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“Muffin” (vulgar slang)
Posted: 02 February 2010 03:04 PM   [ Ignore ]
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Forum Rule # 3 implies questions of this type are OK . . .

Lady Gaga’s mega-hit song Poker Face in which she describes flirtation/seduction in terms of playing cards where her true intentions are hidden, has a line in it, “I’m just bluffin’ with my muffin”.  In the video she gestures to her crotch to underscore the meaning of “muffin”. 

I had never heard “muffin” as slang for a woman’s genitals before, but apparently the song has generated widespread use of the term in this way and I’ve seen several websites credit Gaga with creating a neologism here.

In fact it does not appear to be a neologism because The Online Dictionary of American Slang has a 2003 entry (http://onlineslangdictionary.com/definition+of/muffin) for muffin referring to the “vagina”.  I assume this is an annoyingly common misuse of “vagina” to mean vulva (a misuse popularized and reinforced by Eve Ensler’s The Vagina Monologues )

In any case, have I just been out of the loop and has “muffin” been used this way for a long time?  Any idea of its origin?  “Muffin” is a widely-used term of endearment, and “stud muffin” refers to a sexy man.  If I had to guess about “muffin” referring to the vulva I might suggest it derived from “muff” to mean a woman’s pubic hair, but that would be speculation.  What’s the earliest use of this?

Thanks in advance.

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Posted: 02 February 2010 03:08 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Cassell says “[1950s+] the vagina.”

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Posted: 03 February 2010 06:26 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Can’t have been that well known in the 1950s in the UK, or we’d never have had the BBC children’s programme Muffin the Mule.

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Posted: 03 February 2010 07:26 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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My 2nd ed. of Cassell’s (2005) says “1960s+” It also cross references the entry for apple, an American Black English term for the vagina, which says muffin in that dialect dates to 1970s+. But it’s not listed in HDAS, which makes me question how common it is.

Cassell’s also notes that it is an extension of muff, the anatomical meaning of which dates to the late 17th century.

Other synonyms listed by Cassell’s under apple include: bread, bread box, cake, cherry pie, crumpet, doughnut, and pancake. So the association between sex and baked goods predates the 1999 movie American Pie.

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Posted: 03 February 2010 07:49 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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I distinctly remember reading in my parents’ 1972 edition of The Joy of Sex that “buttered muffin” was slang for “a woman who has only just had sex with someone else”.

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Posted: 03 February 2010 07:52 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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Grose’s Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue cites “buttered bun” in this sense from the early 1800s.

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Posted: 03 February 2010 08:05 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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It’s in the third edition (and maybe earlier ones) of Grose, which dates to 1796. And the OED2 has this:

b. buttered bun(s (slang). A harlot, a mistress. (Cf. B. E. Dict. Cant. Crew 1690). 1679 Cullen w. Flock of Court Misses in Roxb. Ballads (1884) V. 126 This is the day..that sets our Monarch free From butter’d Buns [i.e. Louise de Quérouaille] and Slavery.

Also, my earlier comment about the popularity of the anatomical muffin is not to say that it is not used at all. Undoubtedly, it has been coined many, many times as a variant of muff. It just doesn’t seem to gain traction.

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Posted: 04 February 2010 08:44 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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Muffin is a cracking joke in Philip Roth’s The Great American Novel (1973) where Hemingway refers to a Vassar graduate as Muffin and she bursts into tears when finding out that it means the same as ‘slit’ (for a woman) which Hem also uses in the novel, a synecdoche.

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Posted: 04 February 2010 09:08 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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I’ve not heard “muffin” as referring to vagina, but I have heard “muff” especially in “muff-diver” to mean a person who engages in oral sex with a woman.

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Posted: 05 February 2010 08:34 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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I had heard muff-diver and the connection to muffin sounds persuasive though it had not occurred to me before. Musician Steve Winwood’s fellow-musician brother had the nickname Muff Winwood and Steve later had an LP called Arc of a Diver. Coincidence or something more sinister?
“Carpet-muncher” is even more graphic.

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Posted: 05 February 2010 07:20 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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“Carpet-muncher” is even more graphic.

Reminds me of a South Park episode where Cartman wants to be a lesbian.  The phrase there is “lick carpet” which, of course, he does literally.  And then he starts chewing on a [literal] box.

[ Edited: 05 February 2010 07:24 PM by Oecolampadius ]
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Posted: 06 February 2010 12:49 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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In the UK, a “muffin top” is the roll of fat bulging above the trouser line.  No sexual innuendo there, so I’m helping keep the party clean.

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Posted: 06 February 2010 11:37 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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In the UK, a “muffin top” is the roll of fat bulging above the trouser line.

Also common in the US (both the term and the thing it describes).

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Posted: 06 February 2010 01:31 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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Different origin as well. Muffin top comes from the image of a mushroom-shaped muffin, with the top bulging out. While muff comes from the furry covering.

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Posted: 30 July 2010 06:38 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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The OED (online and draft version June 2010) has as one of the meanings of muffin: ”4. Canad. slang. A young woman, esp. one who regularly partners a particular man, by arrangement, during a social season. Now hist.” The first citation is from 1854: “P. Henderson Life of Oliphant (1956) 50, I had a charming muffin yesterday. She is engaged to be married, so don’t be alarmed.” I am not offering it as an origin of the term, but I found it interesting nonetheless.

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Posted: 30 July 2010 06:45 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]
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In my day, a muff was something furry you put your hand in to keep it warm.

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