[Milton-L] query about fairies and ale

Joshua Scodel jscodel at uchicago.edu
Mon Feb 26 11:08:45 EST 2007


Dear Beth,

I also discuss both the class and religious associations of the wine- 
beer dichotomy in in two chapters on 17th-century drinking and  
convivial poetry in Excess and the Mean in Early Modern English  
Literature (Princeton, 2001).  The dichotomy is important in Ben  
Jonson's "Inviting a Friend to Supper" and several Cavalier drinking  
songs.

I also, by the way, provide readings of Milton's sonnets, "Cyriack,  
whose grandsire" and "Lawrence of virtuous father," in relation to  
Cavalier drinking poetry.

Best,

Josh Scodel

On Feb 26, 2007, at 9:57 AM, Beth Quitslund wrote:

> Thanks for all the considered replies! Though I had suggested that  
> we were looking at a wine-beer distinction, this has helped  
> contextualize things considerably. (And obviously I'm going to have  
> to read Adam Smyth's collection before hosting my next party.)
>
> Beth
>
>
>
>
> At 10:08 AM 2/26/2007, you wrote:
>> Hello, Beth and all.  I recently saw a review of a collection of  
>> essays on
>> the social valence of different kinds of drink:  ADAM SMYTH, ed.  A
>> Pleasing Sinne: Drink and Conviviality in Seventeenth-Century England
>> (Boydell and Brewer, 2004).  Here's the table of contents - it sounds
>> perfect for your student:
>>
>> Sons of Beer and Sons of Ben: Drink as a Social Marker in
>> Seventeenth-Century England - Cedric C Brown
>> 2       The Anacreontea and a Tradition of Refined Male  
>> Sociability - Stella
>> Achilleos
>> 3       Tavern Societies, the Inns of Court, and the Culture of  
>> Conviviality in
>> Early Seventeenth-Century London - Michelle O'Callaghan
>> 4       Wine for Comfort: Drinking and the Royalist Exile  
>> Experience, 1642-1660
>> - Marika Keblusek
>> 5       Roaring Royalists and Ranting Brewers: the Politicisation  
>> of Drink and
>> Drunkenness in Political Broadside Ballads from 1640 to 1689 - Angela
>> McShane
>> 6       'Be sometimes to your country true': the Politics of Wine  
>> in England,
>> 1660-1714 - Charles C Ludington
>> 7       Circe's Cup: Wine and Women in Early Modern Drama - Karen  
>> Britland
>> 8       Drink, Sex and Power in Restoration Comedy - Susan J Owen
>> 9       'Health, Strength and Happiness': Medical Constructions of  
>> Wine and Beer
>> in Early Modern England [with Tanya Cassidy] - Louise Curth
>> 9       'Health, Strength and Happiness': Medical Constructions of  
>> Wine and Beer
>> in Early Modern England [with Louise Curth] - Tanya Cassidy
>> 10      Drinking Cider in Paradise: Science, Improvement, and the  
>> Politics of
>> Fruit-Trees - Vittoria Di Palma
>> 11      A Natural Drink for an English Man: National Stereotyping  
>> in Early
>> Modern Culture - Charlotte McBride
>> 12      'It were far better to be a Toad, or a Serpant, then a  
>> Drunkart':
>> Writing about Drunkenness - Adam Smyth
>>
>> Best,
>> Kate
>>
>>
>>
>> > On 26/02/2007, at 3:15 AM, quitslun at ohio.edu wrote:
>> >
>> >> Dear Colleagues,
>> >>
>> >> No, this is not a contribution to the much-raveled "queer Milton"
>> >> thread. One
>> >> of my graduate students came to me with a question about a speech
>> >> from _The
>> >> Masque at Coleorton_ that I couldn't answer. (It doesn't help that
>> >> I haven't
>> >> read the whole text, of course, but we'll leave that.) The speech
>> >> in question
>> >> is this, from a dialogue between a couple of fairies:
>> >>
>> >> BOB. True, Puck, housekeeping is a rag of Rome; 'tis abolished.  
>> All
>> >> good
>> >> fellowship, called feasting, is turned to a dish of Bibles. The
>> >> country mirth
>> >> and pastime, that's Pontius Pilate, dead and buried.  
>> Entertainment?
>> >> that's now
>> >> a fooling please for every swabber. [
>> >> ] This new sect, in sincerity, 'tis a
>> >> dry one, and a plaguey soaker of the buttery; truly, if e'er they
>> >> drink,
>> >> drunk 'tis with ale and in private?-ale, that turdy, dirty, nasty,
>> >> pissy,
>> >> farty, lantitantical liquor. A drink devised by Puritans and
>> >> pettifoggers to
>> >> settle the spittle of their palates that their tongues may yet run
>> >> more at
>> >> liberty. That villainous drench has been the bane of the buttery.
>> >>
>> >> What she wanted to know, and I couldn't answer is what exactly we
>> >> are supposed
>> >> to make of the disparagement of ale. Is it that it's not wine? If
>> >> the rather
>> >> wonderful series of pejoratives were attributed to the Puritans as
>> >> evidence of
>> >> their hypocrisy, I would understand, but Bob then seems to
>> >> associate ale with
>> >> Puritans as opposed to good hearty country people.
>> >>
>> >> I feel like an idiot--can anyone help me out here?
>> >>
>> >> thanks,
>> >> Beth
>> >> _______________________________________________
>> >> Milton-L mailing list
>> >> Milton-L at lists.richmond.edu
>> >> Manage your list membership and access list archives at http://
>> >> lists.richmond.edu/mailman/listinfo/milton-l
>> >
>> >
>> > _______________________________________________
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>> >
>>
>>
>> --
>> Kate Narveson
>> Dept. of English
>> Luther College
>> Decorah, IA  52101
>> (563) 387-1593
>>
>>
>> _______________________________________________
>> Milton-L mailing list
>> Milton-L at lists.richmond.edu
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>
>
>
> ==============================================
>
> Beth Quitslund
> Assistant Professor of English
>
> Department of English
> Ohio University
> Athens, OH 45701
> phone: (740) 593-2829
> FAX: (740) 593-2818
> _______________________________________________
> Milton-L mailing list
> Milton-L at lists.richmond.edu
> Manage your list membership and access list archives at http:// 
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