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Monday, 5 November 2018

Spot the Frippet: candle.

Today is Guy Fawkes night, our annual English celebration of the defeat of a terrorist plot to blow up our Houses of Parliament.

We traditionally celebrate with fireworks, and this means that the candle we're most likely to spot today is a Roman candle:

File:Roman candle structure drawing-en.svg

image by Petteri Aimonen

but, considering that we've moved on a long way from basic candle technology and now have homes full of halogen bulbs and LEDs, there are still a lot of candles about.

Many of them seem to be amazingly expensive and designed to give out a treacly, migraine-inducing pong. It's amazing what people will spend their money on, quite frankly.

There are candleberry and candlenut bushes, even something called a candlefish:

File:FMIB 50933 "Black Cod" Black "Candle-Fish" or Beshow.jpeg
image of a Black Candlefish by George Brown Goode from the Freshwater and Marine Image Bank 

 They're none of them going to be easy to spot, but you might see one of those candlewick bedspreads: you know, one that's been disfigured by having long lines of tufts applied all over it, like the course of a craft-crazy worm.

Then there's candlepower. Yes, any sort of light can be measured in international candles (though nowadays it's more usually measured in candelas).

Or, if you go bowling, then a skittle is also named a candlepinBy whom, though, I have not the faintest idea.

Spot the Frippet: candle. This word comes from the Old English candel, from the Latin cand─ôre which means to be white or to glitter.

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