Pumpernickel (1766)

Douglas G. Wilson douglas at NB.NET
Tue Apr 30 13:11:30 UTC 2002

I just remembered another -- superficially plausible but presumably bogus
-- "pumpernickel" etymology story which I heard -- maybe 20-30 years ago --
from an educated person [who was a natural-science department head and
later a dean at a major university ... but who also once asserted that
Japanese "arigatou" (= "thank you") was a loan-word from Portuguese

This story has "pumpernickel" < French "bon, pour [un] nickel" = "good, for
[its low price of] a nickel", where "nickel" referred to a small coin.
("Nickel" = "ten-pfennig coin" does/did exist in German, I think, but I
don't know the chronology.)

-- Doug Wilson

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