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a protective mat upon which one places a bottle or glass


coaster = der Untersetzer, der Bierdeckel --- GOOGLE INDEX coaster: approximately 300,000 Google hits



Rumour has it that Conroy dreamed up the $30-billion-plus National Broadband Network on the back of a COASTER.

(The Herald Sun, Australia)

Encourage guests to rest beer bottles or glasses on an elegant COASTER, not a folded paper napkin.

(The Nashua Telegraph)

Did you


- a small mat or plate placed under a vessel to protect a tabletop or other surface beneath


- someone who acts in an aimless manner

- a ship which sails between ports along a coast

- a resident of a coastal region

(American Heritage Dictionary)

The first coasters were introduced by the German printing company, Friedrich Horn in 1880. Made of cardboard, they were essentially used as beer mats.

In addition to cardboard, coasters can also be made of plastic or glass, which are useful for the home. But for pub patrons in countries like the UK and Germany, coasters made from cardboard (or beer mats) are an integral part of the experience.

Breweries in particular have long used them as an advertising medium. In Bavarian beer gardens, the coaster is often placed on top of the beer mug instead of under it. This keeps out pesky wasps who enjoy a cold beer on a warm summer evening as well as anyone.

Coaster trivia (from der Spiegel):

- The record for cardboard coaster throwing stands at 38.26 meters.

- The highest tower, created from more than 40,000 coasters, was 9.70 meters.

- Leo Pisker, an Austrian, has an extensive collection of some 150,000 coasters from around the world.

Etymology: coaster stems from the verbal sense of going around the sides or borders of something, such as a coastline.

SMUGGLE OWAD into today's conversation

"Would you hand me a coaster for my beer glass?"

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