TURKEYS were introduced to Europe from North and Central America.
In Mexico they were called uexolotl, so you can see why they needed a name change.
However, both the French and the English, like Columbus himself, got their geography wrong, the French first calling them coq d’Indie, which became today’s dinde, and the English turkey, apparently because they first arrived in London with merchants from the Levant.
The first record of them being served at an English Christmas is from 1557.
With the tail end towards you, slice the skin between the body and each leg and, gently pulling the legs out from the body, continue cutting through the hip joint to remove them.
Remove each wing by cutting it through at the shoulder joint.
Turn the bird round, so the neck end is towards you, and, with the tip of the knife, make a long cut towards you along each side of the breast bone through to and downwards around the wish bone.
Then, with the knife angled against the rib cage, slice carefully under the breast, following the rib cage and remove each breast whole.
You can then easily carve horizontal or vertical slices from each breast.
Cut the legs through at their knee joint and serve the drumstick and thigh separately to the biggest eaters.
Or, at a more democratic table, carve them by slicing parallel to the bone so everyone gets a serving of the dark meat.