Unfamiliar slang term

Jesse Sheidlower jester at PANIX.COM
Fri Feb 29 16:33:43 UTC 2008

On Fri, Feb 29, 2008 at 03:40:22PM +0000, Jonathon Green wrote:
> Jesse Sheidlower wrote:
> >---------------------- Information from the mail header
> >-----------------------
> >Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> >Poster:       Jesse Sheidlower <jester at PANIX.COM>
> >Subject:      Re: Unfamiliar slang term
> >-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> >
> >On Fri, Feb 29, 2008 at 10:11:09AM -0500, Wilson Gray wrote:
> >
> >>The quote is the set-up to the punchline of a joke. The word's meaning
> >>is clear. The question is whether anyone has ever come across the term
> >>elsewhere. The situation entails a wronged husband giving directions
> >>to a hit-man:
> >>
> >>"I want you to shoot my cheating wife in the head. The guy, I want him
> >>alive, but
> >>can you shoot his _todger_ off?"
> >>
> >
> >This is extremely common in British English. OED has an entry with a
> >first cite of 1986.
> >
> >Jesse Sheidlower
> >OED
> >
> >
> >
> Indeed. And as Monty Python put it in 1983:in their song 'The Meaning of
> Life': It’s swell to have a Stiffy, / it’s divine to have a Dick, / from
> the tinyest little Tadger, / to the world’s greatest Prick.
> Tadger/todger have always been interchangeable. The term seems to have
> started in northern dialect then moved south through the UK. However the
> EDD only offers, at tadger, 'the centre marble in a game of marbles'.
> One sees the physical centrality of the penis, but maybe the verb tadge,
> 'to stitch lightly together', a term used of a newly-married couple, and
> of a piece with other terms that reflect the 'sewing/stitching' motiong
> of intercourse, may be more to the point.

OED does also have an entry for _tadger_ (_todger_ is
etymologized as being a variant of that), with a first
quotation of 1949, in Partridge. And a quotation from Monty
Python's Flying Circus...must have been a favorite of theirs.

Jesse Sheidlower

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

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