Tuesday, 19 August 2008

Beer in St John's Hall

As some readers know, I'm coming to the end of my graduate studies at Cambridge. Nostalgically looking over the last issue of my college's alumni newsletter, I noticed the following plea:
When was beer replaced by wine as the usual beverage at Hall? Peter Linehan would be grateful for information bearing on the date of this crucial transition in the College's history. Answers on a postcard please to Dr Linehan, St John's College, Cambridge, CB2 1TP or by email to pal35 AT cam DOT ac DOT uk (obvious edit there...)
The College of St John the Evangelist, the greatest of the colleges in my completely unbiased opinion, was founded in 1511, and sometime thereafter not only replaced beer with wine as the beverage supplied at formal halls, but as a porter informed me, prohibited beer from being taken into hall as well (what folly!). I haven't tested this prohibition, although I have brought homemade mead to a formal at Clare.

I thought I would put this request for information on the interwebs in case anyone who knows when my college made this "crucial transition" chances upon this entry through the power of Google. I'm sure Dr Linehan would be much obliged.

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