Grapefruit

Why is it called a grapefruit?  There is no immediate resemblance between a grape and a grapefruit.  The most common theory is that it in allusion to the way the fruit grows in clusters on the tree, resembling grapes.  This is not what seems like the most likely theory to me.  Another, less popular, but my favored theory is that the name comes from its scientific moniker.  Citrus grandis translates to great citrus or great fruit.  So perhaps, the grapefruit was called the greatfruit.  This indeed would be a good name for this giant breakfast orange.  

But we all know that language is formed between the constraints of the lazy tongue and the strained ears so perhaps we started calling it grapefruit for the of ease of the tongue and the misinterpretation of the ears.  

Kiwi

There are three kiwis that I am aware of.  Kiwifruit, kiwi bird and a New Zealander.  What do all of these things have in common?  I’ll tell you what we don’t have in common with New Zealand.  In New Zealand the kiwifruit isn’t called a kiwi at all, but rather a Chinese Gooseberry.  And it turns out that kiwis are actually from Northern China!

Kiwifruits were introduced to China when students from a girls school in New Zealand traveled to China and brought some seeds back.  The first kiwis were plucked from those plants in 1910.  They were later grown in New Zealand commercially.  They still carried their Chinese name back then, yáng táo.  Later the New Zealanders changed the name to Chinese Gooseberry.  Originally New Zealand imported them under the name Chinese Gooseberries to America.  Berries incurred extra taxes however so they decided to rename the fruit for the country they were being imported from.  Kiwi rolls of the tongue easier anyhow.

The people of New Zealand are named after the flightless bird that lives on that island, not the bird.

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