[Ads-l] bawdy = 'rowdily humorous; slapstick'

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM
Thu Jan 21 19:49:56 UTC 2021

Reading the lyrics reveals nothing bawdy to me (i.e., 'humorously indecent;
obscene; lewd'). Nor is the L.A. Times a reliable guide to 18th century

Anyone capable of writing the lyrics - written for a convivial singers'
club ("Sons of Harmony") - would know that the myrtle was sacred to Venus,
goddess of love, and that Bacchus was the god of wine (in poetic language,
often "the vine").

The singers want the spirit of Anacreon to help them harmonize about love
and wine in a conventional neo-classic manner, and the beauty of their
singing is irresistible to the gods. If someone gets horny reading the poem
(or singing the song), that's their problem.

Because if the harmonizers want also to fuck around, they don't say so
here. And they could easily find ways to do so, with or without Anacreon's


On Thu, Jan 21, 2021 at 1:56 PM Barretts Mail <mail.barretts at gmail.com>

> FWIW, the Wikipedia article is at
> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Anacreontic_Song <
> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Anacreontic_Song>. While frequently not
> followed, original research is prohibited on Wikipedia as it is a
> tertiary-sourced encyclopedia.
> The comment about the song being bawdy is not sourced, so that is original
> research, but I think "To Anacreon in Heav’n” is clearly bawdy even if
> judged by today’s standards.
> ###
> "And, besides I'll instruct you, like me, to intwine
> "The Myrtle of Venus with Bacchus's Vine.”
> ###
> The LA Times says that the song is a paean to drinking and sex (
> https://tinyurl.com/y4nv6xbp <https://tinyurl.com/y4nv6xbp>).
> Benjamin Barrett (he/his/him)
> Formerly of Seattle, WA
> On 21 Jan 2021, at 04:54, Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM> wrote:
> >
> > Wikipedia considers the turgid English song, "To Anacreon in Heav'n"
> > (ca.1770), to be "bawdy":
> >
> > "The song, through its bawdy lyrics, gained popularity in London and
> > elsewhere beyond the Anacreontic Society."
> >
> > The lyrics irreverently and humorously imagine the enthusiasm of the gods
> > to desert Olympus and join the harmonious singers of the Anacreontic
> > Society, against the wishes of Zeus.
> >
> > (N.b., a Brit at Quora.com assured followers that the U.S. national
> anthem
> > was based on a "pornographic song," but nothing could be less
> pornographic
> > than a bunch of drunks trying to sing these lyrics to the same melody as
> > the "Star-Spangled Banner.")
> >
> > JL
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

"If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the truth."

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

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