Aug 6, 2012
Medieval Mondays: Fuddling cups and puzzle jugs
This is a fuddling cup. These cups are all connected with tubes and holes designed in a clever way that there's only one angle you can pour it into your mouth without it spilling out another part and getting all over you.
Fuddling cups were known in the eighteenth century and perhaps date before then. Another variant is the puzzle jug. It looks like a normal jug with several holes in the neck. Like with the fuddling cup you have to drink from it without spilling.
The trick is that the fluid goes through a ceramic tube leading from the bottom to the spout past several holes. You have to plug those holes with your fingers in order to get a clean drink.
I'll hold a wager if you will,
That you don't drink this liquor all,
Without you spill and let some fall."
Puzzle jugs seem to be later than fuddling cups, dating to the 18th and 19th centuries. I haven't found any serious studies of these cool items from the past, though, so this may not be correct.
These contraptions would fit well into one of my fantasy tales somewhere. . .