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Table of contents
- Full text of "Ireland in fiction; a guide to Irish novels, tales, romances and folk-lore"
- A-Z Review List
- Leo Ireton
- A View from the Author's Window!
I say, I say! Look, look! What, me? Who pinned that woman to the gentleman? Clear away from the doors! Let the customers go in!
Full text of "Ireland in fiction; a guide to Irish novels, tales, romances and folk-lore"
Make way! Let the cakes come out! Go back, boy! All the Boys. More people pinned—and plenty nailed up! To explain, to those who may be ignorant of the practice. On Twelfth-night in London, boys assemble round the inviting shops of the pastrycooks, and dexterously nail the coat-tails of spectators, who venture near enough, to the bottoms of the window frames; or pin them together strongly by their clothes. Sometimes eight or ten persons find themselves thus connected. The dexterity and force of the nail driving is so quick and sure, that a single blow seldom fails of doing the business effectually.
Withdrawal of the nail without a proper instrument is out of the question; and, consequently, the person nailed must either leave part of his coat, as a cognizance of his attachment, or quit the spot with a hole in it. At every nailing and pinning shouts of laughter arise from the perpetrators and the spectators. Yet it often happens to one who turns and smiles at the duress of another, that he also finds himself nailed.
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First, buy your cake. Then, before your visitors arrive, buy your characters, each of which should have a pleasant verse beneath. Next look at your invitation list, and count the number of ladies you expect; and afterwards the number of gentlemen. Then, take as many female characters as you have invited ladies; fold them up, exactly of the same size, and number each on the back; taking care to make the king No.
Cause tea and coffee to be handed to your visitors as they drop in.
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Then call on a gentleman to carry the reticule to the ladies as they sit, from which each lady is to draw one ticket, and to preserve it unopened. Select a lady to bear the hat to the gentlemen for the same purpose.
There will be one ticket left in the reticule, and another in the hat, which the lady and gentleman who carried each is to interchange, as having fallen to each. Next, arrange your visitors according to their numbers; the king No. The king is then to recite the verse on his ticket; then the queen the verse on hers; and so the characters are to proceed in numerical order.
This done, let the cake and refreshments go round, and hey! Twelfth-day is now only commemorated by the custom of choosing king and queen. After tea yesterday, a noble cake was produced, and two bowls, containing the fortunate chances for the different sexes. Our host filled up the tickets; the whole company, except the king and queen, were to be ministers of state, maids of honour, or ladies of the bed-chamber.
Our kind host and hostess, whether by design or accident, became king and queen. According to Twelfth-day law, each party is to support their character till midnight. Within the personal observation of the writer of these sheets, character has never been preserved. It must be admitted, however, that the Twelfth-night characters sold by the pastrycooks, are either commonplace or gross—when genteel they are inane; when humorous, they are vulgar. Young folks anticipate Twelfth-night as a full source of innocent glee to their light little hearts. Where, and what is he who would negative hopes of happiness for a few short hours in the day-spring of life?
I delight to see a score of happy children sitting huddled all round the dainty fare, eyeing the cake and each other, with faces sunny enough to thaw the white snow. I like to see the gazing silence which is kept so religiously while the large knife goes its round, and the glistening eyes which feed beforehand on the huge slices, dark with citron and plums, and heavy as gold. One is proud, as king; another stately, as queen; then there are two whispering grotesque secrets which they cannot contain those are sir Gregory Goose and sir Tunbelly Clumsy. The boys laugh out at their own misfortunes; but the little girls almost ashamed of their prizes sit blushing and silent.
It is not until the lady of the house goes round, that some of the more extravagant fictions are revealed. And then, what a roar of mirth!
crotenhorere.tk Ha, ha! The ceiling shakes, and the air is torn. There is some difficulty in collecting accounts of the manner wherein Twelfth-night is celebrated in the country. It seems that on Twelfth-night, which finishes their Christmas holidays, the rustics meet in a large room. The feast is paid for by subscription: two women are chosen, who with two wooden bowls placed one within the other, so as to leave an opening and a space between them, go round to the female part of the society in succession, and what one puts into the uppermost bowl the attendant collectress slips into the bowl beneath it.
All are expected to contribute something, but not more than a shilling, and they are best esteemed who give most.
A View from the Author's Window!
The men choose two from themselves, and follow the same custom, except that as the gentlemen are not supposed to be altogether so fair in their dealings as the ladies, one of the collectors is furnished with pen, ink, and paper, to set down the subscriptions as soon as received. This was the recommendation of prudence tempered by kindness; a desire for diligence in the husbandman, with an allowance of reasonable pastime to sweeten his labour.
He himself attained his dignity thus:. Sometimes a penny was put in the cake, and the person who obtained it, becoming king, crossed all the beams and rafters of the house against devils. A chafing-dish with burning frankincense was also lit, and the odour snuffed up by the whole family, to keep off disease for the year. After this, the master and mistress went round the house with the pan, a taper, and a loaf, against witchcraft.
Cut the cake: who hath the beane , shall be King; and where the peaze is, she shall be Queene.
A citation by Brand represents the ancient Twelfth-night-cake to have been composed of flour, honey, ginger, and pepper. The maker thrust in, at random, a small coin as she was kneading it. When baked, it was divided into as many parts as there [57, 58] were persons in the family, and each had his share. Portions of it were also assigned to Christ, the Virgin, and the three Magi, and were given in alms. On Twelfth-day the people of Germany and the students of its academies chose a king with great ceremony and sumptuous feastings.
In France, the Twelfth-cake is plain, with a bean; the drawer of the slice containing the bean is king or queen.
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All drink to her or his majesty, who reigns, and receives homage from all, during the evening. There is no other drawing, and consequently the sovereign is the only distinguished character. Whoever gets the bean chooses the king or queen, according as it happens to be a man or woman. There is a difference of opinion as to the origin of Twelfth-day. The Epiphany is called Twelfth-day , because it falls on the twelfth day after Christmas-day. Epiphany signifies manifestation, and is applied to this day because it is the day whereon Christ was manifested to the Gentiles.
Finally, on observances of this festival not connected with the Twelfth-night king and queen. It is a custom in many parishes in Gloucestershire on this day to light up twelve small fires and one large one; this is mentioned by Brand: and Mr. It is stated by sir Henry Piers, in genl. A very singular merriment in the Isle of Man is mentioned by Waldron, in his history of that place. But whatever he says is as absolutely depended on as an oracle; and if he happens to couple two people who have an aversion to each other, tears and vexation succeed the mirth.