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Subject: Where does «meeple» come from? rss

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Nicola Gambetti
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Hallo there,
I have a question for the geekest of you: what does the word «meeple» mean?

I understand it is slang for a player’s wooden pieces (such as those of Carcassonne) but where does it originate from? Has it a connection to everyday life?

I see a meeple’s picture usually depicts a Carcassonne wooden piece: does it mean «meeple» was first used for this game? When did it first appear?

Thank you for any hint: I’m very curious to know more about a word I wasn’t able to find in any dictionary I looked up.
 
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Andrew Bond
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Bombadillo wrote:
does the word «meeple» mean?


From Wiktionary [geekurl=http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/meeple][/geekurl]:

Noun
meeple (plural meeples)
A small person-shaped figure used as a player's token in a board game.

Blend of my and people. Coined in November of 2000 by Alison Hansel during a game of Carcassonne when she fused "my" and "people" to describe the wooden figures each player uses in that game.

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John Earles
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What's a Meeple?
Why are they called "Meeples"?
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Ross G.
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Wiktionary has an entry for it here:http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/meeple, but it sounds like bunk to me.

Edit: It's the same explanation as in the thread above - I still don't buy it. It's exactly the kind of etymological explanation people come up with when they don't have the full story. Of course the story is possible, but without supporting evidence I see no reason to believe it.
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Martin Mathes
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just have a look at the boardgamegeek wiki entry for meeple

[geekurl=http://www.boardgamegeek.com/wiki/page/Glossary#toc83][/geekurl]

ciao

Martin
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Andrew Bond
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Pentaclebreaker wrote:
just have a look at the boardgamegeek wiki entry for meeple

[geekurl=http://www.boardgamegeek.com/wiki/page/Glossary#toc83][/geekurl]

ciao

Martin


Which basically confirms the Wiktionary definition.

See also the Urban Dictionary at: [geekurl=http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=meeple][/geekurl]

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Nicola Gambetti
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Thank you all for your replies: I didn't think to look up the most obvious of the sources, the Wiki.

Neither would I have thought the origin of the word were a simple syncresis of "my people".
 
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Wim van Gruisen
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ZiggyZambo wrote:
Wiktionary has an entry for it here:http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/meeple, but it sounds like bunk to me.

Edit: It's the same explanation as in the thread above - I still don't buy it. It's exactly the kind of etymological explanation people come up with when they don't have the full story. Of course the story is possible, but without supporting evidence I see no reason to believe it.

In that other thread, Steffan Sullivan confirms the story - he apparently knows Alison. But I still find it strange. How does the contraction work?

"I play with the red meeples" sounds fine. "I play with the red my peoples" is a bit awkward. A singular 'meeple' should then refer to the multiple 'people'?
 
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John Earles
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Whymme wrote:
ZiggyZambo wrote:
Wiktionary has an entry for it here:http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/meeple, but it sounds like bunk to me.

Edit: It's the same explanation as in the thread above - I still don't buy it. It's exactly the kind of etymological explanation people come up with when they don't have the full story. Of course the story is possible, but without supporting evidence I see no reason to believe it.

In that other thread, Steffan Sullivan confirms the story - he apparently knows Alison. But I still find it strange. How does the contraction work?

"I play with the red meeples" sounds fine. "I play with the red my peoples" is a bit awkward. A singular 'meeple' should then refer to the multiple 'people'?


It isn't a contraction... it's a portmanteau - a word whose form and meaning are derived from a blending of two or more distinct forms (such as smog, from smoke and fog).
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Andrew Bond
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jearles wrote:
It isn't a contraction... it's a portmanteau - a word whose form and meaning are derived from a blending of two or more distinct forms (such as smog, from smoke and fog).


Except that 'smog' is a contraction of 'smoky fog'. whistle

See: [geekurl=http://www.thefreedictionary.com/smog][/geekurl]

The word smog is first recorded in 1905 in a newspaper report of a meeting of the Public Health Congress. Dr. H.A. des Vux gave a paper entitled "Fog and Smoke," in which, in the words of the Daily Graphic of July 26, "he said it required no science to see that there was something produced in great cities which was not found in the country, and that was smoky fog, or what was known as 'smog.'" The next day the Globe remarked that "Dr. des Vux did a public service in coining a new word for the London fog."
 
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Whymme wrote:

In that other thread, Steffan Sullivan confirms the story - he apparently knows Alison. But I still find it strange. How does the contraction work?

"I play with the red meeples" sounds fine. "I play with the red my peoples" is a bit awkward. A singular 'meeple' should then refer to the multiple 'people'?


You're missing the silliness.

You have to work it with an overemphasized fake accent.

"These be muh peeples."

Muh peeples easily becomes meeples.
 
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Michael Potter
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I had always heard it was a blend of "minature people".

I am sure you can find the real meaning by asking the shooter behind the grassy knoll.
 
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CHAPEL
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ZiggyZambo wrote:
Wiktionary has an entry for it here:http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/meeple, but it sounds like bunk to me.

Edit: It's the same explanation as in the thread above - I still don't buy it. It's exactly the kind of etymological explanation people come up with when they don't have the full story. Of course the story is possible, but without supporting evidence I see no reason to believe it.


There you go:

http://web.archive.org/web/20010207230727/http://www.gis.net/~dber/SessionReport/25Nov2000.htm

Which incidentally was 3 weeks after Carcassonne was released in essen.
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Meredith Martini
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Where does «meeple» come from?

When a boy meeple and a girl meeple like each other very, very much...

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