Only One short of Five Baker's Dozen


Here's the ancient bakery in Pompeii.  Can't you just smell the aroma of fresh Italian bread, pizza or focaccia? And how many baker's dozen do you suppose came out of that great Italian relic?  I doubt they had the term baker's dozen back then, and according to the wonders of Wikipedia, the term comes from 13th century England (get it, 13?) during the reign of King Henry III.  This quick-fix resource suggests the term appeared in an English statute where bakers (read printmakers) who shortchanged their customers were liable to severe punishment!  To guard against the punishment of losing a hand to an axe, the baker (read printmaker) would give 13 items for an intended dozen to prevent "short measure."

We're up to 64, thanks to Rembrandt's humanity, which means we are one short of 5 baker's dozen.   But we still have nearly 12 hours to wrap it up.

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