DAMASCENS, the damson, or Damascene plum.(Glasse, 1747)

DAMASK PRUNE, 52: the large Damaske plum, imported in dried form from France. (Robert May, 1660/1685)

DAMSONS: Nott gives an excellent selection of receipts for this favourite fruit of the 1 8th century. An interesting one is ‘damsons to keep for tarts’, D 7. (John Nott, 1726)

DANE-WEED is dwarf elder (Sambucus ebulus), an important medicinal plant. (William Ellis, 1750)

DAP CHICKEN, 216: dab chick, a small water bird, the little grebe, Podiceps minor. (Robert May, 1660/1685)

DEAL WINE: unidentifiable type of wine, thought to be Rhenish in origin (?imported via Deal, cf Romney wine). (Sir Kenelm Digby, 1669)

DEMIATIER: demi-setier, a measure of quarter-pint capacity. (Sir Kenelm Digby, 1669)

DETERGE, TO: Ellis writes of ‘a wound that requires digesting, deterging, incarning or cicatrizing’. To deterge means to wipe off or cleanse an ulcer or sore. (William Ellis, 1750)

DIAPENTE is a medicament containing five ingredients. OED’s citations mostly concern farriery, the medication being used to purge horses. (William Ellis, 1750)

DIAPER NAPKIN: referred to in Receipt 99, is a linen napkin woven with a characteristic diamond pattern. (John Evelyn, Cook, C17)

DIGEST, TO: Ellis writes of ‘a wound that requires digesting, deterging, incarning or cicatrizing’. To digest means to ‘promote healthy suppuration’. (William Ellis, 1750)

DISCUSSER is a medicine or substance that disperses humours. (William Ellis, 1750)

DISH-BUTTER, 83, was used for making pancakes. The recipe containing this term was copied whole by Hannah Glasse from The Whole Duty of a Woman (Stead, 1983, Part I, 20,). The term is explained in Wright’s English Dialect Dictionary as meaning butter sold in lumps of 24 oz, a practice which survived in Cheshire into the 19th century.(Glasse, 1747)

DODDER OF THYME was also called hellbind in Hertfordshire (Grigson) and was a pleafless parasite that grew on thyme and other plants (Cuscuta epithymum). It was good for the itch or scabies, ‘spleenful headaches’ and other ills. (William Ellis, 1750)

DOG-PARSLEY (Æthusa cynapium), also called fool’s parsley. This is not cow parsley, which is wild chervil. (William Ellis, 1750)

DORCASEE SEED: daucus seed, i.e. the seed of Daucus carota, the wild carrot. John Nott has a recipe for ‘Another Purging Ale’ which includes a vast number of bitter and strong agents, including ‘Daucus-Seeds’. Gerard thought them a remedy for falling-sickness (Grigson, The Englishman’s Flora). (John Evelyn, Cook, C17)

DOTTERELS. A species of plover, so guileless that it could be taken easily.(Glasse, 1747)

DOUBLE TRIPE, see TRIPE.(Glasse, 1747)

DOVES. Mention is made, 162, of turtledoves, ring-doves, and stock- or stock-dove. The turtle dove is Streptopelia turtur. It makes a melodious purr and serves as a symbol of fidelity (cf Chaucer’s ‘wedded turtel with hir herte trewe’). The ring dove, Columba palumbus, is now more commonly known as the woodpigeon, although the old name, which refers to the clasp of white feathers on the bird’s neck, survives in parts of England. It is now the dominant member of the dove family in England, but was less common 200 years ago. The stock dove, Columba oenas, may also be called woodpigeon. It is smaller than the ring dove. The various explanations of the term ‘stock’ are discussed by Francesca Greenoak (1979), who does not, however, mention ‘stack’ as an alternative. Bradley (1736, I, 1-18) discourses on the various kinds of pigeon (dove), their use in carrying messages, and methods of preparing them for table; but he does not mention the importance of their dung as a fertilizer. Other authors make clear that this was a principal reason for maintaining a dovecote. This applied elsewhere too; as far afield as Persia, where many travellers remarked on the pigeon towers and the dung of the occupants was mainly used in growing melons.(Glasse, 1747)

DOWLET PIE: Perhaps a corruption of douillet, meaning ‘daintie’ tender, delicate’. (Cotgrave). (John Nott, 1726)

DRAGM, drachma: dram or drachm: see Weights and measures. (John Evelyn, Cook, C17)

DRAGONS: tarragon. (Sir Kenelm Digby, 1669)

DRAM, drachm is, for apothecaries, 1/8 of an ounce; avoirdupois, 1/16 of an ounce; as a fluid measure, 1/8 of a fluid ounce. (William Ellis, 1750)

DREDGE, DREGGING, 145: a mixture of breadcrumbs, typically with sugar and spice, used to coat meat. (Robert May, 1660/1685)

DRESSER: Working table or board. (John Nott, 1726)

DRESSER, 51. In the 17th and 18th centuries the dresser seems to have evolved from a simple board fixed directly to the wall, often with shelves above, into a sort of table with drawers and an undershelf as well as the shelves higher up (which were eventually incorporated into the unified piece of furniture which is called dresser nowadays). The basic purpose of the dresser was to provide a surface on which to ‘dress’, i.e. prepare, foods or dishes. For this the original simple board type sufficed. Hannah Glasse’s recipe for Rabbits Surprise, in which the reference to a dresser occurs, can be traced back at least as far as Patrick Lamb (1726), complete with the phrase about the dresser, so it does not provide a basis for speculating about what sort of dresser she herself had or meant.(Glasse, 1747)

DRIPPING PAN, 69, 89. The illustration shows an elaborate one, with a circular well in the centre, surrounded by a grid which filtered out solid matter and covered with a protective cap. The pure juices would be ladled out of the well. Dripping was often given as a perquisite to the cook, who could sell it. It was not used in better class households, since it was inferior to butter and often had ash from the fire in it. Hannah Glasse’s suggestion to sea captains that they make pastry of it, 123, is to be read in the light of her advice to the same audience on how to Pot Dripping, 122, and on its good keeping qualities (better than butter).(Glasse, 1747)

DRUDGE (to dredge): to sprinkle something with flour or powdered mixture. (Richard Bradley, 1736)

DRUDGE, an old spelling of the verb dredge.(Glasse, 1747)

DRYING STOVE: A kind of cupboard filled with wire racks or slats on which candied fruit and other sweetmeats were put to dry out. It was heated from below by a chafing dish of coals. Such stoves—in French étuves—were part of the stillroom and confectionery furnishings, not those of the kitchen proper

DUTCH BEEF, 129, 130, was clearly a form of salted beef, well known for ‘slivering’ easily. The recipe, 129, appears to come from Eliza Smith (1742), and it might have been thought that Dutch beef was something which had been introduced to England by William and Mary. However, Anne Wilson (private communication) has pointed out that there is a different recipe, without the sugar, for preparing Dutch beef in Rebecca Price (1681 ms, 1974 edition), and suggests that the Dutch must have pioneered a way of making salted beef so that it was tender, and that this product had been thought worth importing and copying. Another explanation, as Elizabeth David has pointed out to us, could be that Dutch meant German (Deutsch), probably referring to Hamburg beef.(Glasse, 1747)

DWARF-ELDER is also called dane-weed (Sambucus ebulus), an important medicinal plant. (William Ellis, 1750)

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