The word "Hovis" was invented by London student Herbert Grimes in a national competition set by S. Fitton & Sons Ltd to find a trading name for their bread, which used a patent flour that was rich in wheat germ. Grimes coined the word from the Latin phrase hominis vis – "the strength of man".
So says Wikipedia. Doesn't say when, though, so I guess it was in 1886. It seems a very modern concept, a competition like that, for such an age.
Anyway, I noticed this because I realised that Hovis have a patent on Granary® bread. I just thought bread was bread, but our breadmaker sticks the ® symbol after Granary all the time. Does this seem odd to anyone else?
Still, it is FUCKING AMAZING bread. Thank those monks for working it all out.