Kiss my ass! - Shut up! - You asshole!
Oh, shit! - Goddamn it! - Jesus Christ!
(This page is under heavy construction and Inactive)
A Collection of Useful Exclamations in Many Tongues
Add your language!
In 1986, I distributed 10,000 copies of my "Introduction to the Maledicta
Onomastic Questionnaire," a 24-page booklet with hundreds of entries asking
for terms of abuse, exclamations, body parts, excretions, sexual and excretory activities,
and related maledicta. Some 400 contributors sent me their typed-up replies, from
which I have been able to use, so far, nasty and nice terms for "penis,"
"vulva," "vagina," and "female breasts."
I peaked too early -- this was almost a decade before the Internet and e-mail were
widely available on a global scale. With this new technology, it will be much easier
to collect material from around the world at a fraction of the time it took the contributors
and me to type up, mail, leaf through stacks of pages, and retype the information
before it could be published.
Observing what I honestly (or arrogantly) call "amateurish" attempts by
linguistically untrained collectors who now do what I started eleven years ago, I
believe it is time to start our own collection, done systematically and scholarly.
"Scholarly" does not mean boringly but accurately, by providing all essential
philological and cultural information in addition to the word or phrase itself. "Amateurish"
also means that no one supervises which words and phrases individuals add. Whatever
Joe Blow or Fanny Fellatio adds to their collections is good enough for them, but
not for us.
Instead of my over-ambitious first attempt -- 20 years ago -- to collect via Maledicta
1 (1977) material in all languages, asking for 957 items, I limit this
collection to three exclamations: (1) Kiss my ass!, (2) Shut up!
and (3) You asshole! -- surely very common, very rude, and very useful phrases.
Why did I choose these three exclamations? Kiss my ass! is probably universal
(ass is of course the body part, the arse, not the animal). I have
a collection in 74 languages, but as it was compiled by amateurs, I don't trust the
foreign-language equivalents). We are not collecting extended variants, such as "You
can kiss my ass!" or "Why don't you kiss my ass!", as common as they
may be. Shut up! shows interesting metaphors and idiomatic usages, as does
You asshole! The last one is also sex-neutral, that is, usable against a male
or a female target.
This collection will be as accurate as humanly possible, and I will hound those contributors
who send incomplete information until I have all the information needed, just as
I hound my Maledicta contributors who misspell words in their own language,
who don't use the proper diacritical marks, and who fail to provide important linguistic
and cultural information.
If you become a contributor, you will be credited semi-anonymously with your first
name and the initial of your last name only, unless you instruct me to use the full
last name. Once a specific language or dialect is listed, please don't send more
of the same. However, if you wish to add information or corrections to listed exclamations,
please do so. The Bavarian and German contributions are by myself and identified
- Set your browser to "Latin 1" or "Western" or whatever, so
that you can type and read accents (é) and other diacritical marks (ñ,
ü). If you can't see the acute accent over the e or the tilde over the
n or the umlaut (trema) over the u, your browser is not set correctly.
- If the language does not use the Roman alphabet, transliterate it by using the
standard system, which should be as close to the International Phonetic Alphabet
(IPA) as possible. Do not use the inconsistent and silly transliteration,
transcription and pronunciation systems employed in most English-language dictionaries.
Use what is popularly called the "Italian" vowels -- a, e,
i, o, u -- and never use ee if you mean i (as
in if) or oo if you mean u (as in tutu). Use ä,
ö, ü where needed (Farsi, Russian, Swedish), and kh
for the Scottish (Arabic, Dutch, German, Yiddish) guttural ch sound.
- Pronunciation of the exclamations may be added later, when the IPA symbols are
available in HTML.
- Use all diacritical marks available in HTML. If you don't know them, I can e-mail
you the code for them. If a mark is not available, explain the missing mark (e.g.,
"the i in xxx is dotless" or "the e in zzz has a Polish
hook"). This information will be useful, because if I typeset excerpts in Maledicta,
I can create any diacritic and combination, such as an a with a centered dot
underneath, a tilde above, and an acute accent above that.
- Provide the equivalent of the exclamation in the language(s) or dialect(s)
you are competent. The equivalent should connote the same meaning and offensiveness
as the English exclamation, but it may not necessarily be a verbatim translation.
For example, the German Du Arschloch! is 100% identical with the English You
asshole!, but in French it is probably not Tu trou de cul! but perhaps
Quel con!, which literally means "What (a) cunt!"
- For this reason it is important that you add the literal translation if
it differs from the English exclamation -- a significant piece of information
often missing in scholarly publications and in almost all amateurish works. Another
example: Kiss my ass! is in other languages "Lick my ass!" The differing
literal translation is a most useful contribution to the idiomatic and metaphorical
use of language.
- Add any philological or cultural information necessary, so that those who don't
know the language understand the connotations, etc. Don't assume what is clear to
you, if you speak Yoruba, is understood by a Quechua-speaking intellectual.
- Use the rudest level of language and provide synonymous terms, if they exist,
and explain them, too.
- In all three exclamations, use only the "informal" or "familiar"
version; that is, the way you would talk to a close friend, a child, or an animal.
- Use only the version addressing a single target (person).
- If the language uses different verbs or pronouns when the speaker is female,
supply and identify both versions ("said by a man," "said by a girl,"
"said by an old woman," etc.).
- Dialects and regional variants (e.g., Peruvian Spanish or Sicilian
Italian), as well as societal and cultural variants (e.g., used by
prostitutes, farmers, male homosexuals, or gangsters only) are most welcome, but
only if they differ from the standard language in vocabulary or word
order, and not if they differ in pronunciation only.
- If you have any questions about your contribution, e-mail
- You may e-mail your contribution now, observing the above guidelines, or request
"Send Questionnaire." In the latter case, I will send you a blank form
in "text" format which you fill in, then e-mail back. I am not going to
bother with hi-tech "forms" with text fields, radio buttons, check boxes
and the like.
There are so many more high-frequency words, phrases and exclamations that have
to be collected one day, such as "You bastard!" - "You bitch!"
- "That cunt" - "He's a brown-nosing prick" or terms for "female
masturbation" and "smegma," but let's start with the three exclamations
and see what we'll get.
Legg mi am Åsch! - Lit. "Lick me on the ass!" -
When Legg is stressed or mi, instead of the last word, this expression
becomes an utterance of surprise ("Well, I'll be damned!") and more, as
discussed in Maledicta 4. - Variant: Am Åsch leggst mi! - The
Å is long and the same sound as the Swedish, a "dark" o-like
a. - Related Austrian dialects use Legg mi im Oasch!, lit. "Lick
me in the ass!" (R.A)
Leck mich am Arsch! - Lit. "Lick me on the ass!" Variant: Am
Arsch leckst mich! (R.A.)
Kush mir in tokhes! - Lit. "Kiss me in the ass!" - There are regional
variants, e.g., Kush mikh in tokhes arayn! and awful transliterations, such
as tockes and tokkus. -- Tokhes "arse, backside, butt"
is derived from the Hebrew euphemism takhat, lit. "below." (R.A.)
Håit dai Fotzn! - Lit. "Hold your mouth!" - Fotzn is the
most vulgar term for "mouth"; it also means "face" (vulgar) and
"slap in the face." In Bavarian, it does not mean "cunt,"
as the German Fotze (also spelled Votze) means, even though both are
the same word. Variant pronunciation: Håit Pfotzn! - The ai in
dai is nasalized. - Variants: Håit 's Mai!, lit. "Hold the
mouth!" and Håit dai Goschn!, lit. "Hold your mouth!"
Mai (an animal's mouth) and Goschn are impolite. (R.A.)
Halt's Maul! - Lit. "Hold the mouth!" - Variants: Halt dein Maul!,
lit. "Hold your mouth!" - Maul is impolite, as it refers to an animal's
mouth. - Halt die Schnauze!, lit. "Hold the snout!" and Halt
deine Schnauze!, lit. "Hold your snout!" - Schnauze is very
impolite, as it means "mouth" of some animals. - Halt die Gosche!
- Gosche is impolite. - Halt deine Fresse! - Fresse is very
vulgar and derived from fressen, "to eat like an animal." There
are additional variants, such as Halt deinen Schnabel!, lit. "Hold your
beak!", another animal reference. - The least offensive version is Halt deinen
Mund! - Mund is the standard word for "mouth." (R.A.)
Du Åschloch, du! - In Bavarian, the pronoun is normally repeated at
the end. (R.A.)
Du Arschloch! (R.A.)
Schaise! or, stronger, Schaise, fareggde! - Faregga (German
verrecken) literally means "to die like an animal," "to croak,"
but the past participle fareggd is used as English "goddamn" or
"damned." Other examples: Glump, fareggds! "Goddamn junk!"
- Note that in Bavarian the modifier often follows the noun, in contrast to German.
Bavarian: Hund, fareggda! German: Verreckter Hund! "Goddamn bastard!"
Lit., "Croaked dog!" (R.A.)
Scheiße! or Ach, du Scheiße!
- Lit., "Oh, you shit!" (R.A.)
Fadammt, no amåi! - Lit., "Damned, one more time!" - One could
use Gopfadammd!, the Bavarian version of the German "Gottverdammt!"
but it would not be authentic Bavarian. When (Catholic) Bavarians are angry, they
use much stronger blasphemies. See "Jesus Christ!" below. (R.A.)
Gottverdammt! or Gottverflucht! - The latter
literally means "God-cursed!" (R.A.)
The literal translation of "Jesus Christ" is not used. Instead, Saggrament!
or, stronger, Gruzefix! - The former means "sacrament," the latter
"crucifix." These are just two of many common Bavarian blasphemies that
can be expanded, depending on how angry one is, to a long chain of blasphemous utterances
such as Saggrament Alleluja Graiz Gruzefix Saggrament, no amåi! Lit.,
"Sacrament hallelujah cross crucifix sacrament, one more time!" which is
equivalent in intensity to "Jesus fucking Christ almighty!" - Jessas!
("Jesus") and Jessas Maria! ("Jesus Mary") are not used
to express anger but surprise or pity in the sense of English "Jesus!",
"Gee whiz!", "Golly!" or "Oh, dear!" (R.A.)
The literal translation of "Jesus Christ" is not used. To express
the same intensity, one would have to utter something like Herrgott, noch einmal!,
lit. "Lord God, one more time!" or Himmelherrgott!, lit. "Heaven
Lord God!" (R.A.)
Coming, sooner or later: Basque, Bengali, Cantonese,
Norwegian, Polish, Russian, Swedish, Welsh . . .