A Christmas bowl of Smoking Bishop...or


 Scrooge and Bob Cratchit

'A merry Christmas, Bob! Said Scrooge, with an earnestness 
that could not be mistaken…I’ll raise your salary, and endeavour to 
assist your struggling family, and we will discuss your affairs this very 
afternoon, over a Christmas bowl of smoking bishop, Bob!…'

from Charles Dickens' 'A Christmas Carol'


 From Charles Dickens' 'The Pickwick Papers', 1912
 Frank Reynolds (1876 -1953)
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 Smoking Bishop is a type of mulled wine, punch or wassail. It was 
especially popular in Victorian England at Christmas time. Smoking Bishop 
was made from port, red wine, lemons or Seville orangessugar and spices 
such as cloves. The citrus fruit was roasted to caramelise it and the ingredients then 
warmed together. The name comes from the shape of the traditional bowl, 
shaped like a bishop's mitre. In this form, it was served in medieval  
guildhalls and universities. Other variations included :


 Smoking Archbishop — made with claret 
Smoking Beadle — made with ginger wine and raisins 
Smoking Cardinal — made with Champagne or Rhine wine 
Smoking Pope — made with burgundy

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 William Hogarth (1697-1764): 'The Midnight Conversation', ca. 1732
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The word 'punch' is a loanword from Hindi panch (meaning five)
and the drink was originally made with five ingredients: alcohol, sugar, lemon,
water, and tea or spices. The drink was brought to England from India by sailors
and employees of the British East India Company in the early seventeenth century.
The term 'punch' was first recorded in British documents in 1632. At the time,
most punches were of the Wassail type made with a wine or brandy base. But
around 1655, Jamaican rum came into use and the 'modern' punch was
born. By 1671, documents make references to punch houses
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Punch bowl and stand, Made at the Meissen factory, Germany, Saxony, 
About 1770, Porcelain, painted and gilded, gilt-bronze mounts


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 Eliza Acton published a Smoking Bishop recipe
in her 'Modern Cookery' in 1845:

'Make several incisions in the rind of a lemon, stick cloves in these, 
 and roast the lemon by a slow fire. Put small but equal quantities of cinnamon,  
cloves, mace, and allspice, with a race of ginger, into a saucepan with half a pint 
of water: let it boil until it is reduced one-half. Boil one bottle of port wine, burn a portion 
of the spirit out of it by applying a lighted paper to the saucepan; put the roasted lemon 
and spice into the wine ; stir it up well, and let it stand near the fire ten minutes. 
Rub a few knobs of sugar on the rind of a lemon, put the sugar into a bowl 
or jug, with the juice of half a lemon (not roasted), pour the wine into 
it, grate in some nutmeg, sweeten it to the taste, and serve it 
up with the lemon and spice floating in it.

Bishop is frequently made with a Seville orange stuck
with cloves and slowly roasted, and its flavour to many tastes
is infinitely finer than that of the lemon'.


'Mr. Scrooge!' said Bob; 'I'll give you Mr. Scrooge, the Founder of the feast!' 
by E. A. Abbey. American Household Edition (1876), fifth illustration for 'A Christmas Carol', 
'Stave Three: TheSecond of the Three Spirits'. in Dickens's Christmas Stories
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In this Charles Dickens illustration titled 'Micawber in his element', 
Mr. Micawber makes punch after a dinner party 
thrown for him by David Copperfield. , 
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Raphael Tuck. Signed Oilette Postcard from 1907 
Charles Dickens 'Mr. Micawber Makes Punch' 
David Copperfield. Book card.
Purchase it here

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