Having read The Grapes of Wrath, I started wondering why grapes were the only fruit assigned a vice. Why can't oranges, or watermelons, or even pomelos grapple with the same licentiousness and iniquity that the poor grapes have to deal with on a daily basis?

I began exploring what the sins of other fruits might be, and made myself a list. In doing so, I discovered that John Steinbeck had it wrong! He apparently should have titled his book The Grapes of Envy.

Here is the list I came up with. Can you determine how I linked each fruit with its particular vice?

apples of spite
apricots of blasphemy
bananas of pride
blueberries of intolerance
boysenberries of faithlessness
cantaloupes of pettiness
coconuts of complacency
grapes of envy
kiwis of apathy
mangoes of sloth
nectarines of jealousy
pears of avarice
persimmons of perversion
plums of cowardice
pomegranates of gluttony
quinces of egotism
tangerines of profligacy

Bonus A: What sin might be associated with pomelos?
Bonus B: What fruits might be subject to the sin of manipulation?


The sum of their character values a=1, b=2, ..., z=26 is the same for the fruit and the sin.

I found this by observing that

each fruit and sin have similar number of letters, and guessing the answer from there, writing up code to check.

  • $\begingroup$ I also noticed that similarity between fruit and sin but I didn't think to explain it that way. $\endgroup$ – Ben Frankel Sep 11 '15 at 0:04
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ watermelons and manipulation both sum to 145. $\endgroup$ – f'' Sep 11 '15 at 3:18
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ pomelos of sedition works. $\endgroup$ – Rohcana Sep 11 '15 at 7:28

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