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Brown Windsor Information

More about Brown Windsor Soup

Here's every reference we can find to BWS before the Goon Show of 1956:

If Google Books is to be trusted - and I suspect it partly is - there are about 1,400 books, magazines and newspapers mentioning, often 'definitely remembering', BWS, but we can't find one single one of them dating from before the 1960's.

There is a particularily telling snippet in 'It was the nightingale' - Page 175 - by Henry Williamson - 1962; " 'The General Manager deserves to be drowned in a bath of his own Brown Windsor soup!' 'Isn't that a soap?' 'Soap or soup, the taste is the same.' "

1892: The, slightly odd, cookbook 'Practical Gastronomy' of 1892 by Charles Herman Sens which lists the colours of foods, and includes "Potage a la Windsor. Windsor soup (brown)". It does not include the term "Brown Windsor Soup".

1944: All references to BWS we can find in online archives of newspapers of magazines are clearly a scanning error for 'Brown Windsor Soap', with the sole exception of (with thanks to Bill Pearson) a reference to "a case of Brown Windsor Soup" in the 'Western Daily Press' on 1 Jan 1944 as part of a list of gifts of both food and toiletries to a children's home. This is clearly printed as 'Soup', but is almost certainly a typographical error as soup, unless perhaps tinned, doesn't normally come in cases, and we have no record at all of tinned BWS. A case of 'soap' on the other hand, makes sense.

1953: Rory O'Donnell found the reference in 'The Captain's Paradise', the 1953 British comedy film starring Alec Guinness and directed by Anthony Kimmins. The quote is at 00:08:44,407. The script is credited to Alec Coppel

1955: John Leiska points out that the episode of the BBC radio comedy 'Hancocks Half Hour' titled 'The Last In The Series' broadcast on 15th Feb 1955 (available at has the phrase (14:30) "a plate of brown windsor down the back of his neck and he'll soon shift," the scene is in a restaurant, does include several joke food names including what sounds like "a bunghole of biscuit tripe", but it doesn't actually say 'soup'.

Picture Post (London, England), Saturday, October 23, 1943; pg. 5

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