Factoid Department: Did you know that an easel is an old Germanic synonym for donkey? Its equivalent is the only word for both animal and apparatus in various languages, such as Esel in German and ezel in Dutch (the easel generally in full schildersezel, ‘painter’s donkey’), themselves derived from the Latin word Asinus. In Danish, however, the word for easel is staffeli and donkey is æsel. Easels are known to have been in use since the time of the ancient Egyptians. Interesting, no?