Old Christmas Recalled - online book

Washington Irving's description of Old Christmas, Illustrated

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NOTES                                           163
be boiled by daybreak, or else two young men must take the maiden (i.e. the cook) by the arms and run her round the market­place till she is shamed of her laziness."—Round about our Sea-Coal Fire.
Note E, p. 129.
The old ceremony of serving up the boar's head on Christmas day is still observed in the hall of Queen's College, Oxford. I was favoured by the parson with a copy of the carol as now sung, and as it may be acceptable to such of my readers as are curious in these grave and learned matters, I give it entire.
" The boar's head in hand bear I, Bedeck'd with bays and rosemary ; And I pray you, my masters, be merry, Quot estis in convivio. Caput apri defero Reddens laudes Domino.
The boar's head, as I understand, Is the rarest dish in all this land, Which thus bedeck'd with a gay garland Let us servire cantico. Caput apri defero, etc.
Our steward hath provided this In honour of the King of Bliss, Which on this day to be served is In Reginensi Atrio. Caput apri defero,"
Etc. etc. etc.
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