Let us have another one as a deoc an doruis

From A Little Cloud in James Joyce’s Dubliners:

“And to clinch the bargain,” said Little Chandler, “we’ll just have one more now.”

Ignatius Gallaher took out a large gold watch and looked at it.

“Is it to be the last?” he said. “Because you know, I have an a.p.”

“O, yes, positively,” said Little Chandler.

“Very well, then,” said Ignatius Gallaher, “let us have another one as a deoc an doruis—that’s good vernacular for a small whisky, I believe.”

Don Gifford’s Joyce Annotated gives this as – “Irish: (literally) a door-drink; one for the road.”  The Scottish version is Deoch an doris (drink of the door).

There’s also a French variant which I’ve never encountered except in books – le coup de l’étrier – literally ‘drink/glass of the stirrup.’  Huysmans uses it in ch. 11 of À Rebours: “Voyons, fit-il, pour se verser du courage, buvons le coup de l’étrier; et il remplit un verre de brandy, tout en réclamant sa note.”

The Italian version – which I’ve heard used but as something closer to English nightcap – is an exact equivalent of the French – Bicchiere della staffa

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s