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Posted by Alex on August 01, 2020 at 17:55:13 user Alex.

I can't see this discussed before but it was something that I found most noticeable when reading the S&A series, how often chocolate was mentioned.

Science Focus, September 2019 page 59 has an article about chocolate and that it can boost the levels of good bacteria in the gut and possibly lower depression. Obviously not something that Arthur Ransome would be aware of though chocolate is often mentioned in the books.

Chocolate for us as children was something special so not very often eaten. Is it more commonly consumed elsewhere?

However something I especially noticed was mention of feeding it to William, the dog. Chocolate is toxic for dogs because it contains a chemical called theobromine, as well as caffeine and presumably Arthur did not know this and possibly a lot of people didn't know this at that time. Admittedly it seems to take a lot to really upset a dog so possibly not too bad but not good.

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