The history of 'slut'
More than 500 years before Rush Limbaugh called Georgetown law student Sandra Fluke a “slut,” Geoffrey Chaucer used a form of the word to describe an “untidy man” in "The Canterbury Tales." “Why is thy lord so sluttish, I thee pray, And is of power better clothes to bey,” he wrote in the 14th century poem.
But in the ensuing centuries, the would come to take on different meanings – and much more provocative ones, as Limbaugh’s crude use of the word reminds. (Photo: Alex Wong for Getty)
According to what linguist Lisa Sutherland told the BBC, the noun “slut” was first used in 1402 by Thomas Hoccleve, in much the same way Chaucer used the related adjective. In his “The Letter of Cupid,” Hoccleve refers to “the foulest slutte in al a town.”...
comments powered by Disqus
- A grandmother’s trove of Civil War photos goes to Library of Congress
- Tribes See Name on Oregon Maps as Being Out of Bounds
- Holy Haystacks! Researchers Have Officially Discovered A New Monet
- Joan Baez, Sly Stone, Steve Martin, Ben E. King -- all honored by the Library of Congress
- StoryCorps to Launch Global Expansion With $1M TED Prize
- OAH denounces anti-gay legislation signed by Indiana governor
- Emory’s Leslie Harris says we should remember the racist roots of American colleges as we think about what went wrong at OU and other schools
- Stanford historian looks to the U.S. Postal Service to map the boom and bust of 19th-century American West
- U.S. historian denounces Japanese scholars' statement over wartime sexual slavery
- Timothy V Johnson Named Head of Tamiment Library