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why do we drive on parkways and park on driveways

Believe it or not, this is the third time I ve gotten this question in as many months. It must be the sunspots. Let s get one thing cleared up right off the bat: you can drive on the driveway. Indeed, if you ll permit me to wax philosophical for a moment, this is the very essence of drivewayness to enable you to drive from the street to your garage. Moreover, you can park on the parkway, if you re willing to risk the wrath of the law. I don t know that this clarifies things much, but it seemed like a point worth making. I think the crux of the issue, however I love using words like crux is the dual meaning of park. Park in the sense of tended greenery and park in the sense of stowing your vehicle, though deriving from the same root, diverged in meaning long ago. In Old French, a parc was an enclosure. To this day a military park means an area where vehicles are stored and serviced. As early as 1812 there was a verb to park, meaning to store one s howitzers in a military park. This carried over to carriages and ultimately to any sort of vehicle. Our notion of landscaped parks, meanwhile, derives from the medieval practice of enclosing game preserves for the use of the aristocracy. The term was later applied to the grounds around a country estate, then to royal parks in London to which the proles were grudgingly admitted, and finally to any landscaped public grounds.

The idea of enclosure is still evident in expressions like ball park, for an enclosed playing field. Any more questions, smart stuff? Dear Cecil: Thank you for clearing up the driveway/parkway issue. Along the same lines, why is it that kidnapping is a federal offense, while catnapping is merely an enjoyable pastime? Kathleen M. , Washington, D. C. Don t push it, Kathleen. Send questions to Cecil via
Most of us have heard the old joke that goes like why the Royal Mail service delivers БpostБ while the U. S. Postal Service delivers БmailБ? Of course, none of us is bothered by what they call it unless it is delivered in time, often the comedian makes us wonder about these confusing things from our daily life. Another such puzzling question is that why do we park on driveways but drive on parkways? Now you might dismiss it just as a traditional use of words but turns out that there is a kind of interesting and valid reason for why we drive on parkways and park on driveways! The fact is that over time, definitions of the words like park and drive have evolved. In fact, most of these words have been used long before the first car ever hit the road. century, the word БparkБ was defined as: БTo put strips of lawn down the centre or along the side of (a street, the main streets of a city)Б Before this definition was suggested, the word park referred to the large enclosed private game reserves.

Most of these parks were located around the large aristocratic estates in the Europe. The Charter of Friцuuald of Surrey БBitwiene цe shrubbes and Wine? bri? t goinde adun norцri? te binuцe цa parkes gate. Б Later, the word park was used in reference to any piece of well-maintained grounds around the state. The word then evolved to be used for the public as well as private landscaped grounds. Before the automobile industry went big, the word parking was used for planting of shrubs, trees, and other plants while the phrase parking places reserved for the areas designed for one to soak up nature in the presence of flora and fauna. This is why even today the word park is used to refer to areas filled with greenery and trees. The word Parkway was used to explain the area around the parking places (the green, often wooded areas) where the horses and the carriages they pulled were stored. century, the term park came to be associated with automobiles. The vehicles were stored alongside the horse driven carriages in the parkways. As more cars began to hit the road, more parkways were designed to store them. The 1916 novel LoinБs Share БAudreyБs motor-carБwas waiting in the automobile park outside the principal gates. Б Thus, the word parking place indicated a space meant to store car when not in use.

In the late 19 century, the designer of the Central Park in NYC, Frederick Law Olmsted proposed the idea of building the pleasure roads to connect various cities and the towns. To make the trip enjoyable, the pleasure roads will be flanked or parked with trees. Essentially, these were narrow, long parks that connected cities and suburbs and made travel faster. century, the word park was also used to describe the action of the driver as he brought his vehicle to a stop and stored it. This is why you drive on the parkways! The Origin of the term БDriveway. БA private carriageway for a motor vehicle alongside, in front of, or leading to a house, garage, or other building; a drive. Б The word was first introduced in the 1870s. However, today the driveways are much bigger than they were in the past. The driveways in the 19 century were much longer than their modern version. Since the cars had not gone big, the driveways were used for walking, horse riding, etc. Even when the cars became prevalent, the driveways werenБt used to park a car because ample parking space was available in the barn, etc. As the car ownership became common and the cities became more urbanised, the driveways also shrank, and the cars were parked there. Thus, the history proves that we have a reason to drive on parkways and park on driveways!

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