An eclectic collection of facts, trivia and statistics about various foods, beverages, plants and animals

You are here > Home

Also see: Food Articles and Cooking Tips



From Amateur & Basic Cooking Classes to Professional Chef Training & Degrees -  Associates, Bachelors & Masters - More than 1,000 schools & classes listed for all 50 States, Online and Worldwide


FREE Magazines
and other Publications

An extensive selection of free magazines and other publications



Alligator pear is another name for the avocado.

The American Heritage Dictionary entry for Alligator Pear is:
"By folk etymology from American Spanish aguacate, avocado (the trees are said to grow in areas infested by alligators)."

In the Nahuatl language of the Aztecs, the word for the fruit of the avocado tree was 'ahuacatl.'  Spanish speakers pronounced it 'aguacate', but other Spanish speakers substituted the form 'avocado' for the Nahuatl word because 'ahuacatl' sounded like the early Spanish word 'avocado' (now 'abogado'), meaning "lawyer."  In borrowing the Spanish 'avocado', first recorded in English in 1697 as "avogato pear."

Neither the skin nor the alligators are the sole source of the likely origin of alligator pear.  In the opinion of the Oxford English Dictionary, the most likely origin is simply the mispronunciation of the Nahuatl word for the fruit "ahuacatl,"  and sites the following (among others): 1861 Tylor Anahuac ix. 227 "There is a well-known West Indian fruit which we call an avocado or alligator-pear, and which the French call 'avocat' and the Spaniards 'aguacate.' All these names are corruptions of the Aztec name of the fruit, 'ahuacatl.'"

I believe all three - the skin, the alligators and mispronunciation all contributed to the development of the name 'alligator pear.'



  ALABAMA to AMMONIUM   |   Alabama   |   Alaska   |   Albacore Tuna   |   Albermarle Pippin   |   Albert Sauce   |   Albondiga   |   Albumen   |   Alby's Gold Potato   |   Alcohol   |   Alcohol in Cooking   |   Ale Trivia   |   Alfalfa   |   Alfredo   |   Alginates, Alginic Acid   |   All Blue Potato   |   All Red Potato   |   Allergies   |   Alligator Trivia   |   Alligator Pear   |   Allspice   |   Almonds   |   Almond Joy   |   Aluminum   |  Amablu Blue Cheese   |   Amaranth   |   American Food   |   Amino Acids   |   Ammonium Bicarbonate  
  Home   |   About Us & Contact Us   |   Bibliography   |   Food History Articles   |   Food Timeline   |   Free Magazines   |   Other Links  

Please feel free to link to any pages of from your website.
For permission to use any of this content please E-mail:
All contents are copyright © 1990 - 2015 James T. Ehler and unless otherwise noted.
All rights reserved.
You may copy and use portions of this website for non-commercial, personal use only.
Any other use of these materials without prior written authorization is not very nice and violates the copyright.
Please take the time to request permission. Logo



Popular Pages

Free Food Magazine Subscriptions


Recipe Videos, Food Safety, Food Science, Food Festivals, Vintage Commercials, etc.