Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Vulgar Slang The female genital organs.
  • n. Vulgar Slang Sexual intercourse with a woman.
  • n. Offensive Used as a disparaging term for a woman.
  • n. Used as a disparaging term for a person one dislikes or finds extremely disagreeable.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The female genitalia, especially the vulva.
  • n. An extremely unpleasant or objectionable person (in US, especially a woman; in UK or Ireland, more usually a man).
  • n. An objectionable object or item.
  • n. An unpleasant or difficult experience or incident.
  • n. A woman, women, or bottom as a source of sex.
  • n. A person (mostly between male friends); compare bastard.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The female pudenda; specifically the vagina.
  • n. A woman; -- usually used derogatorily and considered obscene.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. obscene terms for female genitals
  • n. a person (usually but not necessarily a woman) who is thoroughly disliked

Etymologies

Middle English cunte.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English cunte, queynt, queynte from Old English *cunte, from Proto-Germanic *kuntōn. Cognate with Frisian kunte, dialectal Swedish kunta, dialectal Danish kunte, Dutch kont ("arse") and Icelandic kunta. A relationship to Latin cunnus has not been conclusively shown. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • While I realized I hold distinctly different views on the world from most of the people there I would also have to say that I am aghast that they'd use the word "slut" or that they would wonder why there is such a strong reaction to the term cunt or slut.

    Bread n Roses poster: Bev Oda is a slut

  • I want books with the word cunt as well as the word kike.

    TalkTalk

  • Sure, all of the “educated”, “middle class” “Guardian” “readers” who pat themselves on the back because they ‘get’ Chris Morris, think that the word cunt is a non-issue and probably deal with the word in a ‘been there, done that’ detachedness.

    C.U.Next Tuesday - :: gia’s blog ::

  • A Flynt apologist could probably wiggle away from the sexism of the word cunt; harder to excuse was Flynt's preposterous suggestion that Sandra Day O'Connor's appointment was meritless, an empty gesture of political correctness.

    Slate Articles

  • In my (Highland) experience, then, 'cunt' is more likely to be used as a general obscenity - on hurting oneself, etc. - by women, or as a comment on particular behaviour as above.

    On Profanity: 3

  • Trying to picture a literally “pendulous” cunt is quite amusing.

    Matthew Yglesias » Who’s “Ideological” in the Health Care Debate?

  • How the fuck we PAY for the ugly cunt is beyond me.

    Face Transplant Man: "I'm Still Bloody Ugly"

  • A man who walked out on his injured wife and their kids for his billionaire mistress - whom he calls a cunt, publicly.

    New McCain Ad Congratulates Obama

  • So Jane Fonda says the word cunt on the Today Show.

    Samara O'Shea: The "N" Word on Network Television

  • Tom Harris MP who I called my cunt of the year - earlier this year over his comments about how people were moaning and we were all doing so well - has proven my point that he is a complete an utter cuntwaft of an MP with regards his reaction to being sent a copy of 1984.

    Tom Harris MP - My cunt of the year.

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Comments

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  • For a titillating, yet scholarly study of cunt (the word :-) ), check .....
    Hal Duncan's Notes from the Geek Show: Cunt blog
    Well, I was titillated...... in a very scholarly way, of course. :-)

    February 10, 2011

  • it sounds the same-like-can't.....

    November 25, 2010

  • "While one word maketh not a women-centered language, "cunt" is certainly mighty potent and versatile contribution. Not to mention how deliciously satisfying it is to totally snag a reviled word and elevate it to a status which all women should rightfully experience in this society." - Inga Muscio from 'Cunt: A Declaration of Independence'

    March 23, 2010

  • "A friend of mine engaged in a play called the vagina monologues, found out that the word cunt according to William Shakespeare derive from getting intimately acquainted."

    oh my gosh, YES!
    I saw the vagina monologues this year on my birthday, my all-time favourite part.
    loved it.

    July 1, 2009

  • A friend of mine engaged in a play called the vagina monologues, found out that the word cunt according to William Shakespeare derive from getting intimately acquainted.

    July 1, 2009

  • when spoken out loud , leave the area

    May 4, 2009

  • Ha!

    May 3, 2009

  • weren't we all.

    (except for Macduff)

    May 3, 2009

  • I was born in Kent.

    May 3, 2009

  • one of Chaucer's spelling variations for it was kent.

    May 2, 2009

  • The English language word that will continue to shock, I think, even when cunt has lost its power, is the despicable n-word in the mouth of a white American.

    April 13, 2009

  • In 2008 BBC4 screened a film which told the story of Mrs Mary Whitehouse (a campaigner against 'filth' on TV etc). The film had a couple of good jokes that were meant to suggest that Mrs Whitehouse was obsessed (perhaps neurotically) with sex. One of these was that her original name for her organistaion was—clean up national TV.

    March 8, 2009

  • For the record, not related to 'quaint': that was a pun by mediaeval writers. Nor, pace Catherine Blackledge quoted below, could any etymologist connect it with the Romance 'country'. The word is in fact of completely unknown etymology, its only known relation being Norse kunta.

    It cannot be related to Latin cunnus of same meaning, as in 'cunnilingus', since that violates Grimm's Law: Latin k would match Germanic h, whereas Germanic k would match Latin g. If it was an early borrowing from Latin into Germanic, so that Grimm's Law didn't have to apply, where would the t come from?

    It is possible, as an idle speculation, that it's related to the Indo-European "woman" word (queen, Venus, gyne-) or to the "know" word (know, kin, kind, king, cunning), but not both. There is no evidence for any such connexion except resemblance, probably just chance resemblance.

    March 8, 2009

  • C U next Tuesday -- the title of a recent book on "bad" language.

    December 29, 2008

  • Graham Norton is a chat show host in Britain, charming, camp, outrageous, with a late night programme laced with sexuality, not mere innuendo. An American guest expressed surprise on air at what British presenters could get away with. "I even hear people say "fuck" and the editors don't bleep it. Is there any word you're not allowed to use?" Without missing a beat, Norton replied, "Cunt".

    December 29, 2008

  • "Cun" is a word in a southern French dialect, possibly Occitan, which means "wedge", as in the ancient mechanical tool still in use today to split things. The wedge shape is triangular (and the downward facing equilateral triangle has been used for millenia as shorthand for the female genitalia, and by extension, some would say, the goddess -- see Marija Gimbutas and Old Europe) and the function of the wedge is to transform. A pretty good description of a cunt, no?

    December 29, 2008

  • The Slovene equivalent of this word, pizda, is used on a daily basis, far more than the common word for the male organ, kurec. Everyone says "pizda", even sometimes on television. It serves the same purpose as the American "fuck" or "shit" in sentences like, "Oh fuck, I forgot my keys!" Even women say "pizda" without batting an eye. I was shocked when I first moved here because I kept translating the word in my head, but now I'm used to it, though I never say it myself.

    June 23, 2008

  • And all their damn fool questions 'tell me Peter,
    what do you writeabout?' (cunts like you, mate)...

    - Peter Reading, Soirée, from The Prison Cell & Barrel Mystery, 1976

    June 23, 2008

  • See also coynte.

    March 6, 2008

  • Sweetest taboo? Maybe English speaking world just doesn't know how to use the word imaginatively, like for example the Italians use figa. Or The Spanish use coño. Not to mention The Finns and their favourite word, the v-word vittu.

    Other variations: cunte, counte, Middle English; kut, The Netherlands; kunta, Old Norse; queynthe Middle English; qwim, sixteenth century England; chuint, Ireland; kus, Arabic & Hebrew.

    Some etymologists think it derives from words, queen, country or cunning - cunnende. What it comes to the root, cu, it is said to signify 'quintessential physical femininity´.

    Catherine Blackledge: The story of V.

    March 6, 2008

  • Not a listener of the Savage Lovecast are you lalala?

    November 3, 2007

  • I find the notion that the word 'cunt' is considered offensive bizarre. Cunts are warm, deep & delightful - you should only call someone a cunt if they have these characteristics.

    November 3, 2007

  • Also related to coney or cunny.

    September 18, 2007

  • Not only quaint, but also kind and kenning - the roots give new meaning to the branches.

    June 15, 2007

  • Definitely one of my favorite words. Even today, where words that were once considered taboo and deeply offensive are used, in many instances, in our day to day language, the word cunt has managed to retain its shock value, and can still illicit a very visceral reaction.

    June 13, 2007

  • Yet this shocking word is cognate with quaint. Odd, eh?

    December 9, 2006

  • What a fantastic, descriptive word. I don't get to use it very often, but it is an absolute pleasure when I do.

    December 7, 2006

  • Good note Pathar. I can't think of a word in the English language which is more shocking, or offensive.

    December 4, 2006

  • I like that this is one of the last few words in the language that can really shock people.

    December 4, 2006