Friday, 24 May 2013

Beverage

Whisky, Shot glass, Cheers, Bottoms up, Bever, Beverage, Alcohol

BEVERAGE

Noun. Middle English.
[Old French be(u)vrage (modern breuvage) from Proto-Romance, from Latin bibere to drink.]

1 A liquid for drinking; drink. In early use also specifically a drink to seal a bargain,
transferred to a bargain sealed by a drink. Now formal or jocular. ME

1b A specific drink, as lemonade, cider, etc., according to locality. dialectical. E17

2 Obsolete. Drinking; a draught of liquid; figurative suffering, a bitter experience. ME-L17

Granted, beverage isn't a particularly interesting word at first glance. Its Latin root is bibere, of course, which will have a ring of familiarity to speakers of Romance languages (beber in Spanish and Portuguese, for example, and a bea in Romanian). It's also related to the English word bever (or beaver), which is a drink generally or some other light refreshment.

What is interesting about the word beverage, however, is that in times past it was specifically a drink taken to seal a bargain or deal. While the word itself may not be used in that sense much anymore, the practice itself is alive and well, with many a beverage taken daily to mark that moment of accord between two discrete minds. Bottoms up, chaps!

2 comments:

  1. I've signed many-a-bad contract thanks to various beverages.

    - clueless

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    Replies
    1. No, man! Oh for goodness sake ... the drink is taken to seal the deal! The details should have been thrashed out beforehand - that's where you're going wrong. Never, ever, ever drink alcoholic beverages before negotiating a critical contract. That's just lunacy! Honestly, C, sometimes I do think you're a bit ... umm ... clueless ...

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