Posted: 31 October 2017 08:37 PM   [ Ignore ]
Total Posts:  827
Joined  2013-10-14

Another interesting etymology (they all are)

A spinster was originally defined as a woman who spins, which was the act of “…converting fibres into thread or yarn by hand-labour or by machinery.” Later on from the 17th Century it was recognized for women who were still unmarried.

Online Etymology Dictionary

spinster (n.)
mid-14c., “female spinner of thread,” from Middle English spinnen “spin fibers into thread” (see spin (v.)) + -stere, feminine suffix (see -ster). Unmarried women were supposed to occupy themselves with spinning, hence the word came to be “the legal designation in England of all unmarried women from a viscount’s daughter downward” [Century Dictionary] in documents from 1600s to early 1900s, and by 1719 the word was being used generically for “woman still unmarried and beyond the usual age for it.”
Spinster, a terme, or an addition in our Common Law, onely added in Obligations, Euidences, and Writings, vnto maids vnmarried. [John Minsheu, “Ductor in Linguas,” 1617]
Strictly in reference to those who spin, spinster also was used of both sexes (compare webster, baxter, brewster) and so a double-feminine form emerged, spinstress “a female spinner” (1640s), which by 1716 also was being used for “maiden lady.” Related: Spinsterhood.

Also, there is the abbreviation Spin


spin, n.2
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Pronunciation:  Brit.  /spɪn/, U.S. /spɪn/
Frequency (in current use): 
Etymology: Abbreviation of spinster n.
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An unmarried lady.

1842 C. Ridley Let. Mar. in U. Ridley Cecilia (1958) vii. 90 Mrs. Dixon, a good lady..who was sitting in a very tidy, very hot room with two old spins as companions.
1872 ‘Aliph Cheem’ Lays of Ind (1876) 193 I’m going to rhyme about A most unhappy spin.
1872 ‘Aliph Cheem’ Lays of Ind (1876) 200 O spins. ! be warned ere yet too late.
1888 B. M. Croker Diana Barrington xxiii There were all the Gurrumpore spins in their beautiful new frocks!

Posted: 31 October 2017 10:33 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
Total Posts:  1233
Joined  2007-03-01

During the Dissolution of the Monasteries, the Earl of Pembroke (allegedly) said to the nuns of the Abbey of Wilton as he was ejecting them from their wealthy foundation, and who were crying “Oh, what will become of us?”, “Go spin, you jades, go spin!”. In other words “Earn a meagre living as other single women do”.

Posted: 01 November 2017 06:05 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
Total Posts:  2654
Joined  2007-02-19

easy thing for a powerful Earl to say. supercilious bastard.

Posted: 01 November 2017 09:22 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
Total Posts:  4632
Joined  2007-01-29

When Adam delved and Eve span, who was then the gentleman?

Posted: 02 November 2017 03:02 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
Total Posts:  1569
Joined  2007-02-14

Free John Ball!

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