Alan Turing's home, Wilmslow. I have a fascination with words and how they came to mean what they do and take on the connotations that they have.
Brunswick dialect queer oblique, off-centerrelated to Ger. The verb "to spoil, ruin" is first recorded The sense of "homosexual" was first recorded in ; the noun in this sense isfrom the adjective. The word homosexual dates fromin C. Chaddock's translation of Krafft-Ebing's Psychopathia Sexualisfrom homo- a combination form from the Greek homos same and the Latin-based sexual.
Havelock Ellis, Studies in Psychology Homosexual was first used as a noun in in French, in English in Interesting comment in the etymological dictionary: In technical use, either male or female; but in non-technical use almost always male. The slang shortened form homo first appeared in The alternative homophile was coined in reference to the homosexual regarded as a person of a particular social group, rather than a sexual abnormality, inbut it didn't catch on.
Homophobia is from Lesbian dates tofrom the Latin Lesbius, from Greek lesbios of Lesbos. Lesbos is a Greek island in northeastern Aegean Sea. The name originally may have meant "wooded.
The meaning "relating to homosexual relations between women" dates from There is a movement among inhabitants of Lesbos to return the meaning of Lesbian to them. Lesbianism on the other hand dates from and the noun lesbian in this sense was first recorded in The slang variant lez is from ; lesbo first attested in Before this, the principal figurative use common in 17c.
Hence it came to mean "pliant morality or judgment.
And this is the nature of the equitable, a correction of law where it is defective owing to its universality. For when the thing is indefinite the rule also is indefinite, like the leaden rule used in making the Lesbian moulding; the rule adapts itself to the shape of the stone and is not rigid, and so too the decree is adapted to the facts.
With all the homos and lezzies running around, it's no wonder the stock market crashed. But bulldyker engage in lesbian activities is attested from and bulldyke as a noun in A source from lists dyke as slang for "the vulva.
The sense of "effeminate homosexual" is s in homosexual slang, probably from notion of mincing motion. The meaning "a sweetheart" is attested from ; the figurative sense of "burning passion" was in M. The verb sense of "unleash invective on a computer network" is from s. Flamer, flaming glaringly homosexual are homosexual slang from s, but flamer "glaringly conspicuous person or thing" and flaming "glaringly conspicuous" are much earlier in the general sense, both originally with reference to "wenches.
By the meaning became brilliant, showy. Gey cats also were said to be tramps who offered sexual services to women. Note about the catamite thing.
Sodomy with women
Catamitus is the corrupt Latin spelling of Ganymedus, who was Jupiter's beloved cup-bearer Wink, wink. Nudge, nudge. Say no more. It came to mean, of course, the younger partner in a pederastic relationship between two males. Reams Volumes could be written about the historical ificance of such relationships Homosexuals, among themselves, used the word gay in this sense since at least Rawson ["Wicked Words"] notes a male prostitute using gay in reference to male homosexuals but also to female prostitutes in Augustus Dolphus is his name, From Skiddy-ma-dink they say he came, He's a handsome man and he's proud and poor, This gay young clerk in the Dry-Goods Store.
The word gay in the s had an overall tinge of promiscuity. A gay house was a brothel.
Catamite female equivalent
The suggestion of immorality in the word can be traced back to Gay as a noun meaning "a usually male homosexual" is attested from The shortened form fag is from Both are probably from earlier contemptuous term for "woman"especially an old and unpleasant one, in reference to faggot 1 "bundle of sticks," as something awkward that has to be carried cf. It was used in this sense in 20c. Lawrence and James Joyce, among others. It may also be reinforced by Yiddish faygele homosexual, lit.
It also may have roots in British public school slang fag a junior who does certain duties for a senior"with suggestions of catamite. This was also used as a verb.
The oft-heard statement that male homosexuals were called faggots in reference to their being burned at the stake is an etymological urban legend. Burning was sometimes a punishment meted out to homosexuals in Christian Europe on the suggestion of the Biblical fate of Sodom and Gomorahbut in England, where parliament had made homosexuality a capital offense inhanging was the method prescribed. Any use of faggot in connection with public executions had long become an English historical obscurity by the time the word began to be used for "male homosexual" in 20th century American slang, whereas the contemptuous slang word for "woman" and the other possible sources or influences listed here was in active use.
Meaning "male homosexual," W. Auden, Popularized in by Susan Sontag, Notes on "Camp". Meaning "young sexually attractive person" is recorded fromprobably from Twinkies, trademark name of a cupcake junk food introduced in by Continental Baking Company, but ss British homosexual slang used a similar sense.
Popular 16c. The meaning "effeminate homosexual male" is first recorded in Narrower sense c Figurative sense of "to draw in as with a moving bait, entice, allure" is from Meaning "to cruise in search of sexual encounters" is recorded fromoriginally in homosexual slang.
One has to wonder about the fascination people have had about effeminate men. One should, I suppose, also wonder about the connection people make between homosexuality and pederasty and wonder why they think that it would be appropriate to do so in this day and age.
The connection between homosexuals and prostitution, at least in the form of the language we use, is also interesting, don't you think? Of Queers and Fags, Hussies and Catamites. Community This content is not subject to review by Daily Kos staff prior to publication.
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Share this article. Alan Turing's home, Wilmslow I have a fascination with words and how they came to mean what they do and take on the connotations that they have. Much of the quoted material here I do the research so you don't have to. This essay was first published on June 1, Without further ado: queer -strange, peculiar, eccentric, from Scottish, perhaps from Low Ger. I admit to being queer. But I am not spoiled or ruined. Havelock Ellis, Studies in PsychologyHomosexual was first used as a noun in in French, in English in Well, I'm sure homophobia is from way before that, but the word is from One follow-up on lesbian.