The “goose” in “gooseberry” has usually been seen as a corruption of either the Dutch word kruisbes or the allied German Krausbeere, or of the earlier forms of the French groseille. Alternatively the word has been connected to the Middle High German krus (curl, crisped), in Latin as grossularia. However, the Oxford English Dictionary takes the obvious derivation from goose and berry as probable because “the grounds on which plants and fruits have received names associating them with animals are so often inexplicable that the inappropriateness in the meaning does not necessarily give good grounds for believing that the word is an etymological corruption”. It is also perhaps worth noting that the French for gooseberry is groseille à maquereau translated as “mackerel berries”, due to their use in a sauce for mackerel in old French cuisine.[
It is also possible that it might be a corruption of “goods berry” (since that is what the Old English fēāberige literally means – see above in ‘Distribution’), although what connection there may be to ‘goods’ is no longer known.
“Gooseberry bush” was 19th-century slang for pubic hair, and from this comes the saying that babies are “born under a gooseberry bush