Fortnum & Mason is renowned for its luxury goods, but the unusual names of its chocolate bars have gone largely unnoticed, until now.

“The Descent of Darkness” and “Beyond the Abyss” are just two of the unusual monikers given to the London retailer’s indulgent cocoa treats, prompting one shopper to ask if the person coming up with these names was alright.

Posting images of the chocolate bars on Twitter, which reveal names like “The Peculiar Bees of Salt Bay” and “Pilots Fly in Pink Skies”, author and illustrator Alex Smith wrote: “I… I hope the person naming the chocolate bars in @Fortnums is doing ok.”

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Since posting his Tweet on 13 February, the post has been “liked” more than 1,800 times and garnered more than 500 retweets, with many people responding with comments that poked fun at the luxury retailer.

Some concurred with Smith's concerns.

“The dark chocolate one sounds like a tiny cry for help!” wrote one person, while another joked, “u ok hun? [sic]”.

Others thought the names were a stroke of genius:

I feel like these names are too smart for me,” wrote one person. “Like I’ll eat the chocolate but not really understand it.”

Love it! The names are begging to be used as book titles!” added another.

Many actually pointed out that the full list of Fortnum & Mason’s chocolate bars reads like a short story collection, with other names including “A bittersweet romance”, “Goodnight, my bittersweet beloved”, “She dreams in marmalade” and “ Forever chasing supernovas”.

Speaking to The Independent, Sophie Young, confectionery buyer at Fortnum & Mason, explained that the unusual names are, in fact, intentional.

“We wanted our chocolate bars – which can be enjoyed individually or bought as a ‘library’ – to marry the worlds of chocolate and literature. Both can be sweet, and equally both can be very dark.”

Young explained that the titles are created to celebrate the individual ingredients used in each chocolate bar in the hope that it would make the purchasing experience more special and “beguiling”.  

“We’re known to be playful with our language and on occasion it takes on a slightly surreal quality,” she continues, “harking back to the 1930s when our commentaries were a little bonkers, in the best possible – and most delightfully Fortnum’s – way.”

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