in Latin, means an apple; and “malus, mala, malum” means evil. Southey, in his Commonplace Book, quotes a
witty etymon given by Nicolson and Burn, making the noun derived from
the adjective, in allusion, I suppose, to the apple eaten by Eve. Of
course, malum (an apple) is the Greek melon or malon (an apple-tree).
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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