Friday, April 9, 2010

Weapons of Mass Breakfast

click to enlarge
The one positive thing you could say about the bread products around him was that they were probably as edible now as they were on the day they were baked. Forged was a better term. Dwarf bread was made as a meal of last resort and also as a weapon and a currency. Dwarfs were not, as far as Vimes knew, religious in any way, but the way they thought about bread came close.
-- (Terry Pratchett, The Fifth Elephant)

In the Discworld novel The Fifth Elephant a pivotal plot point is the theft of a dwarven artifact called the Scone of Stone, a very well preserved bit of dwarven battle bread that is used in their coronations. A parallel is drawn between the Scone of Stone and actual history, in that it is also broken and replicated.

The real Stone of Scone was also known as the Stone of Destiny or the Coronation Stone, an oblong block of red sandstone, about 26 x 16 inches (and over 330 pounds). At each end of the stone is an iron ring, for transport. Historically, the artifact was kept at the now-ruined abbey in Scone, near Perth, Scotland. It was used for centuries in the coronation of the monarchs of Scotland and later in England. One legend has that it was the pillow stone used by the Biblical Jacob. More believe, however, that it was the Coronation Stone of the early Dál Riata Gaels when they lived in Ireland, which they brought with them when settling Caledonia.

Eventually housed in Westminster Abbey, the stone was stolen by four college students in 1950 with the purpose of returning it to it's rightful home in Scotland. Their well intended larceny resulted in it being broken in two. Later repaired, it was returned to the Abbey though rumor persisted that what was returned was a duplicate copy made and the original was hidden in Scotland.The other reference I remember for it was the The Highlander TV series, that featured a humorous episode called The Stone of Scone where Duncan MacLeod, Amanda, and Hugh Fitzcairn were responsible for the 1950 theft. The end of the episode implies that the authentic stone was left on a golf course in Scotland
Oatmeal Scones with raisins and cinnamon. Dense, full of whole grain, but tender, with just at touch of sweetness. Worth grabbing for breakfast. But don't throw at anyone, they're too good to waste.


  1. Those look delicious, the perfect thing to go with the several inches of snow we got yesterday.


  2. I really enjoyed your post. I am a big fan of Discworld and anything baked (except maybe Dwarf bread). Love the scone photos. Enjoyed the history behind the satire too.

  3. Lovely photos, and the scones are quite the bomb!

  4. "Scone of Stone", heh.

    I was terribly disappointed when I was told (by a Scot, of course) that it is pronounced "scoon", not "scohn". It interferes with the rhyme scheme, unless you have a Glaswegan accent - in which case you can claim to rhyme anything with anything, because I can't understand a word. ;-)

  5. MMM B, YUM...I like the looks of those. Be good train food while looking for a new place to shoot in the King's Forest



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