Oh, “apple” is an old word! Very old! “Apple’s” roots dig right down to the oldest forms of German – and with cognates (disputed, but at least good enough for OED to mention) from Old Irish to Polish. There’s even a second century (100s) inscription in Burgh-by-Sands, Cumberland (Cumbria), England suggesting that the British name of the place was Aballava, perhaps we would say Appleton? In all these forms the word means either an apple, an apple tree, any fruit from a tree, or any fruit-bearing tree.
And remember, “apple” in Celtic languages has a soft “v” sound instead of “p” and forms the plural with an “an” sound at the end. “Avalon” is “Apple” Isle.
Hail, eldest of words, most delicious of fruits.
- 09.037 butter, apples, and all sorts of things,
- 10.014 I hope I never smell the smell of apples again!’ said Fili.
- 10.014 To smell apples everlastingly when you can scarcely move
- 10.014 but not an apple!’
“apple, n.” OED Online. Oxford University Press, June 2016. Web. 30 June 2016.