Speaking English - Lesson #7 - ' Expressing distress'

I think Russian is mainly about swearing. So I have been led to believe.
There is a tale of an English army disembarking in Flanders in the 17th Century, on some futile expedition. One observer described it being done ‘with much swearing’ as they advanced.
So there we are, Brits liked to swear a lot. Even then, we had a poor reputation abroad.
There's a famous quote in Tristram Shandy by Laurence Sterne,

"Our armies swore terribly in Flanders, cried my uncle Toby, but nothing to this. For my own part, I could not have a heart to curse my dog so."

It was written in about 1759 and I think the character of Uncle Toby had fought in Marlborough's wars.*

*Edited to add, just looked it up. Uncle Toby had fought in the Nine Years War and was wounded at the siege of Namur in 1695.
Last edited:

Wooden Wonder

War Hero
Currently working my way through Terry Pratchett’s ‘The Truth’ and came across this: “ ... some cursing in Uberwaldean, a good cursing language, ... “


Book Reviewer
Uberwald is home to 'The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents*' who find themselves at the end of the line in Bad Blintz.

Well worth an overlook, some lovely echoes of downtown Hameln.

It is also the setting for 'Monstrous Regiment ' ....I particularly liked the hallucinations of Corporal Maladict when deprived of his/her 'Coffee Engin'


* Well if you make a living scavenging the rubbish tips near Unseen University - stuff is bound to happen.....

New Posts

Latest Threads