Nowadays, wassail, like sugarplums or hot buttered rum, is a part of the Christmas season that most of us experience mainly through references in songs and stories and artwork. But this old English custom is about much more than sharing a cup of good cheer. It’s about one of the parts of Christmas that’s mostly likely destined to remain stuck in Christmas past: inverting the normal rules of social order…with a little help from alcohol.
Thanks to Conrad Bladey, author of the five-volume The Book of Wassail, for appearing in this episode.
Be sure to check out the “Definitive Directory of Christmas Podcasts“
Music in this episode
- The Wassail Song — Chris Friesen, via Noisetrade
- Slow Toe — Blue Dot Sessions, via Free Music Archive
- Cases to Rest — Blue Dot Sessions, via Free Music Archive
- Wassail Wassail — Don Maue, shared directly by the artist
- Wish Background — Kevin MacLeod via Incompetech