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Old 06 April 2012, 06:50 PM
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Facebook Etymology of 'boobs'

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"Boob" is a 1950's shortening of "booby", which in the 1930's came from
"bubby". Linguists aren't sure, but "bubby" may derive from the German
"Bübbi" which means 'teat'.
In 1347, when the bubonic plaque ravaged Europe, one of the symptoms of
the plaque was called bubos or boobos which was a swelling of the lymph
nodes, hence swelling of the chest can be referred to as boobs.
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Old 06 April 2012, 08:32 PM
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Didn't bother to check on this directly, but according to Wikipedia, the name for the seabird known as the booby is thought to have originated as a corruption of the Spanish word bubie, which (again, according to Wikipedia) means dunce.

I'd assume that the use of the word to refer to breasts also derives from that or a similar source.
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Old 06 April 2012, 08:43 PM
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The first part is likely, but the second about the bubonic plague is most likely rubbish. The word bubo (I've never heard it said as 'boobos') comes from the Greek 'boubōn', which specifically refers to the swelling in the groin.
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Old 06 April 2012, 08:47 PM
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Not because of this?

http://nowlebanon.com/Library/Images...sure-blog2.jpg
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Old 06 April 2012, 08:54 PM
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Yes, Chloe, that is a plausible explanation. However, it is also rumored to have begun from the number 58008 on digital calculators.
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Old 07 April 2012, 02:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snopes View Post
Comment: Seen on Facebook:

"Boob" is a 1950's shortening of "booby", which in the 1930's came from
"bubby". Linguists aren't sure, but "bubby" may derive from the German
"Bübbi" which means 'teat'.
This is confirmed by the OED.

Quote:
Originally Posted by OAD
booby, n.2

= bubby n.1 slang (orig. U.S.).
Quote:
Originally Posted by OED
ˈbubby, n.1
Etymology: Compare German bübbi teat (Grimm). Connection with French poupe teat of an animal (formerly also of a woman), Provençal popa, Italian poppa teat, is very doubtful.
Earliest cite is 1690, long after the Plague.
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Old 07 April 2012, 05:45 AM
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That depends which plague outbreak (not that I think it's anything to do with the plague). There was a big one in 1665 as well.

People still die of plague occasionally, even in the USA - it's not been wiped out. (here - I was going to make a joke about Norfolk in the UK, which had a fairly recent death from the plague, but I can't find that story, so making fun of the USA for its medieval tendencies will do instead).
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Old 10 April 2012, 07:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard W View Post
That depends which plague outbreak (not that I think it's anything to do with the plague). There was a big one in 1665 as well.

People still die of plague occasionally, even in the USA - it's not been wiped out. (here - I was going to make a joke about Norfolk in the UK, which had a fairly recent death from the plague, but I can't find that story, so making fun of the USA for its medieval tendencies will do instead).
I remember on one of those medical soaps talking about the number of people who still get the plague at the turn of the millennium in the US and the reply was "Thank God for antibiotics".

As far as I know the only disease we have successfully eliminated is small pox. And that was the first disease we had prevention for (a vaccine). The first by a long time period.

Last edited by Dasla; 10 April 2012 at 07:41 AM.
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