Thursday, July 25, 2024

Word of the Week 2022 – ‘Quafftide’ – A Drinker’s Delight

A 16th century word – ‘quafftide’ – announcing that “it’s time for a drink” is something that should be added to the vocabulary of every single household in the land

Though puritans and bores object to those that like a tipple, the wonderfully wise sage that is Susie Dent – AKA ‘That Woman in Dictionary Corner’ – did it again yesterday when she shared a “one-word announcement that [means] it’s time for a drink” on her Twitter account.

 

That word was “quafftide” and we urge you all say “cheers to that” and to add it to your daily vocabulary. After all, it’s always quafftide wherever and whenever you jolly well want it to be.

 

Editor’s Note – Unlike as is the case in many publications, this article was NOT sponsored or supported by a third-party.

 

Susie Dent
The gin swigging Lillian Bellamy – the character played by the delightfully sunny Sunny Ormonde in the long-running BBC Radio 4 drama series ‘The Archers’ – brings joy wherever she goes and is a reminder than gin doesn’t actually make anyone depressed. If you want joy, pour yourself a stiff G&T and yell out: “It’s quafftide.”
Adrian Chiles drinking
Television presenter Adrian Chiles is right to have lamented the overuse of the tedious “drink responsibly” mantra forced upon us. He quite rightly responded by embracing “quafftide” and by having another measure.
Iris Apgel drinking
Iris Apfel is 101-years-old and she hasn’t yet stopped drinking. We say: “Cheers to her and cheers to that.”

Great Drinking Phrases

“If you can’t have one at eleven, have eleven at one.”

 

“Down the hatch, round the gums, look out Tommy, here it comes.”

 

“Time is only for the middle classes.”

 

“It must be 6pm somewhere in the world.”

 

“They say: ‘No wine before nine,’ but they don’t specify am or pm.”

 

“Any day, anytime, anywhere.”

 

Wise Drinking Advice

“If you’ve had enough, pour yourself a G&T, you have my permission.”

BBC Radio 4 ‘Woman’s Hour’ presenter Anita Rani on home-schooling parents during the January 2021 lockdown.

 

“[Alcohol is] the only drug you do not have to apologise for taking… [I] associate drinking with friendship and good times… The advice to ‘drink responsibly’ is the world’s most boring phrase.”

BBC presenter Adrian Chiles on drinking during lockdowns.

 

“Every Friday in lockdown, my neighbour has left a delicious gin and tonic at my front door. Beats tinned tomatoes hands down.”

Madeline Glancy of Prestwich, Lancashire in a letter to ‘The Telegraph’ in May 2020.

 

Wise Words About Gin

“Let the evening beGIN!”

Anon.

 

“I don’t know what reception I’m at, but for God’s sake, give me a gin and tonic.”

The well-known gin lover and husband of Margaret Thatcher, Denis Thatcher.

 

“Life is too short for single gins.”

Anon.

 

“Red meat and gin.”

America’s answer to Keith Floyd, Julia Child, on the reason for her longevity.

 

“I love water, especially when it’s frozen and surrounded by gin.”

Anon.

 

“Myself, I’m a fan of the gin without the tonic. Why on God’s great earth would you want to water down such masterpiece?”

Reader of ‘The Steeple Times’ ‘The Stray Cat.’

 

“I exercise strong self-control. I never drink anything stronger than gin before breakfast.”

American actor and comedian W. C. Fields.

 

“Gin-drinking is a great vice in England, but wretchedness and dirt are a greater [vice].”

Charles Dickens, ‘Sketches’ (1836).

 

“When life gives you juniper, make gin!”

Holistic health author Laurie Buchanan.

 

“Don’t cry over spilt milk, it could’ve been gin.”

Anon.

 

Night school tutor: “Write a horror story in six words.” Student: “I-have-run-out-of-gin.”

Anon.

 

“A perfect martini should be made by filling a glass with gin then waving it in the general direction of Italy.”

Noël Coward.

 

“The proper union of gin and vermouth is a great and sudden glory; it is one of the happiest marriages on earth, and one of the shortest lived.”

American historian Bernard DeVoto.

 

“The gin and tonic has saved more Englishmen’s lives, and minds, than all the doctors in the Empire.”

Winston Churchill.

 

“Of all the gin joints, in all the towns in all the world, she walks into mine.”

Humphrey Bogart as Rick in ‘Casablanca’ (1942).

 

“Gym? I thought you said: ‘Gin.’”

Anon.

 

“The only time I ever enjoyed ironing was the day I accidentally got gin in the steam iron.”

Comedian Phyllis Diller.

 

“Stop saying I’m hard to buy for… You know where the gin aisle is.”

Anon.

 

“Gin drinkers are sassy, classy and just a little smart assy.”

Anon.

 

“You’d learn more about the world by lying on the couch and drinking gin out of a bottle than by watching the news.”

American radio personality Garrison Keillor.

 

“Fortunately, there is gin, the sole glimmer in this darkness. Do you feel the golden, copper-coloured light it kindles in you? I like walking through the city of an evening in the warmth of gin.”

French philosopher and journalist Albert Camus.

 

“I tried to say no to gin… But it’s 40% stronger than me”

Anon.

 

“I’ll stick with gin. Champagne is just ginger ale that knows somebody.”

Dr. Hawkeye Pierce from M*A*S*H.

 

“Things, since you left, have not gone well with me: they have taken me from a place where there was gin to a place where there is no gin.”

British barrister and detective story author Sarah Cockburn (pseudonym Sarah Caudwell).

 

“According to chemists, gin IS a solution.”

Anon.

 

“Gin is not A solution. It is always THE solution.”

Reader of ‘The Steeple Times’ Shaun Keaveny.

 

“Gin and drugs, dear lady, gin and drugs.”

The reply of T. S. Eliot when asked about inspiration.

 

“It’s always gin o’clock.”

Anon.

 

Matthew Steeples
Matthew Steeples
A graduate of the London School of Economics, Matthew Steeples is a writer and marketing consultant. He conceived The Steeple Times as a media arena to fill the void between the Mail Online, The Huffington Post and such organs as the New York Social Diary in 2012.

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