"The Bends"

Dennis R. Preston preston at PILOT.MSU.EDU
Mon Apr 15 16:11:33 UTC 2002


I assure you our teenage etymology of "get bent" had to do with the
"Young man from Kent" and not "the bends" from diving.


>Does anyone have a date and source for the first use of the
>term "the bends" to refer to the difficulties that divers
>experience with nitrogen solubility and decompression ?
>I would like to know not only where the term originated,
>but also how and when it came to be used outside of the diving
>community as in the phrase, "get bent".

Dennis R. Preston
Professor of Linguistics
Department of Linguistics and Languages
740 Wells Hall A
Michigan State University
East Lansing, MI 48824-1027 USA
Office - (517) 353-0740
Fax - (517) 432-2736

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