Compenso is Latin for ‘balance’ and in Italian it means 'reward.' Legend has it that the pretzel was invented by an Italian monk in the year 610 A.D. whose monastery was located in Germany. To reward young children for learning their prayers and cleaning the church, he supposedly 'twisted' the strips of bread dough to form the crossed arms of praying children. He called his creation pretiola, which meant “little rewards."
One of the key aspects of this pretiola or 'pretzella' or as some say, they were originally called “bracellae,” the Latin term for “little arms,” from which Germans later derived the word “bretzel.” Because the earliest pretzels were dubbed “pretiolas,” meaning “little rewards,” and were handed out by the Italian monk, I chose the Compenso name for my creations.
This gesture of kindness is also an incredible marketing tool. When the children took them home to their parents, the message of God was successfully communicated; the three sections of the pretzel; Father, Son, and the Holy Ghost which lead to further discussions about the Word of God.
Another interpretation regarding the form of the pretzel was it resembles that of an angel...a guardian angel in prayer with folded arms. The German folks would string several pretzels around their necks as they traveled for the purpose of food, since this bread would not spoil as fast as other foods/breads, and as a honor to their guardian angels, to protect them on their journey. The pretzel soon became known to represent good luck and then today, love and kindness.
As my writing pursues 'twists' within the stories, the Compenso name represents the unique history of the twisted pretzel and the rewards from my craft...with love.
The reward of writing