- Registration time
- Last login
- Online time
- 4053 Hour
- Reading permission
This post was edited by dostoevskydr at 2016-6-27 17:48|
Do you ever wonder where the words you use in your day-to-day life came from? The answer may disappoint you. At some point, someone just sort of made them up.
But it should surprise exactly no one to learn that human beings are pretty perverse creatures, and occasionally, we allow our minds to slither out of the gutter long enough to influence our methods of communication. Sometimes, though, generations of use wash away the sleaze, leaving a seemingly squeaky-clean term behind.
What we think it means: Forming a necessary base or core; of central importance.
What it really means: Things to do with the ass.
We’ve got the ancient Romans to thank for this one. The Latin word fundamentum means “a foundation, groundwork; support; beginning.” So we’re talking about building houses here, right? Nothing dirty so far.
But once the French got their hands on the term, they tweaked it into fondement and added a curious new usage—to describe the anus. And sometime in the 13th century, the English made it into “fundament,” adding buttocks to the official definition.
It isn’t difficult to see the logic at play here. The foundation of the body, when seated at least, is the butt. So really, when using the term “fundamental,” we’re observing an object’s relationship to the hind quarters. So be sure to pick up some fundamental paper from the store and give all your enemies a fundamental kicking.
What we think it means: A small, carnivorous plant.
What it really means: A vicious, fly-eating vagina.
As you’ll quickly discover while reading this article, it seems that many of the esteemed, learned members of the botanical community are, in fact, relentless perverts. For instance, when faced with the challenge of thinking up a name for an amazing plant with the unusual habit of eating insects with a lightning-fast snap of its jaws, they couldn’t get over one little detail. It seems that they saw in its pink, hair-lined lips a resemblance to a certain portion of the female anatomy.
So naturally, this was the only point worth conveying when describing the tiny plant. They named it for Venus, the Roman goddess of love and sex, forever associating it with female sexuality. At least, they would have if we hadn’t all been suckered into the popular notion of it having been named for Venus’s beauty. Wake up, people!
What we think it means: A beautiful flower.
What it really means: Testicles.
Once again, we have those dirty, dirty botanists to thank for inadvertently mentioning genitalia in casual conversation. It seems that at some point, the folks in charge of naming new plants completely overlooked the incredibly beautiful, delicate flowers of the orchid and focused instead on the fact that its roots slightly resembled testes. It takes real talent to be that childish.
And this isn’t the first name it’s had referencing that resemblance. In Middle English, it was called ballockwort, “ballock” meaning—well, I suppose it’s fairly obvious.
But after that joke began to get old, the Latin orchis was brought in, also meaning male genitalia. Now, despite having tacked on a “d,” the giggle-inducing Latin root remains for all to enjoy. Who knew that the average florist had more cheap laughs on offer than a sex shop?
What we think it means: A meeting for a discussion of a subject.
What it really means: Semen.
This one really isn’t so hard to believe. I mean, the word is basically right there, staring us down. Yet strangely, few people seem to make the connection. Once explained, it makes a lot of sense. You’ve just got to fight your way through a bit of an etymological hedge maze to get there.
So “seminar” is really just an English shortening of the Latin seminarium, meaning a “breeding ground” or a “plant nursery.” And that, in turn, is taken from seminarius, meaning “things to do with seeds.”
Finally, we arrive at the root word “semen,” meaning “a seed.” Essentially, this means that a “seminar” is a figurative “breeding ground” of ideas, where figurative semen is shared freely among those in attendance. Now, go forth and share this bit of semen with the world, dear reader.