did not invariably accompany


Senior Member

A lady was in a liquor shop talking to a shop owner Mr Freeman. After some time she decided she had to leave to do the rest of the shopping.

Hurrying away to do the rest of her shopping, the bottle
of sherry lying modestly at the bottom of a brown paper
carrier bag which did not invariably accompany single-bottom
Miss Mayfield thought that Mr Freeman
was a kind and sympathetic man, but he was not what she
was looking for. (The Witches/Peter Curtis)

Does it mean that that bag was rarely used for buying one thing only?
  • Egmont

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    I suspect that "single-bottom purchases" (in the third and fourth lines of the quote) should read "single-bottle purchases." This means purchases of only one bottle.

    If that is true, I think it means that the store always gave customers brown paper bags in which to carry their purchases if they bought two or more bottles, but if they only bought one bottle, they did not always get such a bag.
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