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Bivo Beef and Iron Wine tonic, England, 1900-1930

Bivo Beef and Iron Wine was a medicinal tonic especially recommended as a “recuperative and strength giving food” for people recovering from illness. It was one of many popular ‘over the counter’ patent medicines that were available without prescription. One tablespoon or more was to be taken three times a day, plain or diluted with water. Given the alcohol content, the wine was also on sale in off-licences as well as pharmacies with alcohol licenses. Made by Burroughs, Wellcome & Co., Bivo was given good reports by the medical press. The Lancet said Bivo was “a really valuable preparation and as far as we know a novelty”.

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Glossary: medicinal tonic

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