MAY YOUR "JUST DESERTS" be only ..."JUST DESSERTS"!
Soon after the turkey and the fine roasted beasts,
After the yams, the gravies, and rolls of fine yeast,
Just when you're certain your appetite's deceased,
The table is made clear for the last...but not least :
"JUST DESSERTS" -
The Crown of the Feast!
Clear the table away and set it anew!
With the silver dessert knives,
And the forks with "tines two".
A Rare Straight Set of 24 George II Silver "Cheese & Fruit" Knives & Forks,
Dru Drury, London, c1720 ;
And a 1792 depiction : The Prince of Wales (later George IV)
a two-tine fork
to his mouth, following his rather 'filling' meal.*
And the knives colored green
that I've seen!
Fine Set of 18 Early Victorian Silver-Gilt & Crested Bloodstone Dessert (Cheese & Fruit) Knives
Of bloodstone and
gilt - crest of a dove 'bove the hilt,
They're perfect for pears and other fruit fares,
And all the aged cheeses or whatever one pleases....
In fact one may well slice whatever one seizes!
And I just spied that
from the side of my eye,
With apples and
spices and sugary crust...
Early George III Pierced Silver Server, Richard Mills, 1770
It's been cut with 'pierced silver' ,
And there's that 'nutmeg' come hither :
"Very Good" George III Silver Nutmeg Grater, John Shekelton, 1800
I really should not --
but I must!
From merry old England
So rich that it curls up your toes -
With brandy and rum, and raisins called
And topped with a tiny red rose...
(... Upon A Large English Manganese & Yellow Delft Multi-Lobed
Charger, c1690 ...)
With maidens and perhaps their best fellows
Each seated at rest - as they look to the west -
in a moment of quiet repose.
And here's an American cake cousin,
And be danged if it does-n'
Look like the pudding called
These date to old Rome.
But in their new western home,
'Young Colonists' found handy
That fruits made like candy
With sugar - plus nuts and some brandy -
Make a sumptuous
'fruitcake' we now call our own
(A Good English Delft Manganese & Blue 'Woolsack' Charger, c1745-50 )
'Woolsack' type platter ...
And fact of the matter
Is when somewhat 'fatter'
England's Chancellor's purse needed to be,
He'd sit on this cushion,
Beg a King's kind permission,
That more a few 'pounds' he may possibly see...
(The silver kind)!
Now, speaking of 'fatter'
(Oh - what does it matter -
this day comes once
Bow Porcelain Blue and White Dessert Dish, England, c1758-60
A Fine George II Silver Cream or Mint Boat, John Swift, 1747
I just spoke of
- there's another dish too :
Serving ice cream**
Covered with an umbrella
Of berries and blue - an a quite moving new hue!
Someone - please do -
somewhere find me a
Harlequin Set of George II / III Hanoverian Silver 'Dessert
Of most delight on a Saturday night
Is from this early
'dessert silver' to bite.
It is smaller a tad - the forks totally 'rad',
And makes anything on it
The spoons - made for a pudding -
You know, they were let go -
'bout 1770 only.
They've become hard to find,
So keep that in mind
When you seek the small kind,
Be it for dessert -- or hot pepperoni!
Charles II Upholstered Oak Stool, England, c1670
In days of Charles II,
If what you wanted to do
Was to sit at a table to dine,
Chances are a
not a chair,
Would be normal fare,
And would host your most humble behind.
At even the very best tables
'backless stool' could enable
Spontaneous movements in mind -
Be they 'circuitous', 'flirtatious' - or perhaps 'musically' inclined?
A Good Blown English Black Onion Bottle, c1690
A Pair George III Silver Bottle Tickets, Thomas Phipps & Edward Robinson, 1794
In cool British cellars dwelt wine of the fellows
Who had purchased their kegs from lands drier.
Drawn into bottles so dark, and on 'stringed parchment' marked,
For those waiting aloft -
tickets', so flavors - one could pick
And not be just lost in 'wine mire'.
'Black Onion's' and wine,
Both at the table or by a warm fire.
A Queen Anne Heavy Baluster Glass, England, c1710
(A 'black onion bottle' depicted in
"Still life: bread, buts, cheese and containers," Luis Egidio Meléndez, c1772, Prado, Madrid)
George II Pedestal (Silesian) & Knopped Stem Sweetmeat Glass, c1750)
An 'essential' from old, on hot days
-- or cold,
Are stemmed glasses so fine, with
(Fruits that are candied along with their rinds).
These are a treat to enfold, the glass lovely to hold!
We've lost this tradition,
And that's part of our mission -
Restoring these simple lost luxuries' positions,
Actually they're timeless -
might be leaner (of calories cleaner!!)
With wafers, fruit, and nuts to the side.
Stilton with cranberries,
bright red strawberries
All gracefully waiting yet to be tried.
A George III Silver Stilton Cheese Scoop, &
A Victorian Silver Stilton Cheese Scoop
Stilton of old, or so I am told,
Left many best spoons oft half broken -
Then all celebrated
Until even today
When they still remain ...
Most refreshing of all! at the end of the hall :
A big bowl full of fruit called 'ambrosia'.
There's citrus and
pineapple, and a
huge spoon to grapple
With the fruit bits and juices all dappled.
The bowl is so large it could fill half a barge!
So it's bound to feed almost all o' ya.
A 19th Century English Large Blown Glass Footed Center or Punch Bowl
A Very Fine George IV Silver Straining Spoon, William Chawner, 1827, 16.25" Long
At last --
I'm no longer able!
I've passed naught that's been placed on the table!
As my belt's far too tight.
And my conscience a FRIGHT -
It's MUST be time now to bid you :
A VERY, VERY GOOD NIGHT
AND THE VERY HAPPIEST OF HOLIDAY SEASONS!
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And Do Click Below For Our First Christmas Catalog :
APÉRITIFS & CORDIALS,
A Few Befitting Vessels & Related Trivia :
THE "EXTRAORDINARY" GIFT :
Footnotes and Other Tid-bits :
Voluptuary Under The Horrors Of Digestion", James
Gillray, (1757-1815), 1792,
depicting the Prince of Wales (later George IV), leaning back in his chair after a meal.
He holds to his mouth a fork with two tines.
Although now associated with desserts and cheeses, forks with 2 tines
date to medieval times.
A few were brought into England from Italy c1600.
However, they were generally used for securing meat whilst carving.
General use of the fork in England did not begin until c1670, then as small 'sweetmeat forks'.
The dinner fork with three tines arrived c1700, and 4th tine, not until c1750.
The three tines were to represent the thumb and two fingers, with which solid foods had formerly been eaten.
Dessert tables were originally called 'banquets', set with varied dishes to taste.
They included often 'designed' tables, with plates of marzipan, sweetmeats and preserves, cheesecakes,
gilt moulded gingerbreads, candied eryngoes (considered aphrodisiacs) ,
sweet breads, wafers, comfits, fruit pastes and marmalades.
** The first record of ice cream being served was in 1671, to Charles II.
*** 17th and early 18th century banquet or dessert tables were often 'grazed',
either without seating or with a few chairs - and stools
This use is shown in a small segment of "Allegorie des cinq sens", Simon de Vos (1601-1676), Oil on Canvas;
Villa Vauban - Museum of Art of the City of Luxembourg (http://www.villavauban.lu).
**** "Bodegón: pan, peros, queso y recipients", Luis Egidio Meléndez, c1772, Museo del Prado. Madrid
("Still life: bread, buts, cheese and containers," Luis Egidio Meléndez, , c1772,
Prado Museum,. Madrid, oil on canvas)
Product Photography : Millicent Creech