Tobacco fumes, especially in small and poorly-ventilated houses or rooms, injure or destroy the health of multitudes of wives, and injure the health of multitudes of infants and children.
  Tobacco using injures the unborn child by giving it a puny body and an imperfect start in life.
  Tobacco using is fast degenerating the race.

That last one is a real worry!  Mind you, not all Cole says here looks as silly as it did to me as a child… The copy I read was at Uncle Bob’s place, and he was a Craven A fiend. Mind you he did get smoking-related issues in the end.


Amazing how widely this book (or books – there were three eventually) spread in Australia, until well  past 1950. Did you have one?