MINI BELIEVE IT OR NOT –

Believe it or not, the word orange was used to describe the fruit before it was ever used to describe the color. 

  • The word orange had come through many languages before it arrived in English
  • Earliest uses are found in Sanskrit (naranga)
  • By 1300, the leading n had been dropped and the Old French word Orenge was being used in reference to the fruit
  • The word isn’t used to describe the color until the 1540s. Before that, it was just known as “yellow-red”

MINI BION EXTRAS

  • Oranges and lemons did not exist in North America until the arrival of Christopher Columbus’ second voyage in 1493
  • Sara Jane Trout of Aspinwall, Pennsylvania, ate 3,248 oranges in 1938 as a cure for diabetes.
  • In Ivrea, Italy, there is an annual “battle of the oranges” in which participants throw oranges at each other

MINI BION

“BIONs” – short for Believe It or Not – is the word we use at Ripley’s to refer to anything that is unbelievable and worthy to become part of Ripley’s lore and collection.