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Son of a gun a true story maybe ?

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posted on Aug, 7 2017 @ 12:32 AM
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I play golf with a diverse group of guys from different countries. Today one of the guys said "Son of a Gun, I never expected that putt to break that way"... Which reminded me of a story about the route this saying has taken from the British empire days.

Supposedly back when sailing ships and the man of war vessels the Brits used to help rule the British empire from afar pulled into a docking berth the Prostitutes would service the guys who remained upon the ship.. The best place below decks to carry out there trade was actually upon the cannons... Since birth control was more of a miss than a hit some of the girls ended up getting pregnant.. IF the children were not aborted or thrown into a dust bin and were actually registered as a live birth then on the birth certificate you had to list the father... Since many of the girls had no idea who the father was the birth father would be listed as "Son of a Gun".

Just a story but I would not be surprised if there is much truth in this one..




posted on Aug, 7 2017 @ 01:20 AM
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Wow cool story! Makes one wonder about son of a b#tch??



posted on Aug, 7 2017 @ 01:50 AM
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originally posted by: WUNK22
Wow cool story! Makes one wonder about son of a b#tch??


First thing that popped into my mind was the supposedly founders of Rome..."Romulus and Remus".. Now that is a story I find hard to believe..



posted on Aug, 7 2017 @ 06:09 AM
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It's always interesting to hear these kind of history rid bits.....Cool story . Thanks for sharing !



posted on Aug, 7 2017 @ 06:23 AM
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It's quite amazing how much of modern language comes from the old Navy and Empire days.
Lots of Indian words like Shampoo and Pyjamas, for instance.
Three square meals...The RN fed the ratings on small square platters....Around the edge was a raised area, called a fiddle, so scooping more food than you were allowed meant you were "on the fiddle".

Also, cold enough to "freeze the balls off a brass monkey" Comes from the brass frame that the cannon balls were stored in. Pretty much everything one didn't know the word for was called a monkey by sailors. Brass contracts faster than iron cannon balls in cold weather, when it was cold enough, the brass shrank so much the cannon balls tumbled off.

Finally, everyone is "Mate" aren't they?



posted on Aug, 7 2017 @ 06:28 AM
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a reply to: 727Sky

Thank you for this! I live to learn the little beginnings.



posted on Aug, 7 2017 @ 06:34 AM
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a reply to: 727Sky

sounds better than, little bastard.



posted on Aug, 7 2017 @ 06:53 AM
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damn those myth busters guys told me a different story in this old episode



starts @ 21:56



posted on Aug, 7 2017 @ 08:15 AM
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a reply to: Dr UAE

I think the OP seems more plausible.



posted on Aug, 7 2017 @ 09:05 AM
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a reply to: dfnj2015

then Myth Busters got busted



posted on Aug, 7 2017 @ 01:11 PM
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a reply to: Dr UAE

what a crock,

more like "son of a gun" predates the civil war, and such "impregnat" story was some bored soldiers concoction, myth busters is junk....



posted on Aug, 7 2017 @ 04:09 PM
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You know what? I had written a nice post, but looking a bit into some expressions, my world of knowing the origins for some expressions just shattered. I think it even went supernova.

I love learning about the origins of expressions as it is telling of a little aspect of the time it was conceived in, and it allows us to see the image that was originally conveyed as expressions sometimes change meaning overtime, or are mentally imaged differently because of society's evolution and technological progress, being adapted to the new reality.

I find "romantic" the idea of the canons for the expression of "son of a gun" as told in the OP. I always thought it was the polite version of the other, "son of a b...". And, well, what is also fun with expressions is that the context will give it its meaning. Son of a B can be as much a compliment as an insult. You can teach universal truths with some, or you can belittle if using others with sarcasm. The possibilities are endless.
They can be oral hieroglyphs with a meaning bigger and more complex that the words used, lol.

To me, expressions matter!



posted on Aug, 7 2017 @ 07:45 PM
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originally posted by: SprocketUK
...
Also, cold enough to "freeze the balls off a brass monkey" Comes from the brass frame that the cannon balls were stored in. Pretty much everything one didn't know the word for was called a monkey by sailors. Brass contracts faster than iron cannon balls in cold weather, when it was cold enough, the brass shrank so much the cannon balls tumbled off.
...


As much as I love this story, it's not true. Firstly, there is no known record of cannon balls being stored that way. Not only is it not recorded, it would be a rather stupid way to store them. Secondly, the earliest known "brass monkey" expressions (as we know them today) didn't mention balls at all, it was usually body parts such as nose, ear, tail, etc.

However, "monkey" was a term in naval use, and "brass monkeys" was an old name for cannons going back to the 1600s. From what I understand, the terms were out of use long before we start seeing the recent brass monkey expressions, so it may not connect back to that at all.

As an expression, the "freeze" variant appears to be comparatively modern - early 20th century anyway.

Edited to add: Minor correction, after a bit of research I found references to freezing tails and ears off monkeys, going back to the mid 1800s. No reference to freezing the balls off until the 20th Century, though.
edit on Ev50MondayMondayAmerica/ChicagoMon, 07 Aug 2017 19:50:24 -05000762017b by EvillerBob because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 10 2017 @ 08:58 PM
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a reply to: EvillerBob


That was some good detective work.

I can only repeat what I was told re the etymology and, while stacking balls like that wasn't an every day thing, it sure was when ships were being visited by higher ups.

Anyway, it was worth the star



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