This blog is for everyone who uses words.

The ordinary-sized words are for everyone, but the big ones are especially for children.

Monday, 20 June 2011

Spot the frippet: cappuccino

A cappuccino is a little capuchin, of course: and a capuchin is a hood.

The coffee drink, with its hood of whipped milk, was patented in 1901 by Luigi Bezzara. According to the experts a cappuccino should not be drunk after 11 am, but, good grief, life is difficult enough without being banned from having a quick cappuccino whenever you fancy one.

The cappuccino was named after the capuchin monks. This order was founded by Matteo de Bascio after the Franciscan order they originally belonged to developed mission-creep. (Sorry!) 
People got very upset about these new monks, and for safety they had to go and stay with another group of monks called the Camaldolese, who wore beards and hoods which the new monks began to wear too.

The capuchines, or the Poor Clares, are nuns who live by similar rules to the capuchins - except that for them I should imagine the beards aren't compulsory.

Capuchin monkeys are New World monkeys who do look a bit like monks. Unlike the monks, however, they have a long history in show business, doing great things for organ-grinders and, more recently, in the film Pirates of the Caribbean.

Spot the frippet: cappuccino. The coffee sort of cappuccino is probably easiest!

The word cappuccino is from the Italian word cappuccio, which means hood. Before that it came from the Latin word cappa, cloak.

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