sources and flying fuck; OED3 question

Joel S. Berson Berson at ATT.NET
Fri Apr 18 22:54:43 UTC 2008

Jon's two instances of "flying" are presumably  OED2 ppl.a. "2. a.
That passes (usually, that passes quickly) through the *air*", not
the more general sense of 4.

Jesse, can you tell us what sense of flying (adj.) the draft
additions of March 2008 put "flying fuck" under?


At 4/18/2008 04:45 PM, Jonathan Lighter wrote:
>Now that Ron has opened the door to the 18th C., it would be amiss
>to overlook the following graffito, found scratched into a window at
>Harrison's tavern in Bath before ca1732:
>   I kiss'd her standing,
>   Kiss'd her lying,
>   Kiss'd her in Health,
>   And kiss'd her dying;
>   And when she mounts the Skies,
>   I'll kiss her flying.
>   Don't thank me, thank "Hurlo Thrumbo," editor of _The
> Merry-Thought_ in 4 parts (1731-?).
>   Cf. a similar bawdy stanza of "The Old Chisholm Trail" that goes
> "I fucked her standing and I fucked her lying,/ If she'd had wings
> I'd have fucked her flying."
>   This cannot be dated definitively before the 1920s - but I ask
> rhetorically, "So what?"
>It clearly had an antecedent on the window of Harrison's.
>   JL
>RonButters at AOL.COM wrote:
>   ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> -----------------------
>Sender: American Dialect Society
>Poster: RonButters at AOL.COM
>Subject: sources and flying fuck
>It is worth reemphasizing that the OED *is* online, though if one does not=20
>have an institutional affiliation, it is very expensive. And of=20
>course--unfortunately--RDAS is not online (nor complete). A "newbie"
>be expected to=20
>necessarily have home access to either of these fine tools. (I own what volu=
>of RDAS have been published, but they don't travel very well, and I move aro=
>a lot).
>A look at Google Books gives some useful information, though none as good as=
>the OED's. The best is probably Wentworth and Flexner, which shows the 1940s=
>as the earliest use (not too far off from the OED's 1938). Casell's recent=20
>Dictionary of Slang has 1950s. An interesting note is found in a recent book=
>called A Lover's Tongue: A Merry Romp Through Love and Sex, which finds "fly=
>fuck" in an 18th century poem; that use, though, is is not in the modern sen=
>se of=20
>"ridiculously impossible undertaking--hence something worthless," but more i=
>the sense of The Mile High Club (but, it being the 18th century, the=20
>copulators were apparently on horseback), which the authors
>mistakenly take=20=
>to be the=20
>20th century meaning.
>In a message dated 4/18/08 12:47:11 PM, wuxxmupp2000 at YAHOO.COM writes:
> > But Jesse's larger point is important, esp. for whippersnapper newbies who=
> > may be dazzled, in some cases, by time-saving=A0 high tech.=A0 Online reso=
> > are not yet a substitute for looking things up in print. This is especiall=
> > true for books and magazines written after the current magic cutoff date f=
> > copyright of 1923.
> >=20
> > =A0 JL
> >=20
>Need a new ride? Check out the largest site for U.S. used car=20
>listings at AOL Autos.
>The American Dialect Society -
>Be a better friend, newshound, and know-it-all with Yahoo!
>Mobile.  Try it now.
>The American Dialect Society -

The American Dialect Society -

More information about the Ads-l mailing list