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Archive for July, 2013

From the Dictionary of Nautical, University, Gypsy and Other Vulgar Tongues first published in 1859.

English: Traditional pickled herring with sour...

English: Traditional pickled herring with sourcream and chopped chives, potatoes and an egg half served for the midsummer holliday. Svenska: Inlagd sill, gräddfil med hackad gräslök, potatis och en ägghalva serverat för midsommar. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Marinated: transported; from the salt pickling fish undergo in Cornwall. Old Cant.

(Well, I’m not sure what he means by “transported.” Did he mean in the sense of “carry away with strong feelings” which was first recorded c.1500? Or did he mean “to carry away into banishment”  recorded from 1660s? I guess the second would put you in a proverbial pickle.

I couldn’t find out much about the salt pickling in Cornwall, but I did learn about Solomon GundyPickled Herring.

There is a great blog post about it at Small Scales. According to the article:

Solomon Gundy appears in many seventeenth and eighteenth century recipe books, purportedly as a meal made on pirate ships. A recipe appears as far back as 1764 in English Housewifery Exemplified, by Elizabeth Moxon.

And just in case you’re interested, here is a recipe:

Solomon Gundy

1/2 dozen salt herring
2 medium onions
2 cups vinegar
2 tablespoons pickling spice
1/2 cup sugar

Remove tails and heads from herring. Clean inside and remove the skin. Cut in pieces about 1 inch thick and fillet the pieces. Soak in cold water about 24 hours. Squeeze the water from the herring. Place in bottle with slices of onion, in alternate layers. In a saucepan, heat the vinegar and add pickling spice and sugar. Let cool; then pour over the herring in the bottles.

Enjoy!)

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From the Dictionary of Nautical, University, Gypsy and Other Vulgar Tongues first published in 1859.

he looks skeptical to me

he looks leary to me (Photo credit: MrPessimist)

Leary: flash, or knowing.

Leary Bloak: a person who dresses showily.

(Flash means showy, smart, or knowing according to the book. Today’s definition of Leary is: openly distrustful and unwilling to confide. Seems like the “knowing” portion has held over the years, but not so much the “showy” part.)

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Hi Friends,

Francesca and the Baron's Son

Francesca and the Baron’s Son

I wanted to let everyone know that my short story, Francesca and the Baron’s Son is now posted on both Wattpad and Booksie. That means you can read it for free if you haven’t seen it so far. (instead of paying Amazon 99 cents. Amazon won’t let you put things up for free.)

Here are the links:

http://www.booksie.com/historical_fiction/short_story/cjthrush/francesca-and-the-barons-son

http://www.wattpad.com/story/7168967-francesca-and-the-baron%27s-son

What it is about:

In Tuscany during the sixteenth century a girl had to know her place or there were consequences.

Try telling that to Francesca DiCesare, the eleven-year-old daughter of Maestro DiCesare, Europe’s most renowned fencing master. Francesca has more courage than common sense, and learns her lesson – just not the one they were trying to teach her.

Set amid the blushing poppies in the Tuscan countryside, this is the first in a series of coming of age stories.

I’ve also finished the story of Francesca’s birth – during a pirate attack of course. I’ll put that up in a few days.

Thanks everyone!

C. J.

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From the Dictionary of Nautical, University, Gypsy and Other Vulgar Tongues first published in 1859.

English: Kirill Vikentevich Lemokh (Karl Lemoc...

English: Kirill Vikentevich Lemokh (Karl Lemoch) (1841-1910) Young gamblers Русский: Кирилл (Карл) Викентьевич Лемох (1841-1910) Молодые картёжники (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Levanter: a card sharp, or defaulting gambler. A correspondent states that it was formerly the custom to give out to the creditors – when a person was in pecuniary difficulties, and it was convenient for him to keep away – that he was gone to the East, or the Levant; hence, when one loses a bet, and decamps without settling, he is said to Levant.

(Fun how a place-name becomes a verb. I’d say Levanting is a good idea if the loan sharks are on your tail.)

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From the Dictionary of Nautical, University, Gypsy and Other Vulgar Tongues first published in 1859.

Bed Jump

Bed Jump (Photo credit: jamesjyu)

Letty: a bed. Italian, Letto.

(There are a surprising number of words stolen from other languages and then butchered. Many of them are part of the Lingua Franca, the useful language that grew in ports around the old world so that people of different nationalities could communicate.

From Wikipedia:

A lingua franca (or working language, bridge language, vehicular language, unifying language) is a language systematically used to make communication possible between people not sharing a mother tongue, in particular when it is a third language, distinct from both mother tongues.[1] Lingua francas have arisen around the globe throughout human history, sometimes for commercial reasons (so-called “trade languages”) but also for diplomatic and administrative convenience, and as a means of exchanging information between scientists and other scholars of different nationalities. The term originates with one such language, Mediterranean Lingua Franca.)

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From the Dictionary of Nautical, University, Gypsy and Other Vulgar Tongues first published in 1859.

STOP! … Hammer Time

STOP! … Hammer Time (Photo credit: United States Marine Corps Official Page)

Let Drive: to strike, or attack with vigour.

(Are they talking about beating people again? Because that would make sixteen different words.

Let’s hope they’re talking about inanimate objects. I suppose if you were holding a stake for someone to pound in and you’d gotten your fingers well out of the way you could tell them to “Let Drive!” Hmm, maybe I can use that one.)

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From the Dictionary of Nautical, University, Gypsy and Other Vulgar Tongues first published in 1859.

trotters and noodles with sheep's cheese and r...

trotters and noodles with sheep’s cheese and raw onions (Photo credit: kthread)

Legs of Mutton: inflated street term for sheep’s trotters, or feet.

(Well, that’s thinking positively.

I suppose it is good to use every part of the animal, but… yuck.

Okay, being the curious sort, I had to look up a recipe. This comes from a blog called The Old Foodie. The recipe comes from London in the 1870’s. I’m guessing the poor folk who refereed to their sheep’s feet as Leg of Mutton probably didn’t have veal to stuff it with, but they probably had an onion and some herbs. And still, as a vegetarian for the last five years, I have to say, “eww.”

Trotters, Sheep’s.

Take six or eight sheep’s feet. Remove the wool, and singe them, then throw them into fast-boiling water, let them boil quickly for five minutes, drain them, and let them cool. Take the foot firmly in the left hand, give the bone a jerk with the right hand and draw it out. Cut the hoof from the end of the foot, and put the feet into cold water. Let them boil, then simmer them as gently as possible until they are quite tender. Fill them with good veal forcemeat, and bind the feet with packthread to keep them in shape. Put them in a stewpan with as much of the liquor in which they were boiled as will cover them, an onion, and a bunch of sweet herbs. Boil them gently for half an hour, lift them out, and lay them on a dish. Strain the sauce, boil it down to glaze, and brush this over the feet. The trotters may be accompanied by tomato sauce, Robert sauce, or piquant sauce, and any stewed vegetables, or they may be eaten cold with oil and vinegar.
Time to boil the trotters, three or four hours.
Sufficient, three or four for a small dish.)

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From the Dictionary of Nautical, University, Gypsy and Other Vulgar Tongues first published in 1859.

January Suchodolski

January Suchodolski (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Legs or Blacklegs: disreputable sporting characters, and racecourse habitues.

(Hmmm, is this because they study the horse’s legs? Your guess is as good as mine.)

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From the Dictionary of Nautical, University, Gypsy and Other Vulgar Tongues first published in 1859.

Leg Irons

Leg Irons (Photo credit: Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery)

Legged: in irons.

(Unpleasant, to say the least.)

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Yup, that’s four hundred in just over a year. Not bad! Think I’ll do a little dance to celebrate. Then back to work!

From the Dictionary of Nautical, University, Gypsy and Other Vulgar Tongues first published in 1859.

Run like hell!!!

Run like hell!!! (Photo credit: Today is a good day)

Leg It:  to run; Leg Bail, to run off, “to give a Leg,” to assist, as when one mounts a horse; “making a Leg,” a countryman’s bow, projecting the leg from behind as a balance to the head bent forward. Shakespeare.

(All of these would still be understood without much trouble.

I did use Leg It in my novel, Lady Blade. When the captain, Francesca, the first mate and the sailing master are discussing strategy for taking a town:

Francesca pointed to a spot on the coast south of the bay. “I would land two parties here, one to take this fort, and the other to enter the town from behind. With the ships bombarding, and their city overrun, the inhabitants would likely leg it into the jungle.”)

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