Saturday, May 05, 2007

Drinking Like It's a Dentist Convention

In Robert Harris's review of Barbara Holland's The Joy of Drinking, Harris quotes Holland's research into the role alcohol played in the creation of our founding document:
[I]n 1787, two days before their work was done, the 55 delegates to the Constitutional Convention "adjourned to a tavern for some rest, and according to the bill they drank 54 bottles of Madeira, 60 bottles of claret, 8 of whiskey, 22 of port, 8 of hard cider and 7 bowls of punch so large that, it was said, ducks could swim around in them. Then they went back to work and finished founding the new Republic." Note the 55 delegates and 54 bottles of Madiera. Which founder was slacking?
Finally, a fitting explanation for the strange spellings, ranDom CapitalizatioNs, and odd powers included in the Constitution.



At 12:17 AM, Blogger PG said...

I wonder if Thomas Mifflin was the abstainer. Were Quakers allowed to drink back then? Though he went into the Continental Army, so I guess he wasn't too big on even the basic tenets of the faith.


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