Better brands of Fig Syrup made in France or Italy are made from dried figs. Cheaper brands may just be sugar syrups with added figs.
One brand, California Fig Syrup, was founded around 1878. They called their product "Syrup of Figs". It contained 6% alcohol and was sold at drug stores for laxative use. For medicinal use, cascara, rhubarb or senna could be added. Ads for the product portrayed happy people dressed to the 9's playing lawn tennis.
In 1903, the company went to court to attempt to enforce its trademark on the phrase "Syrup of Figs."
It backfired on them, though, when the court ruled that they had no right to enforce the trademark, because their product did not actually contain any fig juice whatsoever.
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