Actionable Offenses

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at YAHOO.COM
Thu Jan 10 17:47:59 UTC 2008

You wouldn't be meaning:

  1888 _The Stag Party_ (n.p., n.d.) [unp.]: Why is the bird hammering for worms on an old dry tree like a boy making water?
  He does it with his little pecker!

  Eugene Field may have edited or helped edit this book, poss. in Chicago.


Jesse Sheidlower <jester at PANIX.COM> wrote:
  ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
Sender: American Dialect Society
Poster: Jesse Sheidlower
Subject: Re: Actionable Offenses

On Thu, Jan 10, 2008 at 11:55:18AM -0500, George Thompson wrote:

> Actionable Offenses is the title of a CD containing
>"indecent phonograph recordings from the 1890s".
>(Archeophone Records, 1007) All recordings were done on
>cylinders; some are now to be found in the archives of the
>Edison company, the rest belong to a private collector. None
>are specifically dated; the booklet accompanying the CD (58
>pages) discusses learnedly the evolution of the technique of
>sound recording during the 1890s, and surveys the careers of
>the two men known to have made some of the records.


> I'm returning the CD to the library for the time being --
> I'm about to leave on a short vacation, and don't have the
> time to do more with this. If anyone else has access to it,
> have at it. Otherwise, more anon, which is to say, toward
> the end of January. An indication from JL, JG or JS as to
> which words should be given in context would be useful.


Thanks for calling this to our attention. Clearly I'll have to
get a copy and take it all--some useful stuff here.

BTW we now have an 1888 example of _pecker_, but it needs to
be checked, which is why it's not in OED Online yet.

Jesse Sheidlower

The American Dialect Society -

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