Amarmylaidie Moon (amarmylaidie) wrote in little_details,
Amarmylaidie Moon

Effects of 19th century absinthe

Setting: London, England 1896

I have a character in a story I'm working on who is a heavy absinthe drinker. I've done some research on the effects of absinthe back then, and I'm coming up with some mixed answers. What I know is:

-Absinthe manufactured today is not hallucinogenic.
-Thujone, an ingredient in pre-ban absinthe, was not actually a hallucinogen, and some think that the people who said it made them hallucinate in the 19th century were making it up.
-There is a theory that it might have been the green dye put into absinthe that made people hallucinate, so the thujone had nothing to do with it. I can find very little information on this idea, though, so I'm not sure how sturdy it is.

So, the information I've found is a little unclear. Every account I've seen on being drunk on absinthe is modern and so the formula is obviously not the same. I'd like to know if anyone has ever seen any reliable 19th century accounts of being drunk on absinthe, if you know anything about its production, its effects, any info at all on the 19th century formula, I'd love to hear it.

The hallucinogenic effects are the most important. Right now, I have my character hallucinating. If there's no way he could be doing so simply by drinking the stuff, I'd like to know. Thank you so much!

Search terms used: absinthe, absinthe hallucinations, Victorian absinthe, 19th century absinthe, thujone in absinthe, green dye in absinthe
Tags: 1880-1889, ~booze, ~victorian era

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