“The problem with defending the purity of the English language is that English is about as pure as a cribhouse whore. We don’t just borrow words; on occasion, English has pursued other languages down alleyways to beat them unconscious and rifle their pockets for new vocabulary.” - James D. Nicoll
ca. 3000 B.C.
(or 6000 B.C?)
Proto-Indo-European spoken in Baltic area.
"The swine turned Normans to my comfort!''
quoth Gurth; "expound that to me, Wamba, for
my brain is too dull, and my mind too vexed, to
"Why, how call you those grunting brutes running
about on their four legs?'' demanded Wamba.
"Swine, fool, swine,'' said the herd, "every fool knows that.''
"And swine is good Saxon,'' said the Jester; "but how call
you the sow when she is flayed, and drawn, and quartered,
and hung up by the heels, like a traitor?''
"Pork,'' answered the swine-herd.
"I am very glad every fool knows that too,'' said
Wamba, "and pork, I think, is good Norman-French;
and so when the brute lives, and is in the charge
of a Saxon slave, she goes by her Saxon name;
but becomes a Norman, and is called pork,
when she is carried to the Castle-hall to feast among
the nobles what dost thou think of this, friend Gurth, ha?''
"It is but too true doctrine, friend Wamba,
however it got into thy fool's pate.''
"Nay, I can tell you more,'' said Wamba, in the
same tone; ``there is old Alderman Ox continues
to hold his Saxon epithet, while he is under the
charge of serfs and bondsmen such as thou, but becomes
Beef, a fiery French gallant, when he arrives
before the worshipful jaws that are destined to
consume him. Mynheer Calf, too, becomes Monsieur
de Veau in the like manner; he is Saxon when
he requires tendance, and takes a Norman name
when he becomes matter of enjoyment.''
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