Total Pageviews

Friday, 3 February 2023

'Eight things you may use every day but never knew their name'

Sharing an article (and images) from the BBC site which you may enjoy reading.  The only one I knew was 'the bumps on a raspberry' - how about you?

"There’s a good chance you’ve either seen or used an aglet today. You might even have waggled your minimus, or noticed your glabella in the mirror.

Like a drupelet or a ferrule, these are all names for things that play a part in everyday life - it’s just that we may never have needed to use their official titles before. By the time you reach the end of this article, BBC Bitesize aims to help you distinguish between a obelus and an octothorpe - even if you never use any of these words, ever again…

The gap between your eyebrows
If you feel comfortable doing it, touch the top of your nose. You’ll probably feel a small indentation. Immediately above that is the area of skin between your eyebrows.

Somewhere on this photo is a good example of a glabella

It could be a part of your face that you rarely think about it, but that patch of skin between the brows does have a name. It’s called the glabella, from the Latin term glabellus, meaning hairless, as it is usually a smooth, bald piece of skin.

The bumps on a raspberry
And not just a raspberry, this also applies to a blackberry. Each of those lumpy segments that cover the surface of these fruits is called a drupelet.

It comes from the word drupe, a fleshy fruit surrounding a single seed, such as a cherry. Each of the bumps on a raspberry or blackberry can be considered a small (as in teeny-tiny) drupe, so it’s known as a drupelet. Cute!

The bit at each end of your shoelace
Allowing the ends of our shoelaces to run free and fray would make threading them through the holes (or eyelets) in our shoes a fiddly, time-consuming task.

There are three aglets in this picture

It was certainly something which wasn’t going to put a delay to someone’s day in Ancient Rome. They were among the earliest people to place a small solid tip on the end of a lace or ribbon to make it easier to thread and tie them. Whereas plastic or metal is usually used today, back then they would have been made from glass or stone, but possibly metal too, such as brass or silver.

Nowadays, these tips are called aglets, and were once known as aiglets. The name comes from the French word aigulette, a form of aiguille which means ‘needle’ - think about how you thread a lace onto your shoe and the aglet does act like a kind of needle!

The real name for your little fingers and little toes
This one is short but sweet, just like our own little toes and little fingers. In anatomy, the smallest digits on our hands and feet, usually the outermost digits, are known as the minimus.

It also applies to zoology, so your pet dogs and cats have their share of minimus (or minimi in the plural) too.

The metal that connects an eraser to a pencil
The first patent for a pencil that also included its own eraser was made in the USA in 1858. Back then, the inventor enlarged part of the groove that housed the pencil lead, enabling the eraser to slot in.

We can all make mistakes, and that’s one of the reasons ferrules are in our lives

These days, we’re more likely to see a crimped metal tube that bridges the gap between the top of the pencil and the bottom of the eraser. It’s called a ferrule, and the name comes from a combination of the Latin ferrum (for iron) and verrel or virl, another Latin word which suggests a small bracelet known as a viriola. That’s a lot of language in one little tube.

The official names for the hashtag and the division sign
Social media must have done wonders for the hash sign, or hashtag (#). The symbol can be used to indicate the subjects people are talking about, and then helping others search for that topic.

Its history is linked with telecommunications, when the symbol was created to illustrate a button on a telephone keypad. Looking a little like a noughts and crosses board, the engineers who developed it needed to give it a name. The prefix Octo was chosen to reflect the eight points on the symbol, but another syllable or two was required to complete the name. In the end, the symbol became known as the octothorp (or octothorpe), although it remains something of a mystery where the 'thorp/e' part of the name originated.

And a division sign (÷)? That’s an example of an obelus symbol (there are other obelus symbols, which look slightly different to the one we recognise from our maths books). The Swiss mathematician Johann Rahn is credited with being the first to use an obelus this way in the 1659 book Teutsche Algebra. It’s not, however, a universal symbol for division - another example is the slash (/), also known as a solidus.

This article was first published in April 2022."

~  and I couldn't resist sharing this recipe suggestion ~
 Raspberry Chocolate Soufflé
Sugar free : Low Carb

Serves Four
4 large egg whites
60 ml (32 g) powdered erythritol
85 g (160 ml) fresh raspberries
1 tsp unsalted butter
14 g (25 ml) sugar-free baking chocolate chopped
more details here

This blog is presented in a magazine style - we hope something for everyone. You will find a variety of articles, studies, thoughts, funnies, photographs, music and recipes!

However, not all the recipe ideas featured in this blog may be suitable for you. If you may have any food allergies, or underlying health issues these must always be taken into account. If you are a diabetic and not sure how certain foods may affect your blood sugars, test is best, i.e., use your meter. If you have any concerns about your health, it is always advisable to consult your doctor or health care team.

All the best Jan


Tom said...

...things that I've never thought about, but I've worn out many erasers over the years.

Practical Parsimony said...

I knew aglet and ferrule and knew what a drupe was so might have guessed drupelet. The other words I have never heard. I have heard of # as a pound sign.

J.P. Alexander said...

Muy interesante. Siempre es genial aprender cosas nuevas. Te mando un beso.

peppylady (Dora) said...

Food looks good.
Coffee is on and stay safe

Elephant's Child said...

Some I knew many I didn't. Thank you.

Margaret D said...

Interesting read Jan...remembered the little fingers and toes 😀

Valerie-Jael said...

Thanks for the fun information! Valerie

Jo said...

What a fun post. The only one I knew was an aglet.

Teresa said...

Muy interesante, no conocía esos términos. Gracias.

Donna said...

Always interesting reads here, Jan!
Have a sweet weekend!

Crafty Green Poet said...

Most of those words are new to me, thanks. The recipe looks delicious!

eileeninmd said...

Interesting read! Some are new to me.
Take care, have a great day and happy weekend!

Jenn Jilks said...

These are fun words!

CJ Kennedy said...


David M. Gascoigne, said...

I agree. These are words I do not ponder daily - or ever, perhaps! I doubt that my life has been impoverished.

Maria Rodrigues said...

Hi Jan,
A very Interesting article, I didn't know most of those words.
This dessert must be divine.
Thanks for sharing.
Hugs and a nice weekend

Conniecrafter said...

isn't it funny how we tend to change the names of things over time, or don't even think of names, I didn't know any of them.

Jeanie said...

This is fun. Thanks for the smiles!

Chatty Crone said...

My glabellus has a wrinkle going up and down - wish I could get botox for! lol

Snowbird said...

How fascinating, a lot of these were new to said...

I think I have heard of some of them before but I wouldn't have remembered what they were called.

It's me said...

Have a wonderful weekend love from me and Leaf 🍀❤️🐾🍀

Christine said...


William Kendall said...

Thanks for the information!

happyone said...

That looks delicious!!!!
The only one I knew was the aglets.

My name is Erika. said...

What a fun post! I knew a couple but not all of them. Have a lovely weekend.

Debbie said...

i didn't really know any of these. the skin above my nose, between my eyebrows...i get that waxed and just always call it my eyebrows!! weird i call it that!!

gluten Free A_Z Blog said...

Very cute ! Enjoyed the post

Anne (cornucopia) said...

I enjoy your posts where I learn things I didn't know. Thank you for sharing this.