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If a Chicken is Poultry, is Poultry a Chicken?

What's the difference between poultry and chicken? Because every time I say poultry instead of chicken they ask me why?, and I really don't know the answer to that question.

Oh, so they're on to you now, are they? Well, they certainly know best, don't they? Seems to us the simplest thing would be to stop saying poultry, and then they wouldn't bother you.

Poultry nowadays is the broader category of domestic fowls (birds) raised for meat or eggs. So if you just mention poultry, you could be referring to farmed geese, ducks, turkeys, or chickens and they might get excited thinking you were going to serve them duck.

Now if you lived several hundred years ago in France, you would have been a little closer to the mark, because poultry comes from the diminutive word in Middle French for hen, which came from the Latin word for chicken. We won't go back further than that, because the origin of that Latin word means small animal or small child, and that's getting into territory that we don't want to deal with.

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