Wondering Why?

Why is Booze called Spirits?

Why is Booze called Spirits?

Booze, spirits, alcohol – they all mean the same. Booze is a slang term which means liquor. To be specific, it is an alcoholic beverage that is distilled rather than fermented. It can also function as a verb which means to drink a lot of alcohol.

There are different versions why booze is also called as spirits. Going back to the origin of the word booze, it starts with the old German word bulge, billow” (bauschen now) and in Dutch buizen which means to drink excessively. It can also be coined form the Dutch buise that means a drinking vessel. The word had been used in the past to refer to drinking spree. It was spelled as bouse but because language is dynamic and constantly changing, bouse was spelled as boose then now, it became booze.

Booze is a distilled beverage which is also the definition of spirits. Distilled or purified beverages that contain 35 % alcohol and above and are low in sugar is called spirits. Examples of this are whisky, tequila, vodka, brandy, gin, and rum.

During the medieval period, these alcoholic beverages were thought to have spirits in them because when a man drinks booze, it’s as if the evil spirit occupies his body because he does not act normally. When a man is drunk, he can’t walk straight, he can’t speak well, he can be violent. This was thought to be the evil spirit who entered to his body through drinking the booze.

On the positive note, booze is called spirit because of the alcohol content which was considered as holy. In the belief of the ancestors, to be drunk is allowing yourself to see the spirits of the gods.

The people before also thought that there are spirits in booze because when they open the jug, the vapors evaporate so they thought it was a spirit coming out from the drink.


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