Sunday, 1 February 2009

St. Anthony again

Hi etymology fans,

Not every day that the church newsletter gives you an etymological factoid, but this week, yes:

For those who have come recently to Offagna, [the feast of St. Anthony] remains little understood because they don't know the meaning of the distribution of the blessed bread. In a time in which bread is not highly regarded, it should be a symbol of brotherhood and union. The word 'companion' ['compagno'] derives from bread: The Latins said "Cum pane", that is, being in agreement and being friends because they ate the same bread; we should be like this as well.