variants: or philippina \ ˌfiləˈpēnə \ or philippine \ -​ēn \
plural -s

Definition of philopena

1 : a game in which a man and woman who have shared the twin kernels of a nut each try to claim a gift from the other as a forfeit at their next meeting by fulfilling certain conditions (as by being the first to exclaim “philopena”)

called also fillipeen

2a : a nut with two kernels
b : a gift given as a forfeit

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History and Etymology for philopena

modification (influenced by Greek philos loving and Latin poena penalty) of German vielliebchen, literally, much loved; perhaps from the idea that the gift was a penalty of friendship or love

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Cite this Entry

“Philopena.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 8 Mar. 2021.

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