Iuscellum testudinum viridum

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Somnium praefecti qui epulum municipale comederit: delineatio satyrica Londinii anno 1830 edita

Iuscellum testudinum viridum,[1] Anglice green turtle soup seu simplicius turtle soup, est ferculum generis Iuscelli vel potagii quod in arte coquinaria Indiarum occidentalium et Britanniae e pelagica testudinum specie Chelonia myda conficitur. Nomen commune huius speciei, videlicet "testudo viridis", e colore carnis et praesertim adipis, ganeonibus cari, demitur.

Consuetudo cenarum testudinum (turtle dinners) ab Eduardo Moore descripta est seu potius ab anonymo collaboratore, qui carnes deperditas gastronomiae Anglicae stilo satirico lamentans, videlicet ardeae, botauri, gruis, cygni, introductionem carnis testudinis viridis "per generosum spiritum promptamque benevolentiam" colonorum Britannorum Indiarum occidentalium laudavit, qua re incomparabile auctarium arti coquinariae Londiniensi conlatus erat.[2] Eodem libello ad naves allusit, cisternis testudineis munitas, quibus Cheloniae mydae in mari Caribaeo captas Londinium viventes advehebantur nisi procellis Atlanticis confractae caederentur.[3]

E tali mercatu Iacobus Quin[en] histrio ganeoque apud amicum Davidem Garrick indulged in the dear delights of high-seasoned venison, delicious turtle, and excellent claret ("deliciis carissimis cervinae manu generosa conditae testudinisque saporosissimae optimique vini rubei Burdigalensis sibi indulsit"). Quem ipse Garrick poëtico "soliloquio" ita commemoravit:

Let me embalm this flesh of mine
With turtle fat and Bourdeaux wine ...
Embalm'd alive, old Quin shall die
A mummy ready made

("carnem meam adipe testudineo vinoque Burdigalensi condiam! Ita vivens imbalsamatus, Quin tuus mumia iam factus moriar").[4] Saeculis XVIII et XIX iusculum testudinum saepe ad epulas municipales Britannicas inlatum est: quam habitudinem anno 1761 a decemviris Hantoniensibus ut matrimonium regis Georgii III celebrarent secutam Oliverius Goldsmith verbis satiricis vituperat.[5] Ex eadem coniunctione nominum "testudinum" (turtles) et "decemvirorum" (aldermen), post octoginta annos labiis populi supervivente, derivavit poëta Robertus Browning verbalem suam imaginem praefecti urbis Hamelnensis gula cruciati:

Save when at noon his paunch grew mutinous
For a plate of turtle green and glutinous

("Nisi meridie venter rebellaret patinamque glutinosae testudinis viridis postularet").[6] Tam e pretio carnis testudinum quam e difficultate confectionis huis ferculi, ortus est in Britannia regnoque Hannoverano saeculo XVIII usus falsi testudinum iuscelli parandi. Eis annis cenam testudinis elegantiores iam reiicere inceperunt, "testudinis iusculum decemviro tantum convenire" praetendentes,[7] atque "decemvir nihil scire nisi cervinam bene e gelato ribum rubrorum sapere, nisi se testudinem sumentem bonam adipis viridis copiam prehendere velle?"[8]

Notae[recensere | fontem recensere]

  1. "Iusculum testudinum" (col. 420 apud Google Books)
  2. As through neglect or caprice we have lost some eatables, which our ancestors held in high esteem, as the heron, the bittern, the crane, and, I may add, the swan, it should seem requisite ... to replace what has been laid aside by the introduction of some eatable which was not known to our predecessors ... Of all the improvements in the modern kitchen there are none that can bear a comparison with the introduction of Turtle. We are indebted for this delicacy, as well as for several others, to the generous spirit and benevolent zeal of the West Indians: #The World (1755) p. 99
  3. #The World (1755) p. 102
  4. Thomas Davies, Memoirs of the Life of David Garrick (vol. 2 pp. 89-90 editionis Dublinensis 1780 apud Google Books)
  5. We learn that the mayor and aldermen of that loyal borough [Southampton] had the particular satisfaction of celebrating the royal nuptials by a magnificent turtle-feast: Oliver Goldsmith, "Unacknowledged Essays" no. 10 (cf. p. 155 apud Google Books), primum in The Public Ledger die 17 Septembris 1761 sine nomine auctoris divulgatum
  6. Robert Browning, "The Pied Piper of Hamelin" in Bells and Pomegranates No. III: Dramatic Lyrics (1842)
  7. The object of soup being to "take the chill off" the appetite and prepare the inner man for the reception of solids, a light soup is better than a thick one, which clogs the appetite; turtle is only fit for an alderman: The habits of good society: a handbook of etiquette for ladies and gentlemen (Londinii: Hogg, 1859) p. 310
  8. How can Alderman Pogson know anything beyond the fact that venison is good with currant jelly, and that he likes lots of green fat with his turtle? W. M. Thackeray, "Fitz-Boodle's Professions" in Burlesques vol. 2 p. 230 editionis 1887

Bibliographia[recensere | fontem recensere]

Historica et lexicographica
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