Home Page John Wilson Related Sites Acknowledgements Send a message Email about the diary Start from January 1st

March 24th 1517

Previous day Next day

Keeping the women in check

In the earlier parts of the 17th Century, even in the Highlands, ale rather than whisky, was the customary drink. This was also true among the gentry and it is recorded that the young bloods of the time indulged in a particular feat known a ‘scourging a nine gallon tree’. This consisted of opening a nine gallon barrel of ale and drinking it day and night without leaving the house until it was finished.

The practice of drinking was not confined to the men and there was an interesting ordinance passed in 1617 at Killin.

“It is statuted by the Laird, with the advice of the haill assize of court, that whatever person, or person’s wives ane or more, shall be found in Breadalbane in ony brewster-house drinking outwith the company of their husbands, they shall pay to the Laird £10 of unlaw toties quoties (i.e. as a fine for every offence) and for every chopin of ale (approximately 1½ pints) they shall sit twenty four hours in the lang gadd.” 

The lang gadd was an iron bar to which the offenders were tied.

Previous day Next day

Perthshire Diary Home | Author | Perthshire Links | Reference | Contact Us | Tell a friend | Browse