Drowned in a Butt of Malmsey
George, Duke of Clarence, being allowed to choose by what death he would die, chose drowning in malmsey wine (1477). See the continuation of Monstrelet, 196; Fulgosus, ix. 12; Martin du Bellais's Memoirs (year 1514).
Admitting this legend to be an historic fact, it is not unique: Michael Harslob, of Berlin, wished to meet death in a similar way in 1571, if we may credit the inscription on his tomb: -
In cyatho vini pleno cum musca periret, Sic, ait Oeneus, sponte perire velim.'
When in a cup of wine a fly was drowned. So, said Vinarius, may my days be crowned.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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