There's a lot we disagree on in the United States of America but one thing we can come to a general consensus on is that some words are bad to say. The team at Buzzfeed took the liberty of explaining the origin of some notorious curse words ranging from "fuck," to "shit," to "ass," which, as some of you might know, wasn't even originally a curse word! My, how the times do change, no?
Of course, while there are some universal curse words we all know, love, and use (sometimes frequently), there are some curse words that vary from region to region, country to country, and even generation to generation. For example, my dad considers "screw you" to be one of the most horrible phrases I could use; now, however, it's colloquially lost a lot of horrible connotations and is more easily thrown around. Meanwhile, inappropriate words in the UK like "wanker" sound pretty silly out of context in the U.S. And even within our own country, there are hundreds of different curse words, ranging from variations on older swears or new words all their own. Think "asshat," "dick wad," and, according to the Buzzfeed quiz "What Does Your Favorite Curse Word Say About You," "knobsticle."
With all that in mind it's hard to not wonder where all these words come from. Check out the origins of some curse words below, and scroll all the way down to watch the full video.
1. That Four-Letter Word
Way back in the day, "fuck" actually used to mean "to go back and forth and to strike," influenced by Swedish, German, and Dutch. It was discovered to have been used in a coded poem in 1475 A.D. which translated to "they are not in heaven because they fuck the wives of Ely."
2. The Title of a Meredith Brooks Song
Though we're not entirely certain of the origins of "bitch" as a curse word, it was likely used as a slur against women in the 14th or 15th century. Though it's thrown around casually, it's one of those curse words we should use carefully and think about the implications when using it.
3. That Thing We All Do
Like "fuck," "shit" didn't start off as a bad word at all. Though the video has some idea of where it came from, it doesn't really elaborate how it became a bad word. Shit's a mystery, I guess.
4. This Classic
"Damn" comes from the Latin "damnare," which means "to condemn or to inflict loss on." When you're damning someone, you're essentially banishing them to hell, so understandably you wouldn't really want your kids saying it around their teacher.
Check out the video to learn more about all the best bad words:
Images: BuzzFeedVideo/YouTube (4)