Reprint: Drunkenness and Poetry

BENDIGO, Wednesday - A married man named James Dennis Meehan was, at the Bendigo City Court today charged with having been found in an intoxicated condition on the licensed premises of the Kimberly Hotel on May 11. Mr. E. W. Kirby, who appeared for the defendant said that his client was not in a drunken state within the meaning of the act; he was merely recovering from the effects of drink, and had delirium tremens. In a New Zealand case the distinction had been drawn that a man was not in a state of intoxication unless he had lost the normal control of his bodily and mental faculties.

Mr. R. B. Anderson, J.P., who presided on the bench, gave the following definition of drunkenness -

"He is not drunk who on the floor,
Can drink, and ask for more.
But drunk is he, who prostrate lies,
Upon the floor, and cannot rise."

(Laughter.) The man had been arrested at the instance of his wife, and her object had been served. The defendant would be discharged.

Meehan promised to go straight away and sign the pledge. Mr. Anderson advised him "not to go to the nearest pub and wet it."  


First published in The Argus, 14 May 1908

[Thanks to the National Library of Australia's newspaper digitisation project for this piece.]

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on September 29, 2010 8:44 AM.

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