Pumpernickel (1766)

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Mon Apr 29 19:50:58 UTC 2002

>The most recent edition of Kluge--Seebold's German etymological dictionary
>makes no mention of the "bon pour Nicole" etymology of Pumpernickel, only
>of flatulent Nicholas.

Could you give us the whole story on that one, Ben?  The AHD4
etymology just features the farting goblin (< Nickel 'goblin', not <
Nicholas).  Somehow the "bon pour Nicole" and "pain pour Nicole"
stories are just too etymythological (whatever their lineage) to be
true, so I take it SOMEone's farting (< Ger. pumpern) was involved,
although I'm still not sure how.


>On Sun, 28 Apr 2002, Baker, John wrote:
>>          Barry is showing us some pretty impressive antedatings of
>>the old "bon pour Nicole" chestnut.  Do any German language
>>reference works address the story?  There must be somebody on this
>>list who reads German and has ready access to such scholarship.
>>  John Baker

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