The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #57360 Message #901610
Posted By: Penny S.
02-Mar-03 - 07:14 AM
Thread Name: Folklore: Treacle mines
Subject: RE: Folklore: Treacle mines
The Alice in Wonderland treacle well is derived from the treacle well in St Frideswide's churchyard in Oxford, a healing well, as the old use of the word treacle was for a healing substance or balm - but the mines are certainly referring to the sticky stuff.
I googled, rather than dogpiled, but most of the references I found were from within the world in which the mines exist, rather than from our world, in which they are a local conceit. Or is that too posh a way of putting it? What I'm interested in is the idea of the treacle mine as a joke, which seems to encourage, both in the 30's and now, an extended riff on a simple idea.
The closest to what I wanted to know was on the Frittenden website, where it is said that locals sent London tourists off to look for the mines as a joke. But why treacle mines - why not doughnut mines? Jam mines? Sausage quarries?