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Commander Rotal 05-27-2014 10:30 AM

Hecate's Sanctuary
 
For quite a while now i have been wondering about something: some english speakers seem to curse a lot, but don't use curse words. They'll say "Gosh" instead of "God", "Darn" instead of "Damn" and so on. I can kind of understand the Gosh-thing due to not using the Lord's name (which... should be technically Yahwee, right? I mean he doesn't get a different name in Christianity so presumably the old one is still canon, making "God" more of a description.), but there's tons of different words for curses where i have to ask: why? How is cursing with another word less cursy? Why is it "more appropriate" to say "Darn" when it's used in the same way?

Also, to prevent "Spam Thread, Motherfucker, do you speak it?": if you do the above, what alternatives do you use? And why?

Why yes i am bored, darn it.

Bolvar 05-27-2014 10:31 AM

It's generally because people prefer not to take the Lord's name in vain.

Or they have kids.

Commander Rotal 05-27-2014 10:34 AM

That's my point: why is a curse less of a curse if it's using another word? I don't see a difference between Darn and Damn if it's both used as a curse, it's like the difference between Shit and Crap. I get the not using the Lord in Vain, but aside from inventing sex he doesn't really factor in when using the word "Fuck".

Bolvar 05-27-2014 10:35 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Rotal (Post 1131410)
That's my point: why is a curse less of a curse if it's using another word? I don't see a difference between Darn and Damn if it's both used as a curse, it's like the difference between Shit and Crap. I get the not using the Lord in Vain, but aside from inventing sex he doesn't really factor in when using the word "Fuck".

Maybe you're unfamiliar with the concept of "polite conversation."

Insipid_Lobster 05-27-2014 10:36 AM

I try not to swear around my parents, which is hard because I swear like a sailor who has just stubbed his toe.

There's a lot less force behind a word like flip/flipping than fuck/fucking, that's what it boils down to. You don't get the same effect of calling someone a cunt with twat.

Aneurysm 05-27-2014 10:38 AM

It's as stupid as saying "the n-word". Either say what you're thinking, or don't say anything at all.

Commander Rotal 05-27-2014 10:45 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Insipid_Lobster (Post 1131413)
There's a lot less force behind a word like flip/flipping than fuck/fucking, that's what it boils down to. You don't get the same effect of calling someone a cunt with twat.

But why not? It's not like the meaning changes.

Noitora 05-27-2014 10:47 AM

It does, but I guess you don't understand euphemisms.

Erthad 05-27-2014 11:04 AM

Damn has religious connotations too, as in damning something to Hell. A lot of people think that that is a really severe thing to say.

Ultimately though, cursing is a way to relieve tension and a lot of people want to be able to do that without being crude.

Insipid_Lobster 05-27-2014 11:07 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Rotal (Post 1131417)
But why not? It's not like the meaning changes.

Harsher words with stronger meanings behind them, you -could- call someone an idiot but in comparison with fuck-wit, it isn't as strong an an insult? If you get where i'm coming from.

Korath 05-27-2014 11:24 AM

It is not only an english thing. Many (outdated) curses in French use -bleu as a man to avoid to say Dieu -God). It is historical and cultural based on those people religion, that's all !

Aneurysm 05-27-2014 11:40 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Lowtide (Post 1131429)
I just recently used the word "crud", just for shits and giggles, during a text conversation with my girlfriend and she was totally weirded out because she has never ever heard anyone actually use that word.
So she asked several of her English-speaking friends and the verdict was as followed: you use "crud", "gosh" or "darn" if you want to curse (for example on TV) but you're afraid you might "offend" someone.

To be super sensitive and careful around whom and where you curse seems to be a very American thing (her Irish friends just burst into laughter at the notion of using "darn" or "crud").

Puritans, y'know...

Noitora 05-27-2014 11:42 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Aneurysm (Post 1131430)
Puritans, y'know...

Shut up European.

Tilgath 05-27-2014 12:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Aneurysm (Post 1131430)
Puritans, y'know...

Godless Europoors can't handle American spiritual strength and purity.

Aneurysm 05-27-2014 12:08 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Tilgath (Post 1131434)
Godless Europoors can't handle American spiritual strength and purity.

It was you who couldn't handle our blissful decadence.

Saranus 05-27-2014 12:14 PM

The whole taking the Lord's name in vain is one of the Ten Commandments, but I remember in Sunday School the teacher told us that it's such a terrible thing to say something like "God damn it" because you are essentially giving God orders. You are demanding that he damn someone/something to Hell, and that's just presumptuous and arrogant. In a more obvious sense it's blasphemous because you are associating something that represents love and redemption with damnation I guess.

Shamu 05-27-2014 12:25 PM

Choosing the right curse word to convey the desired tone and amount of (dis)respect is one of the great joys of language, consarnit.

Torch 05-27-2014 12:29 PM


Ma Caque Attaque 05-27-2014 12:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Saranus (Post 1131436)
The whole taking the Lord's name in vain is one of the Ten Commandments, but I remember in Sunday School the teacher told us that it's such a terrible thing to say something like "God damn it" because you are essentially giving God orders. You are demanding that he damn someone/something to Hell, and that's just presumptuous and arrogant. In a more obvious sense it's blasphemous because you are associating something that represents love and redemption with damnation I guess.

That's one interpritation. The other that I've heard from biblical scholars, is that "taking the Lord's name in vain" isn't about saying God damn it and the kind, but it's doing evil acts in the name of God. Like if you went out an murdered a bunch of people, let's say they are abortion doctors, and saying that it's God's Will that you do it, or God wanted you to do it. That would be taking the Lord's name in vain since God isn't about murder, and has a commandment about not murdering, and yet you are invoking him as the reason behind your murder spree.

But you can say the Devil made me do it, since the Devil has no problem with taking his name in vain. Unless you are doing acts of charity and kindess... then I'd imagine he would be pretty upset you. :P

BaronGrackle 05-27-2014 01:10 PM

I treat "damn" and "hell" as actual curse words and try to avoid them.

Words like "fuck", "shit", and "bitch" are just gross and silly so I don't care about them much.

Ruinshin 05-27-2014 01:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bolvar (Post 1131408)
It's generally because people prefer not to take the Lord's name in vain.

Or they have kids.

That's a bit like not wanting to take Santa's name in vain.

Like, as in, quite literally.

God isn't the Name of the Lord (believe or otherwise), just as Santa isn't, well, you know, Santa's name.

Khyrberos 07-04-2018 02:48 AM

Hm. Interesting topic. Worthy necropost.

~~~

First off, you're right on the money in terms of replacing God's name in curses. That is, to my understanding, the classical sense of breaking the 3rd commandment ("thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain"). I would argue against the "God's not his name so it's not taking his name in vain" position by saying that while we can dive head-first into the etymological roots of the name of Deity, I don't think that's what it's about.

I mean, I would reckon that whatever language you speak, the word you use for God is the one you are most accountable to not take in vain, regardless of what it is. And there's a pretty good likelihood (the rest of the non-English-speaking world) that it's not [glottal-plosive][short-o][voiced alveolar stop], but something else entirely.

In this case, I would submit it's not so much the words as the intentions.

~

To your more general point: I'm not sure I'm on the same page. You say "curse a lot, but don't use curse words"; for me those are basically synonymous. One is only cursing if one is using curse words.

So, like, things such as "crap" or "darn" or "gosh" are simply tamer versions of currently-socially-unapproved curse words, that are not themselves curse words. At least, insofar as I understand it.

~

To answer the final part: Yeah, I do this. Pretty hard-core, actually. I consider it an important part of my character to avoid such language. This is largely due to my faith-background (LDS); classic Christian upbringing where such was discouraged. However, my parents went a step farther; they asked us to avoid even 'inappropriate' non-curse words, such as "butt" or "crap" or "boob". Unlike my siblings, that's still a code I live by.

While some might see it as oppressive, I never rankled, and honestly the 'one step further' kinda helped; in a way, if you are being careful about saying something as 'common'/'acceptable' as "crap", then you're nowhere close to accidentally saying "s***". I find that useful.

Personally, I generally use a lot of "gosh", "darn(it)", "dang(it)", "heck(in')", "freak(in(g))", "frig(gin(g))", "frick(in(g))", "crimin(idl)y", "goldarn", "gorram" (Browncoat wannabe, lol), "bum", "tush", "parts", "member", "privates"... Probably some others I can't recall because it's nearly 6am.
For pretty much everything else, [s]there's Mastercard[/s], barring me being silly & spewing out random stuff, I use the 'proper/scientific' term for a thing.

C9H20 07-04-2018 05:51 AM

The pedant in me feels the need to correct the title to Goshdarnit to Heck.

That is all.

Aneurysm 07-04-2018 07:37 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by C9H20 (Post 1620656)
The pedant in me feels the need to correct the title to Goshdarnit to Heck.

That is all.

I thought the same when I saw it just now. Don't know why I didn't catch it four years back when I posted in this thread.

I went ahead and submitted a ticket to the moderating team so that they can get on it. Top priority.

C9H20 07-04-2018 09:04 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Aneurysm (Post 1620665)
I thought the same when I saw it just now. Don't know why I didn't catch it four years back when I posted in this thread.

I went ahead and submitted a ticket to the moderating team so that they can get on it. Top priority.

Indeed, good thinking.

It is probably this glaring oversight that has kept Blizzard from reaching out and more directly engaging with this forum. I mean why waste time on people who don't use proper lingo?

Surely after we fix this Blizz will delegate a CM solely to talk to us and carry our ideas to the lore guys directly.


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