Uninhibited History

Various ramblings, musings, film reviews and fantasies of a couple of history geeks and their guests

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Origins of some words

I was talking to a friend who was writing a book, a paranormal involving men kind of trapped in a time bubble and could only speak English relating to the late 1600's.

She was having problems because a lot of the words we use now weren't invented then. Especially when writing an erotic romance.


I too had this problem when I was writing, Fox's Bride. (Which btw is currently 0.99 cents at Ellora's Cave, a Value from the Vault!)

It was a can of worms. I was about fifty years too early on many of the words I had chose, words which were historical, but weren't invented until much, much later. D'oh.

I felt my friend's pain KEENLY.

So I thought I would share with you the origins of some naughty words thanks to Etymology Online.

Cock: Referring as slang for penis didn't show up until 1670.

Pussy: Referring to female genitalia didn't show up until 1870. When referring to a cat or a rabbit, it came about in 1715 and as a term of endearment (for men and women) it was used as early as 1580.

Wuss: A form of wussy is a recent invention to our dialect, it was first used in 1982. Which means I am older than the word. 0_0 (I only know this because it was below the word pussy.)

Penis: Came about in 1670.

Tit: Came about 1928, however Titty was around as early as 1746.

Erection: Showed up in both means "putting up a building" and ... well you know around 1590.

Clitoris: Used first around 1610, however anatomist (This is directly from Online Etymology) "Mateo Renaldo Colombo (1516-1559), professor at Padua, claimed to have discovered it ("De re anatomica," 1559, p. 243). He called it amor Veneris, vel dulcedo "the love or sweetness of Venus." It had been known earlier to women."

So when you're thinking about writing a historical, especially erotic, be mindful of your word choices!