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Tad

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The great white north, eh?
Underlying this question is the curiosity, as to why the colour should be named after the fruit and not the vegetable, which is obviously more deserving in terms of mere intensity of colour.
From what I understand the colour came first. The romans had lemons as their only citrus fruit originaly, but when they became regulars at the eastern end of the Mediterranean they foind that people there had something similar but sweeter that they really liked. Being not so creative with language they called it an "orange lemon" eventually the second word dropped off, and it is still called an orange throughout much of Europe (orange, orangen, naranja, laranjas, etc). Although variants of 'appelsiner' in scandanavia, and of 'pomarance' in east/central Europe.
 

Shotha

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From what I understand the colour came first. The romans had lemons as their only citrus fruit originaly, but when they became regulars at the eastern end of the Mediterranean they foind that people there had something similar but sweeter that they really liked. Being not so creative with language they called it an "orange lemon" eventually the second word dropped off, and it is still called an orange throughout much of Europe (orange, orangen, naranja, laranjas, etc). Although variants of 'appelsiner' in scandanavia, and of 'pomarance' in east/central Europe.


Here's the entry for orange in etymonline. It's more or less my take on the etymology. The fruit came before the colour. I didn't know that the first usage of the word to describe colour was in the 1540's.

orange (n.)

c. 1300, in reference to the fruit, from Old French orange, orenge (12c., Modern French orange), from Medieval Latin pomum de orenge, from Italian arancia, originally narancia (Venetian naranza), alteration of Arabic naranj, from Persian narang, from Sanskrit naranga-s "orange tree," a word of uncertain origin.

Not used as a color word until 1540s (colors similar to modern orange in Middle English might be called citrine or saffron). Loss of initial n- probably is due to confusion with definite article (as in une narange, una narancia), but perhaps also influence of French or "gold." The name of the town of Orange in France (see Orangemen) perhaps was deformed by the name of the fruit. Orange juice is attested from 1723.

The tree's original range probably was northern India. The Persian orange, grown widely in southern Europe after its introduction in Italy 11c., was bitter; sweet oranges were brought to Europe 15c. from India by Portuguese traders and quickly displaced the bitter variety, but only Modern Greek still seems to distinguish the bitter (nerantzi) from the sweet (portokali"Portuguese") orange.

Portuguese, Spanish, Arab, and Dutch sailors planted citrus trees along trade routes to prevent scurvy. On his second voyage in 1493, Christopher Columbus brought the seeds of oranges, lemons and citrons to Haiti and the Caribbean. Introduced in Florida (along with lemons) in 1513 by Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de Leon. Introduced to Hawaii 1792.


And here is the Wikipedia entry on its etymology, which talks of othe words for the fruit in Scandinavia and Eastern Europe.


The word orange derives from the Sanskrit word for "orange tree" (नारङ्ग nāraṅga), which in turn derives from a Dravidian root word (from நரந்தம் narandam which refers to Bitter orange in Tamil).[27] The Sanskrit word reached European languages through Persian نارنگ (nārang) and its Arabic derivative نارنج (nāranj).

The word entered Late Middle English in the fourteenth century via Old French orenge (in the phrase pomme d'orenge).[28] The French word, in turn, comes from Old Provençal auranja, based on Arabic nāranj.[27] In several languages, the initial n present in earlier forms of the word dropped off because it may have been mistaken as part of an indefinite article ending in an n sound—in French, for example, une norenge may have been heard as une orenge. This linguistic change is called juncture loss. The color was named after the fruit,[29] and the first recorded use of orange as a color name in English was in 1512.[30][31]
A closeup of an orange blossom
As Portuguese merchants were presumably the first to introduce the sweet orange to some regions of Europe, in several modern Indo-European languages the fruit has been named after them. Some examples are Albanian portokall, Bulgarian портокал (portokal), Greek πορτοκάλι (portokali), Macedonian portokal, Persian پرتقال (porteghal), Turkish portakal and Romanian portocală.[32][33] Related names can be found in other languages, such as Arabic البرتقال (bourtouqal), Georgian ფორთოხალი (pʰortʰoxali) and Amharic birtukan.[32] Also, in some of the Italian regional languages (e.g. Neapolitan), an orange is portogallo or purtuallo, literally "(the) Portuguese (one)", in contrast to the Italian arancia.

In other Indo-European languages, the words for orange allude to the eastern origin of the fruit and can be translated literally as "apple from China". Some examples are German Apfelsine (alternative name for Orange and common in northern Germany), Dutch appelsien and sinaasappel, Swedish apelsin, Russian апельсин (apelsin) and Norwegian appelsin.[33] A similar case is Puerto Rican Spanish china.[34][35]

Various Slavic languages use the variants pomaranč (Slovak), pomeranč (Czech), pomaranča (Slovene), and pomarańcza (Polish), all from Old French pomme d'orenge.[36][37]


And let's not forget about the Greek family in My Big Fat Greek Wedding, whose name was Portokali meaning the colour orange with the stress on the last syllable as opposed to portokali the fruit with the stress on the next to last syllable.
 

agouderia

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Oranges and Greeks - 2 favorite issues that make me want to contribute... ;)

While it is indeed the case that Modern Greek still regularly differentiates between bitter oranges (nerantzi) and sweet oranges (portokáli) different words still exist in other languages, too. In French there is "bigarade" next to orange amère - or in German "Pomeranze" instead of Bitterorange.
This tell us 2 things: Words for things that iare not very common simply go out of use. When was the last time anyone saw a bitter orange in a supermarket around here? In Greece, many families still have nerantzies - plural of the trees - in their yards because of their fragrant blossoms.
And you can always count on English being a particularly limited language when it comes to culinary matters .....

The family in "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" by the way is called "Portokalos" - "os" simply being one of the common endings for Greek surnames. Like -opoulos, -idis, - akis, -as, -is or -oglou - which most often also give away which region the name originated in.
When the movie came out, I actually thought "Portokalos" was a fake, made up name - because a surname deriving from a lay word for an object is highly unusual. But during the recent local elections I came across a mayor candidate of the name in a suburb of Athens - so unusual as it may be, there seem to be existing cases.
 
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Shotha

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The family in "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" by the way is called "Portokalos" - "os" simply being one of the common endings for Greek surnames.
Thank you, Agouderia. I wondered if I had got the comment about the Greek surname right, as an unexpected interruption made me run out of time, so that I could not check my facts. I think that a second reason why we do not have nerantzies in England, despite there lovely fragrance, is that the climate isn't warm enough to grow them outside.
 

HUGEisElegant

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I recently found this in a stonemason magazine: this is what can be done with a bathroom wall when you're on an unlimited budget.
(I'm now trying to paint this on canvas, which will be hard enough, but imagine doing this as a mosaic.)
Wow! I like the style of the tree and the colours of the overall design. Very cool! :)
 

Unbasher

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I'm the same. I never sing in the shower either. I sing most everywhere outside of showers :)
 

Shotha

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In Greece, many families still have nerantzies - plural of the trees - in their yards because of their fragrant blossoms.
I now find that, thanks to climate change, citrus fruits are cultivated in the UK. Including sweet oranges and bitter oranges. We use the latter for making marmelade.

With all this talk about nerantzies, I can't get this little Greek song out of my head:-

 

agouderia

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With all this talk about nerantzies, I can't get this little Greek song out of my head:-

I can never understand, why Nana Mouskouri of all Greek singers rose to such fame everywhere else in Europe. From my perspective, there are quite a few who have better voices and more interesting song sujets and lyrics.

To give you an idea and stick to this theme of discussion:


One of Greece's best chansonettes of the last few decades, Charis Alexiou, with her song "Vissino kai Nerantzi" - Black sour cherries and bitter oranges.

Bitter orange marmelade though, always reminds me of Paddington ....

That said, I think there also is a different, underlying issue of bitter oranges - and other bitter fruits and vegetables - going out of fashion in mass consumption. They are difficult to prepare - finding the right balance between toning down the bitterness while maintaining the character. And the food industry definitely contributed to the extensive dissemination of all sweet and mild tastes, adding sugar even to products where one would never do it when cooking it from scratch.

And no, these are all not shower thoughts - I'm a quick shower person, too. But I certainly think along such lines, develop ideas and solutions when swimming, so also water related....;)
 

Shotha

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One of Greece's best chansonettes of the last few decades, Charis Alexiou, with her song "Vissino kai Nerantzi" - Black sour cherries and bitter oranges.
Thank for this song, which mentions, bitter oranges. I've added it to my favourites. I think that Nana's ability to sing in other European languages and that her timing was right brought her international celebrity. Other Greek singers sing more interesting songs. I listen to them most of the time. The thing that I find very difficult with Nana is her indistinct pronunciation, as I'm not a native Greek speaker. (I listen to Greek music most of the time.)

Bitter and sour fruits and vegetables are getting hard to find here and the taste is hidden with sugar. As I have a dry mouth, I like bitterness and sourness, because they make food easier to eat. So, it makes gaining a lot easier. And I sing Greek songs in the shower.
 
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