Re: how many bastards are there, anyway?

Dave Wilton (
Tue, 17 Sep 1996 16:51:02 -0700

Ian A. York wrote:
> In article <>,
> Dave Wilton <> wrote:
> >
> >(Germania XXIX, 59) to the practice formerly prevalent of planting
> >or engrafting the spurs of a castrated cock on the root of the
> >excised comb, where they grew and became horns, sometimes of
> >several inches long. He shows that Ger[man] 'hahureh' or 'hahurei'
> I've heard of this practice several times before, always in explanations
> for the meaning of "cuckold". Does it sound completely bizarre to anyone

It sounded bizarre when I read it. I know nothing about chicken farming,
if it is difficult or inconvenient to determine the difference between a
rooster and a capon, perhaps it was done to differentiate the two
That way the farmer would easily know which bird was dinner and which
for breeding.

Then again, with a word like 'hahureh' maybe the OED editors were

--Dave Wilton