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Oranges: Which Came First, The Fruit Or The Color?

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The question of orange (the fruit? the color?) may not be as profound as the chicken and egg debate, but we wanted to know: which came first, orange the fruit or orange the color? Both scenarios are plausible, but in the case of orange, the color was named after the fruit. (Have we lost you yet?)

Unlike the chicken, we can follow the etymological trail, and know with certainty that the fruit came first -- by 300 years no less. The first instance of the word in Anglo manuscript, "pume orange," dates back to the 13th century (and it was adapted from old French "pomme d'orenge" ). And the first use of the word to describe the color is first noted in the 16th century.

If it weren't for orange (the fruit) we would probably know the color as geolurēad (yellow-red). That's just one more reason to appreciate the fruit.

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Did learning that make you crave oranges? Try these recipes.

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