voted “that it would very much contribute to the health (of students), facilitate their studies and prevent extravagance if the scholars were restrained from dieting in private families” ; and to compensate them for this deprivation, they also voted that “there should be pudding three times a week” at the college commons.
On the other hand, however, the College
officially recognized a return of courtesies by the students, as in 1759 the overseers declared that “it shall be no offence if any scholar at commencement
make, and entertain guests at his chamber with punch,” although it may be doubted if “the young ladies at Mr. Wigglesworth
's” accepted such an invitation.
The overseers evidently did not look upon punch with such disfavor as their successors in the present board, as two years later, they again voted that “it should be no offence if the scholars in a sober manner entertain one another and strangers with punch, which as it is now usually made is no intoxicating liquor.”
Commencement day in the olden time was an occasion which Town and Gown celebrated together.
The day was a holiday throughout the province when the shops of Boston
were generally closed and their proprietors repaired to the Cambridge
common which was completely taken possession of by drinking stands, dancing booths, mountebank shows and gambling tables.
The religious interests of Town and Gown were intimately associated in the last century.
The college paid a portion of the cost of the erection of the new meeting house of the First Parish in 1756, and in return was given the use of the front gallery for the students.
They were regarded as part of the congregation and were expected to contribute to