A grace for a wine tasting: discussion and commentary

Anything to do with Port.
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jdaw1
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A grace for a wine tasting: discussion and commentary

Post by jdaw1 » 00:54 Thu 02 Jul 2009

[This thread discusses the grace for a wine tasting that also appears in the Reference forum. For ease of legibility it starts by repeating the grace.]

A grace for a wine tasting

The first trial of a grace for a wine tasting occurred recently at Quinta do Noval. Neat copies of the grace and translation are available formatted for A4 (8.28″×11.70″) and for US Letter (8½″×11″).
  • Te inuocamus, Liber Pater, ut nobis adsis qui id quod nunc bibemus dum profertur omnem ad gradum curauisti. te enim praesente uuae clarissimae leuissimis manibus carptae, te praesente pressae in uinum feruerunt. tu quoque adsis, o Siluane, qui durissimum corticem dedisti cuius puro in amplexu, tot per annos nullo calore, nullo frigore conturbatum dormiret. adeste igitur, di immortales, et concedite ut his uinis hodie ita ut uolebant auctores fruamur. nunc est bibendum.

    Thee we invoke, Liber Pater: be present now, as you were at every step when what we are about to drink was made. For under your care the finest grapes were picked by gentle hands; under your care they were trodden and turned to wine. Be present too, Silvanus, for you gave of the long-lasting cork, in whose clean embrace the wine has slept for many years, disturbed by no excess of heat or cold. Come, Immortal Gods, and grant that we may enjoy these wines as their makers intended. Now is the time to drink!
The grace was composed by Dr Rupert J. E. Thompson, Orator of the University of Cambridge (links personal and professional), at the request of, and based on some suggested English phrases written by, J. D. A. Wiseman.

Pronunciation guide
  • Mostly, where a ‘u’ is followed by a vowel the ‘u’ is pronounced like an English w. Hence:
    • ‘uuae’ as u-wae;
    • ‘inuocamus’ as inwocamus;
    • ‘curauisti’ as curawisti;
    • ‘uinum’ as winum;
    • ‘Siluane’ as Silwane;
    • ‘qui’ as qwi;
  • ‘cuius’ as coo-yus;
  • ‘fruamur’ as froo-amur;
  • ‘feruerunt’ as fair WEAR unt;
  • ‘concedite’ as conk Eh deeti;
  • In the following paragraph long vowels are shown in capitals (with ‘I’ being the same vowel sound as in eat):
    • Te inuocAmus, LIber Pater, ut nobis adsis qui id quod nunc bibEmus dum profertur omnem ad gradum curauisti. te enim praesente uuae clarissimae leuissimis manibus carptae, te praesente pressae in uinum feruErunt. tu quoque adsis, o SiluAne, qui durissimum corticem dedisti cuius purO in amplexU, tot per annOs nullO calore, nullO frigore conturbatum dormiret. adeste igitur, di immortales, et concEdite ut hIs uinIs hodie ita ut uolebant auctores fruAmur. nunc est bibendum.
It is recommended that somebody intending to deliver the grace have a few practice read-throughs in private.

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Axel P
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Re: A grace for a wine tasting

Post by Axel P » 10:03 Thu 02 Jul 2009

Perfect grace for a perfect evening.

Thanks, Julian

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Re: A grace for a wine tasting

Post by Glenn E. » 17:57 Thu 02 Jul 2009

Very nice, Julian, well done!
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DRT
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Re: A grace for a wine tasting

Post by DRT » 11:42 Fri 03 Jul 2009

Should this be moved to the Reference section?
"The first duty of Port is to be red"

Ernest H. Cockburn

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JacobH
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Re: A grace for a wine tasting

Post by JacobH » 12:47 Sat 04 Jul 2009

Excellent stuff. I particularly commend the use of a member of Selwyn College ;-)

Who is the Roman god of fortification?
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DRT
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Re: A grace for a wine tasting

Post by DRT » 12:15 Sun 05 Jul 2009

JacobH wrote:Who is the Roman god of fortification?
Bacchus was the god of wine and partying - can't find a god of fortification so he will have to do :wink:
"The first duty of Port is to be red"

Ernest H. Cockburn

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jdaw1
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Re: A grace for a wine tasting: discussion and commentary

Post by jdaw1 » 13:32 Sun 05 Jul 2009

Wikipedia wrote:Dionysus is equated with both Bacchus and Liber (also Liber Pater). Liber ("the free one") was a god of fertility, wine, and growth, married to Libera.

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Re: A grace for a wine tasting: discussion and commentary

Post by JacobH » 17:54 Sun 05 Jul 2009

DRT wrote:can't find a god of fortification
On reflection, it may be that the Romans did not have a concept of fortified wine!

Another possibility might be Acratus the god of unmixed wines which might be as close as the Romans came to a fortified wine.
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Re: A grace for a wine tasting: discussion and commentary

Post by jdaw1 » 01:03 Mon 06 Jul 2009

JacobH wrote: the god of unmixed wines
Port is a blended wine your ‘unmixed’ deity seems rather inappropriate.

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Re: A grace for a wine tasting: discussion and commentary

Post by DRT » 01:06 Mon 06 Jul 2009

Did the the Romans have a god named Geekius? If not, can we claim him as our own?
"The first duty of Port is to be red"

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Re: A grace for a wine tasting: discussion and commentary

Post by JacobH » 09:52 Mon 06 Jul 2009

Blended ≠ Mixed; due to their sweetness, wine in Classical times were almost always drunk mixed with water (any museum containing Classical remains will have a stack of kraters which were used for mixing the wine before a symposium or dinner party). Drinking the wines unmixed was somewhat unusual and, due to the ancient wine's strength and sweetness, I would have thought it would somewhat closer to that of Port. For instance, to me, this has more than a passing semblance to white tawnies and colheitas (albeit unfortified):
James Grout wrote: Distillation was unknown in the ancient world (and would not be discovered until the early middle ages); wine, therefore, was the strongest drink of the Romans. Falernian was full-bodied (firmissima), with an alcohol content as much as fifteen or sixteen percent (at which point the yeast is killed by the alcohol it produces). A white wine, it was aged for ten to twenty years, until it was the color of amber (Pliny, XXXVII.12). The fabled vintage of 121 BC was a Falernian, the same year that Opimius was consul and had rebuilt the Temple of Concord. This is the wine that Petronius, in the Satyricon, has Trimalchio serve at his dinner banquet, and it is this wine that Pliny says still survived, although so concentrated as to be barely drinkable, to his own time 200 years later. He also speaks of Opimian Falernian being offered to Caligula that was 160 years old.
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Re: A grace for a wine tasting: discussion and commentary

Post by jdaw1 » 13:13 Mon 06 Jul 2009

JacobH wrote:Blended ≠ Mixed; due to their sweetness, wine in Classical times were almost always drunk mixed with water ! kraters
Indeed, a detail of a Roman drinking cup was briefly my TPF avatar. There are many things in the modern world lacked by the ancients: brandy; corks; late-night television. In choosing ancient gods for modern roles some tolerance of approximation can be necessary, for which purpose Blended ≈ Mixed.

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Re: A grace for a wine tasting: discussion and commentary

Post by jdaw1 » 13:21 Mon 06 Jul 2009

James Grout wrote:Vintage wines could be kept for such lengths of time because they were stored in amphorae. These were large tapering two-handled clay jars, with a narrow neck that was sealed with cork plastered over with cement, and held approximately 26 liters or almost 7 gallons.
Hmmm. So if I can persuade the IVDP to allow bottles up to the 18L Melchior, the task still isn’t done.

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Re: A grace for a wine tasting: discussion and commentary

Post by AHB » 13:39 Mon 06 Jul 2009

jdaw1 wrote:
James Grout wrote:Vintage wines could be kept for such lengths of time because they were stored in amphorae. These were large tapering two-handled clay jars, with a narrow neck that was sealed with cork plastered over with cement, and held approximately 26 liters or almost 7 gallons.
Hmmm. So if I can persuade the IVDP to allow bottles up to the 18L Melchior, the task still isn’t done.
Perhaps you can convince the IVDP of a grandfathering precedent, demonstrating to them that in the First European Union which had its Parliament in Rome, it was permitted to ship wine in 27 litre clay amphorae and therefore you don't need special permission for this size container.
Top Port in 2017 (so far): Taylor 2010 LBV
2016 Port of the year: Cockburn 1908

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Re: A grace for a wine tasting: discussion and commentary

Post by DRT » 15:33 Mon 06 Jul 2009

AHB wrote:
jdaw1 wrote:
James Grout wrote:Vintage wines could be kept for such lengths of time because they were stored in amphorae. These were large tapering two-handled clay jars, with a narrow neck that was sealed with cork plastered over with cement, and held approximately 26 liters or almost 7 gallons.
Hmmm. So if I can persuade the IVDP to allow bottles up to the 18L Melchior, the task still isn’t done.
Perhaps you can convince the IVDP of a grandfathering precedent, demonstrating to them that in the First European Union which had its Parliament in Rome, it was permitted to ship wine in 27 litre clay amphorae and therefore you don't need special permission for this size container.
Perhaps if we promised only to drink an Amphorae of vintage port at a Caligula-sytle orgy they would agree that we had not stepped outside established tradition?
"The first duty of Port is to be red"

Ernest H. Cockburn

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Re: A grace for a wine tasting: discussion and commentary

Post by JacobH » 21:53 Mon 06 Jul 2009

DRT wrote:
AHB wrote:
jdaw1 wrote:
James Grout wrote:Vintage wines could be kept for such lengths of time because they were stored in amphorae. These were large tapering two-handled clay jars, with a narrow neck that was sealed with cork plastered over with cement, and held approximately 26 liters or almost 7 gallons.
Hmmm. So if I can persuade the IVDP to allow bottles up to the 18L Melchior, the task still isn’t done.
Perhaps you can convince the IVDP of a grandfathering precedent, demonstrating to them that in the First European Union which had its Parliament in Rome, it was permitted to ship wine in 27 litre clay amphorae and therefore you don't need special permission for this size container.
Perhaps if we promised only to drink an Amphorae of vintage port at a Caligula-sytle orgy they would agree that we had not stepped outside established tradition?
First :tpf: Rome offline?

Any suggestions as to how Port would age in clay? Would it oxidise without picking up the woodiness?
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Re: A grace for a wine tasting: discussion and commentary

Post by uncle tom » 22:13 Mon 06 Jul 2009

Valete! Geekius Julianus abbas Geekius Maximus quod suum amicitia

- Satis!

Lest alius reputo nos dementis


:D :D :D
I may be drunk, Miss, but in the morning I shall be sober and you will still be ugly - W.S. Churchill

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