The Oeconomia on swans (not really a recipe)

Icky stupid poors…

(Marginalia: swans do not serve in poor people’s kitchens)

They are also strongly privileged gamebirds that not anyone may catch, take, or kill, for such a large bird is not easily concealed or stashed away and many an ignorant layperson also does not know whether it is good to eat or not. And even if he knew, such people do not know how to prepare it, whether they cook it like cabbage or bacon, make it sour or sweet, black or white, stuffed or not stuffed, especially since it has awful (abscheulich) meat that poor people should hardly eat. And with such a roast belongs a good and well spiced sauce and a good drink of Rhenish or other wine which a poor man will not have in front of his mouth on many days. Therefore, swans can be kept away from the common man and secured well.

But they are not kept for their good and tasty meat, but mostly for the soft feathers, because they have delightful, cheering, soft feathers on which emperors and kings, princes and lords properly sleep and rest.

p. 486 (635 according to the pdf)

Johann Coler’s Oeconomia ruralis et domestica was a popular book on the topic of managing a wealthy household. It is based largely on previous writings by Coler and first appeared between 1596 and 1601. Repeatedly reprinted for decades, it became one of the most influential early works of Hausväterliteratur. I am working from a 1645 edition.

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