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Midsummer Ale

The Midsummer banquet. Brand mentions nine alefeasts: “Bride-ales, church-ales, clerk-ales, give-ales, lamb-ales, leet-ales, Midsummer-ales, Scot-ales, Whitsun-ales, and several more.” Here “ale” does not mean the drink, but the feast in which good stout ale was supplied. The Cambridge phrase, “Will you wine with me after hall?” means, “Will you come to my rooms for dessert, when wines, fruits, and cigars will be prepared, with coffee to follow?”

Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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More on Midsummer Ale from Infoplease:

  • Midsummer Ale - Midsummer Ale The Midsummer banquet. Brand mentions nine alefeasts: “Bride-ales, church-ales, ...
  • Clerk-ale - Clerk-ale and Church-ale. Mr. Douce says the word “ale” is used in such composite words ...
  • Dictionary of Phrase and Fable: M - Definitions, origins, and illustrative excerpts for words, phases, and literary allusions starting with "M"

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