a little FYI (1 Viewer)

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Zé Tahir

Dec 10, 2004
Did u know that F*ck stands for: Fornication Under the Consent of the King

apparently back in the days, in England or something, people had to get permission to have babies. So they took permission from the King, and hung a sign outside their doors with the letters F*CK.

Also, did you know that the word "O.K.", was used by soldiers to describe how a battle went. If someone asked, how was it? they would say 0K, zero K, meaning, Zero Killed.

PS: there are other theories out there..

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Senior Member
Jul 28, 2003
I thought OK was originally a native indian word..!! I read about it somewhere.. in the 1800's.. in the Creek War of the americans against the British.. the native indians helped the americans in their war.. when the american president at that time asked the indian tribe leader about how they were doing.. he answered "OKEH".. the president liked the word.. and from there forward.. they used it to approve or describe a good situation..!! O.K


Senior Member
Apr 22, 2003
++ [ originally posted by iBianconeri ] ++
Did u know that F*ck stands for: Fornication Under the Consent of the King

apparently back in the days, in England or something, people had to get permission to have babies. So they took permission from the King, and hung a sign outside their doors with the letters F*CK.
I'm not so sure about that one. While it's an interesting theory, the use of the word 'fornication' throws it into a bit of doubt for me, since fornication by definition means sex outside of marriage. If the laws in those days required people to seek permission from the king to have babies, surely the rule wouldn't be so relaxed as to let just any two people do the deed.


Senior Member
Jul 28, 2003
agree with gray..

btw, I did a little googling about the word OK, and came up with this:


Eric Partridge, in Origins (1983), says OK derives from the OK Club, which supported Martin "Old Kinderhook" Van Buren in 1840. That isn't wrong, but it's only half the story.

William and Mary Morris, in the Morris Dictionary of Word and Phrase Origins (1977), mention the OK Club and give several other theories as well, including the off-the-wall idea that OK comes from "Aux Cayes," a port in Haiti noted for its rum. They imply the matter is still shrouded in mystery.

Baloney. The etymology of OK was masterfully explained by the distinguished Columbia University professor Allen Walker Read in a series of articles in the journal American Speech in 1963 and 1964.

The letters, not to keep you guessing, stand for "oll korrect." They're the result of a fad for comical abbreviations that flourished in the late 1830s and 1840s.

Read buttressed his arguments with hundreds of citations from newspapers and other documents of the period. As far as I know his work has never been successfully challenged.

The abbreviation fad began in Boston in the summer of 1838 and spread to New York and New Orleans in 1839. The Boston newspapers began referring satirically to the local swells as OFM, "our first men," and used expressions like NG, "no go," GT, "gone to Texas," and SP, "small potatoes."

Many of the abbreviated expressions were exaggerated misspellings, a stock in trade of the humorists of the day. One predecessor of OK was OW, "oll wright," and there was also KY, "know yuse," KG, "know go," and NS, "nuff said."

Most of these acronyms enjoyed only a brief popularity. But OK was an exception, no doubt because it came in so handy. It first found its way into print in Boston in March of 1839 and soon became widespread among the hipper element.

It didn't really enter the language at large, however, until 1840. That's when Democratic supporters of Martin Van Buren adopted it as the name of their political club, giving OK a double meaning. ("Old Kinderhook" was a native of Kinderhook, New York.)

OK became the warcry of Tammany hooligans in New York while beating up their opponents. It was mentioned in newspaper stories around the country.

Van Buren's opponents tried to turn the phrase against him, saying that it had originated with Van Buren's allegedly illiterate predecessor, Andrew Jackson, a story that has survived to this day. They also devoted considerable energy to coming up with unflattering interpretations, e.g., "Out of Kash, Out of Kredit, and Out of Klothes."

Newspaper editors and publicists around the country delighted in coming up with even sillier interpretations-- Oll Killed, Orfully Konfused, Often Kontradicts, etc.--so that by the time the campaign was over the expression had taken firm root nationwide.

As time went on, though, people forgot about the abbreviation fad and Old Kinderhook and began manufacturing their own etymologies. Here's a sampling:

(1) It's a derivative of the Choctaw Indian affirmative "okeh." Andrew Jackson, who figures in many stories about OK, is said to have introduced the word to the white man.

(2) Another Jackson story has it that he used to mark OK for "oll korrect" on court documents. In the one example of this that was actually unearthed, however, the OK was found actually to be OR, for "order recorded," a common courthouse abbreviation.

(3) It was a telegraphic signal meaning "open key," that is, ready to receive. Others say OK was used for "all right" because A and R had already been appropriated for other purposes. Big problem with this theory: the first telegraph message was transmitted in 1844, five years after OK appeared.

(4) It stands for O. Kendall & Sons, a supplier of army biscuits that stamped its initials on its product.

(5) It comes from Aux Cayes, already discussed. A variant is that it comes from the French au quai, "to the dock," said of cotton that had been approved for loading on a ship.

(6) It stands for Obediah Kelly, a railroad freight agent, who used to mark his initials on documents to indicate all was in order.

(7) It comes from the Greek Olla Kalla, "all good."

(8) A German general who fought on the side of the Americans in the Revolutionary War used to sign documents OK for Ober-Kommando.

the point is.. there are many theories.. and it's hard to tell which is the closest..


Senior Member
Jun 9, 2003
Another theory says that the OK comes from Otto Kruger. Apparantly, Otto Kruger was 5the quality inspector in Henry Fords first auto plant, and whenever he would inspect a car he'd put his initials, O.K. on it if it passed the inspection.


Senior Member
Jul 12, 2002
++ [ originally posted by Zlatan ] ++
Another theory says that the OK comes from Otto Kruger. Apparantly, Otto Kruger was 5the quality inspector in Henry Fords first auto plant, and whenever he would inspect a car he'd put his initials, O.K. on it if it passed the inspection.
I've heard that one somewhere as well...


Senior Member
Jun 9, 2003
++ [ originally posted by chxta ] ++
Gandalf, what about the origin of fvck?

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

****, a word connected to sexual intercourse, is among the strongest and most controversial vulgarisms in the modern English language.

When the word was expelled from polite usage, becoming profane, is unclear. Some evidence indicates that, in some English-speaking locales, it was considered acceptable as late as the 17th century, meaning 'to strike' or 'to penetrate'. [1] (http://dictionary.reference.com/help/faq/language/f/fword.html). Other evidence indicates that it may have become "vulgar", in polite use, as early as the 16th century; thus other reputable sources such as the Oxford English Dictionary contend the true etymology is still uncertain. The two seemingly contradictory hypotheses might reflect cultural and/or regional dialects.

Modern use and status

In the modern English-speaking world, the word is usually considered highly offensive. English-speaking countries often censor it on television and the radio.

Non-English speaking cultures tend to recognize the word's vulgarity within many cultures, but because the word has less effect, or there are no such censorship rules, they generally do not censor it. For example, American rap songs are frequently played, on European radio, with the word "****" in the clear. In one case, the album 97BT99 by Japanese rock group Buck-Tick contains an errata sheet which includes correcting a song title from My Facking Valentine to My ****ing Valentine; given that the song appears twice on the album, and is spelled correctly on the package one of the two times it appears, it is clear that the misspelling was a typo and not censorship.

Despite the word's undisputed "impolite" status, the word is very common in popular usage and, despite its supposed status as the "worst of all swear words", it usually has less offensive effect than less common profanities like "cunt" and "cock", as well as racial and gender slurs. Some have argued that the prolific usage of the word "****" has de-vulgarized it, a reverse example of the "euphemism treadmill".

To **** is to copulate, but it is also used as a more general expletive or intensifier. Some instances of the word can be taken at face value, such as:

* "Let's ****."
* "That was a good ****."
* "I can't believe she's ****ing him!"

Other uses are dysphemistic: The sexual connotation, usually connected to rape or (in the case of "**** you") masturbation, is invoked to incite additional disgust, but has nothing to do with the matter of discussion.

* "**** you!" or "Go **** yourself!" (I don't like you; please leave me alone.)
* "He's a dumb ****." (He's an idiot.)
* "Sorry, I ****ed up your computer." (Sorry, I damaged your computer.)
* "He's pretty ****ed up." (He's mentally or emotionally unstable.)
* "I got ****ed on this test." (I did poorly on this test.)
* "Let's **** around for a couple hours." (Let's waste a couple of hours.)

Additionally, other uses are completely vacuous in that there is no desire to offend nor connection to the sexual meaning of the word, and the word could be removed and leave a sentence of identical syntactical meaning. For example, rap music often uses the word "****ing" as a meaningless adjective (I'm the ****ing man) for the word's (rhythmic) properties. Insertion of the iambic word "****ing" is also an exercise for diagnosing the cadence of an English-language word. For example, the word "in-****ing-credible" sounds acceptable to the English ear, and is in fairly common use, while "incredi-****ing-ble" is very clumsy and never used. While neither dysphemistic nor connected to the sexual connotations of the word, even the vacuous usages are considered offensive and gratuitous, and censored in some media. Some vacuous uses include:

* "None of your ****ing business!"
* "Un-****ing-believable!" (Very unbelievable)
* "What a ****ing great day outside!"
* "Shut the **** up!"
* "****!" (Something unpleasant happened.)
* "He's a great ****er!" (He's a great fellow, not he's sexually competent.)

In the last usage, the word "****er" is used as a term of endearment rather than antipathy. This usage is not uncommon, to say "you're one smart ****er" is often a term of affection. However, because of its ambiguity and vulgarity, it's best not to use the word "****er" in the context of another person unless very familiar with him or her, since that affection could be misinterpreted.

Related to "****er" is the word "mother****er". Sometimes used as an extreme insult—an accusation of incest— this term occasionally used to connote respectful awe. For example, "he's a nasty mother****er" does not mean "he's filthy and copulates with his mother" but "he's someone to be afraid of." In this context, some gang members even describe themselves as "mother****ers". The word "mother****er", unlike "****", has not become more accepted in English usage: it is uncommonly used, and still considered highly offensive.

Because of its profane status and versatility, the word "****" can be used many times in an English sentence. For example,

* "****ing **** those ****ing ****ers!" ("Forget about those very disliked people.")
* "****ing ****er's ****ing ****ed!" ("It is broken.")

The latter example excellently demonstrates the versitility of the word ****, as each instance represents a different syntactical usage: an article, a noun, a present participle (to is), and an adjective.

Because of its vulgar status, the word "****" is usually restricted in mass media and barred from titles in the United States. In 2002, when the controversial French film Baise-moi (2000) was released in the USA, its title was changed to Rape Me, rather than the literal **** Me, though this may have been for effect. Similarly, the Swedish film ****ing Åmål was retitled Show Me Love.

Online fora and public blogs may censor the word by use of automatic filters. For example, Fark.com replaces the word "****" with "fark". Others replace the word with asterisks ("****") to censor it (and other profanities) entirely. To avert these filters, many online posters will use the word "fvck"— a poster to one dating website in 2003 thus invented the phrase "He who fvcks fvssy fvcks fvck-all." ("He who is choosy about sexual partners will have difficulty obtaining sex". The use of "fvssy" for "fussy" is technically unnecessary, since the latter is nowhere considered profane.)

Some have claimed that the word "****" is more commonly used among blue collar workers than professionals, and that it is therefore a trademark of the lower social classes. However, this claim is unsupported and largely untrue: college students, predominantly middle- and upper-class, frequently use the word among themselves, but more rarely with professors and authority figures. What is true is that the word is more accepted in some social circles than others— truck-drivers at lunch would probably meet no reproach using the word "****" with co-workers, while it would be very hazardous to a corporate executive's career to use it during a professional presentation, and while she might use the word in private, she almost certainly would not in this environment.


In situations where using or mentioning the word directly may be considered inappropriate, people often bowdlerize it, either referring to it with terms such as the f-word or the f-bomb (and in particular, the phrase "dropping the F-bomb"), or replacing it with feck, fudge, freak, fork, fook, fizzuck, frick, frickin, f*ck, f**k, f-u! (or simply eff), fahq, pock, fock, f0ck, phoque (actually French for seal), fawk, fcuk, the "hacker" terms phuck, puck, funk, or f***, or frig. (Although one dictionary meaning of frig is ****, the rarity of its use renders it less offensive.) In software contexts, fsck, fuk, fark and f2k are also used. In the formerly British Caribbean nations it is sometimes spelled fock. Fark is a bowdlerization which originated in the British Commonwealth countries, derived from exaggerated pronunciation in, for example, the Australian accent (but see also fark.com).

The fashion house French Connection United Kingdom controversially uses its initials, usually in lower case, fcuk, as a trademark symbol. The word appears on some clothing sold by French Connection, including clothes marketed to teenagers.

The previously-mentioned fsck usage is derived from the Unix command fsck(8) for "file-system check". It has been noted that this command is particularly appropriate, as it is the option of last resort.

In the Irish sitcom Father Ted the word **** was replaced with feck, a common slang word in Ireland that was acceptable to audiences in other countries.

Secondary meanings

As with other swearwords and taboo words, or intensifiers, **** is often not used in its original, literal meaning. Rather, it is an intensifier expressing nothing but the speaker's strong emotional involvement (often negatively, but not necessarily: e.g. "****ing good" is a rude way of saying "very good"). In the book Practical English Usage, the two meanings of the word are clearly illustrated by juxtaposing the sentences:

What are you doing ****ing in my bed?
What are you ****ing doing in my bed?

The first sentence means "Why are you copulating in my bed?", while the second merely emphasizes the sentence "What are you doing in my bed?". The second usage is more common than the first. In the former usage, emphasis will more often than not be put on ****ing, to convey that it is the literal act of copulating. An acceptable and more common alternative to the latter is:

What the **** are you doing in my bed?

"**** you!" expresses anger, and thus seems to be more related to "I am so angry at you, I am going to rape you to punish you" (although it carries no connotation of this sort) than to "I would like to lovingly have sexual intercourse with you". It also may be related to "**** off", which seems to be a reference to masturbation, where it might originally have been a vulgar way of saying "quit bugging me and go back to masturbating or whatever stupid stuff you usually do". It may also express indifference with respect to the well-being of another person or of other people in general, for example reacting to a request, or the imposing of rules.

Surprise or bemusement can be expressed by, "**** me!" or "Well, I'll be ****ed!" without suggesting an open invitation. Similarly, "Well, **** me stupid!" expresses even greater surprise. The phrase "What the ****!" is also used to express surprise, in the same way as "What the hell!". In internet slang this is abbreviated to WTF.

Another use of the word **** is as a replacement for the word God in profane statements as in "for ****'s sake!" For example "**** knows," or "who the **** knows," means something like "I don't know, and neither is anyone ever likely to know". Sometimes, the phrase "Oh my ****!" is used instead of "Oh my God!"

Meanwhile, **** can be used as a negation, as in "I know **** all", for "I know nothing".


The many uses of the word "****" are shown in this example: ****! He is ****ing that dead ****'s bum with a ****ing broom.


The word can be used as a verb transitively:

He ****ed her.

Or intransitively:

They ****ed all night.

Or as an impersonal command:

I'm not going down there, **** that, dude!
I'm not doing that. **** outta here!(Forget it!)


As a noun:

She is a real ****. (non-specific insult)
He is a good ****. (specific reference to sexual skill)
Eat my ****. (courtesy of Courtney Love)
What the ****?!
We had a good **** last night. (as a sexual action)



The interjection **** is frequently used to express shock, discontent and anger in general.

****! A punctured tire!

The variation **** me! may also be used to express great shock or surprise, not necessarily in a negative sense.

* **** me! They've hacked this computer!
* **** me! This is the best movie EVER!

Another variation sometimes used is ****in' a!.

Present participle

The present participle ****ing (or ****in' ) is commonly used to intensify a verb or noun. As described earlier, it is used more negatively than positively.

My ****ing boss made me work all weekend.
She is ****in' hot.

In addition, the present participle is sometimes inserted in the middle of a word as an intensifier, a process known as expletive infixation. The rules for insertion of the "****ing"-infix are regular: "****ing" may only be inserted in a multisyllabic word between metrical feet (also known as a tmesis). For example:

That was abso-****in-lutely cool!


Past participle

The past participle ****ed connotes that something is completely useless, destroyed, or messed up. For example:

The hard drive crashed, so now the database is ****ed.
Your engine's ****ed because you forgot to change the oil!
Now that the electricity is out, your computer is ****ed.

(This connotation can also be found as a transitive verb: He totally ****ed his engine when he forgot to change the oil.)

Phrasal verbs

"To **** up" means to ruin, and the related "to be ****ed up" generally connotes drunkenness in the United States. Although "to be ****ed up" less commonly refers to physical or emotional injuries in the US, this can be its primary meaning in other English speaking countries.

* I did ten shots in ten minutes, and now I'm totally ****ed up!
* The bouncer really ****ed up that guy who kept causing trouble.
* My sister's been really ****ed up since her fiancé dumped her. (could also refer to drunkenness, depending on the context or the sister)

"To **** over" connotes betrayal or a generally unfavorable act.

* Yeah, he slept with my girlfriend. I can't believe he ****ed me over like that!
* I got ****ed over at work today – they promoted my assistant instead of me.



Prepended to another word, the sound "f" is sometimes used to evoke the entire expletive, with an intensifying sense.

That's fugly (****ing ugly).
You ****tard (****ing retard).


Discourse particle

**** is sometimes used as a discourse particle or filler, in much the same way um... is used.

Her name is, ****... What was her name again?!



**** is used in various acronyms, especially on the Internet.

* FUBAR: ****ed up beyond all recognition (or repair); in computer programming examples, this is often split up into foo and bar and used as names of program variables, routines, etc.
* FFS: For ****'s Sake
* FIGJAM: **** I'm Good, Just Ask Me
* FUDIE: **** you and die
* FUGAZI: ****ed up, got ambushed, zipped in
* FOAD: **** off and die
* GFYS: go **** yourself
* GTFO: get the **** out
* LMFAO: laughing my ****ing ass off
* PFO: Please **** Off (usually refers to a letter of rejection from a potential employer)
* RTFM: read the ****ing manual
* SNAFU: situation normal, all ****ed up
* STFU: shut the **** up
* SUSFU : Situation unchanged, still ****ed up
* TARFU: things are really ****ed up
* WOFTAM: waste of ****ing time and money
* WTF: what the ****?


History of usage and censorship

Early usage

The earliest reference appears to be the name "John Le ****er", which John Ayto's Dictionary of Word Origins dates to 1278. What John did to earn this name is unknown.

Its first known use as a verb meaning to fornicate is in a poem titled "Flen flyys" some time before 1500. Written half in English and half in Latin, the poem includes the word fuccant, a hybrid of English root with Latin conjugation, disguised in the text by a simple code. It was originally written as gxddbov, and is decrypted by substituting each letter with the letter which precedes it in the alphabet (keep in mind the alphabet that was used at the time).

William Dunbar's 1503 poem "Brash of Wowing" includes the lines: "Yit be his feiris he wald haif fukkit:/ Ye brek my hairt, my bony ane."

Some time around 1600, before the term acquired its current meaning, "wind****er" was an acceptable name for the bird now known as the kestrel.

While Shakespeare never used the term explicitly, he hinted at it in comic scenes in several plays. The Merry Wives of Windsor (IV.i) contains focative case (see vocative case). In Henry V (IV.iv), Pistol threatens to firk (strike) a soldier, a euphemism for ****.

There are some urban legends postulating an acronymic origin for the word. In the most popular version, it is said that the word "****" came from Irish law. If a couple were "Found Under Carnal Knowledge" they would be penalized, with **** as the crime. Other variants include the ideas that the word came from "For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge," "Fornication Under Consent of the King," or "Fornication Unlawful in the Commonwealth of the King." However, all these explanations are considered to be backronyms and hence recent inventions.

Rise of modern usage

**** did not appear in any widely-consulted dictionary of the English language from 1795 to 1965. Its first appearance in the Oxford English Dictionary (along with the word cunt) was in 1972.

In 1900, the Prince Albert Edward, Prince of Wales said, "**** it, I've taken a bullet" when he was shot by an anarchist while standing on a Brussels railway station.

The liberal usage of the word (and other vulgarisms) by certain artists (such as James Joyce, Henry Miller, and Lenny Bruce) has led to the banning of their works and criminal charges of obscenity.

After Norman Mailer's publishers convinced him to bowdlerize **** as fug in his work The Naked and the Dead (1948), Tallulah Bankhead supposedly greeted him with the quip, "So you're the young man who can't spell ****." (In fact, according to Mailer, the quip was devised by Bankhead's PR man and he and Bankhead never met until 1966 and did not discuss the word then.) The rock group The Fugs named themselves after the Mailer euphemism.


In 1965, the critic Kenneth Tynan was the first person to say **** on BBC television, during a late-night live talk show hosted by Eamonn Andrews, causing a furor and a short TV career for Tynan. For British broadcasting, the next stage was reached in 1976 when the word was pointedly used in a prime-time early evening show, during a live interview with the Sex Pistols.

The films Ulysses and I'll Never Forget What's'isname (both 1967) are contenders for being the first film to use the word. Since the U.S. adoption of the MPAA film rating system, use of the word has been accepted in R-rated movies, and under the older rules, use of the word would automatically cause the film to be given an R rating. Later rule changes permit a single, non-sexual, strictly exclamatory use of the word in PG-13 movies.

Since the 1970s, the use of the word **** in R-rated movies has become so commonplace in mainstream American movies that it is rarely noticed by most audiences. Nonetheless, a few movies have made exceptional use of the word, to the point where such films as Scarface (1983), Pulp Fiction, The Big Lebowski, South Park: Bigger Longer and Uncut and Goodfellas are known for its extensive use. In the popular comedy Four Weddings and a Funeral, it is the chief word, repeatedly uttered, during the opening five minutes. One of the most humorous tirades demonstrating various usages of the word appears in the comedy, Planes, Trains and Automobiles (1987), where Steve Martin expresses his dissatisfaction in his treatment by a rental car agency. In several PG-rated movies, however, the word is used, mainly because at the time there was no PG-13 rating and the MPAA did not want to give the films R ratings; for instance, All the President's Men (1976), where it is used seven times, The Kids Are Alright (1979), where it is used twice, and The Right Stuff (1983), where it is used five times. Spaceballs (1987) is an anomaly in that it was rated PG after the 1984 introduction of the PG-13 rating, yet it includes the line, "****! Even in the future nothing works!" In the PG-13 rated movie Soapdish (1991), Sally Field, played an aging soap opera actress. Appalled that her costume included a turban, she complained to her show's producer "What I feel like is Gloria-****ing-Swanson!"

Films edited for broadcast use matching euphemisms so that lip synching will not be thrown off. One televised version of Quentin Tarantino's Jackie Brown, for instance, had the actors dub in the words frick, Nubian, and melon farmer for ****, nigger, and mother****er, respectively. In similarly dubbed versions of Die Hard and Die Hard 2, Bruce Willis' catchphrase "Yippee-ki-yay, mother****er" is replaced by "Yippee-ki-yay, Mister Falcon" or "Yippee-ki-yay, Kemo Sabe."

In a similar vein, many stand-up comedians who perform for adult audiences make liberal use of the word ****. While George Carlin's use of the word is an important part of his stage persona, other comedians (such as Andrew Dice Clay) have been accused of substituting vulgarity and offensiveness for genuine creativity through overuse of the word. Billy Connolly was a pioneer of the use of the word in his shows for general audiences.

Canadian prime minister Pierre Trudeau caused a minor scandal when opposition MPs stated he had told them to "**** off" in the House of Commons in February 1971. Pressed by journalists, Trudeau later unconvincingly stated he may have said (or mouthed) "'fuddle duddle' or something like that"[2] (http://archives.cbc.ca/IDC-1-73-571-2955-20/that_was_then/politics_economy/trudeau_fuddle_duddle), a phrase which then took on a humorous connotation of that event for Canadians.

During the tumultuous 1968 Democratic National Convention, Connecticut Senator Abraham Ribicoff, during a speech in which he nominated the anti-Vietnam War candidate George McGovern, departed from his written text to say, "If George McGovern were president, we wouldn't have these Gestapo tactics in the streets of Chicago." Many conventioneers, having been appalled by the response of the Chicago police to the simultaneously occurring anti-war demonstrations, promptly broke into ecstatic applause. As television cameras focused on an indignant Chicago Mayor Richard J. Daley, lip-readers throughout America claimed to have observed him shouting, "**** you, you Jew mother****er." Defenders of the mayor would later claim that he was calling Senator Ribicoff a "faker" or a "fink".

Freedom of expression

In 1971, the U.S. Supreme Court decided that the mere public display of **** is protected under the First and Fourteenth Amendments and cannot be made a criminal offense. In 1968, Paul Robert Cohen had been convicted of "disturbing the peace" for wearing a jacket with "**** THE DRAFT" on it. The conviction was upheld by the Court of Appeals and overturned by the Supreme Court. Cohen v. California, 403 U.S. 15 (1971).

Pornographer Larry Flynt, representing himself before the U.S. Supreme Court in 1983 in a libel case, shouted, "**** this court!" during the proceedings and called the justices "nothing but eight assholes and a token cunt". Chief Justice Warren E. Burger had him arrested for contempt of court but the charge was later dismissed.

In Colorado Springs, tavern owner Leonard Carlo had over 29 signs containing the word "****", including the slogans "Leonard's II ****ing Much", "No ****ing Children, Animals, Tabs or Checks!", and "No ****ing tap or draw beer". Signs on the restroom doors read "****ing Men" and "****ing Women". Also, the top of Leonard's bald head was tattooed with the words "**** U. Leave Me the **** Alone." A state liquor agent removed all 29 signs from Leonard's Bar on August 31, 1999 because he believed the signs violated a state regulation that prohibits profanity in bars.

Popular usage

Various people (primarily musical guests) have said the word on the weekly American late-night comedy show Saturday Night Live, generally with little consequence. On the February 26, 1981 show Charles Rocket, playing J.R. Ewing, said clearly, "Oh man, it's the first time I've been shot in my life. I'd like to know who the **** did it." He and the rest of the cast (except Joe Piscopo and Eddie Murphy) were fired soon thereafter. The show was in a slump at the time, so Rocket's indiscretion may only have been the straw that broke the camel's back.

Following the death of Monty Python legend Graham Chapman in 1989, a speech at his memorial was read by fellow Monty Python actor John Cleese, which claims to be the first time someone has said the word **** in a British memorial service.

The Channel 4 television comedy series Father Ted introduced to 90s Britain an Irish swear-word which was almost **** and not quite a euphemism, prolifically used by the drunken and lecherous priest Father Jack Hackett: feck. This was originally a term meaning to steal and is probably derived from the word fetch. This term is becoming a common substitute for **** in the United Kingdom as a consequence of the popularity of this series, and has been further bowdlerized into feth.

In the early commercial days of the Internet, the domain name registrar Network Solutions blocked certain obscene words from being used. There was no such restriction in the UK and a group of fans of VIZ comic registered the domain ****.co.uk. Their website claimed to be promoting the Fulchester Underwater Canoeing Klubb (Fulchester being the fictional setting of many of the stories in VIZ). The name now hosts a pornography site.

In the United States, the Federal Communications Commission fines stations for the broadcast of "indecent language", but in 2003 ruled that the airing of "This is really, really ****ing brilliant!" by U2 member Bono after receiving a Golden Globe Award was neither obscene nor indecent. In early 2004 the FCC decided to review that use saying "The F-word is one of the most vulgar, graphic and explicit descriptions of sexual activity in the English language"; a fine may result.

The first American play with the word **** in the title is Sex, ****ing and Making Love. It is being produced in New York fall 2004 by Genesis Productions Worldwide, LLC as an off-off-Broadway production [3] (http://www.sfml.info/). However Mark Ravenhill's play Shopping and ****ing opened in London, UK in 1996, and also played in the U.S..

In April 2004 the controversial R&B song "**** It (I Don't Want You Back)" by Eamon became the first song with an obscenity in its title to reach the top 20 in the US. The word **** was censored both on the packaging and on the radio edit. The single also reached #1 in the charts of several countries including UK and Australia. A reply to that song, titled "F.U.R.B. (**** U Right Back)", by Frankee was also very successful, and also reached #1 in the UK in May 2004, and then in Australia in June 2004. American band Nine Inch Nails' 2000 single, "Starsuckers, Inc." features a lyrical re-work of the album version, "Star****ers, Inc." intended to give the song a chance of broadcast both on U.S. television and radio. The track In Heaven on the Fatboy Slim album You've Come a Long Way, Baby repeats ****ing a total of 108 times in just under four minutes.

On June 22, 2004, while participating in the U.S. Senate class photo, Vice President Dick Cheney and Democratic Senator Patrick Leahy from Vermont had a personal exchange that garnered headlines in the United States. After comments by Leahy, Cheney allegedly told him to "...go **** [him]self", which was later characterized as "a frank exchange of views." In response, Leahy said that Cheney "was just having a bad day." Others have pointed to this incident and the events that led up to it as evidence of a culture of extreme partisanship that has developed in Washington. Senate rules prohibit profanity while the Senate is in session, but Cheney did not violate the rules because the Senate was not in session at the time.

Most broadcasters replace **** (and other so-called four-letter words) on broadcast television and radio with a beep "at times of day when there is a reasonable risk that children may be in the audience", or have the word/words silenced out, or a reverse of the sound of the word/words in question is used.


The etymology of **** has given rise to a great deal of speculation, which should be regarded skeptically. The authoritative Oxford English Dictionary is quite cautious in providing an etymology for this word. In the quotation below, the dictionary's usual abbreviations are spelled out for clarity:

Early modern English ****, fuk, answering to a Middle English type *fuken (weak verb) [which is] not found; ulterior etymology unknown. Synonymous German ficken cannot be shown to be related.

The first known occurrence, in code because of its unacceptability, is in a poem composed in a mixture of Latin and English sometime before 1500. The poem, which satirizes the Carmelite friars of Cambridge, England, takes its title, “Flen flyys”, from the first words of its opening line, “Flen, flyys, and freris”; that is, “Fleas, flies, and friars”. The line that contains **** reads “Non sunt in coeli, quia gxddbov xxkxzt pg ifmk.” The Latin words “Non sunt in coeli, quia,” mean “They (the friars) are not in heaven, since.” The code “gxddbov xxkxzt pg ifmk” is easily broken by simply substituting the preceding letter in the alphabet, keeping in mind differences in the alphabet and in spelling between then and now: i was then used for both i and j; v was used for both u and v; and vv was used for w. This yields “fvccant (a fake Latin form) vvivys of heli.” The whole thus reads in translation: “They are not in heaven since they **** wives of Ely (a town near Cambridge).”

As the OED notes, some have attempted to draw a connection to the German word ficken (to ****, in dialects: to rub, to scratch, and historically to strike).

A possible etymology is suggested by the fact that the Common Germanic fuk-, by an application of Grimm's law, would have as its most likely Indo-European ancestor *pug-, which appears in Latin and Greek words meaning "fight" and "fist". In early Common Germanic the word was likely used at first as a slang or euphemistic replacement for an older word for "intercourse", and then became the usual word for "intercourse".

Other possible connections are to Latin futuere (hence the French foutre, the Italian fottere, the vulgar peninsular Spanish follar and joder, and the Portuguese foder). However, there is considerable doubt and no clear lineage for these derivations. These roots, even if cognate, are not the original Indo-European word for to ****; that root is likely *h3yebh-, ("h3" is the H3 laryngeal) which is attested in Sanskrit (yabhati) and the Slavic languages (Russian yebat`), among others: compare Greek "oiphô" (verb), and Greek "zephyros" (noun, ref. a Greek belief that the west wind caused pregnancy). However, Wayland Young (who agrees that these words are related) argues that they derive from the Indo-European *bhu- or *bhug-, believed to be the root of "to be", "to grow", and "to build". [Young, 1964]

Spanish follar has a different root; according to Spanish etymologists, the Spanish verb "follar" (attested in the 19th century) derives from "fuelle" (bellows) from Latin "folle(m)" < Indo-European "bhel-"; ancient Spanish verb folgar (attested in the 15th century) derived from Latin "follicare", ultimately from follem/follis too.

Some have supposed that **** has cognates in other Germanic languages, such as Middle Dutch fokken (to thrust, to copulate), dialectical Norwegian fukka (to copulate), and dialectical Swedish focka (to strike, copulate) and fock (*****). A very similar set of Latin words that have not yet been related to these are those for hearth or fire, "focus/focum" (with a short o), fiery, "focilis", Latin and Italian for hearthly/hearthling, "foc[c]ia/focac[c]ia", and fire, "focca", and the Italian for bonfire, "focere". But these words came from New Latin, centuries after Middle Dutch.

There is perhaps even an original Celtic derivation; futuere being related to battuere (to strike, to copulate); which may be related to Irish bot and Manx bwoid (*****). The argument is that battuere and futuere (like the Irish and Manx words) comes from the Celtic *bactuere (to pierce), from the root buc- (a point). An even earlier root may be the Egyptian petcha (to copulate), which has a highly suggestive hieroglyph. Or perhaps Latin "futuere" came from the root "fu", Common Indo-European "bhu", meaning "be, become" and originally referred to procreation.

Fake etymologies

There are many imaginative fake etymologies, including the backronyms "Fornication Under Consent of the King", which was supposedly placed on signs above houses in medieval England during times of population control, and "For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge", supposedly written on the stocks above people who committed adultery or "Forced Unlawful Carnal Knowledge" in various things linked to rape cases. These acronyms were never heard before the 1960s, according to the authoritative lexicographical work, The F-Word. See also fake etymology.

The verb **** in different languages

* Afrikaans: fok ("fok my", "fok jou")
* Albanian: qi ("qifsha" when used in sentences)
* Amharic: tebeda
* Arabic: neak
* Armenian: kunel
* Bosnian: jebati (to ****)
* Bulgarian: &#1077;&#1073;&#1072; (eba)
* Chinese (Cantonese): diu (&#23628;, but often denoted as the character &#23567; inside the character &#38272;(&#62695;). Pronounced like "dew" in English)
* Chinese (Mandarin/Putonghua):
1. diao (&#23628;) Also refers to *****, esp. in Northern China; means "damn" or "darn" in Taiwan.
2. cao (&#32911;/&#25805;) (&#32911; pronounced "tsaau" and &#25805; pronounced "tsou")
3. gan (&#24185;) (used more by native speakers of Taiwanese, it occurs in the expression "Gan ni niang!" which means, "**** your mother!" or "Gan ni nia bo" which means "**** your wife")
* Catalan: follar, cardar, fotre
* Cebuano: iyot
* Croatian: jebati; fukati (probably borrowed from English); karati (literally, to scold)
* Czech: píchat (literally "to thrust", used as a slang word for "to copulate"); ?ukat, ?oustat (? as "sh"), mrdat (all three vulgar, to have sex [with], to ****); kurva! (vulgar, literally "*****", used as an expletive)
* Danish: knep
* Dutch: neuken (also, the Dutch verb fokken, meaning to breed animals, usually for pedigree)
* Esperanto: fiki
* Estonian: nikkuma, nussima, keppima
* Filipino: kantot
* Finnish: vittu (Curseword, "Voi vitun vittu!!"="****ing ****!!", literal meaning of "vittu" is "cunt") nussia (verb)
* French: baiser (to have sex with); foutre (dismissive: "Va te faire foutre!" meaning "Go screw yourself!"; "Fous le camp!" meaning "**** off!" or "Shove aside!"), nique (As in "nique ta mère!" meaning "**** your mother!")
* French (Quebec): fourrer (literally, to stuff); the adjective ****é, a borrowing, means broken or out of luck, and is not especially profane. See sacre.
* Galician: foder
* German: ficken (to have sex with, pronounced like ****en, just with a short e instead of the u)3
* Greek: gamao, gamo, gamisi; &#915;&#945;&#956;&#940;&#969;, &#915;&#945;&#956;&#974;, &#915;&#945;&#956;&#942;&#963;&#953; ("g" prounounced softly, as a voiced velar fricative)
* Gujarati: chod ("Ch" as in check & "d" is pronounced softly)
* Hebrew: "lezayen", from noun "zayin", which is a slang word for the *****
* Hindi: chod (&#2330;&#2379;&#2342;)("Ch" as in check & "d" is pronounced softly)
* Hungarian: baszni
* Icelandic: ríða (pronounced "ree-tha" with a soft th-sound)
* Indonesian: ngentot
* Italian: fottere, scopare
* Japanese: ["fuzakeru"¹]
* Kannada: kay-yi
* Korean: "ssi-bal" (&#50472;&#48156;), pronounced like the English words "she ball"
* Lithuanian: pisti
* Malay: puki (likely an adoption of ****) or pukimak (likely an adoption of mother****er) or celaka (bastard)

Edit: 'Puki' in Malay actually means '******' while 'pukimak' means 'your mum's ******'. The more common word for **** is 'kongket', as described by the Kamus Dewan (A Malay Language Dictionary). 'Celaka', although is a foul word, has no sexual connection. It is used to express an angry situation. Indonesian language (Malay language borrows a lot of words from them) uses the word 'celaka' for accident(more correctly, like car accidents) .

* Malayalam: uook
* Marathi: &#2333;&#2357;,Zav
* Nepali: chik (verb, pronounced chick)
* Norwegian: knulle, pule
* Persian: &#1711;&#1575;&#1740;&#1740;&#1583;&#1606; ga-yee-dan
* Polish: jebać (pronounced yebatch), Pierdolić (pronounced pee-erdolitch), kurwa (pronounced koorva, used as an interjection)
* Portuguese: foder (or comer subjectively used, because it means "to eat", in Northern Portugal pinar ou montar is also used)
* Romanian: a fute
* Russian: yebat [&#1077;&#1073;&#1072;&#1090;&#1100;] (transitive), yebatsa [&#1077;&#1073;&#1072;&#1090;&#1100;&#1089;&#1103;] (intransitive).
* Samoan: mea This is not used as a swear word but is not used in polite company. Other anatomical and physiological words are used as swear words but not "mea" or any other related word.
* Serbian: &#1112;&#1077;&#1073;&#1072;&#1090;&#1080; (jebati), &#1082;&#1072;&#1088;&#1072;&#1090;&#1080; (karati)
* Slovak: jeba&#357;, drba&#357;
* Spanish: Follar
o Argentina: coger (this same verb in Spain and other countries means "to grab")
o Chile: culear
o Colombia: pichar or tirar (the last one means "to throw" in most other Spanish-speaking countries)
o Cuba: singar similar to mexican chingar
o Ecuador: tirar, culear, pegarse un palo, pegarse un polvo (meaning "to take a dust" in most other countries)
o Mexico: chingar or less but commonly used joder also vergar (translatable as "to dick")
o Peru: cachar
o Spain: joder (usually as an all-purpose expletive, can be accompanied by other expletives) or follar
* Swedish: knulla
* Thai: 'yet' (as in to corpulate), 'ai hear', or 'yet maeng' (as in mother****er)
* Turkish: sikmek (Pronounced "seek-make"), düzmek, siktir (="**** off")
* Urdu: &#1670;&#1608;&#1583;&#1606;&#1575; (verb), chod("Ch" as in check & "d" is pronounced softly)
* Vietnamese: &#273;&#7909; or &#273;éo
o Example: "&#272;&#7909; m&#7865; mày!" or "&#272;éo má mày!" (insulting words similar to "mother****er", where 'm&#7865;' is pronounced meh and 'mày' is pronounced may)
* Yiddish: shtupn (&#1513;&#1496;&#1493;&#64324;&#1503;) (literally "to stuff")

¹Ambiguously translated back to English as "to fool around". Many have argued that a verbal translation of "****" into Japanese is impossible, but Japanese vulgarity largely comes from speaking in a forceful and explicit manner. Offensive language is communicated through directness, self-importance, emphatics, and curtly abbreviated expressions. When "fuzakeru" is lazily truncated by dropping the "fu" and the formal verb ending "ru" while adding "na" to mean "not" and "yo" for exclamation, we have Zakennayo! which if uttered aggressively, sounds like "Don't **** with me, asshole!" to the Japanese ear, even though its root literally translates as "don't mess around". It should also be noted that almost all American curse words, including "****", are recognizable to the Japanese because of their use in films.

²Thai has a medical word for sexual intercourse (which translated back means "genitalia touching") and at least two slang versions for it. But even the slang versions wouldn't work as insults. To the amusement of Thais, the name of the German automaker Audi sounds like one of the two slang versions. To confuse matters, Thais have a vegetable whose name sounds like **** (it irritates some tourists when they hear the name because they think they are being insulted). But the correct pronunciation for this vegetable is "fug" with the "g" like in "guest".

3 On an interesting side note, the word ficken was seemingly not used as an expletive in German until recently. (It was, however, a taboo word, but this due to its literal meaning, and its belonging to vulgar speech.) That today fick dich! is used as a common (though very strong) expletive meaning **** off! is clearly a borrowing from English. The general all-purpose taboo expletive and correct translation of ****! remains Scheiße, literally shit, or, increasingly common, **** used in untranslated verbatim.

Further reference

* Jesse Sheidlower, The F Word (1999) ISBN 0375706348. Presents hundreds of uses of **** and related words.
* Michael Swan, Practical English Usage, OUP, 1995, ISBN 019431197X
* Philip J. Cunningham, Zakennayo!: The Real Japanese You Were Never Taught in School, Plume (1995) ISBN 0452275067
* Wayland Young, Eros Denied: Sex in Western Society. Grove Press/Zebra Books, New York 1964.
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