Word Archaeology: araucaria

Genus of coniferous trees found in South America and Australia. It was first identified by European explorers in Chile in the 1780s. The name was derived from native Araucanians who used the nuts from the trees. The more popular English language name of the tree – monkey puzzle – owes its origin in about 1850 to someone remarking that “It would puzzle a monkey to climb that.”

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Wes Platt

Lead storyteller. Game designer and journalist. Recovering Floridian.

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