Talking Dirty: The Origins of Sexual Obscenities

Talking Dirty: The Origins of Sexual Obscenities

Fuck. Cunt. Twat. Pussy. Cock. Until fairly recently, authorities on English considered the first three too sexually vulgar (obscenities) to include in standard dictionaries, while the genital connotations of the other two were equally unmentionable. But in many other languages, equivalent terms that describe the genitals and intercourse are not considered so vulgar. How did these English words become so tainted? The answer has nothing to do with sex—and everything to do with political conquest a thousand years ago.

Talking Dirty: The Origins of Sexual Obscenities

In this article:

Angles and Saxons
The Origins of Our Dirty Words

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