List of common false etymologies

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This incomplete list is not intended to be exhaustive.

This is a list of current, widespread, fallacious ideas and beliefs about the origins (or etymologies) of common English words.

Obscenities[edit]

Ethnic slurs[edit]

Acronyms[edit]

Other[edit]

The statue of Louis Pasteur, where students would meet at 4:20 PM to smoke cannabis

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Barbara Mikkelson (July 8, 2007). "What the Fuck?". Snopes.com. Urban Legends Reference Pages. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  2. ^ Barbara Mikkelson (July 9, 2007). "Pluck Yew". Snopes.com. Urban Legends Reference Pages. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  3. ^ a b c Douglas Harper (2010). "Ingenious Trifling". Online Etymology Dictionary. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  4. ^ Douglas Harper (2010). "Fuck". Online Etymology Dictionary. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  5. ^ "Fuck". Merriam–Webster. Merriam–Webster, Inc. 2011. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  6. ^ "Fuck". Webster's New World College Dictionary. John Wiley & Sons. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  7. ^ Michael Quinion (2011). "Crap". World Wide Words. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  8. ^ "Thomas Crapper". Snopes.com. Urban Legends Reference Pages. May 31, 2011. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  9. ^ Douglas Harper (2010). "Crap". Online Etymology Dictionary. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  10. ^ "Cropper". Dictionary of American Family Names. Oxford University Press. 2003. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  11. ^ "Crap". American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language. Houghton Mifflin. 2001. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  12. ^ Barbara Mikkelson (July 8, 2007). "Shit Faced". Snopes.com. Urban Legends Reference Pages. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  13. ^ "Shit". Merriam–Webster. Merriam–Webster, Inc. 2011. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  14. ^ Douglas Harper (2010). "Shit". Online Etymology Dictionary. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  15. ^ "Gringo". American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language. 2001. 
  16. ^ "Spic". American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language. Houghton Mifflin. 2001. 
  17. ^ "Wop". American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language. Houghton Mifflin. 2001. 
  18. ^ Douglas Harper (2010). "Cracker (2)". Online Etymology Dictionary. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  19. ^ Barbara Mikkelson (March 18, 2008). "Picnic Pique". Snopes.com. Urban Legends Reference Pages. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  20. ^ "Picnic". American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language. Houghton Mifflin. 2001. 
  21. ^ Douglas Harper (2010). "Picnic". Online Etymology Dictionary. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  22. ^ "Passing the Buck". Snopes.com. Urban Legends Reference Pages. July 12, 2007. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  23. ^ "Buck". American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language. Houghton Mifflin. 2001. 
  24. ^ "Crowbar". Snopes.com. Urban Legends Reference Pages. July 12, 2007. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  25. ^ "Crow". American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language. Houghton Mifflin. 2001. 
  26. ^ Barbara Mikkelson (October 10, 2006). "Golf Carte". Snopes.com. Urban Legends Reference Pages. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  27. ^ "Golf". Merriam–Webster. Merriam–Webster, Inc. 2011. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  28. ^ "Golf". American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language. Houghton Mifflin. 2001. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  29. ^ Barbara Mikkelson (May 30, 2010). "Tip Sheet". Snopes.com. Urban Legends Reference Pages. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  30. ^ Douglas Harper (2010). "Tip". Online Etymology Dictionary. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  31. ^ Barbara Mikkelson (June 13, 2008). "420". Snopes.com. Urban Legends Reference Pages. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  32. ^ "Radio Codes & Signals – California". National Communications Magazine. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  33. ^ "California Penal Code Section 420". January 15, 2011. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  34. ^ "Police 10/11 and Penal Codes". RadioLabs. RadioLabs International Inc. 2010. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  35. ^ Alfred F. Matthews, Jr. (2009). "Police Scanner 10 Codes...". You Get Info. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  36. ^ "Oxford English Dictionary". Retrieved January 13, 2013. 
  37. ^ "Island". American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language. Houghton Mifflin. 2001. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  38. ^ "Island". Merriam–Webster. Merriam–Webster, Inc. 2011. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  39. ^ Barbara Mikkelson (June 16, 2011). "Handicaprice". Snopes.com. Urban Legends Reference Pages. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  40. ^ "Handicap". American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language. Houghton Mifflin. 2001. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  41. ^ "Handicap". Merriam–Webster. Merriam–Webster, Inc. 2011. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  42. ^ About.com article on etymology of "nasty"
  43. ^ Oxford English Dictionary
  44. ^ [1]
  45. ^ http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=sincere&allowed_in_frame=0