RE: Re:       Re: whence BUCK NAKED?

Mon Apr 5 21:57:03 UTC 2004

        Maybe, but there were a number of years before 1990 during which "butt naked" could be said and written with impunity.  A derivation of "buck naked" from "butt naked" requires the assumption that "butt naked" came first, was almost entirely superseded by "buck naked," then began a come-back around 1990.  At present, this theory is entirely lacking in evidence.

John Baker

-----Original Message-----
From: American Dialect Society [mailto:ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU]On Behalf
Of RonButters at AOL.COM
Sent: Monday, April 05, 2004 5:52 PM
Subject: Re:       Re: whence BUCK NAKED?

However, in 1928 BUTT was not a nice word to use in conjunction with NAKED,
whereas BUCK was. Perhaps BUCK is to BUTT as GOSH is to GOD? That is to say,
BUTT NAKED could be old as the hills (no pun intended) with BUCK being what
polite people came to say and write.

M-W's predating must predate such archival resources as Newspaperarchive. I
guess that would be the place to look for raw (pun intended) data.

In a message dated 4/5/04 5:46:49 PM, JMB at STRADLEY.COM writes:

>         If the "butt naked" theory were true, then presumably "butt naked"
> would predate "buck naked."  Instead, "butt naked" seems to be relatively
> recent (Google Groups has 2/23/90), while Merriam-Webster takes "buck naked"
> back to 1928.
> John Baker

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