Forks Were Once Controversial Utensils

Believe it or not, the fork was a controversial utensil and not accepted in all countries until the mid 1600s.

The word fork comes from the Latin word furca, meaning pitchfork.  Many cultures made a connection between the pitchfork and the devil.  The Greeks used forks until a princess died shortly after eating with one and then banned its use believing it was a punishment for using a utensil associated with the devil.

Until forks were used, only wooden spoons and knives were placed at the table setting.  However, a two prong fork would be used as a serving utensil.  People believed forks were unnecessary because they thought that’s what fingers are for.

England first began manufacturing forks in 1632.  Charles I of England declared, “it is decent to use a fork” in 1633.  Even then, only the wealthy began to use them.

Today, it would be an etiquette faux pas to use your fingers rather than a fork.  Unless of course, you’re enjoying fried or barbecue chicken at an outdoor picnic.  Then that is what fingers are for.  Just be sure to use your napkin too.

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