4 Annotations

First Reading

Terry F  •  Link

Co-propietor of a popular coffee-house

"The first coffee house opened in London in 1652. A man named Bowman, servant to a merchant in the Turkey trade, opened it in partnership with Pasqua Rosee in St. Michael's Alley, Cornhill. An advertising handbill from the shop, *The Vertue of the Coffee Drink*, is preserved in the British Museum." http://www.avramdavidson.org/coff…

Pedro  •  Link

Terry, a slight difference from The Book of Days (could Bowman be the son-in- law of Edwards?)...


A manuscript note, written by Oldys, the celebrated antiquary, states that 'The use of coffee in England was first known in 1657. Mr. Edwards, a Turkey merchant, brought from Smyrna to London one Pasqua Rosee, a Ragusan youth, who prepared this drink for him every morning. But the novelty thereof drawing too much company to him, he allowed his said servant, with another of his son-in-law, to sell it publicly, and they set up the first coffee-house in London, in St. Michael's alley in Cornhill. The sign was Pasqua Rosee's own head.' Oldys is slightly in' error here; Rosee commenced- his coffee-house in 1652, and one Jacobs, a Jew, had established a similar undertaking at Oxford,-a year or two earlier. One of Rosee's original shop or hand-bills, the only mode of advertising in those days, is now before us; and considering it to be a remarkable record of a great social innovation, we here reprint it for the amusement of the reader:
First made and publicly sold in England by Pasqua Rosee.

The grain or berry called coffee, groweth upon little trees only in the deserts of Arabia. It is brought from thence, and drunk generally throughout all the Grand Seignour's dominions. It is a simple, innocent thing, composed into a drink, by being dried in an oven, and ground to powder, and boiled up with spring water, and about half a pint of it to be drunk fasting an hour before, and not eating an hour after, and to be taken as hot as possibly can be endured; the which will never fetch the skin off the mouth, or raise any blisters by reason of that heat.

The Turks' drink at meals and other times is usually water, and their diet consists much of fruit; the crudities whereof are very much corrected by this drink.
The quality of this drink is cold and dry; and though it be a drier, yet it neither heats, nor inflames more than hot posset. It so incloseth the orifice of the stomach, and fortifies the heat within, that it is very good to help digestion; and therefore of great use to be taken about three or four o'clock afternoon, as well as in the morning. It much quickens the spirits, and makes the heart lightsome; it is good against sore eyes, and the better if you hold your head over it and take in the steam that way. It suppresseth fumes exceedingly, and therefore is good against the head-ache, and will very much stop any deflexion of rhenms, that distil from the head upon the stomach, and so prevent and help consumptions and the cough of the lungs.
It is excellent to prevent and cure the dropsy, gout, and scurvy. It is known by experience to be better than any other drying drink for people in years, or children that have any running humours upon them, as the king's evil, &c. It is a most excellent remedy against the spleen, hypochondriac winds, and the like. It will prevent drowsiness, and make one fit for business, if one have occasion to watch, and therefore you are not to drink of it after supper, unless you intend to be watchful, for it will hinder sleep for three or four hours.
It is observed that in Turkey, where this is generally drunk, that they are not troubled with the stone, gout, dropsy, or scurvy, and that their skins are exceeding clear and white. It is neither laxative nor restringent.


Paul Chapin  •  Link

What do you suppose "hypochondriac winds" might be?
Reminds me of the classic definition of an oboe as "an ill wind that nobody blows good."

Great post, Pedro, thanks.

Terry Foreman  •  Link

Edward and Francis Bowman were made Gentlemen-Ushers to the King in June 1550. Shortly afterwards, c. 1663, Francis Bowman (? the same) was an officer of the King's Wardrobe. (L&M Companion)

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Chart showing the number of references in each month of the diary’s entries.