Breakfast Interrupted – about the meaning of breakfast
Breakfast is the first meal of the day eaten after waking from the night’s sleep, in the morning. The word in English refers to breaking the fasting period of the previous night. There is a strong likelihood for one or more “typical”, or “traditional”, breakfast menus to exist in most places, but their composition varies widely from place to place, and has varied over time, so that globally a very wide range of preparations and ingredients are now associated with breakfast.
The English word “dinner” (from Old French disner) also referred originally to breaking a fast; until its meaning shifted in the mid-13th century it was the name given to the first meal of the day. The tradition of eating a morning meal has existed since ancient times, though it was not until the 15th century that “breakfast” came into use in written English as a calque of dinner to describe a morning meal, literally a breaking of the fasting period of the night just ended. In Old English the term had been morgenmete, literally “morning food.”