Thursday, 27 April 2017

W is for Whistlejacket …




Whistlejacket as painted by the British artist George Stubbs showing the Marquess of Rockingham’s racehorse approximately at life-size, rearing up against a plain background.
 
Canvas is
9 1/2 feet x 8 feet
"Whistlejacket" by George Stubbs

The art work has been described as “a paradigm of the flawless beautify of an Arabian thoroughbred” … it can now be seen in the National Gallery.



Whistlejacket in another context is a “Mahogany” – and in Yorkshire it is considered a traditional cold remedy … a rather daunting mix ….



Opihr Gin


… a curious liquor peculiar to the Cornish Fishermen in the late 1700s … it is made with two parts gin, and one part treacle, well beaten together … and was made into a ‘very good liquor’.






The pirates of Cornwall … note that in a biography of Ashley Hutchings, the founder of the folk-rock bands Fairport Convention and SteeleyeSpan, the members mentioned this drink … they remembered “Mahogany” but very little else about the night!!

  

That is W for What Should be a Well Forgotten recipe for a Walloping cold, but is W for a Wondrous Work of Whistlejacket, the Arabian thoroughbred  … from Aspects of British County Rare Breeds …



Counties with the letter W … 
(note some Counties have been retired!, or amended over historical local government … but some I’ve included)
England: Warwickshire; West Midlands; Westmorland; West Sussex; Wiltshire; Worcestershire
Northern Ireland: None
Scotland:  West Lothian; Wigtownshire
Wales:  Wrexham

Pyracy - Cornish Sea Shanties ...  see notes in this site

The Old Foodie ... James Boswell - Pepys' biographer ... describes the drink ... 


Hilary Melton-Butcher
Positive Letters Inspirational Stories

54 comments:

Gattina said...

Still a few letters to go and your work is finished ! and you did a lot of work and real interesting posts !

D.G. Hudson said...

Love horses, and I've heard of treacle, but not that alcoholic drink. Man can make liquor out of almost anything. . .
So glad that you have your posts on Blogger, Hilary. I have not seen very many of the posts for the A to Z as it's so difficult to find them. C'est la vie.

Bob Scotney said...

It must be awe inspiring to see that Whistlejacket canvas. It would be difficult to focus however with a Mahogany inside you.

M. Denise C. said...

Sounds like my kind of cough medicine! Beautiful horse . . . Cheers, D

Sara C. Snider said...

Treacle and gin? Sounds like an acquired taste. ;) The horse is beautiful.

A to Z 2017: Magical and Medicinal Herbs

Anabel Marsh said...

I don't think I'll be trying this remedy!

bazza said...

The brilliant Stubbs was probably the most specialised artist ever. I can't wait to see X, Y and Z!
CLICK HERE for Bazza’s blatherskite Blog ‘To Discover Ice’

Sylvia van Bruggen said...

wow, what a gorgeous horse!!!

Almost at the finish line of A to Z! Good luck!

Rhodesia said...

Wish I could afford a Stubbs, his horse paintings are brilliant, and this is no exception. Another great post. Diane

Nilanjana Bose said...

That horse is beautiful! He would have been a good fit for me today instead of the rant-mode :)


Nilanjana
Madly-in-Verse

Deniz Bevan said...

I haven't been to the National Gallery since I was a kid! Way overdue for a visit.
Gin and treacle, that sounds kind of tasty...

Elephant's Child said...

Glorious horse.
Not a fan of treacle though, so will pass on the drink.
I have been thoroughly enjoying your A-Z - from the weird to the wonderful. Thank you.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Gattina – almost there … they were ‘left overs’ from last year when I didn’t do the A-Z … but I’m glad you’ve enjoyed them …

@ DG – horses are brilliant animals aren’t they – I know little about them sadly – though my sister in law now has two … so at some stage I’ll pick up some lore about them …

That drink is just extraordinary … but all things to make the A-Z tick happily along! You can always check in with other bloggers from here … many seem to pop in – for which I’m really grateful … I use Feedly to store the people/ or articles I wish to be kept up with … it’s easy to set up .. and is free …

@ Bob – yes I must get to the National Gallery to see it. But you’re right I’d be a-weaving if I had a smidgen of Mahogany inside me …

@ Denise – oh yes … good medicine I’d say – sends you to bed to recover and that’s what’s needed! That art work is stunning…

@ Sara – I know treacle and gin … but in those days they’d have mixed anything … and we don’t have it now – except at specialist events (I think) …

@ Anabel – no … I don’t think I will either … but it seemed a good ‘W’ …

@ Bazza – yes Stubbs was an outstanding artist wasn’t he – I probably should have added more about him in … but one can’t do it all … even in the A-Z! X, Y and Z have been waiting in the wings – they will appear …

@ Sylvia – yes Stubbs’ painting of Whistlejacket is very special …

@ Diane – well frankly me too – his works of art are exceptional: while this seems to be considered the best …

@ Nila – oh of course you could have done him for Arabiana horses – by using a W somewhere … but I’m going to enjoy your rant-mode … those posts of yours are just brilliant – so much to learn about … let alone listen to that wonderful music …

@ Deniz – ah well … now is the time on your next visit perhaps – Trafalgar Square is a great place for a run-around … I don’t think I’d try gin and treacle … dangereuse: very!

@ EC – lovely to see you … I don’t like the dark treacle, but love golden syrup … occasionally now. That’s great to read you’ve been enjoying the A-Zs … a good mix of Rare Breeds with some light relief thrown in …

Thanks so much for visiting and your comments – I hope those of you who haven’t seen Whistlejacket in situ at the National Gallery will make a plan when you next visit London – PS applies to me too! Cheers Hilary

Out on the prairie said...

Too smooth of a drink that it goes down too fast. When at the horse shows I always enjoy the Arabians.

Bill said...

I had to look up "treacle." :) We don't have that word here.

That concoction doesn't sound tasty to me.

Cynthia Rodrigues Manchekar said...

The horse is beautiful. He looks so lifelike.

Ronel Janse van Vuuren said...

Interesting :-) Thanks for sharing. Happy A-to-Z-ing.

A Heron's View said...

I don't like horses and they don't like me. I was once chased across a field in Scotland by a stallion who kept rearing up and flailing his hooves at me - I escaped by running through a wood and jumping into a river to escape his attention.

Kristin said...

I haven't had much to do with horses but have never been chased across a field either. The painting looks magnificent and the drink sounds like one I will never try.

Finding Eliza

Emily Bloomquist said...

The racehorse looks beautiful.

I think I would skip that 'remedy' though!

Emily | My Life In Ecuador | Water. Clean Drinking Water

Deborah Weber said...

I'd love to see that painting in person - how impressive it must be. I'll pass on the drink though - otherwise I might be trying to ride the horse in the painting. :-)

FinnBadger said...

I dislike gin, maybe treacle would make it taste much better! Fantastic that you uncovered this traditional recipe.

Phillip | W is for White Shapes | What do you see?

Robert Bennett said...

Huh. I'm a little surprised I've never heard of that piece before.

Andrea Ostapovitch said...

Oh, I can just imagine how impressive that artwork must be in person.

I think I would have to pass on that drink though, I'm what they call a lightweight.
Although, I did discover a gin in Nova Scotia last summer that tastes like a flower garden. It is amazing! In very tiny amounts of course.

Andrea

Nick Wilford said...

Amazingly lifelike painting. It's like you can see the horse moving. Gin and treacle? That's one I haven't come across before... think I'd give it a pass as a cold remedy!

Arti Jain said...

I clicked on your blog a bit late in the A to Z month, but I'm happy I did today. Love that horse. It must be amazing to see this huge canvas in person. Hope to check it out when we travel to London this summer.
W is for Warp and Weft

Jacqui Murray said...

That is amazing--life size. It would take a special room, but then, it would be perfect.

Shirley Corder said...

Oh I absolutely love that painting! It is hardly to believe it's a painting. It looks like a photograph. Thank you for a fascinating post - as always. W is for Watch the Wordcount as you Build a Better Blog. #AtoZchallenge.

Keith's Ramblings said...

You mentioned my favourite band, and I just had to play some of their music. Steeleye Span! I have to say that liquor sounds right up my street (or in my harbour!) Sounds a bit like a liquid form of those Fisherman's Friend things!

Another day in Amble Bay!

Vinodini Iyer said...

That's a regal looking horse, Hilary. Love the piece of art.

Lynn said...

What a wonderful name for a horse! And I had to look up treacle - we call it molasses. Trying to imagine those two mixed together!

Romance Reader said...

That concoction is not for me :)

A Cuban In London said...

That is such a beautiful horse. Thanks! :-)

Greetings from London.

Gail M Baugniet - Author said...

Good humor that the consumers remembered the drink but not much else about the night, Hilary. The Arabian thoroughbred, on the other hand, is unforgettable.

bookworm said...

Well done! The Unknown Journey Ahead agingonthespectrum.blogspot.com

Sue Bursztynski said...

Stubbs was indeed quite a horse artist! And that horse - I want to throw my arms around his neck and cuddle! My booze of choice is Cointreau, thank you. I'll leave the Mahogany for folk singers.

X is for eXtras

Inger said...

That is one gorgeous horse! Did you watch Poldark? Pirates of Cornwall and what Cornwall means to you as well, made me wonder. I am in love with him, Poldark, I mean, not the horse, and also with Cornwall. So sorry I never made it there when I lived in England. Finally, Fran-fishducky wrote an email to Graham and he left a comment on my airplane post in case you want to go back and read it.

Joanne said...

Can never go wrong with a George Stubbs painting - his work is magnificent. Oh you are so close to the finish line, and your blogs have been superb. You and Nila Bose - impeccable writing and research. Absolutely top-notch.
Thanks for letting me learn so much

Aidyl Ewoh said...

Wow! That painting sounds amazing! Especially with it being so huge. Artists have a way of totally amazing me with the way they use their creativity and talent.

Visiting from the A to Z Challenge. See my “W” post here: https://lydiahowe.com/2017/04/27/w-is-for-water-and-no-tea-atozchallenge/

Roland D. Yeomans said...

You have done an impressive research job for all these posts. I think I will bypass any drinking with pirates from the description of that concoction!

Liz A. said...

Got a little drunk, did they?

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Steve – I would think it must have been disgusting! Oh horse shows are amazing … I don’t go to many – but I do love seeing them …

@ Bill – sorry about ‘treacle’ it’s a word used by Lewis Carroll, Orwell, et al … treacle tart is delicious! I won’t be trying the cough mixture any time soon either!

@ Cynthia – Stubbs was a great equine artist …

@ Ronel – glad you enjoyed the ‘take’ on a W

@ Mel – oh yes … I’m not good with horses either … I did get thrown by one ... but thankfully didn’t have to run for miles to find him or escape from him!

@ Kristin – I’m not the best with horses … and am glad I did not have Mel’s experience. The painting is wonderful … the drink – shall we just leave that!?

@ Emily – yes the racehorse is an amazing piece of art … but definitely don’t put the cough remedy near a horse.

@ Deborah – the painting is in our National Gallery – and I must make an effort to see it sometime soon. Oh dear I think the cough drink might give you hallucinogenic ideas …

@ Phillip – yes I’m not keen on gin … but I don’t think treacle would make it better … I just came across the recipe and had to add it in …

@ Robert – you hadn’t seen Whisteljacket before … ah – good excuse the come to London?

@ Andrea – Whisteljacket is definitely one of our ‘famed’ art pieces hanging in the National Gallery. Drink can be a dangerous solution - and this appears worse than some. They are producing some new versions of drinks aren’t they with wonderful names …sounds like your gin was one of them – glad you enjoyed your small sampler …

@ Nick – I think that painting must be one of the best around – so so lifelike. I know the cough medicine –sounds revolting doesn’t it … not sure the medics would recommend it …

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Arti – thanks so much for coming over to see what I’m up to – it’s good to meet you. Isn’t the horse just wonderful – perhaps you can make a trip to London sometime to see it –oh great you’re coming over fairly soon …

@ Jacqui – I’m not sure how it is displayed at the National Gallery – I’d expect on one wall … but I must check sometime …

@ Shirley – thanks so much … Whistlejacket does look amazing doesn’t he …stunning art work …

@ Keith –oh good … Steeleye Span and glad you put on some of their music. Yes I think you’re right about the Fisherman’s Friends things and Cornish harbours ... but probably a few hundred years out of date … still it’s possible to concoct a version now!?

@ Vinodini – I just had to include Whistlejacket in … so stunning to see …

@ Lynn – yes isn’t it a fun and great name for a horse. I know treacle is different in the States – we have golden syrup too … but gin and molasses – I think not … as you confirm –not worth thinking about …

@ Nas – I agree … not for me either …

@ ACIL – well you can easily get to see it – wish I was that much nearer … still I get the sea!

@ Gail – I’m sure many who had ‘a mahogany’ would be very unhappy in the morning. Exactly Whistlejacket is unforgettable isn’t he …

@ Bookworm .. thank you

@ Sue – Stubbs is recognised as the best equine artist of all time – considering he painted in the 1700s – just sorry that you can’t give him a cuddle! Ok Cointreau you may have and we’ll leave mahogany here!

@ Inger – Whistlejacket just has to be one of the highlights of the National Gallery. I did see some of Poldark and the Cornish coastline – Aidan Turner seems to have been loved by everyone who watched the recent Poldark: he did make it into my A-Z on British Cornwall 2015. It’s a pity you never made Cornwall … still you saw many other parts. Thanks re the note on Graham – I’ve visited you …

@ Joanne – I agree with you … Stubbs was an excellent artist interested in his subjects … to the understanding of their anatomical being. Thanks so much … Nila has been doing some extraordinary work with her Arabiana … I’ve been learning a great deal – and I am going to go back and read through all hers again …

@ Aidyl – I agree I can’t imagine painting something – let alone this incredible work … and then of course their creativity kicks in to their works of art for us: I still think I prefer ‘real life’ as such … Thanks for your visit …

@ Roland – thanks … it was an interesting challenge to have written up and I’ve learnt loads. I agree the drink sounds a little yughish!

@ Liz – I suspect they did get a little drunk …

Thank so much everyone – good to see you and for your various comments – cheers Hilary

DeeDee said...

The best post for W.
Loved it. It gave this classic vintage vibes.

A Peice Of My Life

Trin Carl said...

You forget about the animals who often perish in war as well... also the numerous ways they benefit our society like you mentioned"transport, communications, logistics, vermin control and solace." If the animal kingdom did their own tally of destroyed, I wonder how much it would be?

I'm interviewing with an author who finds the characters in the books she writes-speak to her every day.

http://theglobaldig.blogspot.com/2017/04/x-is-for-x-ordinary-words-on-books.html

Birgit said...

What a way to forget one's illness:) I love that painting! This horse must have been a big winner in its day

Michelle Wallace said...

The Whistlejacket painting is STUNNING!
What a beautiful animal...

Madeleine Sara said...

Another lovely post Hilary. An interesting name for a horse, too.

Debbie D. said...

Beautiful horse! Gin and treacle - sounds lethal. ☺ The sweetness is bound to cause a wicked hangover.

Jemima Pett said...

Love this picture - it came up on a quiz a couple of weeks ago and I couldn't remember his name - so when I saw your post link, I knew who he was!

Jemima reveals Zanzibar's Rings

Sharon M Himsl said...

The whistle jacket was beautiful.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ DeeDee - that's an honour .. thank you so much . It was enjoyable write-up ...

@ Trin - thanks for your comment ... which I think belongs to the X post - but you've highlighted a different aspect: if the animal kingdom did their own tally of death and destruction during the War - how terrible it would be ... much much worse.

Interesting about your author interview - I'm coming over (belatedly) now ...

@ Birgit - well that's good news! Isn't the painting exceptional and yes he had won a lot of races ...

@ Michelle - isn't it wonderful ... and resides in the National Gallery - looking magnificent ...

@ Madeleine - good to see you and thanks so much - he might have been named after the cough mixture ... and the colours matched - good guess work by me, I suspect??

@ Debbie - an amazing animal ... I think you're right about the gin and treacle - but made a fun post! Well as you're sick, I guess you could stay in bed the next day!!

@ Jemima - yes the artwork is quite extraordinary ... now I've jogged your memory re Whistlejacket's name ...

@ Sharon - Isn't the painting exquisite ...

Cheers everyone - thanks for the extra comments ... this was a fun post to write up ... Hilary

diedre Knight said...

Outstanding portrait of Whistlejacket - looks like a photo!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Thanks Diedre - Stubbs work is quite extraordinary ... as he was interested in the anatomy of animals as well as wonderful paintings ... cheers Hilary