From: Don Pearce
Subject: Re: A new toaster design? Is it worth it?
Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 10:48:32 +0000
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On Mon, 20 Jan 2003 08:10:12 +0000, John Woodgate
>I read in sci.electronics.design that Ed Price wrote
>(in ) about 'A new toaster
>design? Is it worth it?', on Mon, 20 Jan 2003:
>>(Those who could not speak were assumed to be too stupid to speak, hence
>The two words are from different recent origins, and 'dumb' in the sense
>of 'stupid' didn't exist in British English until recently, and still
>isn't widely used. That sense of 'dumb' is a borrowing of 'dumm' =
>'stupid' from German (or 'dom' from Dutch) into US English in the 19th
>century. The British English word 'dumb' = mute came, much earlier, from
>the same root as the German 'Stumm' and Dutch 'stom'.
If we are into the etymology of insults - did you know that imbecile
comes from imbaculum - Latin for "no stick", meaning unable to walk
without a stick.
In US English, this would probably translate as unable to walk and
chew gum. Now who was that...?