Scottish National Dictionary (1700–)
BIRSE-CUP, BIRSE TEA, n. The last cup of tea, with whisky or other spirit added, usually a third cup — an extra. The expression is said to have originated in the parish of Birse. The spirit was put in instead of cream.
Bnff. 1930 2 :
Will ye tak a birse-cup, Munty, t' feenish up wi'? Abd. 1912 Scotsman (18 Jan.):
What “Birse Tea” is everyone in Deeside knows, but . . . no one is apparently able to give me a satisfactory explanation. Abd. 1922 J. Lawrence in Bnffsh. Jnl. (14 Nov.):
I have seen “birse tea” drunk in Byth. Bch. 1929 W. Littlejohn Buchan Cottar Stories i.:
Instead of putting cream into the cup of tea, they put a small supply of whisky, and that cup was known as “birse tea.”
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"Birse-cup n.". Dictionary of the Scots Language. 2004. Scottish Language Dictionaries Ltd. Accessed 20 Jun 2018 <http://www.dsl.ac.uk/entry/snd/birsecup>
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