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#204406 - 01/28/12 10:56 AM Attention: Candy
Jackie Offline

Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 11610
Loc: Louisville, Kentucky
I just got an e-mail from an Aussie friend, who said he'll be renting his house at a "peppercorn rate". I think he meant cheaply, but where did this expression come from, do you know?

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#204409 - 01/28/12 04:34 PM Re: Attention: Candy [Re: Jackie]
Rhubarb Commando Offline
old hand

Registered: 11/13/11
Posts: 1074
Loc: Lancaster, UK
Yep - in the Middle Ages in Britain, pepper was actually quite an expensive spice. However, to pay just one pepper corn (from which pepper is ground) was still a lot less than most rents, so the lease or agreement drawn up between friends, with one making a gift to the other for whatever reason, but to make it a truly legal contract, the rent was one pepper corn per year. Other commodities were used, as well, for the same reason, to ake a contract legally binding.
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#204412 - 01/28/12 09:09 PM Re: Attention: Candy [Re: Jackie]
Jackie Offline

Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 11610
Loc: Louisville, Kentucky
Interesting; thanks.

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#204413 - 01/29/12 09:04 AM Re: Attention: Candy [Re: Jackie]
BranShea Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/23/06
Posts: 5284
Loc: Netherlands, the Hague
Peppercorn price. We still have standing expressions such as 'for a peppered price' or 'as expensive as pepper', meaning really extra expensive.
(no mention of a single corn saying)

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#204414 - 01/29/12 09:10 AM Re: Attention: Candy [Re: BranShea]
Rhubarb Commando Offline
old hand

Registered: 11/13/11
Posts: 1074
Loc: Lancaster, UK
Makes sense, Bran - in the C17 and C18, the Dutch were the main importers of spices from their connections in the East Indies and other places in the Far East.
_________________________
I'm immortal until proven otherwise

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#204415 - 01/29/12 09:34 AM Re: Attention: Candy [Re: Rhubarb Commando]
BranShea Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/23/06
Posts: 5284
Loc: Netherlands, the Hague
I'm sure many of the traders and common sailors slipped a few unaccounted for corns into their pockets. smile

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#204427 - 01/29/12 11:01 PM Re: Attention: Candy [Re: Jackie]
Jackie Offline

Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 11610
Loc: Louisville, Kentucky
Didn't their sneezing then give them away? wink

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#204431 - 01/30/12 06:17 AM Re: Attention: Candy [Re: Jackie]
HalAl Offline
stranger

Registered: 03/22/04
Posts: 19
Loc: Central Indiana
Originally Posted By: Jackie
Didn't their sneezing then give them away? wink

Until ground it's not likely a problem. Like an onion that's perfectly fine until you start to peel or slice it, then, WAAAAAAHHHHHH!

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#204448 - 01/30/12 09:27 PM Re: Attention: Candy [Re: Jackie]
Jackie Offline

Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 11610
Loc: Louisville, Kentucky
Oh man, what is the name of that chemical in onions? I was just trying to think of it the other day.

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#204456 - 01/31/12 02:17 PM Re: Attention: Candy [Re: Jackie]
BranShea Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/23/06
Posts: 5284
Loc: Netherlands, the Hague
Sulphur. Compound of the whole Genus Allium. Antidiabolic, antivampiric, antianything that isn't good for your health.

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