Below are some early definitions and descriptions of punch that I have used at the beginning of the punch section in my own book. Note that the definitions focus on the elements that make punch rather than it needing to be served in large batches in bowls. Also note that when soda water or the water added while shaking is taken into account, many modern drinks such as the Mojitio, Sidecar, Margarita, Whiskey Sour, etc. are pleasant for exactly the same characteristics as described by the sources. They are all punches. Richard Dolby even describes in other terms the balance sought after by so many in their so-called ‘craft cocktails’ that are actually punches.
P.S. For anyone not familiar with the word ‘factitious’ in John Ash’s definition below, it means ‘man-made’ or ‘artificially created.’