Every dacha owner probably has a stove, not in the house, but in the bathhouse, and next to it, a stump is sure to hang on a hook. Without this bent metal stick, it will not be possible to properly heat the room, so summer residents and villagers know: a poker is an inventory that mixes fuel in a wood or coal stove.
However, few people know where the word "poker" came from, and may not guess about its other meanings.
Kokora - kochera - poker
The word "poker" is so ancient that it is not possible to establish its exact origin. It is known for certain that in the East Slavic culture the word "kokora" was used, which was called a tree with a root.
Over time, thanks to the play of the suffixes “ora” and “era”, as well as the alternation of the letters “k” and “h”, “kokora” turned into “kochera”, already close in sound to poker. This word was called crooked old trees and snags.
History is silent when the letter “g” appeared in the word and a fire-resistant device for mixing coals began to be called a poker.However, thanks to the “poker”, “stokers” appeared - people who stir up coals in the furnaces of steam locomotives and steamships. It is interesting that before this profession was called “poker”.
And also from the poker originates the word "to roam", which means to grimace, break down, act up, etc.
The traditional meaning of the word "poker" is clear to everyone. But let's see how inventive minds apply the word in today's world.
Not a candle to God, not a poker to hell
This saying was very common in Russian folklore and meant a worthless person, as well as any insignificant action or object, in other words: neither this nor that.
Today, a poker is still called an accessory for stoves, even improvised, for example, a bent ski pole. But the poker also has other interesting meanings:
- Dark bristles on newborns: common and easy to treat.
- Among motorists, this is the name of the automatic transmission shift lever: by the way, the mechanics handle is called a stirrer.
- Again, in driver's slang, a poker is a mechanical steering lock.
- An older woman may be called by some individuals the swear phrase "old poker".
And since the poker is an ancient item of rural life, interesting folk beliefs are associated with it, which you might not know about.
Dreams, signs, customs
In Russia, during wedding ceremonies, it was customary to tie a poker crosswiseand a broom, which symbolized the hearth and a strong marriage union.
Even in ancient times, they believed that a fire suddenly dying out in a fireplace is the machinations of the devil, and in order to exorcise evil spirits, they put a poker across the grate, thus creating a cross. But what is interesting - from these manipulations, the thrust really improves and the fire flares up.
And judging by the old dream books, people really didn’t like it when they dreamed of a poker. It was believed that this was for quarrels and fights, scandals in the family, strife among friends and neighbors.
Modern interpreters of dreams disagree about the stalk. Some believe that a person who dreamed of a poker is careless about a possible danger. Others believe that a red-hot poker in a dream is a good sign: to reveal malicious intent, gossip and intrigues of ill-wishers. And it is also considered a happy omen: despite the vicissitudes of fate, everything planned will definitely work out.