This Week: Napoleons…or maybe not.

I have a poor track record confronting the Napoleon, but there’s been a consistent drumbeat of requests for me to do so for at least the last two years. Which I suppose means it’s time I strapped on my boots, fixed my bayonet and engaged on the field of honor. By which I do not mean to imply that Napoleons and Napoleon are related. I just woke up this morning in the mood for early 19th Century military allusions. In reality Napoleons are “Neapolitans”, i.e. pastries made in the style of Naples. In French the word is “Napolitain”, close enough to be confused with “Napoleon” for an English speaker. Just who that English speaker was is a mystery, but here in the Anglosphere we’ll likely call these little pastry cream-filled strips by that name forever.

That doesn’t bother me, though I am disappointed I won’t get to write about the real Napoleon this week. Eh, maybe I ‘ll find a way to work him in. I’m not above a little myth perpetuation, as long as it’s tastefully done.

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