hist-brewing: looking for sources

pwp at cs.cmu.edu pwp at cs.cmu.edu
Tue Jan 5 14:28:19 PST 1999


< In the 18th century, "ale" in English was reserved for strong brews and 
< "beer" for the weaker, at least in some areas.

For a late 16th / early 17th century reference, Markham describes
"Strong", "Ordinary" and "Small" beer, but also "Strong Ale" and
"Bottle Ale".  He writes that "as for hops, although some use not to
put in any, yet the best brewers thereof will allow to fourteen
gallons of ale a good espen full of hops, and no more".  So he is
suggesting adding a _small_ amount of hops to 'ale'.

According to Bennett, "beer (brewed with malt, water, yeast, and
_hops_)" was first sold in Lullington in the 1480s, and "by the 1520s
it was regularly brewed on site."

Later in that same chapter:

  By the late fourteenth century, however, circumstances began to
  favor the introduction of beer and the new brewing technologies it
  encouraged.  From the 1370s, merchants in towns along the eastern
  and southern coasts of England -- Lynn, Norwich, Colchester, London,
  Winchelsea, and other ports -- began to import and sell beer.{12}
  About two generations later, certainly by the 1430s, beer began to
  be brewed, as well as sold, in England.{13}  And in 1441,
  beerbrewing was sufficiently widespread to require royal supervisors
  of the trade.{14}  Three factors (each with its own implications in
  terms of women's access to this new technology) especially
  encouraged English adoption of beer in the late fourteenth and early
  fifteenth centuries; trans-channel trade and migration, expanding
  commercial opportunities, and military requirements.
  [Bennett, p. 79]

It seems that beer was brewed in England somewhat earlier than
commonly thought, though Bennett points out that in the 15th C. it was
mostly brewed by foreigners for foreigners -- the locals still
preferring sweet ale to more bitter beer.

		--Paul

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