Very fashionable coffins & Dr Butler’s Ale

Snippets from advertisments circa 1680:

‘At Tobias’s Coffee-house, in Pye Corner, is sold the right drink, called Dr Butler’s Ale, it being the same that was sold by Mr Lansdale in Newgate Market.  It is an excellent stomack drink, it helps digestion, expels wind, and dissolves congealed phlegm upon the lungs, and is therefore good against colds, coughs, physical and consumptive distempers; and being drunk in the evening, it moderately fortifies nature, causeth good rest, and hugely corroborates the brain and memory.’

‘Whereas John Pippin, whose grandfather, father, and himself have been for above 190 years past famous throughout all England for curing the rupture, making the most easie trusses of all sorts, both for men, women, and children, being lately deceased; This is to certifie to all persons that Eleanor Pippin, the widow, who in his lifetime made all the trusses which he sold, lives still at The Three Naked Boys near the Strand Bridge, where she makes all manner of trusses.  She also hath a gentleman to assist in the fitting of them upon men, he being intrusted by the said Julin Pippin in his lifetime.’

‘At the sign of the Golden Ball and Coffin, a coffin-maker’s shop, at the upper end of the Old Change, near Cheapside, there are ready made to be sold, very fashionable laced and plain dressings for the dead of all sizes, with very fashionable coffins, that will secure any corps above ground without any ill scent or other annoyance as long as shall be required.’

‘The much approved necklaces of Joynts, of the great traveller J. C., which absolutely eases children in breeding teeth, by cutting them, and thereby preventing feavers, convulsions, &c., are sold by Barrel, at the Golden Ball, under St Dunstan’s Church, in Fleet Street.’

‘One Robert Taylor, a dancing-master, being in company of several neighbours in Covent Garden on Monday night last, about 10 of the clock, upon occasion of some words, killed one Mr Price, of the same place, at the Three Tuns Tavern, in Shandois Street.  The said R.Taylor is a person of middle stature, hath a cut across his chin, a scar in his left cheek, having two fingers and a thumb of one hand burnt at the ends shorter than the other, round visaged, thick lipt, his own hair being of a light brown under a periwig; he lived in James Street, in Covent Garden. Whoever apprehends him, and gives notice thereof to Mr Reynolds, bookseller, in Henrietta Street, Covent Garden, shall have 10 pounds reward.  And whereas it was printed in last week’s Intelligence that he was taken, you are to take notice that it is most notoriously false.’

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  • October 23, 2009 - 10:08 am | Permalink

    I wish Dr Butler’s Ale were still available! Corroboration of the brain and memory sounds like just what I need.

  • October 23, 2009 - 9:38 am | Permalink

    Thank you. It’s nice to know these snippets prove interesting.

  • October 22, 2009 - 7:08 pm | Permalink

    Wonderful post. Good to have some descriptive imagery in terms of the deceased, albeit a good bit earlier than Edwardian times. Should be a very useful starting point, once we decide whom to kill off in our story.

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