While the little boys cry ‘merry Christmas is coming,’
Shall I be as dull as a water-drunk log?
No! I’ll sing you a song (for we bards must be humming)
And the burden shall still be, Beware of Egg-nog.
When the bowl mantles over the elegant foam,
And the steam rises up in a silvery tog;
Put by the potation, keep Reason at home,
And think of my warning, Beware of Egg-nog.
When Circe, the witch, caught Ulysses’s men,
She gave each a dram that soon made him a hog;
The identical mixture–’tis now as ’twas then;
So attend to the moral, Beware of Egg-nog.
When the circle is form’d, the glass passes round,
Old Satan draws night, tho’, as usual, incog.,
And chuckles to see good Sobriety drown’d–
Would you frustrate his malice–Beware of Egg-nog.
But why do I rail at one liquor this way?
Is no other as fatal; rum, brandy, or grog?
Yes, yes, they’re all one, I mean all when I say,
And I’ll say but once more now, Beware of Egg-nog.
Source: “The American Beacon,” Norfolk, December 24, 1817
Excerpted from “Beware of Egg-Nog: An 1817 Warning”
by Janice Brown, “Cow Hampshire,” on Friday, 01 Dec. 2006