Sunday, 29 September 2019

pardon my french

Due to the candid and colourful language of Chaucer, we learn via The History of English that Middle English unguarded vulgarities was referred to as reverting to the Anglo-Saxon.
Despite how sensibilities change, some words remain too taboo for common parlance and polite company and there’s certainly much history in its waxing and waning. A particular intensifier that’s in certain contexts lightly veiled as fcuk was given its first imprimatur far better disguised though the cognoscenti could decipher the meaning: the mixed English and Latin poem of the sixteen-hundreds titled Fleas, flies and friars lobbies an indictment against the monks as non sunt in cœli, quia gxddbov xxkxzt pg ifmk—by advancing to the next letter, i and j as u, w and v not yet distinguished to impugn their religious community, masking the women of Ely and their trysts that make the religious figures hypocrites. We’re also reminded throughout how bawdy and lewd The Canterbury Tales is to inspire such an expression as the above reversion and how history will probably either judge us for our prudishness, cruelty or crudity of the graffiti will leave behind.