The Celts

Happy St. Paddy’s Day! For the day that’s in it we are going to go back to ancient Ireland and the group of people who populated the island milennia ago – the Celts. Scholars like Ian Hornsby have argued that these people are actually responsible for bringing brewing to what is now modern Ireland, but […]

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Gillian and the Brewsters of Exeter

In medieval England, while the brewing trade was dominated largely by women, especially in rural areas, those who maintained and enforced regulations were male. In particular the position of aletaster, that is a person who evaluated women’s brews and made sure they were keeping to regulations, was wholly male dominated – I have not found […]

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Ninkasi

Ninkasi was the Sumerian goddess of beer. Known as ‘the lady who fills the mouth’ an ancient tablet dating to around 1800 BCE contained a hymn to the goddess. [1]   According to scholars like Ian Hornsby, brewing in Mesopotamian society was the only trade presided over by a goddess of some type.[2]  Residing on Mount Sâbu (‘the […]

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Margery Kempe and Her Failed Brewing Enterprise

Known as an Christian Mystic, Kempe is most famous for writing The Book of Margery Kempe, completed around 1438, wherein she described her life, her flaws, her discussions with God, and her pilgrimages. One such instance was of her brewing. According to her own account, she began to brew ‘out of pure covetousness and in […]

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Pints and Protests: Women’s History Month

So.  I had this grand plan of writing about a woman, or group of women, a day for Women’s History Month. But then it decided to snow. And I got stuck in Heathrow…. For five days. Without any of my notes. Or resources. Or computer. That’ll teach me to leave my work at home. So […]

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Introducing Braciatrix

Like its name suggests, Braciatrix is particularly interested in the contributions of women to beer and brewing history. Inspired by the many amazing women of the modern industry, I decided to embark on a project curating the history of female brewers, consumers, and sellers of beer.

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