[Ads-l] "sporting girl/woman"

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM
Mon Jan 25 15:44:22 UTC 2021


The OED has an ambiguous ex. of "sporting girl" in 1790, but the earliest
clear ex. is from the U.S. in 1887.

Here's one that's earlier:

1866 _Republican Banner_ (Nashville) (Dec. 21) 1:  A couple of
negroes...inaugurated a small row on account of a "sporting girl."

Syn. "sporting woman" is absent from OED:

1866 _Daily Courier_ [Louisville, Ky.] (July 24) 4: A young man named
Thomas F. Cary...was shot by a young lawyer named J. C. Henley, whom he had
ordered out of the room of a sporting woman named Spanglery, who had sent
for Henley and with whom he had passed the night.

"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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