Wake Up And Smell The Enfeebling Liquor

May 10, 2007

Having woken with a bout of delirium tremens, I decide it’s time to reduce my caffeine intake. Were she alive, this would no doubt please the disgruntled wife behind the 1674 Women’s Petition Against Coffee.

Cover image from Folger Shakespeare Library

She wrote: ‘Coffee leads men to scald their chops and spend money – all for nasty, stinking, nauseous puddle-water. They come home with nothing stiff but joints, nor standing but ears. They pretend ‘twil keep them waking, but we find by scurvy experience they sleep quietly after it.’

In response, her husband published the 1674 Men’s Petition For Coffee. It read: ‘Put ye kettle on, love.’