slang terms for "clitoris"

Wilson Gray hwgray at EARTHLINK.NET
Mon Jul 19 19:20:54 UTC 2004

By the early 'Sixties, I had long been familiar with the terms
"clit(ty) and "the little man in the boat." However, I knew them only
as literary, therefore "white" terms and I wanted find out whether
there was a term for "clitoris" in BE. So, one day in 1963, I asked a
female friend whether she knew a slang term for the clitoris. She
answered, "Yes: 'pearltongue.' (the spelling used here reflects my
mental picture of the word, since it didn't occur to me to ask her to
spell it out)." The next day, at work, I asked one of my male
colleagues the same question. He answered, "Yes: 'purrtongue' (same
caveat re spelling as above)."

I found this quite interesting, since "clitoris" and some form of
"tongue" fall together in other languages. Cf., e.g. German
"schamzuengelchen," literally, "little shame-tongue" and Sardo-Nugorese
"limbeddha," literally, "little tongue." Now, I simply needed to
discover which of these forms - pearltongue or purrtongue - was the
original one and to find out whether other people knew other words.
But, for some reason, at this point, I totally lost interest in
pursuing this of research.

Today, just for the hell of it, I googled these words and got no hits.
However, when I tried "pearl tongue" and "purr tongue," I got one hit
each: "pearl tongue" from 2003 and "purr tongue" from 1998. The former
is actually defined (cf. "Very good at eating
pussy.  Makes a woman cum[sic] every time when they eat the pussy.  A
tongue that exites[sic] the women." The latter occurs in the sentence,
"... I gave her 'dah purr tongue' ...," spoken by a man.

 From this, I infer that "pearl tongue" and "purr tongue" not only
continue to be synonyms, but also that they have both undergone the
same semantic shift, in standard-English slang. Unfortunately, this
breaks the direct link between clitoris and tongue (no pun intended).
Hopefully, this direct link still exists in BE. Perhaps Clarence Majors
can enlighten us.

-Wilson Gray

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