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a baker’s dozen


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Choose the correct definition : a, b or c.

a) 13 instead of 12

Well done ! That’s the right answer.

a baker’s dozen’ means a group of thirteen or a dozen plus one, sometimes but more rarely, fourteen. The expression comes from the bakers’ former practice of giving 13 rolls where twelve were requested, to protect themselves against accusations of giving light weight.

French translation

la douzaine du boulanger, treize à la douzaine

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Examples in context

‘While "Under the Dome" is considered a limited-run series in terms of its number of episodes - a baker’s dozen compared with the 22 or so that air during the regular September-to-May season - that doesn’t mean it’s one summer and done. The producers have "such a clear vision of where this show is going. We’re prepared for success," Tassler said, confidently. "Under the Dome" could return next summer and there might be a "winter cycle" as well, she said. ‘

The Day Connecticut, 24 June 2013.

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‘You’ll never ’bake’ alone – community devise recipe to re-open Liverpool bakery

A group of determined Liverpool residents now have fewer than half a baker’s dozen of days remaining to raise the ’dough’ needed to re-open a local bakery.

Situated in the shadow of Liverpool’s Anfield football stadium, there are plans for the former family-owned bakery - which closed in 2010 - to re-open as a community-owned enterprise established with support from The Co-operative Enterprise Hub.’

Guardian Professional, 24 June 2013

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Everyday usage

The "baker’s dozen" may have originated as a way for bakers to avoid being blamed for shorting their customers.

They compiled the Baker’s Dozen top managed services providers, by surveying over 300 customers within the industry.

b) 12 items for the price of 11

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c) 11 instead of 12

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