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What does 'Fornication Under Consent of the King' mean?

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βˆ™ 2016-01-06 23:53:26

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Nearly all these 'acronym' explanations for common naughty words such as f*** and sh** are nonsense. Any good reference dictionary will tell you the origin of such words, invariably considerably earlier than the supposed dates of the acronym.

http:/urbanlegends.about.com/library/bl-f-word.htm?terms=Fornication+Under+Consent+of+the+King

Urban Legends and Folklore Origin of the F-Word

Netlore Archive

Description: Folk etymology Circulating since: The 1960s Status: False Analysis: See below

Variant #1 Email example contributed by T. McInnis, 22 March 2001:

In ancient England a person could not have sex unless you had consent of the King (unless you were in the Royal Family). When anyone wanted to have a baby, they got consent of the King, the King gave them a placard that they hung on their door while they were having sex. The placard had F.*.*.*. (Fornication Under Consent of the King) on it. Now you know where that came from.

Variant #2 From a Usenet posting, 1 November 1990:

The word f*** comes from colonial times, when someone would be punished for 'prostitution' It was an acronym for the words

'For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge' F*** was written on the stocks that held these criminals because For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge was too long to go on the stocks.

Variant #3 From a Usenet posting, 12 October 1990:

I always heard that "F.*.*.*." originated in the 1800's in London, when they used to charge prostitutes "For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge". So officer got sick and tired of writing those, um, lessee, 26 characters, not including spaces, so it got abbreviated F*** and stuck.

Comments: Having consulted the definitive reference work on this subject (yes, there is such a thing: "The F-Word" by Jesse Sheidlower, published by Random House in 1999), we feel confident in dismissing the above claims as imaginative bunk.

The word f*** did not originate as an acronym. It crept, fully formed, into the English language from Dutch or Low German around the 15th century (it's impossible to say precisely when because so little documentary evidence exists, probably due to the fact that the word was so taboo throughout its early history that people were afraid to write it down). The American Heritage Dictionary says its first known occurrence in English literature was in the satirical poem "Flen, Flyss" (c.1500), where it was not only disguised as a Latin word but encrypted � gxddbov � which has been deciphered as fuccant, pseudo-Latin for "they f***."

According to Sheidlower, the earliest claims in print of supposed acronymic origins for the F-word appeared during the 1960s. An underground newspaper called the East Village Other published this version in 1967:

It's not commonly known that the word "f***" originated as a medical diagnostic notation on the documents of soldiers in the British Imperial Army. When a soldier reported sick and was found to have V.D., the abbreviation F.*.*.*. was stamped on his documents. It was short for "Found Under Carnal Knowledge." Two more variants appeared in a letter published in Playboy magazine in 1970:

My friend claims that the word f*** originated in the 15th Century, when a married couple needed permission from the king to procreate. Hence, Fornication Under Consent of the King. I maintain that it's an acronym of a law term used in the 1500s that referred to rape as Forced Unnatural Carnal Knowledge." Undoubtedly the most famous use of this etymological travesty was as the title of the 1991 Van Halen album, "For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge."

Comments: Aside from the Latin "fuccant" as a basis of origin, the most logical variant that I have heard is the following. That even in the relatively crude times of the middle ages, the catholic church along with local governments, following religious doctrine, kept sins of the flesh and crime down with fairly stern punishments (i.e. beatings, hanging, burning, dismemberment).

This practice was only challenged after the first coinciding of the Bubonic Plague in England in the 1340's. After the conservatively estimated death tole of roughly 30 to 60 percent of the English population, the previously very militaristic King Edward III was faced with a shortage of manpower and with it, food supplies, infrastructure, and (probably most important to the king) public sentiment. Understandingly the list of offenses requiring death were shortened as adding insult to injury was not in the king's favor.

One method proposed to him for alleviating the population scarcity was "fornication under consent of the king" whereby, for a time, the crime of unlawful fornication was stricken from punishment if the person in question was unmarried. It was the hope that the royal decree (basically a scare tactic) would encourage more people to wed and in turn have children. Whether it worked or not is history's guess but as a cynical person I like this theory best.

one of the the most gory , bloody and tragic times in England history is time of Henry VIII..because of plague, homicide,battles ,wars half of England population died and English army had insufficient soldiers. The King was worried about the future of Great Britain. At the end he has a research made and found out that there were lots of rascal men in jails and dungeons and so many prostitutes as well. So he decided to allow them to make love for increasing the population of England.

Mating was organized in jails between prostitutes and rascal men to provide population explosion. Since it was done by the permission of king it was known as " Fornication Under the Control of King" or abbreviated (FU_K). In 15 years population increased twofold. This is brief story of the word F_CK ..well also that point out the actual truth that half of English are illegitimate

The Variant # 1 is correct !! it was used in ancient time when the pplz had to take placard from the king before having sex otherwise they were punished !!

I have heard that it means "Fornicating Under Command of the King" which meant that they wanted to repopulate after the plague.

The true meaning of the f word is "fornication under the consent of the king". when foreign dignitaries would come visit the king, the trip would take days if not weeks or months. so they were issued a "f.**k. basically it was the right for the person to sleep with the eldest unwed female at which ever house he chose to spend the night.

Another Answer:

This is one of the false etymologies of the word f..k. Similarly, "Fornication Under the Command of the King" is also a false etymology.

2016-01-06 23:53:26
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"Fornication Under Consent of the King" mean the king gives you the right to freak any one you want that your not married to..


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In ancient England,pipo cudnt hav sex without consent frm da king.when pipo wanted to hav a child,they had 2 solicit a permission to da monarchy,in turn they wud supply a plaque to hang on their door when they had sexual relations,the plaque read "Fornication Under Consent of the King" dis z da orgin of the word..


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