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Lollipop

 By Bron Hendrixson

Is the lollipop named after a racehorse? The story is that in the early 1900s one George Smith, a Connecticut candy manufacturer, “put together the candy and the stick” and named it in honor of Lolly Pop, the era’s most famous racehorse, the name “lollipop” then becoming an exclusive trade name used by the Bradley-Smith company of New Haven. It is true that candy on a stick wasn’t known in America before about 1908 and neither was the word lollipop. Smith may have invented the confection (there are no other claimants), and he may even have named his candy on a stick after the horse in question. But the word lollipop for a piece of sucking candy that dissolves easily in the mouth (not one, however, that is attached to a stick) was widely used in England as early as the late eighteenth century. It apparently derives from the English dialect word lolly, used in northern England to mean tongue, plus the word pop, in reference to the sound children make when sucking candy. Somehow lollipop remained unknown to Americans until the candy on a stick was invented in the early twentieth century, but this is not to say that the racehorse Lolly Pop couldn’t have been named for the British word for sucking candy.


 
 
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