Christmas Carols, Ancient And Modern

With Historical notes Lyrics & Sheet music - online book.

Home Main Menu Singing & Playing Order & Order Info Support Search Voucher Codes

Share page  Visit Us On FB

Previous Contents Next
satisfaction partake of the subsequent feasting and rejoicing, bearing in mind that he should, as far as in his power, or consistent with his station in life, assist at this time his poorer brethren and dependants.
The Britons and Saxons were famed for their hospitality and feasting, and Christmas was pro­bably their principal feast. Thus does Whistle-craft (alias Frere), in his most amusing national work, describe the dainties at King Arthur's Christmas:—
They served up salmon, venison, and wild boars, By hundreds, and by dozens, and by scores.
Hogsheads of honey, kilderkins of mustard, Muttons, and fatted beeves, and bacon swine;
Herons and bitterns, peacocks, swan, and bustard, Teal, mallard, pigeons, widgeons, and in fine,
Plum-puddings, pancakes, apple-pies, and custard. And therewithal they drank good Gascon wine,
With mead, and ale, and cider of our own;
For porter, punch, and negus were not known.
After the introduction of the Normans, the man­ners were still unchanged in this respect, although the style of the entertainments, and nature of the dishes, might from time to time vary. Some of their dainties would rather astonish a party of experimental gourmands, or gourmets, at present. Imagine a bill of fare, containing diligrout, maupi-gyrnun, or karumpie, all favourite dishes in the 12th century.* King Edward the Third endea-
* The tenant of the manor of Addington, in Surrey, held it by the service of making a mess of Diligrout on the day of the Coronation. This is supposed to have been the same as the dish called Bardolf, contained among some receipts of the 13th century, the family of that name being then lords of Addington. It was made of almond milk, the brawn of capons, sugar, and spices, chicken parboiled and chopped; and if there were fat or lard in the mess, it was called Maupigyrnun.—Blount's Fragment. Antiq. by Beckwith, 4to. 1815, pp. 50-54.

Previous Contents Next