CHOCOTHYMIA

by The Chocolate Dictionary

Chocothymia is the anxiety that comes from an absence of chocolates. Symptoms range from nervousness, distress and impatience, to displacement activities such as drinking, smoking and shopping. In her bestseller Chocolate, The Consuming Passion, author Sandra Boynton illustrates the point when mentioning that the most enduring tragedies were written by the Greeks and Shakespeare, both of whom were ignorant of chocolate. Marlowe, Corneille, Racine and Schiller also wrote great tragedies — perhaps they suffered from chocothymia too? And was Dickens’ great novel Bleak House so-called because there was no chocolate? The author intimated as much when Richard and Ada, wards of court in the labyrinthine Jarndyce case, visit an old friend who greets them with the apology, “I am sorry, but I cannot offer chocolate”. As Alexander Pope almost put it a hundred and fifty years before: “A little chocolate is a dangerous thing, not enough is positively fatal”. Childrens’ author Alex Shearer made a whole story of chocothymia in his 2003 bestseller and TV adaptation Bootleg, later made into a Japanese manga and anime and renamed The Chocolate Underground. In this, a new government keen to build a happier and healthier population decides to ban chocolate, with disastrous consequences.

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