November 15, 2018

Dorothy Shirley and Ann Goodenough’s recipes round out the panoply of inventive applications for and spellings of chocolate in seventeenth-century England.

Their countryman, William Hughes, had compiled a list of ways to write the word back in 1672. Hughes' The American...

November 1, 2018

On a recent trip to the Folger Shakespeare Library, I had the opportunity to read cover-to-cover extant seventeenth-century family recipe books of the English household. The above pages from Margaret Baker's family Receipt Book offer a glimpse into the material fascinat...

June 1, 2018

The European Chocolate Cup

Mancerina i xícara*

Alcora Manufactory, tin-glazed earthenware, mid-18th century. Reproduces the fashion of the 17th-century Spanish saucer--which held the cup in metal lattice--with beaker reminiscent of a gourd.

Courtesy of the Museu de Ceràmi...

March 15, 2018

The different ways the cacao tree has been depicted through history — from 16th-century codices to 18th-century botanicals — and what this changing iconography reveals about cacao’s journey into European culture.

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