Food and the rites of passage
Baptism, marriage, childbirth, death: these are the milestones of life, invariably marked by a feast or comforting rituals founded on food and drink. Some of these habits flourished, then died away - think of the cups of wine passed around the gossips gathered at a lying in; others have gone on to be industries in their own right - the wedding cake, which has slowly but surely evolved from the giant flat discs of bride cake illustrated in the sensational full-colour cover of a fete in Bermondsey by Hofnagel in the seventeenth century, to the many-tiered and icing-bedaubed monuments of today. The book consists of six essays by recognised food-historians, each taking in turn one of these milestones, sometimes (but not always) with a certain north-country bias: Peter Brears writes on funerals; Dr Layinka Swinburne writes on childbirth; Laura Mason on wedding cakes; Ivan Day on old marriage customs; and Professor Tony Green on the sociology of the modern wedding celebration. There is also an overview of Irish food customs, with reference to these rites, by the well-regarded young Irish food historian, Regina Sexton.
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almonds Anne Wilson baked birth boiled boxty bread bridal bride and groom bride-cake butter celebrations ceremony Charsley child chine christening church Clara Peeters colour comfits confectioner cookery cooking County County Cork Crohan currants custom Danachair deceased decorated diet dish early eggs eighteenth England English entertainment Figure flour flowers food and drink food historian friends funeral biscuits funeral feast gloves godparents guests Hannah Woolley hippocras ingredients Ireland Irish wedding John Aubrey Joris Hoefnagel Kildwick Lady Leeds loaf London marchpane marriage meal meat midwife milk mourners nineteenth century nutmeg occasions Peter Brears piece pint posset potatoes pound pregnancy recipe rites of passage ritual rose-water rosemary round rural seventeenth century sin-eating social Society spice sprigs of rosemary sugar sweet Symposium traditional twentieth century University of Leeds Vitalogy wedding and wake Wedding Cake wedding feast wedding-cake West Yorkshire whiskey wine woman women Wrapper Yorkshire
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