Dirty words

Subject: Dirty words
From: Steve Fouts <sfouts -at- ELLISON -dot- SC -dot- TI -dot- COM>
Date: Wed, 27 Jul 1994 13:24:37 CDT

Gwen Gall says
|}"dirty" itself is, not surprisingly, from the
|} French.

Sally Marquigny replies

|} Really???? As you many know, the French word for "dirty" is "sale",
|} accent acute on the e, (which I am constantly reminded of by my
|} French husband because that's what my first name sounds like!).
|} What is the actual origin of "dirty"? "d'something"?

My Big Honkin' (tm) dictionary lists ``dirt'' as ``often attributed to
an alteration of Middle English drit, from Old Norse for excrement,'' akin
to OE dritan and ON drita, both meaning to defecate (both use the long I
sound). It then goes on to examine similarities between this word and
Serbian and Lithuanian words that still mean ``to defecate.''

If you then look up ``shit,'' you'll see that those ME folks had almost as
many words for ``crap'' as Eskimoes have words for snow. They sure must
have been experts. Crap, by the way, apparently meant ``pork chop.''
Fascinating. Find reasons do bring up this topic at the dinner table
this evening.

``Honey, did you know that "dirt" derives from the Old Norse for "shit,"
and has the same root as the modern Serbian word for diarrhea? Say, how
are those pork chops this evening?''

Oops. For those of you who get real ***** retentive ;-) about such things,
the Big Honkin' Dictionary in question is Webster's Third New International,
unabridged. This 1986 edition contains listing for many of George Carlin's
words you can't say on television, but ``fuck'' is not one of them.
Does anyone know a good expletive I can use to express my surprise and

<Heavy Sigh>

Huh, huh, huh. Hey Beavis, he said, ``crap.''
_______________ _____
/ ___ __/__\ \ / / _\ Steve Fouts
/___ \| | ___\ | / __\ sfouts -at- ellison -dot- sc -dot- ti -dot- com
/ / \ | \ / \
/_______/__|_______\_/________\ "She understood, as he did, that all writing
was infernally boring and futile, but that it had to be done out of respect
for tradition" --Stanislaw Lem

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