Online Encyclopedia


Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V12, Page 364 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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GRAPE, the fruit of the vine (q.v.). The word is adopted from the O. Fr. grape, mod. grappe, bunch or cluster of flowers or fruit, grappes de raisin, bunch of grapes. The French word meant properly a hook; cf. M.H.G. krapfe, Eng. " grapnel," and " cramp." The development of meaning seems to be vine-hook, cluster of grapes cut with a hook, and thence in English a single grape of a cluster. The projectile called " grape " or " grape-shot," formerly used with smooth-bore ordnance, took its name from its general resemblance to a bunch of grapes. It consisted of a number of spherical bullets (heavier than those of the con-temporary musket) arranged in layers separated by thin iron plates, a bolt passing through the centre of the plates binding the whole together. On being discharged the projectile delivered the bullets in a shower somewhat after the fashion of case-shot.
End of Article: GRAPE

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