One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1(in the UK) a public ceremony on the Thursday before Easter (Maundy Thursday) at which the monarch distributes specially minted coins.
- ‘Whereas Henry VIII spent an average of £63 on the annual Maundy ceremony, Mary's honour required an outlay of £160.’
- ‘The practice of Maundy gifts dates back to 1210 when King John distributed food and clothing to the poor in the Yorkshire town of Knaresborough (my home town).’
- ‘The first known record of Royal Maundy took place here, when King John fed and clothed 13 paupers in 1210.’
- 1.1 The money distributed by the monarch at the Maundy ceremony; Maundy money.as modifier ‘a George I Maundy fourpence’
- ‘Plus, back home she has handed out the Royal Maundy in so many of the cathedrals in England and Wales that one wonders which ones she's missed?’
- ‘Two years later the Queen was in North Yorkshire again, distributing the Maundy Money at Ripon Cathedral.’
- ‘Each white purse contained 79p in Maundy coins, reflecting the Queen's age on her next birthday.’
- ‘They were among 13 arrests made during the visit which saw the Queen hand out Maundy coins to 158 pensioners.’
- ‘The Maundy recipients told the Evening Press that they were determined not to sell the coins.’
Middle English: from Old French mande, from Latin mandatum ‘mandate, commandment’, from mandatum novum ‘new commandment’ (see John 13:34).
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