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"Burchard tells us how, for the amusement of Cesare, of the Pope, and of Lucrezia, these fifty courtesans were set to dance after supper with the servants and some others who were present, dressed at first and afterwards not so. He draws for us a picture of those fifty women on all fours, in all their plastic nudity, striving for the chestnuts flung to them in that chamber of the Apostolic Palace by Christ’s Vicar--an old man of seventy--by his son and his daughter." --The Life of Cesare Borgia (1912) by Rafael Sabatini, on the Banquet of Chestnuts

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  1. A tree or shrub of the genus Castanea.
  2. The nut of this tree or shrub.
  3. A dark, reddish-brown colour/color.
  4. A reddish-brown horse.
  5. The wood of a chestnut tree.
  6. (Often "old chestnut") A worn-out meme; a work so often repeated as to have grown tiresome.
  7. A part of a horse found on the inner leg, similar to a birthmark on a human.

Artistic references

  • The jazz standard "April in Paris" begins, "April in Paris / Chestnuts in blossom."
  • In the Polish film, Ashes and Diamonds, two characters reminisce about the Chestnut trees that once lined a famous boulevard destroyed in the Warsaw Uprising.
  • "The Christmas Song" begins with the phrase "Chestnuts roasting on an open fire." Nat King Cole's hit recording is now a Christmas standard.
  • In the movie Howards End, Mrs. Ruth Wilcox (Vanessa Redgrave) tells of her childhood home, where superstitious farmers would place pigs' teeth in the bark of the Chestnut trees and then chew on this bark to ease toothaches.
  • In the novel Jane Eyre, a Chestnut tree outside of Thornfield Hall is broken in two by lightning. This foreshadows the break-up of Rochester and Jane's marriage.
  • The opening lines of Longfellow's poem The Village Blacksmith are "Under a spreading Chestnut-tree / the village smithy stands." This famous reference is much remarked upon by those involved in projects to return the American Chestnut to the wild.
  • In George Orwell's 1984 the Chestnut tree is used in poems recited throughout, referring to nature, modern life, and lies as in the saying; 'that old chestnut'.

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Chestnut" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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