Cache-Control: public, max-age=1024000 The Queen's Head Bow Street


This Tavern, in Duke's Court, was once kept by a facetious person, named Jupp, and is associated with a piece of humour, which may either be matter of fact, or interpreted as a pleasant satire upon etymological fancies. One evening, two well-known characters, Annesley Shay and Bob Todrington (the latter caricatured by Old Dighton), met at the Queen's Head, and at the bar asked for "half a quartern" each, with a little cold water. They continued to drink until they had swallowed four-and-twenty half-quarterns in water, when Shay said to the other, "Now, we'll go." "Oh, no," replied he, "we'll have another, and then go." This did not satisfy the Hibernians, and they continued drinking on till three in the morning, when they both agreed to go; so that under the idea of going they made a long stay, and this was the origin of drinking, or calling for, goes of liquor; but another, determined to eke out the measure his own way, used to call for a quartern at a time, and these, in the exercise of his humour, he called stays. We find the above in the very pleasant Etymological Compendium, third edition, revised and improved by Merton A. Thoms, 1853.

John Timbs
Club Life of London Vol. II
London, 1866