Edinburgh Dungeon launches limited edition 'foul body fluid flavoured' ice lollies for new plague event

The Edinburgh Dungeon has launched a limited-edition range of three gruesome ice lollies based on the foul body fluid flavours of Blood, Yellow Bile, and Phlegm.

Published 19th Jul 2017
Updated 9 th Aug 2023

The limited edition creations were researched and developed by multi-sensory experts, Jelly & Gin, to announce the launch of the attraction’s seasonal summer show, ‘Escape the Plague’.

The team behind the event explained that 17th-century Edinburgh was a dark, despairing place to live. Plague-ridden, fetid and corpse strewn, the streets ran rife with sewage and rats, and the foul stench of death was in the air.

Edinburgh Dungeon
The limited edition not so n(ice) lollies are sure to be a big hit with Dungeon fans. Picture: The Edinburgh Dungeon

The team added: "Initially brought by vermin, the plague spread quickly, causing truly repulsive symptoms from which most never recovered."

"Desperation and famine followed, as the public made futile and abhorrent attempts to survive, with historical experts reporting countless cases of cannibalism."

Jelly & Gin discovered from their research that the coughing, spluttering, bleeding and vile secretions of the sick did very little to contain the infection and used this information as helpful inspiration for their latest creation.

Samuel Cohn, Historical author and Professor of Medieval History at the University of Glasgow comments: “Famine, which accompanied the plague, led to eating habits of desperation. The rich resolved to eating horses, while the poor ate cats, dogs, rats, and mice.

"Even more grim was the reported claims of human cannibalism, with locals resorting to eating friends and family to survive.”

Whilst the experts at Jelly & Gin say they weren’t allowed to resort to cannibalism, they say they were inspired by these gruesome historical cases and coupled this with The Four Humors theory, which states that the human body is filled with four basic substances – phlegm, blood, yellow bile, and black bile.

This helped ensure the end results were truly reflective of the horrid tastes 17th century flesh-eaters would have experienced and of the vile bodily secretions of unfortunate plague victims.

Blood is described as having a repulsively realistic, earthy, and metallic taste, designed to mimic the moist flavours a cannibal would have experienced when biting into the human heart

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While yellow bile accurately offers up the sharp and bitter retch inducing taste of the greenish-brown alkaline fluid found inside the gall bladder.

Finally, Phlegm is decribed as having a "salty sourness" designed to mimic the taste profile of the human secretion typically laced with virus, bacteria, other debris, and the final effect is enhanced by chewy pieces of "sputum"

The limited-edition range of not so n(ice) lollies will be given out free of charge to the first 150 visitors who show up to The Edinburgh Dungeon (31 Market Street) this Saturday (22 July) quoting the phrase: “Escape The Plague”.

They will also receive complimentary tickets to the Dungeon.

For those not able to visit the Dungeon this weekend, a further 250, limited edition not so n(ice) lollies will be served up at the Edinburgh Dungeon Fringe experience, ‘An Evening with the Plague Doctor’.

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Edward Evans, General Manager at The Edinburgh Dungeon, added: “We want to give visitors to the Dungeon a true ‘taste’ of plague-ridden Edinburgh, and what better way to shout about our ‘Escape the Plague’ show than by getting people to immerse themselves in the experience.”

“We can’t wait to challenge the taste-buds of those visiting the venue this weekend – some will be repulsed but others will be pleasantly surprised. Who knows, if the not so n(ice) lollies prove popular then they may become a regular summer feature at the Dungeon!”

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