Trivia Teaser

The word PAPUA forms part of which well known acronym?


Coffee Break


By Christine Lovatt

George Bernard Shaw once wrote “There is no love sincerer than the love of food”.

Therefore it’s no surprise that some of the great victories of history have been celebrated by naming a tasty morsel after them.

So next time you’re enjoying a coffee and croissant or bagel, you may care to remember that all three come to us from a single event in history.

In 1683, the people of Vienna were besieged by the Turks and were rescued at the last minute by the arrival of Count Sobiesky and his Polish legions. The image of the Count gallantly storming in over the mountains on horseback inspired one Viennese baker to commemorate the event by baking a chewy bread roll in the shape of one of the Count’s stirrups. A bagel comes from the German beugel, meaning stirrup.

Both German and French were spoken in Vienna. Another baker, maybe a French-speaking one, invented the delicious puffed pastry we know as a croissant, which is French for crescent, to symbolise victory over the Turks whose flags bore a crescent moon.

When the Turks beat a hasty retreat from the Polish cavalry they left behind, among other things, sacks of coffee beans. Coffee originated from the town of Kaffa in Ethiopia and became known as Kaffee when introduced to Europe by the Viennese.

I bet you never realised how much history is involved in having a quick coffee break.


Happy puzzling!


1 Response to

Coffee Break

February 03, 2008 at 2:07 PM


There are over 100 different varieties of pasta throughout Italy too.