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Advent Calendar - 2nd Dec | by Paul Bommer
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Advent Calendar - 2nd Dec

Advent Calendar -2nd December - 'Smoking Bishop'


Nowadays we still celebrate Christmas with a glass or four of Mulled Wine. But our Victorian and Georgian forebears had a vast panoply of Punches, Cups, Caudles, Noyeaux, Neguses, Shrubs, Flips and Possets at their disposal to mark the Season.


This included a range of 'clerical' punches, spiced and served piping-hot with the addition of roasted (and clove-studded) lemons and/ or seville oranges. If the drink was Burgundy based it was termed a Pope, if Claret-based it was deamed an Archbishop and if Port was the main constituent the Punch was called a Bishop, and so on.


At the very end of Dicken's A Christmas Carol a reformed Ebenezer Scrooge tells Bob Cratchett that “… we will discuss your affairs this very afternoon over a bowl of Smoking Bishop, Bob!”. Now you know.


This particular Smoking Bishop is Monsignor Cathal Septimus O'Herlihy, Bishop of Ballygramore, enjoying a glass of this edifying brew after a hard day. Note his mitre, crozier, cincture and zucchetto!

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Taken on November 30, 2010