Monday, 10 May 2010

Stokes Society Centenary Dinner

George Gabriel Stokes (1819-1903)
The Stokes Society is Pembroke College's Natural Sciences Society, named after George Garbriel Stokes.
Stokes entered Pembroke College, Cambridge, in 1837. In Stokes's second year at Cambridge he began to be coached by William Hopkins, a famous Cambridge coach who played a more important role than the lecturers. In 1841 Stokes graduated as Senior Wrangler (the top First Class degree) in the Mathematical Tripos and he was the first Smith's prizeman. Pembroke College immediately gave him a Fellowship.

About the Stokes Society

The Stokes Society, founded in 1909 by six undergraduates who read papers to each other, has a long and distinguished history. In 1932 the first Annual Dinner was held (the second was to be 1945!). The speaker then read out a lecture about "Science in Nazi Germany" from the Minutes Book. After the 2nd World War the constitution was changed to allow for more than 24 members. The official tie was black showing a red golf ball dropping into treacle. Some ties appeared showing the 'F.ds' equation, probably from the Caius Green Society. Scarves appeared in the 80's, and were originally black with a light green stripe - you could get an extra wide one for an additional £1.

In the 50's the society branched out and organised visits to Fisons, an Engineering Works and a Brewery.
In 1966 the first lady was admitted as a member.
In 1968 the Dean's cat turned down an offer of honorary membership.
In 1985 attempts to deny a different cat membership on the grounds of not being a scientist were thwarted.
At the 575th meeting the Society was renamed "Stokes' Pembroke Old Order of Natural Sciences" - "SPOONS". At the 576th meeting the President tried to return the name to "Pembroke College Stokes Society". He Failed.
On Saturday, we helped to celebrate the 100 year history of the Stokes with the following menu.
 We began with locally sourced asparagus, grilled and then served with grapefruit and Hollandaise sauce.
Then followed a chump of Spring lamb, cooked sous vide, and served with ras el hanout couscous and an onion and olive sauce.
For dessert we served a coconut flavoured pannacotta with fresh fruit poached in a Champagne syrup; yum!
Bon Appetite!

1 comment:

  1. This was a fantastic meal - the best food I've ever had at Pembroke. The lamb was superb. But then again, I hadn't realised the culinary heights Pembroke has scaled recently...

    A fitting tribute to a hundred years.

    (A past president, the Stokes Society.)