Pet peeve: Why do people redundantly call it "tuna fish?" You never hear "parrot bird" or "Cocker spaniel dog."

Two Replies to Blog Entry Post

Kris Weberg | November 11, 2006
Tuna is also the name for a kind of cactus fruit found in the same tropical regions where the fish lives. The fish got the name from a variant of the same Spanish root word originally used for the cactus fruit.

Indeed, the original word in British English for the fish was "tunny," but it sounded so much like "tuna" -- especially in certain accents -- that the words became confused with one another and "tuna" began to refer to the fish as well as the prickly pear.

In short, the fruit called tuna came first, so "fish" is appended to the secondary use even though infinitely more people today associate "tuna," uh, solely with seafood.

Amy Austin | December 31, 2006
AHHHha... Kris, you're such a clownfish...

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