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The word "Punch" is derived from the Hindustani word "Panchan" which means Five, and referred to the amount of ingredients in the initial recipes. The word "Panchan" was anglicized to "Puncheon," and was then shortened to "Punch."

Historical References

"Oakland Tribune", 23rd December 1875

"Squarza' Celebrated Punches. known as Welcome Punch, Whisky Punch, Pineapple Punch, Strawberry Punch and Jamaica Rum Punch, are now being introduced to the people of Oakland by Mr. Selms, at Becht's Saloon, corner of Broadway and 11th street. Squarza's Original Punches have been awarded seventeen first premiums. Go and try a Punch"

"STAGECOACH and TAVERN DAYS", Alice Morse Earle, 1900

"Another universal and potent colonial drink was punch. It came to the English colonies in America from the English colonies in India. To the Orientals we owe punch - as many other good things. The word is from the Hindustani panch, five, referring to the five ingredients then used in the drink, namely: tea, arrack, sugar, lemons, water.

In 1675 one Tryer drank punch in India and, like the poor thing that he was, basely libelled it as an enervating liquor. The English took very quickly to the new drink, as they did to everything else in India, and soon the word appeared in English ballads, showing that punch was well known."


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