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At­ro­pel­lar and Troop

At­ro­pel­lar (“to knock over, to knock down” in Span­ish) comes to Span­ish bor­rowed from the French, troupe, as in, a troop of sol­diers or more com­mon these days, a com­e­dy troop.

Al­though we can see the tr‑p root in the Eng­lish, French, and Span­ish words, the ques­tion re­mains: how did a group turn in­to a knock­ing-over? The an­swer is that, large groups of row­dy drunk men al­most al­ways re­sult in… knock­ing lots of peo­ple over! This is not a new concept–the word it­self at­tests to the an­tiq­ui­ty of drunk­en rev­el­ry!

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