Minced oath

  • James Brandon

    Senior Member
    English + French - UK
    Oui, mais est-ce-que cela s'emploie en français? Je ne l'ai jamais entendu. Je crois qu'il y a bien une expression en français pour ça, mais je n'arrive pas à m'en rappeler.
     

    LivingTree

    Banned
    English - Canadian
    Câline de bine, they are so common in Quebec that hopefully one of our colleagues from there will have a term!

    Quebec French profanity
    which includes List of common sacres, Mild forms, and which directs to the wiki for "minced oaths" ;)

    All that the French article Sacre québécois seems to offer is euphémismes.

    It does refer to the variantes douces of various profane uses of sacres, so possibly juron(s) doux? But google finds only a very few uses of those terms -- more of sacres doux. Which would really mean "mild oath", so not quite the same.
     
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    James Brandon

    Senior Member
    English + French - UK
    This is interesting and French Canadian appears to be particularly fertile, here... "Euphémisme", however, is a general term, to my understanding: it does not apply to swear words/expressions only, but to toning down anything deemed potentially controversial, offensive and/or difficult. This is not to say it is wrong: but it is not very specific, I believe.
     

    franc 91

    Senior Member
    English - GB
    I've found - in books about dialects and language used in French regions, the term - un juron adouci.
     
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    guillaumedemanzac

    Senior Member
    English - Southern England Home Counties
    Minced oath is not an English phrase I have ever heard. I assume it comes from the phrase he doesn't mince his words - meaning he speaks plain English and so therefore a minced oath is where he does mince his words and prevaricates or diverges from the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
    Wikipedia assumes it is a euphemistic usage which "minces" the original into a more acceptable form (e.g. gordon bennett) which is not directly blasphemous.
    "Softening" a blasphemy sounds a good French version.
    guillaume
     

    LivingTree

    Banned
    English - Canadian
    Google finds that juron adouci has been used here at this forum, anyhow!

    sâprer des coups de pied - WordReference Forums
    câline de bine - WordReference Forums ... as I was saying ;)

    Here's one I didn't know:
    Glossaire franco-canadien et vocabulaire de locutions vicieuses usitées au Canada
    17. Sapré Ctre. de la Fr. Juron adouci de Sacré.

    That definition also shows up in Les Acadiens Louisianais Et Leur Parler, and google finds loads of other references to the jurons adoucis of Quebec.

    So juron adouci sounds right.

    For "minced oath", if wiki has a page devoted to it, it's gotta exist. ;)
     

    James Brandon

    Senior Member
    English + French - UK
    I think we can agree that "minced oath" exists, that "juron adouci" exists, and that they mean the same.

    If someone knows another expression in French for "minced oath", hopefully, we will hear of it...
     

    Nicomon

    Senior Member
    Français, Québec ♀
    Hello,

    À part « juron adouci », il y aurait : juron atténué / juron édulcoré / juron non grossier.

    Antidote définit les bonté divine, câline, cibole, mautadit, tabarouette et autres euphémismes du genre comme : juron inoffensif.

    Et moi, je dirais à la québécoise : des sacres polis.

    Edit - inspirée de l'extrait ci-dessous, copié de cette page du site The Phrase Finder (notez l'adresse - org.uk ;)):
    Minced oaths are a sub-group of euphemisms used to avoid swearing when expressing surprise or annoyance. If you hit your thumb with a hammer when great aunt Edith is in the room what do you say? It's probably going to be a minced oath. Shakespeare might have resorted to 'gadzooks' (God's hooks - referring to the nails in the cross), we might try 'shoot' or 'freaking heck'.
    Il me vient maintenant : Sacres de matante, ce qui pourrait donner en français international : Jurons de taties .

    Je doute que ça existe, mais il me semble que ce serait compris. :D
     
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    James Brandon

    Senior Member
    English + French - UK
    All of this is interesting and relevant. I am struck by the expression "juron non grossier"? Is a swear word not a swear word when used in its "minced" version? It is still a swear word, isn't it? I suppose this is not an issue of language but one of culture, and, since many of them are linked to religious references, a theological matter. :D
     

    petit1

    Senior Member
    français - France
    I think that we speak of "juron altéré" but they were often used to avoid blasphemy. For example, our king Henry IV of France , (good King Henri )used to swear a lot and his confessor made him alter his swears.
    There are many examples: palsambleu, morbleu, parbleu in which "bleu" has been substituted to "Dieu" .
     

    James Brandon

    Senior Member
    English + French - UK
    Precisely, the aim is to avoid shocking the other person(s). More often than not, as many of the French Canadian examples illustrated, the toning-down of the swear word relates to the religious concept/figure/belief that the swear word refers back to and is built upon: it is exactly what you said, i.e. an attempt at avoiding the charge of blasphemy. Nowadays, swear words are mostly overtly sexual in nature, I suppose, and, since inhibitions (and religious beliefs) have been eroded considerably over the past 40 to 60 years, it is quite OK to swear in public, on TV, etc., up to a point at any rate.
     
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