Second Earliest Version of "Motherf*cker / Motherf*cking"

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM
Sat Mar 23 18:35:52 UTC 2013

Perhaps a different witness had heard  it differently? No that it would
matter much. HDAS also lists "mother-sucking."


On Sat, Mar 23, 2013 at 2:10 PM, Shapiro, Fred <fred.shapiro at>wrote:

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> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       "Shapiro, Fred" <fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU>
> Subject:      Second Earliest Version of "Motherf*cker / Motherf*cking"
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> (I use * in this message to try to avoid its being blocked by people's
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> The earliest version of "motherf*cker" or "motherf*cking" in OED is from
> an 1889 Texas judicial opinion, contributed by me (if you look at my
> Wikipedia biography, you would think this kind of thing is the main focus
> of my researches).  I apologize for forgetting, in my previous e-mail, that
> Jonathan Lighter had pointed out a very important 1865-66 citation for
> "mother f*cking" in 2009.
> I have now found the second earliest (as far as I know) known citation,
> again from those colorful late-19th-century Texas courts:
> 1888 _Reports of Cases Argued and Adjudged in the Court of Appeals of
> Texas_ XXV. 435  Ridge passed on up the street, and Crisman again remarked
> that whoever fired that shot at him was a "mammy f-----g son of a bitch."
> Curiously, the following citation appears two pages later:
> 1888 _Reports of Cases Argued and Adjudged in the Court of Appeals of
> Texas_ XXV. 437  He heard Crisman say, and repeat, two or three times, that
> "Whoever he is, he is a God d----d mammy sucking son of a bitch."
> Fred Shapiro
> Editor
> YALE BOOK OF QUOTATIONS (Yale University Press)
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