John "The Gneech" Robey (the_gneech) wrote,
John "The Gneech" Robey
the_gneech

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Happy Birthday to babsbunny and bjbuttons!

For your present, here's today's Forgotten English!

zarf
A cup-shaped holder for a hot coffee-cup ... usually of metal and of ornamental design.
--Sir James Murray's New English Dictionary, 1928


Feast Day of St. Drogo,
a twelfth-century shepherd who became a patron of coffeehouse owners, whose controversial shops were once regarded with suspicion. According to Edward Hatton's New View of London (1708), "the Inquest of St. Dunstan's in the West" investigated James Fair, a barber by London's Inner Temple Gate, "for making a sort of liquor called 'coffee,' to the great nuisance and prejudice of the neighborhood." Three decades earlier, women in London created a pamphlet to warn against the dangers of impotence posed by coffee consumption. After coffee's acceptance as a beverage following centuries of trial and error, the glossary of John Russell Lowell's Bigelow Papers (1882) described an American technique of improving its flavor and clarity by immersing fresh or preserved fish-skin into the brew. "But," Lowell remarked, "the practice is by no means confined to New England. In the country districts in England, dried fish-skin, newly broken egg-shells, &c. are still used for this purpose."

Zarf! Tross! HahaHAha!

Given some of the nonsensical invective spewed at Starbucks, I'd say the 'prejudice of the neighborhood' is still pretty common.

-The Gneech
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