Skip to comments.'Most children learn how to swear before they even know the alphabet'
Posted on 04/17/2013 7:21:48 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
* 0.7% of all English spoken language is swearing
* Many children learn swear words before the alphabet
* Bad language dates to Romans and Anglo-Saxons
Most children learn how to swear before they even know the alphabet, according to a new book that examines bad language and its origins.
English speakers also use a curse word on average once in every 140 words, roughly the same proportion as the first person plural pronouns such as we, us and our.
The surprising preponderance of swearing in everyday language probably explains why the majority of children know at least one obscene word by the age of two, says language expert Dr. Mellissa Mohr, from Stanford University in California.
It really kicks off, she adds, around the ages of three and four.
She claims that over an average day around 0.7 per cent of English language consists of swear words.
In her new book, Holy Sh*t: A Brief History of Swearing, Dr. Mohr claims the upper classes are just as likely to turn the air blue as less educated working class people.
The group least likely to use swear words, says the researcher, is the middle class.
This goes back to the Victorian era idea that you get control over your language and your deportment, which indicates that you are a proper, good person and this is a sign of your morality and awareness of social rules,' she said.
Aristocrats have a secure position in society, so they can say whatever they want and may even make a show of doing so, she adds.
Dr. Mohr said her book sets out to correct some misconceptions people have about swearing.
(Excerpt) Read more at dailymail.co.uk ...
No that is not true.
I coached baseball at a local high school for three seasons. There are two or three kids I never heard a single cuss word from. The others are lost causes.
As a parent, I am f$#$’in outraged!
Because the Greeks, Babylonians, Egyptians and Neanderthals all had clean mouths and clean minds.
The source of the word comes from a German word, I believe.
Depends on how recalcitrant the mechanical object being worked on is. Sometimes, that ratio can climb to 50%.
I go outside my residence here in Red Hampshire, and I can hear the 'f' word (and all its companion words) coming from the neighbor's property all day long, from younger children up to 'adults'
Do you have to use so many cuss words?
This goes back to the Victorian era idea that you get control over your language and your deportment, which indicates that you are a proper, good person and this is a sign of your morality and awareness of social rules,’ she said.
Well, this lady still happens to believe this. So disgusted by the prevalence of bad language, and I am on a personal crusade.
Swearing is a sign of moral degeneration. A person who regularly swears, is frankly, degenerate.
When I was growing up, my dad hardly ever used a cuss word, but when he did, it was serious. It made you take notice.
For me, when I was in college, I used to swear a lot. Since then, not so much, to the point when I referred to someone as a “smart-ass”, my wife gave me a surprised and disappointed look.
However, certain people and situations sure do tax my ability to keep it in check...
A direct quote from my niece when she was about 4 years old.
Mother to Friend “I’m so excited! Today little Trayvon just said his first half word!”
When my daughter was 7 she told us about a horrible word that was said that day at school. We braced ourselves and asked her which word it was. “The ‘S’ word.” she said hesitantly.
I thought I should discuss it with her, but just before I used the word myself, I asked her, “Which ‘S’ word dear.” She looked at me and said, “Stupid”. I smiled.
Now she is 15 and I think I've heard her say the real “S” word twice, but no other profanity. The "F" word or God's name in vain would result in some bad consequences for her.
Children learn curse words from their parents mainly, until they are older. My father was extremely profane on a regular basis and I picked up the habit. When I was in high-school I began trying to clean up my act and by the time I was in college I rarely if ever cursed. I have my own personal standard of allowing the very rare crude word (dealing with excrement), but not other words that I consider profane or vulgar.
That being said, when cursing is done frequently, it loses its power. Therefore, other than an excited utterance (@#$@#$!! I just slammed my finger in the door!!) ... I try to only use cursing as an attention-getter, or to drive home a point.
Case in point...I rarely curse at work. The workplace is not a lockerroom. Therefore, when @#%#$@%% comes out of my mouth on the job, it gets people's attention immediately.
Which is why I do it.
I did not hear any profanity until I was 11 or so. But I didn’t dare to use it at home! Blasphemy on the other hand, I picked up when I was maybe 3 from listening to our neighbor rant at the TV. He was pathologically incapable of forming a sentence without inserting a “GD” or a “JC”. A very sound spanking cured me for life.
A wise man once told me “profanity is the crutch of the inarticulate mother#@&er.”
One of my daughters didn’t know what the F word was until high school. She does have speech problems, but she just did n’t hear us at home using that kind of language.
****This goes back to the Victorian era idea that you get control over your language and your deportment, which indicates that you are a proper, good person and this is a sign of your morality and awareness of social rules,’ she said. ***
Back in the early 1960s anyone using coarse language in certain social gatherings like a dance would be taken out back and “taught” some manners.
No one yelled “bull s#!t while at a C&W dance as they started doing back in the 1970s.
By the mid 1960s the college radicals began to do all they could to debase the English language and make vulgarity common.
Before 1968, movies were very safe for kids, even adult oriented plots were safe. Then after the murder of Bobby Kennedy, the movie industry said they would “police themselves”. What came out was the most violent, vile language movies ever made.
It is worse today which is why I rarely go to movies, or even watch them on pay TV.
If a person came into my house and used that type of language they would be shown the door. So why should I allow a movie in my home that does the same?
Well, they do if they watch American television.
No (eyes rolls )
My father was the same way, an old WW II vet and career military man, he could let out a string of profanity that would make a bartender blush. I remember him to this day working on the old car with a Cigarette hanging out of his mouth, cussing to high heavens. I've been told that shortly after I learned to talk I could imitate one of his profane rants to a "t". He thought it was hilarious...until I started doing it out in public... I guess between that and mom's complaining, it finally convinced him to stop cussing...or at least try to keep it PG rated, which he was pretty good at, unless he was really angry.
My friend (a preacher) told us his little boy came home from his first day at school. He asked HIS MOTHER “Mom, what does “M**********r mean?”
His mom cried to her husband...”Of all cuss words, Why did it have to be THAT word!”
College Professor Arrested Amid Profanity-Laced Rant Against Pro-Life Students Display
My mom called it a lack of vocabulary.
%#**&## Yes, I can swear, too. (But I try not to. We have a swearing jar and we put in $1 in it for every swear. Yes even me and wife does, too.)
I tell my kids the same, (using slightly different words).
I try not to use bad language, but sometimes one just slips out. Like when Zero says or does something jarringly stupid, or when hearing terrible news like from Boston on Monday.
That’s because they are pissed about something.
Does cursing include damn and hell? Does context rule? I remember as a small boy I used to pronounce helicopter HEE-LE-O-COPTER, because hell was a “bad” word!
It would be nice if freerepublic was socially conservative enough to not accept cussing, especially to the extent that it is done here.
Response: From what I have seen and heard, in say restaurants, over the airwaves(penis and testicles being local favorites)movies and television it is fair to state that our society has coarsened.
You might get more attention and surprise a lot of people if you use a four syllable word instead of a four letter word.
Or more likely they just didn’t have the concept of bad words. The most important element in cursing is designating some words as dirty and wrong for some audiences, without that it’s not possible to have impolite speech.
So...are you saying that I don't know many four syllable words? ;-)
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