The word “apothic”

apothic crush

My friend Dan, always with a question, writes:

Apothic: A mysterious word. Searching Google, apothic is used for a lot of commercial enterprises, particularly a cheap red California wine that appears to be popular. It also pops up as a scent, as an alternative medicine peddler, a carpentry shop, etc. But mostly the wine.

Urban Dictionary gives “beautiful or stunning,” but there’s only one entry which makes that definition highly suspect. The word “apoth” appears to have nothing to do with it, that is an archaic derogatory term for someone who is an apothecary, plus apoth is also a Northern English local word meaning “silly.” Not to be confused with aphotic, which means “unfathomable depth.” My spell checker keeps trying to make the word apothem, which is a line drawn in a polygon from the center to one of the sides.

So in desperation I checked the wine maker’s site, and found Apothic Red Wine is put out by Gallo. (Urp.) On their site I found, “Inspired by “Apotheca,” a mysterious place where wine was blended and stored in 13th century Europe…” So I find Wiktionary which defines apotheca as a warehouse or repository. But then I see “apotheca” appropriated as a coffee house and as another herb peddler, flower seller, a hair shop, etc.

So finally I zeroed in. It seems that an apotheca, back in ancient Greek times, was a storeroom usually in the upper part of a house used particularly for storing wine. So I’m guessing that “apothic” is a modern made-up word that has not been copyrighted (although it appears that someone tried to claim copyright) that is supposed to sound like something technical to do with wine. But, judging by the variety of commercial names, the use of the word is scattered all over the place.

Perhaps a Librarian can help me out here. Am I missing something? Or is this too tedious to bother with? Is this what I do when I get up early?

“So I’m guessing that ‘apothic’ is a modern made-up word” – well, all words are ultimately made up. And my best guess is someone made an adjective out of apotheca, which is the antecedent to boutique and bodega.

To your last sentence: I think you already have the bulk of your answer, a variation of apothecary: Mid-14c., “shopkeeper, especially one who stores, compounds, and sells medicaments,” from Old French apotecaire (13c., Modern French apothicaire), from Late Latin apothecarius “storekeeper,” from Latin apotheca “storehouse,” from Greek apotheke “barn, storehouse,” literally “a place where things are put away,” from apo- “away” (see apo-) + tithenai “to put, to place” (see theme). Same root produced French boutique and Spanish bodega. Cognate compounds produced Sanskrit apadha- “concealment,” Old Persian apadana- “palace.”

Surely THE answer you seek may be derived by the right librarian or linguist. But I’m hitting the same references as you are. I DO agree that the “beautiful” definition is suspect.

The only reference I found you did not mention is the Thesaurasize definition, “Of, or relating to the eye or to vision,” which I find even more puzzling. Maybe this was confused with aphotic, “being the deep zone of an ocean or lake receiving too little light to permit photosynthesis.”

I looked at the website. Yes, E. & J. GALLO WINERY CORPORATION has a lot of trademarks that are LIVE (active), Apothic, Apothic Brew, Apothic Dark, Apothic Fire, and Apothic Smoke. Two of them they have even trademarked not just the name but the logo design:

APOTHIC CRUSH (pictured)
The color(s) red is/are claimed as a feature of the mark. The mark consists of a red label with a letter “A” surrounded by various swirl designs centered at the top. Centered below is cursive lettering spelling out CRUSH in what appears to be fabric, and directly below that are printed capital letters spelling APOTHIC CRUSH. Forming a rectangle around the border of the label are swirl designs.

The color(s) red is/are claimed as a feature of the mark. The mark consists of a three dimensional configuration of a glass bottle for the goods, namely, a bottle with a round circumference and vertical sides that gradually curve in at the neck; the bottom of the bottle is concave. Around the middle of the circumference of the bottle it is shaded darker than the rest of the bottle, and at the top of the shaded section on one side of the bottle is a label, which consists of the red letter “A” surrounded by various red swirl designs. Directly underneath the label are the words APOTHIC RED in capital letters, with APOTHIC in white lettering and RED in red lettering. The top of the bottle is covered by red sealing material that goes halfway down the neck of the bottle and covers the cork at the top of the bottle.

GALLO has abandoned the trademarks for Apothic Frost, Apothic Ice, Apothic Lust, and Apothic Spice.

The only other company that has trademarked the word apothic is LUX BEAUTY GROUP, West Hollywood CALIFORNIA 90069.

This title is DEAD (abandoned) – ROYAL APOTHIC INVISIBLE SKIN: Cosmetics, toiletries, non-medicated skin care preparations, non-medicated bath and body gels and lotions, body washes, and soaps for personal use

But this is LIVE (in use) – ROYAL APOTHIC: Non-medicated bath and body gels and lotions, non-medicated skin care preparations; soaps for personal use; perfumes; and scented room sprays.

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