The etymology of the word snickerdoodle is very uncertain. The first known usage of it that we can identify is from an 1898 cookbook that doesn't go into any detail on the origin of the cookie name. One theory, proffered by the Joy of Cooking cookbook, is that the term "may be a corruption of the German word Schneckennudeln," which means something along the lines of "snail dough" The Oxford English Dictionary, meanwhile, says that it might just be a whimsical combination of the words snicker (meaning "laugh") and doodle (meaning "doodle-bug"). The German connection is a bit tenuous, and it makes more sense to me that the light, fun confection would be a fanciful nonsense word. This is completely unrelated to the popular Snickers candy bar, which was named in the 1930s after a horse owned by the Mars family.
Hello! I'm Adam Aleksic, a rising junior studying government and linguistics at Harvard University, where I co-founded the Harvard Undergraduate Linguistics Society. In addition to etymology, I also really enjoy trivia, politics, vexillology, geography, board games, conlanging, art history, and law.