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Who invented swearing who said these words were rude?

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June 06, 2012 3:27AM

Swearing has been around since man began, but the meaning of the words have changed and so have the words. The Romans had 800 dirty words, but today there are only about 20 words. Many words in use today were not swear words 500 years ago and some as early as 60 years ago were not swear words. Buttocks goes back to at least the 13th century, but was not recorded until 1859. Language changes as people use it and new words are added. There always have been a benchmark of proper behavior in society, but that too changes. There have been eras where behavior was stricter and more formal, but still there was a line that people were not to cross and was considered "rude." Today many people seem to have lost that line in what is impolite and tolerable. In 1623 in Britain an Act of Parliament was passed making it illegal to swear and people were fined for mild oaths. The laws were made stricter in 1649 to the extent that swearing at a parent became punishable by death. Yet, there are professions and people who still consider swearing impolite, rude, and crude. The person who swears shows a lack of vocabulary and education since they seem unable to words other than the most base words to relate and describe their world, feelings, and thoughts.

Different cultures swear differently with different words. In French it is an insult to call someone a camel, or a cow. Some cultures don't swear at all. The Japanese, Malayans, and American Natives have no native swear words. The Finns, lacking words adopted the word "ravintolassa" which means "in the restaurant." Swearing involves one or more qualities: filthy, the forbidden, and the sacred. Most cultures also have two levels of swearing and those are the mild and the profane. It is hard to trace words because most were not written down.