National Intelligencer, September 24, 1833. The faithful will recall that in a prior post we discussed the rumor, popularized by Charles Dickens in The Pickwick Papers, that felis catus was standard ingredient of commercially-produced mince pie. Here’s an incident that lends color to the charge.
I think the reference to gout has to do with the notion that it was a disease of gourmands and epicures, whose educated palates would not be fooled. Thanks to Melynda for pointing out that the reference is not to gout (painful crystals of uric acid in one’s joints) but gout (French for “taste”), and that the “victims” were not human consumers of cat meat but butchered tom cats whose gamy flavor failed to pass as bunny flesh. Gosh, do I ever have mince on my anthropocentric face.