(or, as we call it here, Thursday). I hope everyone is enjoying the post-Christmas glow, or if you had to return to work, that your colleagues brought in the leftover cookies.
Santa was good to me this year, although I cannot guarantee it had anything to do with behavior–among my loot was Lucy Inglis’s Georgian London and The Black Count by Tom Reiss, and yes, Jane Austen bandaids! I am blessed.
And now on to the term Boxing Day. What does it mean? Let’s hear it from you history buffs.
1. It was the day that servants were given their Christmas boxes by their kindly employers. Jolly good, John Potboy. Here is three shillings and sixpence and a suet pudding, less five shillings and eleven pence in fines for drunkenness, swearing, and eating left over bread without permission, leaving you with a balance to be taken from your wages of two shillings and five pence. You may keep the suet pudding.
2. It was the day that misrule ruled downstairs in the house. Wild games of football using suet puddings as the ball, amateur drag shows where the butler dressed up as the housekeeper and sang popular songs, and rolling naked in the snow were just some of the charming local customs.
3. Ladies Day at Gentleman Jackson’s Saloon. Ladies of the aristocracy would have the run of Jackson’s famous boxing establishment to settle such affairs of honor as Almack’s vouchers,¬† slights, snubs, and stealing of fashion secrets, suet pudding recipes, or servants.
4. Black sheep disposal. Troublesome family members were lured into a box with only a suet pudding for sustenance and loaded on a ship going to the Americas. Those who survived frequently turned up to claim the title to the dukedom and display dreadful American manners in the drawing rooms of the ton.
Happy holidays everyone! Don’t forget to enter my contest at goodreads.com.