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and not acorn trees? And do any other tree seeds have different names than the tree they're from?
Caterpillers -> Butterflies
but seriously, this is dreadful.
A seed or nut of an oak tree is called an acorn in English because that is the name that has come down to us over the past thousand or so years.
Both the words oak and acorn words are derived via Dutch from the original Old Low German word for an oak tree: Eiche. (Pronounced roughly as "eye-sheh".)
That Old Low German word evolved into the modern Dutch word for an oak tree, eik. That is pronounced as "ake" today (as in the English words "take" or "ache") but eik may have sounded much more like "oke" a few hundred years ago.
Our modern English word "acorn" may be derived from an Old Dutch word eik-korn, meaning "oak-corn". (As when using the word "corn" to mean "seed".)
Eik-korn has been replaced by the modern Dutch word eikel which means "a baby oak", just as we could say "an oaklet" in English.
In modern Dutch an oak tree is called an eik and its seed or nut - an acorn - is called an eikel. So, in modern Dutch at least, the oak tree and its nut actually sound very similar!
Another interesting fact:
In Early English the modern word oak was spelt ac but it was pronounced in almost the same way as the modern word! It's another reason why we still spell acorn the way we do.
The change from ac to oak is a good example of the way the original Old English spelling of a word has been modernised over the past 500 years or so to match the way a word is written to the way that word is pronounced.
Such modernisation of spelling was introduced mainly as a result of the invention of the printing press and the use of printed books to educate a majority of the population: it made good sense to change the spelling from ac to oak to make it much easier to teach people how to read.
That process is still going on today, for example the use of such words as "color" instead of "colour", "thru" instead of "through", "pediatrician"" instead of "paediatrician" as current standard spellings in US English whilst, in Britain and countries within the British Commonwealth, the older spellings are still used as standard.
nearly lunchtime tho.
Because "acorn" was originally a generic word for "nut" back in the olden days. Over time, the similarity to the word 'oak' has mutated it into what we know now.
You is welcome.
Furthermore, the link between acorn being a term for any nut/seed/fruit whatever from any tree is where we get "acre" - which in the olden days, was a generic term for a field.
So basically, we need to have a post-off, because yours contradicts mine.
Right now you're winning by default on the apathy ticket.
i mean, why don't they just stay as acorns? what do they gain? why bother?
and a conker grows into a horse chestnut tree
and a fir cone grows into a christmas tree