son of a gun

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son of a gun

Post by Archived Topic » Wed Feb 03, 1999 12:00 am

I read somewhere on a word a day calendar that this phrase originated from naval sailing vessels. When women aboard these ships gave birth to babies the corpsman would deliver the baby in a room chamber underneath the big guns on the top deck. Sometimes the women didn't know who the father was because they were having relations with more than one sailor. Hence the newborn was a son of a gun. I don't know what era this is from or if it is accurate or how or why women were aboard military craft at all.
Submitted by hagbard celine (Danbury CT - U.S.A.)
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son of a gun

Post by Jonathon Green » Sat Feb 06, 1999 8:00 am

This sounds fun, but like so much popular etymology should be taken with a whole mine full of salt. It is simply a euphemism, if such a thing is actually necessary, for 'sonofabitch'.
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