Inquiring minds want to know...
What's with the word "smorgasbord"? Does anyone use it anymore?
In my Winnipeg youth, quite a few restaurants boasted a smorgasbord or all-you-can-eat buffet, but it's a word that is hardly ever used in English in this literal sense anymore, except referring specifically to the original Swedish buffet of open sandwiches and other dishes, such as smoked and pickled fish, cheeses, and salads.
Its etymology is as follows:
< Swedish, < smörgås (slice of) bread and butter ( < smör butter, cognate with smear n. + gås goose, lump of butter) + bord board n., tableFood fashions are notoriously transient, and the smorgasbord trend of the 60s and 70s seems to have been particularly fleeting. I don't really know if these smorgasbords limited themselves to authentic Swedish food; I rather think they were just buffets with a fancy name.
But we English speakers have not abandoned the word "smorgasbord". That would be so unlike us, to get rid of a good word. It is alive and well meaning "a rich variety or selection". Here are some examples of the types of smorgasbord we may hear about today:
a smorgasbord of:
Do you use the word "smorgasbord" to mean "buffet"? Did you in the past?sights
law school dropouts
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