Thursday, July 03, 2008


It’s Cherry Festival time again in Traverse City, and what started as a modest tribute to the cherry industry decades ago has burgeoned into a fullscale festival. The community is anxious to learn what a shrinking dollar and intolerably high gas prices will do to tourism. At any rate, the idea of cherry is buried deep within some words like a fruit pit.

amarine, bitter or sour, derives from the morello cherry (L. amarina)
cerasin is the insoluble portion of the gum which exudes from the cherry and other trees (L. cerasus, cherry tree).
cerise is the name of a light, bright cherry-red color.
cornel is the English name for cornouille, the Cornelian Cherry or Long Cherry.
cornelian is a variety of chalcedony, a semi-transparent quartz, of a deep dull red, flesh, or reddish white color.
goynire is an obsolete word for a small kind of cherry (OF guinier)
kirshwasser is an alcoholic spirit distilled in Germany and Switzerland from a fermented liquor obtained by crushing wild cherries (Ger. kirsche, cherry + wasser, water).
marasca is a small black Dalmatian cherry grown for the distilling of maraschino (L. amarus, bitter?).
merise is a small bitter black cherry (blend of amer, bitter, and cerise, cherry).
visney is a liqueur of the nature of cherry brandy (Pers. wishneh, cherry).

SIDEBAR: 2008 National Cherry Festival

Now available from McFarland & Co.: Word Parts Dictionary, 2nd edition

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