A Brief History Of The ‘Cunt’
A Brief History of the Cunt. By Mina Moriarty CLICK HERE
From Hindu Goddesses and Pagan rituals to Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, the c-word has had an ancient and powerful history that spans centuries and cultures.
Why, then, is “cunt” still considered one of the most offensive words in the Western Hemisphere?
According to author and historian M. Geller, its first appearance in the Oxford English Dictionary in 1972 saw the word having been first sighted in London in 1230 as the street name “Gropecunte Lane,” a supposed Red Light District. Lexicographers also argue a connection to the Romance languages, with the word “vagina” rooted in the Latin cunnus, meaning “sword sheath.”
While “vagina” is used much more commonly in colloquial speech to refer to the genitals of people with vulvas than “cunt” is, its origins
are defined by its service to male sexuality, making “cunt” — interestingly enough — the least historically misogynistic of the two. “Cunt” has also been used in Renaissance bawdy verse and in Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, but it was not until Shakespeare’s era that its meaning began to fundamentally shift, during the dawn of Christian doctrine.