Paul Ponder, Noctes Atticae, or Reveries in a Garret; Containing Short, and Chiefly Original, Observations on Men and Books
(Bath: Richard Cruttwell, 1825), pp. 10-11:
Shyness of Scholars in Company.
Some men, though well loaded with learning and intelligence, yet can never discharge their head-pieces till they are well primed with a glass or two of the Falernian; and then they go off sharply enough. It is said that the celebrated author of the Spectator could not fire his joke, till he was charged with a bottle.