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“A futon for a crouton, nay, a couch.”

~ William Shakespeare on Croutons

“CROUTON CROUTON! crunchy friends in a liquid broth.”

~ The Mighty Boosh on Croutons in soup

The humble crouton may be taken for granted in modern times; indeed, we give little thought to the tiny bits of bread that make possible our electric dryers, space heaters, and shoe salesmen. If the crouton is ever considered it is to remark disparagingly on how it on expensive they have become, that is, a symbol of wealth. Prior to the 17th century, however, the very concept, much less the use, of a small piece of dry or fried bread, often seasoned, was considered radical and its entertaining could be grounds for imprisonment or worse.

Croutennii[edit | edit source]

History has been rife with what are called crouton relatives, or croutenii (CRU-TEN-I), with the true crouton making a relatively late historical appearance. These croutenii may share one or more similarities with the true crouton but are lacking in an important way. An example is a sandstone brick, while it may be both squarish shaped and tan colored (hallmarks of a classic crouton) it is not considered a proper crouton as the planting of it produces a fruitless tree.

Modern Croutons[edit | edit source]

The modern crouton can first trace its history to its invention by William Forrester, not to be confused with James Forster - MA & clergyman, in 1511. Forrester, a failed doctor, writer, and generally despicable human being, awoke one night with a vision of what we now know as the crouton. Seized by an idea that was centuries before its time, Forrester passionately but unsuccessfully tried to convince the population of Britain for widespread adoption of the crouton. Unfortunately for Forrester, Britain, like the rest of the world at that time, was reliant on a competing standard of oats. This entrenched oats lobby was successful in preventing and even, briefly, prosecuting the use of crouton under the Improper Bread Derivatives Restriction act of 1551. A critically lampooned but commercially successful musical also resulted mocking Forrester and the perceived flaws of crouton use.

In 1599, both the ever apparent advantages of the crouton and the growing impossibility of maintaining a crouton-free society motivated the repeal of the hated Improper Bread Derivatives Restriction act. Since 1599, croutons have seen a continual rise in use to the almost universal application we see today.

Croton 3000[edit | edit source]

By the year 4000, croutons have evolved into a giant robot overlord known as Croton 3000. They long ago decided to drop the pesky 'u' in their name, as they felt it was sadly inefficient. Ironically, they had no idea what 'sadness' was. They were unaware that the 3000 made them seem as if they were 1000 years behind the times.

External Links[edit | edit source]

This article was cited in The Korea Herald,
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