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It appears from Auan Ramsay's Poems, 1721, p. 120, that in Scotland, of those “wha had been fou yestreen," i. e. drunk the night before, “payment of the drunken groat is very peremptorily demanded by the common people, next morning: but if they frankly confess the debt due, they are passed for twopence.” The same author, ibid. p. 17, mentions as in use among the Scots, Hy-jinks, “a drunken game, or new project to drink and be rich; thus the quaff or cup is filled to the brim, then one of the company takes a pair of dice, and after crying hy-finks, he throws them out: the number he casts up points out the person must drink, he who threw beginning at himself number one, and so round till the number of the persons agree with that of the dice (which may fall upon him. self if the number be within twelve), then he sets the dice to him, or bids him take them: he on whom they fall is obliged to drink, or pay a small forfeiture in money; then throw, and so on : but if he forgets to cry hy-jinks, he pavs a forfeiture into the bank. Now he on whom it falls to drink, if there be anything in bank worth drawing, gets it all if he drinks. Then, with a great deal of caution, he empties his cup, sweeps up the money, and orders the cup to be filled again, and then throws; for, if he err in the articles, he loses the privilege of drawing the money. The articles are, (1) Drink. (2) Draw. (3) Fill. (4) Cry hy-jinks. (5) Count just. (6) Chuse your doublet man, viz. when two equal numbers of the dice are thrown, the person whom you chuse must pay a double of the common forfeiture, and so must you when the dice is in his hand. A rare project this,” adds honest Allan, “and no bubble, I can assure you; for a covetous fellow may save money, and get himself as drunk as he can desire in less than an hour's time." It is probable he might have subjoined “experto crede Roberto.” He mentions, p. 30, a set of drinkers called Facers, who, he says, “were a club of fair drinkers, who inclined rather to spend a shilling on ale than two-pence for meat. They had their name from a rule they observed of obliging themselves to throw all they left in the cup in their own faces: wherefore, to save their face and cloaths, they prudently suck’d the liquor clean out.”!
i Dr. Jamieson notices Whigmeleerie as the name of a ridiculous game which was occasionally used in Angus at a drinking club. A pin was stuck in the centre of a circle, from which there were as many radii as there
Strutt's authority for his origin of Pledging, before quoted, is William of Malmesbury, and he observes from the delineation he gives us (and it must be noted that his plates, being copies of ancient illuminated manuscripts, are of unquestionable authority,) that it seems perfectly well to agree with the reported custom ; the middle figure is addressing himself to his companion, who seems to tell him that he pledges him, holding up his knife in token of his readiness to assist and protect him. After all, I cannot help hazarding an opinion that the expression meant no more than that if you took your cup or glass I pledged myself to you that I would follow your example. The common ellipsis, “ to,” is wanting. Thus we say, “I'll give you," instead of “ I'll give to you ;" “ I'll pledge you," “I'll pledge to you.” But I offer this with great deference to the established opinions on the subject.!
It was the custom in Beaumont and Fletcher's time for the young gallants to stab themselves in the arms or elsewhere, in order to drink the healths of their mistresses, or to write their names in their own blood. See Mason's Notes on Beaumont and Fletcher, p. 103, where many instances are adduced. So, in the Oxford Drollery, 1671, p. 124, is a song to a Scotch tune, in which the following lines occur:
3. “ I stab'd mine arm to drink her health,
The more fool I, the more fool I,” &c. 4. “I will no more her servant be,
The wiser I, the wiser I,
Nor pledge her health upon my knee,” &c. I beg the reader's candid examination of the subsequent
were persons in the company, with the name of each person at the radius opposite to him. On the pin an index was placed, and moved round by every one in his turn; and at whatsoever person's radius it stopped, he was obliged to drink off his glass. Whiymeleeries are " whims, fancies, crotchets."
Pasquier, in his Recherches, p. 501, mentions that Mary, Queen of Scots, previously to her execution, drank to all her attendants, desiring them to pledge her. See what the same author has said in p. 785 of his work concerning this custom. See also the Fabliaux of M. Le Granu. tom. i. p. 119, and his Histoire de la Vie privée des François, iï270. The custom of pledging is to be found in the ancient romance of Ogie Danoit, where Charlemagne pledges himself for Ogie. See Tressan, Corps d'Extraits de Romans de Chevalerie, ii. 77.
passages in Rigby's Ingenious Poem called the Drankard's Prospective, or Burning Glasse, 1656, p. 7 :
“ Yea every cup is fast to others wedg'd,
They alwaies double drink, they must be pledg'd.
Looks that each one do drink as much as he."
“Oh, how they'll wind men in, do what they can,
In the first quotation the author's meaning seems to be this: a man in company, not contented with taking what he chooses, binds another to drink the same quantity that he does. In the last, one proposes a health which another pledges to honour by drinking to it an equal quantity with him that proposed it.
Heywood, in his Philocothonista, or the Drunkard Opened, Dissected, and Anatomized, 1635, says, p. 45, “Of drinking cups divers and sundry sorts we have; some of elme, some of box, some of maple, some of holly, &c., mazers, broad-month'd dishes, noggins, whiskins, piggins, crinzes, ale-bowles, wassell. bowles, court-dishes, tankards, kannes, from a bottle to a pint, from a pint to a gill. Other bottles we have of leather, but they most used amongst the shepheards and harvest-people of the countrey: small jacks wee have in many alehouses, of the citie and suburbs, tip't with silver, besides the great black jacks and bombards at the court, which when the Frenchmen first saw, they reported, at their returne into their countrey, that the Englishmen used to drinke out of their bootes : we have besides, cups made of hornes of beasts, of coeker-nuts, of goords, of the eggs of estriches, others made of the shells of divers fishes brought from the Indies and other places, and shining like mother of pearle. Come to plate, every taverne can afford you flat bowles, French bowles, prounet cups, beare
bowles, beakers; and private householders in the citie, when they make a feast to entertaine their friends, can furnish their cupboards with flagons, tankards, beere-cups, wine-bowles, some white, some percell guilt, some guilt all over, some with covers, others without, of sundry shapes and qualities.” Page 51, he tells us : “There is now profest an eighth liberal art or science, callid Ars Bibendi, i. e. the Art of Drinking. The students or professors thereof call a greene garland, or painted hoope hang'd out, a colledge : a signe where there is lodging, man's-meate, and horse-meate, an inne of court, an hall, or an hostle : where nothing is sold but ale and tobacco, a grammar schoole : a red or blew lattice, that they terme a free schoole, for all commers. ... The bookes which they studdy, and whose leaves they so often turne over, are, for the most part, three of the old translation and three of the new. Those of the old translation: 1. The Tankard. 2. The Black Jacke. 3. The Quart-pot rib'd, or Thorondell. Those of the new be these : 1. The Jugge. 2. The Beaker. 3. The double or single Can, or Black Pot.” Among the proper phrases belonging to the library, occur, p. 65, “ to drinke upse-phreese, supernaculum, to swallow a slap-dragon, or a raw eggerto see that no lesse than three at once be bare to a health.” Our author, p. 23, observes : “Many of our nation have used the Lowe-countrey warres so long, that though they have left their money and clothes behind, yet they have brought home their habit of drinking.” At p. 60 he gives the following phrases then in use for being drunk: “He is foxt, hee is flawed, he is flustered, hee is suttle, cupshot, cut in the leg or backe, hee hath seene the French king, he hath swallowed an haire or a taverne-token, hee hath whipt the cat, he hath been at the scriveners and learn'd to make indentures, hee hath bit his grannam, or is bit by a barne-weesell, with an hundred such-like adages and sentences.”
· [That is, partly gilded.]
HEALTHS, OR TOASTS.
" 'Twas usual then the banquet to prolong
By musick's charm, and some delightful song:
King's ART OF COOKERY, ed. 1776, iii. 75. The ancient Greeks and Romans used at their meals to make libations, pour out, and even drink wine, in honour of the gods. The classical writings abound with proofs of this,
The Grecian poets and historians, as well as the Roman writers, have also transmitted to us accounts of the grateful custom of drinking to the health of our benefactors and of our acquaintances.
Y" Pro te, fortissime, vota Publica suscipimus : Bacchi tibi sumimus haustus." It appears that the men of gallantry among the Romans used to take off as many glasses to their respective mistresses as there were letters in the name of each. Thus, Martial :
“ Six cups to Nævia's health go quickly round,
And be with seven the fair Justina's crown'd." Hence, no doubt, our custom of toasting, or drinking healths, 2 a ceremony which Pryone, in his work entitled Healthes Sicknesse, inveighs against in language most strongly tinctured with enthusiastic fury.3
| How exceedingly similar to our modern custom of saying to each of the company in turn, “Give us a lady to toast," is the following: “Da puere ab summo, age tu interibi ab infimo da suavium."
Plauti Asinaria. ? The following is a curious epigram of Owen, I. ii. 42, on this subject:
“ Quo tibi potarum plus est in ventre salutum,
Hoc minus epotis, hisce salutis habes.
Non est in potâ vera salute salus."
“Even from my heart much health I wish,
No health I'll wash with drink,
To be the best I think." * This extraordinary man, who, though he drank no healths, yet appears