From The Gentleman's and London Magazine (1741), here are:
Coffee House Rules, or rules necessary to be observed in all Coffee Houses.
In the first place, no politician has any right to sleep over a paper; or, in other words, to read it as slow as if he was perusing some long-laboured metaphysical tract, or any other studied composition.
All news-papers (especially when the coffee-house is full of company) should be constantly read with a little polite, genteel, well-bred hurry.
For any one to enter upon a regular re-reading of advertisements before he has delivered the paper to another gentleman, is by no means the thing; because it not only discovers little or no genius for news-papers, but at the same time, it creates very considerable stagnation in the general steam of politics, and may possibly favour of the Nimis severa serutandi methodus.
QUERY: - Whether the truly learned in politics do not look upon the re-reading of advertisements as a sort of otium politicum?
To the following rule I beg all proper attention may be paid:
No one should be too sedulous in reading out in a coffee-house, or in descanting upon a particular point, unless he is prodigiously deep in matters of state, and, at the same time, particularly desired by a select JUNTO of the most approved politicians.
If any one, in reading of a newspaper, should meet with an ingenious sentiment: of any sort, or what is generally called a striking passage, he should be vastly cautious in how he breaks out into any sudden, instantaneous, vociferous, oh! or ah! or any other laconic expression; because such sort of laconism is often too much of a startling kind to the rest of the company, and is fruitful of bad consequences in all political assemblies.
To hold a paper quite snug and quiet in one hand, and to read another at the same time, is very injudicious, if not selfish, and partakes of what the gentlemen of law call a MONOPOLY.
To peep over a gentleman’s shoulder in order to read a paper, (or rather to partake of one) is being in too great a hurry to gratify a political spirit. This is a method which I beg leave to discountenance.
As for the act of bowing, either at coming into a coffee-house, or going out, I could never see the necessity or propriety of it. It seems to make no difference between a public or a private room, and every body knows that a mis-application of good manners degenerates into no manners at all.
But not to be too serious.
In order to preserve a proper decency and decorum, no one should loll upon his chair, or incline too much either to the right hand or to the left. Because a considerable number of lollers at the same time (according to my rule of perspective) makes a very awkward and ridiculous appearance.
As the recipe for the day, I give you a lovely coffee cream from the eighteenth century.
Roast one ounce of coffee, put it hot into a pint and a half of boiling cream; boil these together a little, take it off, put in two dried gizzards; cover this close, let it stand one hour, sweeten with double-refined sugar; pass it two or three times through a sieve, with a wooden spoon; put it into a dish with a tin on the top, set the dish on a gentle stove, put fire on the top upon the tin; when it has taken, set it by; serve it cold.
Tea cream is made in the same manner.
The lady's assistant for regulating and supplying her table (1787), by Charlotte Mason, 1777
Quotation for the Day
These consumers are always ordering mutant beverages with names like "mocha-almond-honey-vinaigrette lattespressacino,"' beverages that must be made one at a time via a lengthy and complex process involving approximately one coffee bean, three quarts of dairy products and what appears to be a small nuclear reactor.
Dave Barry, "Decaf Poopacino" (1997)
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