1790tr. ofF. Le Vaillant’s Trav.I. 92Those who enter a house are always presented with a sopi, that is to say, a glass of rack or gin, or rather of French brandy.
1798Lady A. BarnardLett. to Henry Dundas (1973) 181The Boers from the Country..generally come to pay their respects at the castle at seven ’o clock in the morning and always have their Sopi of Gin with me while I am at breakfast.
1804R. PercivalAcct of Cape of G.H. 254Sit in the porch for an hour or two with a pipe in their mouths, and a slave by their side holding a glass and a small decanter of gin from which the master every now and then takes his soupkie or glass.
1827G. ThompsonTrav. 270He pressed me to take a soopie with him, to which I willingly agreed, as the night was very chilly, but asked for water to mix with the brandy.
1832Graham’s Town Jrnl 18 Oct. 167I did not see deceased drink any brandy on that day, she does take her soopie, but never so much as to cause her to fall on the ground, or make a noise.
1840C.A. Kinloch inEcho 26 Oct. 4An English trader, from Graham’s Town..informed them that we were three poor Indian Gentlemen travelling for amusement, and the whole affair was most satisfactorily explained by the aid of the Snuff-box and a soopee of the real Cognac.
1847J. BarrowAutobiog. Memoir 183Our very devout boors prepared themselves for the enterprise by singing three or four hymns.., and drinking each a sopie, or glass of Cape brandy.
1852H. WardJasper Lyle 3Major Frankfort..solaced himself and his friend moderately with a sopie (dram) from the flask stuck in his leather waist-belt.
1863T. Shone Diary. 30 Apr.I went to J. Knights, got my Dinner, and a suppe of gin.
1868W.R. ThomsonPoems, Essays & Sketches 167You will have to drink one or two [cups] for every hour you stay, varied now and then, mayhap, with a soepie from your host.
1882C. Du ValWith Show through Sn Afr.I. 272The ice having thus been broken, it required only the application of the flask of brandy to create a complete thaw, and a proffered ‘soupje’ was at once accepted.
1910D. FairbridgeThat Which Hath Been (1913) 240If you want a zoopje there is Van der Hum on the table yonder and a bottle of old dop.
1913C. PettmanAfricanderisms 461The quantity of spirit which goes to make a soopje is variable, one man’s soopje would be another man’s overthrow.
1958A. JacksonTrader on Veld 44Although the average farmer was fond of his ‘sopie’ (spot), alchoholic excesses were unknown.
1968F.C. MetrowichFrontier Flames 99After being sufficiently primed with innumerable sopies Gaika would also fling off his blanket and join vigorously in the fun.
1976A. DeliusBorder 225Soon we were all, ladies as well as the gentlemen, prevailed upon to try a glass — and those who didn’t try a second ‘soepie’ were declared guilty of insulting this distant relative of Oom Roer.
1979Heard & FaullOur Best Trad. Recipes 18In mid-18th century Cape Town it was customary for the gentry to take a sopie (small glass of gin or brandy) before breakfast.
1980A. PatonTowards Mountain 117Part of the remuneration of the farm workers is the ‘sopie,’ the draught of sour inferior wine that is given to them three or four times a day...The sopie has been condemned by generation after generation of social workers, teachers, and ministers of religion.
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