Puritan euphemisms

Charles C Doyle cdoyle at UGA.EDU
Wed Oct 24 14:49:11 UTC 2012

Though printed versions of plays often do preserve somebody's (artistic) impression of colloquial speech.


From: American Dialect Society [ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] on behalf of Jonathan Lighter [wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM]
Sent: Wednesday, October 24, 2012 10:41 AM


> I haven't studied colloquial, secular writing, but I suspect there wasn't
much before -- when? the 3rd quarter of the 18th century?

My impression is that colloquial writing was very rare in America before ca
1830. It was given a boost by an outbreak of relatively informal, often
humorous writing in papers like  The Spirit of the Times__.

What this seems to mean is that everyday conversation in the 18th C. must
have sounded far more "modern" in certain ways [note weaseling] than the
written record might suggest

(Of course that's always the case.)


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