The Straight Dope: What’s a runcible spoon?
What’s a runcible spoon? –Theogr, via AOL
I can’t believe you have to ask this. A runcible spoon is a utensil suitable for runciation. This of course is in contrast to an irruncible spoon, which one runciates at one’s peril.
But skeptics pointed out that Lear’s drawings of runcible spoons gave no indication of tines or cutting edges. Also the use of a runcible spoon for the pedestrian purpose of eating pickles seemed at odds with the refined original menu of mince and quince. And why should one require a spoon with a cutting edge for quince that, Lear tells us, has already been sliced?
Modern students of runciosity believe that while it may have been inspired by the word “rouncival” (apparently meaning gigantic), runcibilization as we know it today was the invention of Edward Lear.
But the runcible-spoon-as-pickle-fork idea has taken firm root. One sighs, but what can you do? I expect the discovery of the Bong-tree any day.
[Thanks to John Verity.]
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