[Northkeep] period fruit

Marc Carlson marc-carlson at utulsa.edu
Fri Aug 31 09:40:47 PDT 2001

>>Maybe Dairmaid could check the OED to find out when the term "pineapple"
>>entered the English lexicon as a referent to the Brazilian fruit?

Only because it's easy to get to.

  1. a. The fruit of the pine-tree; a pine-cone. Obs. exc. dial. Formerly also applied to the edible
seeds or ‘kernels’ (pine-nuts).

  1398 TREVISA Barth. De P.R. XVII. cxxii. (Tollem. MS.), Pinea, e pinappel, is e frute of e pine tre..e pinappel is e
moste gret note and conteyne in it selfe many curneles, closid in ful harde schales. a1400 Pistill of Susan 82 On peren
and pynappel ei ioyken in pees.

  2. a. The juicy edible fruit of the Ananas, Ananassa sativa, a large collective fruit developed from
a conical spike of flowers, and surmounted by a crown of small leaves; so called from its resemblance
to a pine-cone: see quot. 1665 in 1; = PINE n.2 5.    b. The plant which bears this, Ananassa sativa
(family Bromeliaceæ), a native of tropical South America, widely cultivated in tropical countries
generally, and in hot-houses also in temperate climates.

  1664 EVELYN Kal. Hort. 83 Pine-apples, Moly, Persian Jasmine.

  c. A bomb; a hand grenade or light trench mortar. slang.

  [1916: see pineapple bomb below].

 d. the pineapple (slang), unemployment benefit, ‘the dole’.

  1937 PARTRIDGE Dict. Slang 632/1 Pine-apple, on the, on parish relief.

and so on.

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