bagel

Pronunciations

Definitions

  • n. A boiled, baked ring-shaped bread product.

Example Sentences

  • "They served lox and bagels for breakfast after davening."

Languages of Origin

  • Yiddish

Etymology

  • בײגל beygl, related to Yiddish root בײג beyg 'bend, curve'

    • Who Uses This

      • Jews: Jews of diverse religious backgrounds and organizational involvements
      • Non-Jews: (words that have spread outside of Jewish networks)

      Regions

      • North America
      • Great Britain
      • South Africa
      • Australia / New Zealand

      Dictionaries

      • The New Joys of Yiddish, by Leo Rosten and Lawrence Bush (New York, 2003[1968]).
      • The JPS Dictionary of Jewish Words, by Joyce Eisenberg and Ellen Scolnic, (Philadelphia, 2001).
      • Dictionary of Jewish Usage: A Popular Guide to the Use of Jewish Terms, by Sol Steinmetz (Lanham, MD, 2005).

      Alternative Spellings

      beygl, beigel

Notes

  • Plural "bagels," although the original Yiddish plural is beygl (same as singular).

    The Yiddish word beygl probably comes from Early New High German beugel, meaning pretzel.

    South African alternative definition: A materialistic, selfish young Jewish man, like American English JAP (source).

    See also bageling (bagel v.).

    Originally bagels were harder and denser and had a much larger hole. They changed in New York in the 1920s and came to be served with cream cheese and lox as a sign of upward mobility. See more at:
    Marx, Jeffrey A. 2017. “Eating Up: The Origins of Bagels and Lox.” In Tastes of Faith: Jewish Eating in the United States, edited by Steven J. Ross, Leah Hochman, and Lisa Ansell. Purdue University Press. 77–114.
    Gastropod. 2019. “The Bagelization of America.” Podcast.

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