Monday, 19 December 2011

Christmas cheer from 1873

To put everyone in the mood for the coming season of over-indulgence and indigestion here is a seasonal poem printed in Leeds in 1873.  It was published in a private magazine, Ye Quaynt, An Omnium Gatherum, distributed among the friends of Samuel Leathley Nussey of Potternewton Hall, Leeds.

A Dyspeptic's Morning Soliloquy

Oh! I was ill last night,
And Still it preys my mind on,
As Memory brings to light
The horrid things I dined on;
The roast, the boiled, that both were spoiled,
The fish so soft and flabby,
The poultry tough, the claret rough,
The whole affair so shabby.
Oh! I was ill etc.

The Champagne-cup was spiced, how wrong!
To taste it scarce I dare did,
The Punch Romaine did not seem strong,
But then, alas, the hare did!
The wines were hot, the soups were not,
The sauces quite distressing,
The peas were old, the gravy cold,
And oh! that salad dressing!
Oh! I was ill etc.

An oyster stale, though in a stew,
It very hard to bolt is;
The partridges were not done through,
The bread sauce like a poultice! -
The cheese was not the cheese, and what
Could make them call it Stilton?
The Mayonnaise seemed to my gaze
Like greens, with soft soap split on!
Oh! I was ill etc.

When I remember all
The flavours mixed together,
In the entrees great and small,
And cutlets hard as leather,
Had I forborne - 'tis thus I mourn -
Or sooner had deserted
That fatal feast, I'd then at least
Dyspepsia's pangs averted!
But I was ill etc.

Posted by Kitty Ross, Curator of Leeds History

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