"Plough with the favorite heifer", 1749

Charles Doyle cdoyle at UGA.EDU
Wed Jun 7 12:42:52 UTC 2006

Literal "fucking with" sounds OK to my Southern white
ears:  "Zeke was out behind the barn fucking with Marysue."
Perhaps it connotes a greater degree of mutuality (or
sweetness) than ". . . fucking Marysue."  (And it's NOT the
same as ". . . behind the barn with Marysue fucking.")


---- Original message ----
>Date: Tue, 6 Jun 2006 21:20:17 -0400
>From: Benjamin Zimmer <bgzimmer at BABEL.LING.UPENN.EDU>
>Subject: Re: "Plough with the favorite heifer", 1749
>On 6/6/06, Wilson Gray <hwgray at gmail.com> wrote:
>> On 6/6/06, Charles Doyle <cdoyle at uga.edu> wrote:
>> >
>> > Incidentally, that metaphorical "plow" presents one of
>> > verb +/- preposition cases.  Interpreted literally, the
>> > phrase "plow with a heifer" would be taken to
mean 'hitch a
>> > heifer (rather than an ox) to the plow in order to plow
>> > field'--in contrast with Shakespeare's "plowed HER."
But I
>> > suppose we can say (literally or figuratively)
either "fuck
>> > (somebody)" or "fuck WITH (somebody)."
>> Can "fuck with" have a literal meaning of "have sex
with"? I know of
>> only metaphorical ways to use  it, e.g.:
>> John fucked with Bill's head by fucking with the
brother's shit.
>Well, you can use it with the literal meaning if you're
Kanye West, as
>we learned back in December:
>--Ben Zimmer

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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