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quote:Originally posted by Solvay_1927And why are mince pies called that? And why are they filled with "mincemeat"? They don't have anything to do with meat.
quote:And why do we call turkey that anyway? The bird doesn't even originate from Turkey.
quote:But, then again, Portuguese is a strange language anyway - if you see a sign on a door saying "puxe", pronounced "push", it actually means "pull".
quote:...for two things to be opposite they must be almost identical
quote:According to Eric Partridge's 'Origins', the bird came into Europe from Africa via Turkey
quote:Another version is that the word meat has often been used as a generic term for food (in the same way that the line in the Lord's prayer about 'Give us our daily bread' is not intended to literally refer to an oven backed cereal loaf).
quote:Originally posted by DoctorBeaverquote:...for two things to be opposite they must be almost identicalThings must have similarities or they cannot be compared. If they cannot be compared, they cannot be opposites. Take "up" and "down", for instance. Whilst they are antonyms, they both express location or direction. Totally disimilar things such as "up" and "placid" cannot be compared in any way whatsoever (except, maybe, in the mind of someone like Spike Milligan!)
quote:Originally posted by DoctorBeaverDamned clever birds, then. How did they get from the Americas to Africa?The word "turkey" was originally applied to the guinea fowl, which is the bird that came from Africa via Turkey. When the British began colonising the Americas in the 16th century they named the bird they found there a turkey as it resembled the guinea fowl.The 1st turkeys - as in what we now know as turkeys - were, in fact, brought to Europe from the Americas in the 16th century.
quote:In fact, I would go a little further. Since the notion of 'opposite' is a one dimensional comparison, so it follows that the items you are comparing (if they are true opposites) must be identical in all respects except one, and only in that one respect do they occupy opposite extremes. Clearly, in the real world, one allows for approximations, and can still regard things as opposite even if one does so by disregarding some other minor differences.