The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Mince Pies

Source: Brand's Popular Antiquities Of Great Britain

W. Carew Hazlitt, Faith and Folklore: A Dictionary of National Beliefs, Superstitions and Popular Customs, Past and Current, With Their Classical and Foreign Analogues, Described and Illustrated.

Forming A New Edition of "The Popular Antiquities of Great Britain" By Brand and Ellis, Largely Extended, Corrected, Brought Down To The Present Time, and Now First Alphabetically Arranged.

In Two Volumes

London: Reeves and Turner, 1905.

Vol. 2, p. 412

In Sheppard’s "Epigrams," 1651, Mince, Minch, or Minced Pies are called Shrid-pies.

Epig. 19.
"Christmas Day.

" No matter for plomb-porridge, or Shrid-pies,
‘Or a whole oxe offered in sacrifice
To Comus, not to Christ," &c.

In Dekker’s "Warres, Warres, Warres," 1628, sign. C. 4, these pies are called " Minched Pies." Minced pies are thus mentioned in "The Religion of the Hypocritical Presbyterians in meeter," 1661:

"Three Christmas or minc’d pies, all very fair,
Methought they had this motto, ‘Though they slir
And preach, us down, sub pondere crescit virtus.’

Jonson in his "Masque of Christmas," printed in his "Works," 1616, has introduced "Minced-Pye" and "Babie-cake," who act their parts in the drama. We have never been witnesses, says Dr. Johnson in his "Life of Butler," of animosities excited by the use of minced pies and plumb-porridge, nor seen with what abhorrence those who could eat them at all other times of the year, would shrink from them in December.

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