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Orts and Other Bits of Food

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An ort is a small bite of food left on one’s dinner plate. Also known as the manners bit or manners piece, because some people consider it polite for guests to leave that last bite, which suggests that the host provided enough for everyone to feel sated. A favorite of crossword constructors, the handy word ort dates back to the 15th century, when it meant “a bit of fodder that farm animals didn’t bother to eat.” This is part of a complete episode.

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