Page:The food of the Gods - A Popular Account of Cocoa.djvu/158

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81
AN AMUSING EPISODE.

by its use. The story is told in Gaze's "New Survey of the West Indies," published in 1648, and is worth repetition. It is well to bear in mind his information that "two or three hours after a good meal of three or four dishes of mutton, veal or beef, kid, turkeys or other fowles, our stomackes would bee ready to faint, and so wee were fain to support them with a cup of chocolatte."

"The women of that city, it seems, pretend much weakness and squeamishness of stomacke, which they say is so great that they are not able to continue in church while the mass is briefly hurried over, much lesse while a solemn high mass is sung and a sermon preached, unles they drinke a cup of hot chocolatte and eat a bit of sweetmeats to strengthen their stomackes. For this purpose it was much used by them to make their maids bring them to church, in the middle of mass or sermon, a cup of chocolatte, which could not be done to all without a great confusion and interrupting both mass and sermon. The Bishop, perceiving this abuse, and having given faire warning for the omitting of it, but all without amendment, thought fit to fix in writing upon the church dores an excommunication against all such as should