Prune: происхождение и значение слова (озвученный текст на английском)





   The podictionary word for today is "prune": Prunes are the dried form of plums. English got the word from French more than 600 years ago at a time when the plums imported from France must have all been dried and so we adopted their word for plum, as our word for dried plum.
   Their word in turn came from Latin. Now, as it happens, eating prunes is reputed to be helpful in preventing constipation. Perhaps it is this unsavory association that has caused people to be called prunes as a kind of derogatory term, along the lines of boring and simple, for more than 100 years. In the last 20 or 30 years a different association has lead to prunie being used as a different kind of dismissive.
   Prunes are wrinkly and as tourism by older folks to sunny climes like Florida has increased, the locals began to refer to these wrinkled tourists as prunies. The word prune made it into my book. Not because of any dietary properties, nor its association with the lines on people faces. It was the fact that if you soak in the bath, your finger tips get to look like prunes. What is interesting here is that we don’t often bump up against the edges of human knowledge, but pruny fingers and toes in the bathtub represent one of those edges. Scientists don’t exactly know why our fingers and toes get so wrinkly in the bath. The simple answer might be that the old dead outer layer of skin, made of keratinized cells absorbs the water and swells a bit. But things get complicated when you learn that adding bath salts in a certain concentration prevents pruny fingers. Something to do with osmosis?
   Well what about the fact that people with nerve damage in their hands don’t get pruny fingers. Same thing with people with advanced Parkinson’s disease, a condition that disrupts the functioning of the nerves. It seems that somehow sensing the water with our finger tip nerves has something to do with the skin getting pruny.

Vocabulary note

prune – чернослив; красновато-лиловый цвет; глупец, простак; зануда
prunie – дряхлый, пожилой
pruny fingers – сморщенная кожа на пальцах после бани
prunes and prism – жеманство; манерность в речи

Названия сухофруктов на английском языке

dehydrated fruit – обезвоженные фрукты
dried fruit – сухофрукты
apricots halves – сушёные абрикосы, курага
banana figs – сушёные бананы
desiccated apples, dried apples – сушёные яблоки
dried dates – сушёные финики
dried figs – сушёный инжир
prune, French plum, dried plums – чернослив
raisins – изюм
dried currant – бессемянный изюм, коринка



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