Bollocks: Wikis

  
  
  

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Bollocks is a word of Anglo-Saxon origin, meaning "testicles". The word is often used figuratively in British English, as a noun to mean "nonsense", an expletive following a minor accident or misfortune, or an adjective to mean "poor quality" or "useless". Similarly, the common phrases "Bollocks to this!" or "That's a load of old bollocks" generally indicate contempt for a certain task, subject or opinion. Conversely, the word also figures in idiomatic phrases such as "the dog's bollocks" and "top bollock(s)", which usually refer to something which is admired, approved of or well-respected.

Contents

Etymology

The word has a long and distinguished history, with the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) giving examples of its usage dating back to the 13th century. One of the early references is John Wycliffe's Bible (1382), Leviticus xxii, 24: "Al beeste, that ... kitt and taken a wey the ballokes is, ye shulen not offre to the Lord..." (any beast that is cut and taken away the bollocks, you shall not offer to the Lord, i.e. castrated animals are not suitable as religious sacrifices).

The OED states (with abbreviations expanded): "Probably a derivative of Teutonic ball-, of which the Old English representative would be inferred as beall-u, -a, or -e".

The Teutonic ball- in turn probably derives from the Proto-Indo-European base *bhel-, to inflate or swell. This base also forms the root of many other words, including "phallus".

From the seventeenth to the nineteenth century, bollocks or ballocks was allegedly used as a slang term for a clergyman, although this meaning is not mentioned by the OED's 1989 edition. For example, in 1864, the Commanding Officer of the Straits Fleet regularly referred to his chaplain as "Ballocks". It has been suggested that bollocks came to have its modern meaning of "nonsense" because clergymen were notorious for talking nonsense during their sermons.[1]

In 1977, Professor James Kingsley, a famous linguistics professor at the University of Nottingham, had accredited the word to be used in the early eighteenth century with the Roman Catholic Church priests. His studies show that the actual word "bollocks" means either a 'priest', or 'rubbish spoken by the priest'. Often, there were priests in the early eighteenth century who generally spoke rubbish, which is how the term "bollocks" became associated with verbal diarrhoea. The conviction came from the fact that Professor James Kingsley himself was a reverend and had been doing linguistic history research all his life.[2]

Alternative spellings

"Ballock" is a variation of "bollock", which was in everyday usage in the medieval period, albeit rarely heard today. The connection with "ball" in the sense of "testis" is evident.

The word is sometimes spelled as bollox or bollix, usually in order to make it appear less vulgar. In this case, its meaning is "to bungle"; for example, "The project was going well, but my boss bollixed it up". "Bollixed up" is sometimes considered an out-of-date expression[citation needed] which has largely been replaced by phrases such as "screwed up", as the latter term has gradually lost most of its previously vulgar connotation. This spelling remains current in Ireland, however, as in the phrase "You're a bollix" (fool or unpleasant person).

"Bollix" may also be used to refer to a particularly nasty or awkward person, particularly in rural Ireland[citation needed], (where it is also used to refer to testicles, as in standard English).

Severity

The relative severity of the various profanities, as perceived by the British public, was studied on behalf of the Broadcasting Standards Commission, Independent Television Commission, BBC and Advertising Standards Authority. The results of this jointly commissioned research were published in December 2000 in a paper called "Delete Expletives?". This placed "bollocks" in eighth position in terms of its perceived severity, between "prick" (seventh place) and "arsehole" (ninth place). By comparison, the word "balls" (which has a similar literal meaning) was down in 22nd place. Of the people surveyed, only 11% thought that "bollocks" could acceptably be broadcast at times before the national 9pm "watershed"[3] on television (radio does not have a watershed).

Negative uses

"Bollocks!"

"Bollocks!" can be used as a stand-alone interjection to express strong disagreement. It dismisses a statement as nonsense, similar to "bullshit", but much stronger in its emphasis and implications. This can be expanded, for example, to "What a complete and utter load of bollocks!" An expression with a similar meaning is "Yer ballax!" (Your bollocks). Sometimes bollocks! is combined with an abbreviated version of the original statement, for instance: "It was your fault" - "Bollocks, it was!" (It certainly was not); or "Did England win last night?" - "Did they bollocks!" (No, they did not) or "Pubs are shit in Atherton and Westhoughton.""Are they bollocks, there's good ones in Westhoughton!".[4]

As well as its use as an exclamation, "bollocks" can be used as a noun to annunciate a lie, an incorrect statement, an unfair situation, misfortune or a hiding to nothing, i.e. "what a load of bollocks" or "bollocks, more like". A quotation from John O'Farrell includes a range of examples of this usage: a character attending a comedy awards ceremony said: "These awards are a load of bollocks. It's all bollocks, all of it. These people: bollocks; this whole industry: complete bollocks; these prizes: meaningless bollocks; all these free gifts: marketing bollocks; this food: pure bollocks".[5] Similarly, it is claimed that New Labour spin doctor Alastair Campbell "routinely dismissed unwelcome news stories as bollocks, complete bollocks and bollocks on stilts".[6]

A related usage is in expressing contempt for something or someone. International development charity ActionAid's slogan 'Bollocks to Poverty' has been popular with younger supporters since 2002.[7] A Channel 4 TV programme on 9 June 2005, dealing with the subject of testicular cancer, was (appropriately enough) entitled Bollocks to Cancer. A similar usage is the "Bollocks to Brussels" car stickers, which were displayed by those wishing to express contempt for European law.[8]

The word "bollocks" used on its own can also mean an expression of dismay. Often used in a single word form people will utter "bollocks" when something breaks or does not go their way. Similar to a usage of the word shit.

"Talking bollocks" and "Bollockspeak"

"Talking bollocks" generally means talking nonsense or bullshit,[9] for example: "Don't listen to him, he's talking bollocks", or "...talking absolute bollocks". Another example is "I told Maurice that he was talking bollocks, that he was full of shit and that his opinions were a pile of piss. (Rhetoric was always my indulgence.)"[10] "Talking bollocks" in a corporate context is referred to as bollockspeak.[11] Bollockspeak tends to be buzzword-laden and largely content-free, like gobbledygook: "Rupert, we'll have to leverage our synergies to facilitate a paradigm shift by Q4" is an example of management bollockspeak. There is a whole parodic book entitled The Little Book of Management Bollocks.[12] When a great deal of bollocks is being spoken, it may be said that the 'bollocks quotient' is high.[13]

Testiculate (verb)

The act of "talking bollocks" while waving one's arms about wildly (e.g. gesticulating) can be referred to as testiculation.[14] Possibly attributable to the BBC Radio 4 comedy programme "I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue".

A "bollocks" (singular noun)

Comparable to cock-up, screw-up, balls-up, etc. Used with the indefinite article, it means a disaster, a mess or a failure. It is often used pejoratively, as in "You made a bollocks out of that one, sunshine!",[15] and it is generally used throughout Ireland and the northern regions of the United Kingdom.

Bollocks (transitive verb)

To bollocks something up means "to mess something up". It refers to a botched job: "Well, you bollocksed it up that time, Your Majesty!" or "Bollocksed up at work again, I fear. Millions down the drain".[16]

To "drop a bollock"

To "drop a bollock" describes the malfunction of an operation, or messing something up, as in many sports, and in more polite business parlance, dropping the ball brings play to an unscheduled halt.[17] It has not been unknown in some instances for the phrase to be used to highlight extreme anger. The phrase has also seen use in the literal sense, when an adult male takes an injury to the scrotum.

"Bollocks dropping" is also used more physiologically to refer to a male adolescent, especially concerning the changes to his voice, for instance: "How does he sing so high?" - "Simple, his bollocks haven't dropped yet."

More recently, the term has been used to describe disbelief; for instance, "He nearly dropped a bollock when he found out", "The manager would drop a bollock if he knew".

Bollocking

Noun

A "bollocking" usually denotes a robust verbal chastisement for something which one has done (or not done, as the case may be), for instance: "I didn't do my homework and got a right bollocking off Mr Smith", or "A nurse was assisting at an appendix operation when she shouldn't have been...and the surgeon got a bollocking".[18] Actively, one gives or delivers a bollocking to someone: in the building trade one can 'throw a right bollocking into' someone.

Degrees of bollocking may be proper,[19] real,[20] severe,[21] ferocious;[22] terrible,[23] frightful,[24] fearful,[25] fearsome;[26] thorough, comprehensive,[27] absolute,[28] massive,[29] almighty,[30] right royal,[31] or the mother (and father) of all bollockings.[32] One may become incandescent when issuing such a bollocking.[33] The action implies that the giver has authority over the recipient by status or entitlement:[34] Rupert Murdoch gave Kelvin McKenzie 'the bollocking of a lifetime'.[35] Modern employment legislation discourages this mode of reprimand,[36] though reports of its demise may be premature. A good and a bad bollocking would both be forceful, but while the 'good' might contain covert advice,[37] the 'bad' one could be savage and unforgiving. The term is used frequently in the British Army recruitment process where it is mutually understood that "if you err, you will get bollocked (or a bollocking)" — in most cases, these bollockings will not involve physical contact, but will be a verbal attack on a person's character, appearance or recent actions.

Originally, a bollocking was a serious assault, and the term comes from[citation needed] the bollock dagger, popular between the 13th and 18th centuries. There may be some connection also with the roll-lock, a form of Sliding knife, given the euphemistic term rollock or rollocking (see below).

The Oxford English Dictionary gives the earliest meaning as "to slander or defame" and suggests that it entered the English language from the 1653 translation of one of Rabelais' works, which includes the Middle French expression "en couilletant", translated as "ballocking". The earliest printed use in the sense of a severe reprimand is, according to the OED, from 1946.[38]

Adjective

Bollocking can also be used as a reinforcing adjective: "He hasn't a bollocking clue!" or "Where's me bollocking car?"[39]

"A kick in the bollocks" and "Dog's Bollocks Syndrome"

"A kick in the bollocks" is used to describe a significant set-back or disappointment, eg "I was diagnosed with having skin cancer. Ye Gods! What a kick in the bollocks".[40]

In Ireland, it is also the name of a non-alcoholic cocktail of Red Bull and red lemonade.

"Dog's Bollocks Syndrome" can be used to describe an excessive use of technology or visual aid, such as in an enormous use of Flash animations on a website. It is derived from the question: "Why do dogs lick their bollocks?" (answer: "Because they can"). In a technological context, the question could be "Why has the web developer included a three-minute animated intro to this page?", prompting the response: "Dog's Bollocks Syndrome, mate. Because he can".[citation needed]

"Up to one's bollocks", "bollock cold", "freeze (or work) one's bollocks off" and "bollock naked"

This phrase can be used if one is overwhelmed with something, for instance: "Can you help me out, Henry? I'm up to my bollocks in paperwork!", or: "The wife over-watered the flowerbeds again, and now I'm up to my bollocks in petunias!". It is a vulgarism for the more polite "up to one's eyes (in something)".

The scrotum's purpose is to keep testicles a couple of degrees cooler than the rest of the body. However, bollock cold means very cold indeed. "It's bollock cold outside - it's enough to freeze the balls off a brass monkey". Both icy weather and hard work run the risk of orchidectomy: "Fred worked his bollocks off on that last project". This phrase is sometimes used by or about women: Boy George referred to his mother "working her bollocks off" at home.[41] One can also "work one's bollocks to the bone".

"Bollock naked" is used in the singular form to describe being in the nude: "he was completely pissed and stark bollock naked".[42] "Bollocky" is Australian slang for "naked"; in the bollocky-buff is naval slang for the same.[43] However, "bollock naked" is naval slang for spaghetti bolognese.

Bollocks (singular noun)

In Ireland, "bollocks", "ballocks" or "bollox" can be used as a singular noun to mean a despicable or notorious person, for instance: "Who's the old ballocks you were talking to?",[44] or conversely as a very informal term of endearment: "Ah Ted, ye big bollocks, let's go and have a pint!".

"Bollocksed"

Multiple meanings, also spelled "bolloxed":

  1. Exhausted: "I couldn't sleep at all last night, I'm completely bollocksed!"
  2. Broken: "My foot pump is bollocksed."
  3. An extreme state of inebriation or drug-induced stupor: "Last night I got completely bollocksed".[45]
  4. Hungover (or equivalent): "I drank two bottles of gin last night, I'm completely bollocksed".
  5. Made a mistake: "I tried to draw that landscape but I bollocksed it up".

Positive uses

"Dog's bollocks"

A usage with a positive (albeit still vulgar) sense is "the dog's bollocks".[46] An example of this usage is: "Before Tony Blair's speech, a chap near me growled: ‘He thinks he's the dog's bollocks’. Well, he's entitled to. It was a commanding speech: a real dog's bollocks of an oration".[47]

Although this is a recent term (the Online Etymology Dictionary dates it to 1989[46][48]), its origins are obscure:

This phrase has found its way into popular culture in a number of ways. There is a beer brewed in England by the Wychwood Brewery called the "Dog's Bollocks",[51] as well as a lager cocktail.[52] There is an Australian political blog called The Dogs Bollocks, with the motto 'Truth is like a dog’s bollocks - pretty obvious if you care to look – but most of us prefer to avert our gaze, or have them permanently removed'.

After making a remark that something is "the dog's bollocks" someone (usually an American) will ask "What's so great about the dog's bollocks?" to which the reply is "Ask the dog." After all, they seem to spend all their time licking them.

Sometimes the phrase is shortened to just "the dog's" or "the bollocks". "The bollocks" — and the definite article is important here — can be used to mean something exceptionally good, when one is talking about a person or object: "My new car is the bollocks!" or "That new chef down the road, she's the bollocks!". Non-native speakers of British English should exercise caution when using the term in this manner, as the positive applications of the word do not remove any of its vulgarity or implied familiarity. The antonymic property of "bollocks" and "the [dog's] bollocks" is often used in humour, such as in the film The 51st State.

"Top bollock(s)"

"Top bollock" is used as a superlative, for example: "This beer is top bollock". Used in the plural, "top bollocks" can be a slang term for women's breasts: "Look at Suzanne's top bollocks - you don't get many of those to the pound".[53] It is also known to be used to refer to authority figures or those in power, particularly by office workers, for instance: "I have to do this, it's an order from the Top Bollocks" (see also "Top Dog", "Top Brass" etc).

"Chuffed to one's bollocks"

The phrase "chuffed to one's bollocks" describes someone who is very pleased with himself. Nobel laureate Harold Pinter used this in The Homecoming[54] The phrase provided a serious challenge to translators of his work.[55] Pinter used a similar phrase in an open letter, published in The Guardian, and addressed to Prime Minister Tony Blair, attacking his co-operation with American foreign policy. The letter ends by saying "Oh, by the way, meant to mention, forgot to tell you, we were all chuffed to the bollocks when Labour won the election".[56]

Other uses

  • "Bollock-head" is a vulgar British term for a shaven head.[57] It can also refer to someone who is stupid, as can "bollock-brain". The Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue (1811) cites the expression "His brains are in his ballocks", to designate a fool.[58]
  • "Bollock-chops" describes someone with a round face. "Bollock-breath" is a general term of abuse, likely for a person suffering from halitosis. "Bollock-buster" refers to any very heavy item, especially one that may cause a hernia.
  • "Bollocked", as well as meaning reprimanded, can describe the period during which a painful, sometimes crippling sensation is experienced by virtue of the testicles being physically assaulted, for instance by a football. Usage: "The ball caught me right up the nads and I was bollocked for a good 5 minutes".
  • On the Internet, "bollocks" is sometimes synonymous with miscellaneous in some blogs. It is used to list stories which do not fit into any particular category.[59]
  • During the 1990s, a craze of shouting "bollocks!" swept through UK festivals, for example the Reading and Leeds festivals.[60] Upon hearing someone shouting the word, the etiquette was to repeat the word as loudly as possible. The end result was seemingly spontaneous outbreaks of "bollocks!"-shouting spreading across the campsites. This may have begun at Isle of Wight Festival 1970.[citation needed]

Euphemisms

Although the term "bollocks" is more easily accepted now than it was at the time of the Sex Pistols trial, there are occasions when an alternative phrase is required, either for reasons of decorum or to thwart an overzealous mail filter.[citation needed]

Rhyming slang

The rhyming slang for bollocks is "Jackson Pollocks".[61] It can be shortened to Jackson's, as in "Modern art? Pile o' Jacksons if you ask me!". Sandra Bullocks is occasionally used to approximate rhyming slang; it does not quite rhyme, but preserves meter and rhythm. The Beautiful South bowdlerised their original line "sweaty bollocks" as "Sandra Bullocks", as one of several changes to make their song "Don't Marry Her" acceptable for mainstream radio play.

In the movie The Devil Wears Prada, Emily, the snooty assistant to the fashion editor, uses the term "bullocks" as an expletive when informed of her impending removal from the Paris team.

Spoonerisms

The spoonerism "Bonkey Dollocks" is a term of endearment for a well-endowed male. "The bonkey's dollocks" can be used as a synonym for "the dog's bollocks", as can "the bog's dollocks". Another popular spoonerism is "Betty Swollocks" (also "Swallox" or "Swallocks"). "It ain't half hot and humid in Kuala Lumpur, mum - I've got a serious case of Betty Swollocks". This can be shortened to "the Betties", although "the Betties" could denote any sweaty part of the anatomy. "Sweaty Betties" is also used in some areas in the north of England. Recently, the use of "Sweaty Betties" has been growing in popularity on the North Shore of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

"Horlicks"

The term "Horlicks" was brought to prominence in July 2003, when then-British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw used it to describe irregularities in the preparation and provenance of the "dodgy dossier" regarding weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. Straw used the expression "a complete Horlicks",[62] instead of the more impolite "make a complete bollocks of something". This euphemism stems from an advertising campaign for the Horlicks malt drink, where people were seen to be shouting "Horlicks!" in a loud voice, to give vent to stress or frustration. Eric Morecambe was also known to cough "Horlicks!" behind his hand on The Morecambe and Wise Show.

Eupemisms for "the dog's bollocks"

There are also several broadly synonymous substitute phrases for "the dog's bollocks", that are sometimes used for humorous effect, including "the mutt's nuts", "the dog's danglies", "the bee's knees" and "the badger's nadgers".[63]

Rowlocks/rowlocking

Rollocking is sometimes used as a euphemism for "bollocking", and is not to be confused with rowlocks, which are devices used in rowing a boat, nor with Rollox, a name-form by which Saint Roch is commemorated in Royston, Glasgow,[64] nor with rollicking, which describes a kind of boisterously sportive behaviour.[65] A rollocking bollocking may be delivered by an electorate.[66]

Humour

There is a strand of English humour which uses words that sound similar to "bollocks", or other slang words for testicles, for comic effect. A good example would be "In Sarajevo in 1914, Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria was shot in the Balkans". In Richard E Grant's memoir With Nails, the actor tells of going to the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles. He notes that this is the place where "Robert Kennedy was shot in the kitchens. Sorry - kitchens sounds like a euphemism for bollocks. He was killed here."

Another joke plays on a double meaning: "I was in the shoe-menders today and I got kicked in the cobblers".

Ballock knife

There is a type of late-medieval dagger that is known to weapon and armour specialists as a "ballock knife" or "ballock-hafted knife". This dagger has a pair of symmetrical oval swellings located on each side of the hilt at the guard, clearly resembling male genitalia. An example can be found in the Wallace Collection in central London and is depicted in the museum's official catalogue.

"Obscenity" court ruling

Perhaps the best-known use of the term is in the title of the 1977 punk rock album Never Mind the Bollocks, Here's the Sex Pistols. Testimony in a resulting prosecution over the term demonstrated that in Old English, the word referred to a priest, and could also be used to mean "nonsense". Defence barrister John Mortimer QC and Virgin Records won the case: the court ruled that the word was not obscene.

The usage of the word "bollocks" caused controversy when Tony Wright, a Leicestershire trader, was given an £80 fixed penalty fine by police for selling T-shirts bearing the slogan "Bollocks to Blair". This took place on 29 June 2006 at the Royal Norfolk Show; the police issued the penalty notice, quoting Section 5 of the Public Order Act 1986 which refers to language "deemed to cause harassment, alarm or distress".[67] Although Wright would most likely win a legal case against the fine, it is not known whether he considered challenging it or not.

Commentators have made comparisons with the Sex Pistols case,[68] pointing to some of the statements made by John Mortimer QC: "What sort of country are we living in if a politician comes to Nottingham and speaks here to a group of people in the city centre and, during his speech, a heckler replies "bollocks". Are we to expect this person to be incarcerated, or do we live in a country where we are proud of our Anglo-Saxon language?".

Not current in American English

Because the word "bollocks" is not commonly understood in American English, it was used by one of the subjects in the 2004 reality television programme Brat Camp, in which troubled British and American teenagers were sent to an American wilderness reformation camp in the desert of central Oregon. The participants were forbidden (by the camp rules) from swearing, but since the supervisors did not recognise the term "bollocks" as a swear word, one member was able to use it with impunity to relieve his frustration. The programme included a brief segment in which he begged the (British) camera crew not to reveal the meaning of the word to the camp supervisors.

Also, in the American medical drama series ER, British character Neela Rasgotra (played by British actress Parminder Nagra) has frequently used the word, presumably as a way for the writers to sneak an offensive word past censors into mainstream television or to reinforce her being British. Colm Meaney's Irish character Chief Miles O'Brien said "bollocks"' on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine in the episode Time's Orphan.

The phrase "bollocks things up" appears in episodes of The Flintstones,[69] which are frequently broadcast in the UK as part of BBC children's programming.

It was also used on an episode of How I Met Your Mother.

Carey Mulligan said "bollocks" during a Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson interview, which made him ask his producer, but they allowed the word to be used without any censor. For the whole segment Craig Ferguson frequently said "bollocks", and the word didn't get any censor.

International parallels

It is by no means common for languages to make such frequent reference to this particular organ, but one language which does so is close neighbour Dutch, which uses klootzak similarly as an insult. The Spanish word cojón can also be used with many different meanings, conveying a similar profanity level, as well as minchiata (derivative of minchia, "penis") in Sicilian and cazzata (derivative of cazzo, "penis") in Italian. As bollocks is used to mean nonsense in British English, Bullshit is similarly used in American English.

See also

References

  1. ^ Watkins, Peter. The Soul of Wit: Eccentricity, Absurdity and Other Ecclesiastical Treasures. SCM-Canterbury Press Ltd. p. 71. ISBN 1-85311-496-0. 
  2. ^ Branson, Richard. Losing My Virginity. Three Rivers Press. pp. 118, 119. ISBN 0-8129-3229-3. 
  3. ^ Delete Expletives paper
  4. ^ McConnell, Peter (2006). Cold-Blooded Killer. Trafford Publishing. p. 112. ISBN 1412062128, 9781412062121. 
  5. ^ O'Farrell, John (2003). This is your life (paperback edn.). Black Swan. p. 179. 
  6. ^ Danchev, Alex (2005). The Iraq War and Democratic Politics. Routledge. p. 247. ISBN 0415351472. 
  7. ^ ActionAid website, retrieved 25 February 2010
  8. ^ Dunn, Willy (2005-09-29). "Spheres of contempt". The Times: Letters Page, p.18. 
  9. ^ R Lingo, Talking Bollocks!: Totally Stupid Everyday Remarks, Crombie Jardine Publishing Limited, 2008.ISBN 1906051186, 9781906051181
  10. ^ Robert McLiam Wilson, Ripley Bogle, Arcade Publishing, 1998, ISBN 1559704241, 9781559704243
  11. ^ Tony J. Watson, Organising and managing work: organisational, managerial and strategic behaviour in theory and practice (2nd edition), Pearson Education, 2006, ISBN 027370480X, 9780273704805. p.231: "I call a cock up a cock up and not a "contingent operating difficulty [which is] pompous bollock-speak."
  12. ^ Alistair Beaton 2001 ISBN 978-0743404136
  13. ^ John Pilger, 'The politics of bollocks', New Statesman 5 February 2009 [1]
  14. ^ Rahman, Saif (2006). Down to a Sunset Sea. Twenty First Century Publishers Ltd. p. 222. ISBN 1904433561. ' "What a fine load of bollocks that was", Phillip confessed to Caroline the following evening. "There's even a word for it: testiculating, or waving your arms around and talking bollocks. Mind you - towards the end I was starting to believe what I was saying". '
  15. ^ Henry Friedman, Sander Meredeen, The dynamics of industrial conflict: lessons from Ford, Taylor & Francis, 1980, ISBN 070990374X, 9780709903741, p.104: "Birch had admitted to Rees that the Union had 'made a bollocks of it' by confusing the grading and equal pay issues in court."
  16. ^ "Memorable Quotes from Notting Hill (film)". Internet Movie Database. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0125439/quotes. Retrieved 2007-02-05. 
  17. ^ "Top Ten Worst Vanity Projects". http://www.theshiznit.co.uk/review.php?id=146. Retrieved 2007-02-05.  "Guy Ritchie...was about to drop a bollock from a mile high. His next project in 2003 was Swept Away, a film so harshly derided by critics that it actually made the reader feel sympathy for the poor guy – that is, until they saw it for themselves."
  18. ^ Lyall, Joanna (2005-02-26). "Journalists accused of wrecking doctors' lives". British Medical Journal 330: 485. doi:10.1136/bmj.330.7489.485. 
  19. ^ Scott Murray, 'South Africa 37 - 13 Argentina', Guardian.co.uk 14 October 2007 [2]: used ironically:- Sandy Mitchell, 'What Jamie cooked up next', The Daily Telegraph 13 May 2006 [3]
  20. ^ Rhymer Rigby, 'Death of the bollocking', Managementtoday.com, 30 September 2008 [4]. (See also Britannica Online Encyclopedia).
  21. ^ Audrey Young, 'The Boss gives the Bloke a 'bollocking' and a hug', New Zealand Herald 13 April 2005 [5].
  22. ^ (Given by John Major, British Prime Minister, to John Patten, Baron Patten) John Barnes, 'Obituary:Baroness Blatch', The Independent 1 June 2005. [6]
  23. ^ Deborah Ross, 'Johnny Vegas laid bare', The Independent 6 August 2001 [7]
  24. ^ Rowley Leigh, 'Get back to your roots' The Daily Telegraph 21 Dec 2000 [8]
  25. ^ Charlie Brooks, 'Wallace a giant amongst men', The Daily Telegraph 17 Feb 2002 [9]
  26. ^ Janice Turner, 'Drunkenness knows no social boundaries', The Times online, 10 Oct 2009 [10].
  27. ^ Ed Walker, 'Don't blame me, I'm only a doctor', The Independent 5 July 2004 [11]: Eric Robson, Outside Broadcaster: An Autobiography (Frances Lincoln, 2004), 50. [12]
  28. ^ Rachel Holmes, 'Table Talk' (interview with Jason Atherton), The Guardian 2 December 2008, [13].
  29. ^ Mils Muliaina (with Lynn McConnell), Living the Dream (Hachette, 2009).
  30. ^ BBC - 'WW2 People's War', Article ID A4452635, 'Tour of Operations - 3.' [14]
  31. ^ BBC - 'WW2 People's War', Article ID A4093607 (ref) 1944, 'A Midsummer Night's Dip in the Baltic', Chapter 2. [15]
  32. ^ Derek Pringle, 'Louts threaten to gatecrash 20Twenty party', The Telegraph (online) 27 June 2007 [16].
  33. ^ Richard E. Grant, 'The King and I', Daily Telegraph 9 April 2006 [17]
  34. ^ For example, the chef Gordon Ramsey has been called 'the bollocking king', see Alessandra Stanley, '‘Chopping Block’ Winds Up There', The New York Times April 1, 2009.
  35. ^ Brian Viner, 'Books: The bollocking of a lifetime', The Independent, 24 January 1999. [18]
  36. ^ Rigby, 'Death of the bollocking'.
  37. ^ New Zealand Press Council Rulings, Case number 840, J A Franklin against the Weekend Sun September 2001 [19].
  38. ^ Oxford English Dictionary, online edition. Entry for "bollocking"
  39. ^ Brown, Christy (1976). Wild Grow the Lillies. Martin Secker & Warburg. p. 216. 
  40. ^ Roger Stutter, Jonny Kennedy: The Story of the Boy Whose Skin Fell Off, Tonto Books, 2007, ISBN 0955218381, 9780955218385. p.158
  41. ^ Deborah Ross, 'Boy George: Drama chameleon', The Independent, 13 May 2002 [20]: also Lee Ryan from Blue (boy band) in (link broken) www.officialleeryan.com/biography.html.
  42. ^ Carter, Jon (2005). South America Detox. Carter. p. 258. ISBN 0-9552-1840-3. 
  43. ^ Denton, Andrew (2006-02-20). "Transcript of interview with Billy Connolly for ABC TV's With Enough Rope". http://www.abc.net.au/tv/enoughrope/transcripts/s1574093.htm. Retrieved 2007-02-05. : With reference to a scene in a film in which Connolly appears naked, he says "So I danced bollocky buff round them..."
  44. ^ Joyce, James (1922). Ulysses. Episode 12. 
  45. ^ Ball, Kevin. "Bally's Celtic Swing". A Love Supreme (Sunderland AFC Fanzine). ALS Publications. http://www.a-love-supreme.com/archive/archive049.htm. Retrieved 2007-02-05.  "We all went out...for a few beers to a place called Sean's Bar. Some of the lads were playing darts in there, and there was a lass near them who was utterly bollocksed. She was all over the shop".
  46. ^ a b Dog's bollocks - meaning and origin phrases.org.uk, Viz magazine 1989: "Viz: the dog's bollocks: the best of issues 26 to 31".
  47. ^ The Times: p.7. 1995-10-04. 
  48. ^ Douglas Harper. "Online Etymology Dictionary". http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=bee%27s+knees. Retrieved 2006-09-08. 
  49. ^ Extract revised for OED Online: dog" BBC 2
  50. ^ Michael Quinion. "Questions & Answers: Bog-standard". World Wide Words. http://www.worldwidewords.org/qa/qa-bog1.htm. Retrieved 2006-09-08. 
  51. ^ "Wychwood Dogs Bollocks". RateBeer LLC. http://www.ratebeer.com/beer/wychwood-dogs-bollocks/6471/. Retrieved 2006-09-08. 
  52. ^ "Dogs Bollocks recipe". http://www.drinksmixer.com/drink3221.html. Retrieved 2006-09-08. 
  53. ^ Wood, Christopher (2006). James Bond, The Spy I Loved. Twenty First Century Publishers Ltd. p. 138. ISBN 1904433537.  'The heroine needed to be young, capable of projecting a naïve innocence, able to act a bit and possessed of what I heard a member of the crew describe as "a decent pair of top bollocks"'.
  54. ^ "He'll be chuffed to his bollocks in the morning when he sees his eldest son".
  55. ^ BBC - BBC Four - Ask Michael Billington - Language
  56. ^ Raby, Peter (2001). The Cambridge Companion to Harold Pinter. Cambridge University Press. p. 232. ISBN 052165842X. 
  57. ^ Wilson, Robert McLiam (1998). Ripley Bogle. Arcade Publishing. p. 302. ISBN 1559704241. "My baldy chum wasn't smiling now...This bollock-head was obviously an amateur, a cowboy".
  58. ^ Grose, Captain (2004). 1811 Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue (reprinted 2004). Kessinger Publishing. p. 15. ISBN 1419100076. 
  59. ^ Threadwatch
  60. ^ "'Butt Scratcher!' At Reading ... / Festivals // Drowned In Sound". Drownedinsound.com. 2008-08-26. http://drownedinsound.com/community/boards/festivals/3903165. Retrieved 2010-02-14. 
  61. ^ Eric Partridge, Tom Dalzell, Terry Victor, The New Partridge Dictionary of Slang and Unconventional English, Taylor & Francis, 2006, ISBN 041525938X, 9780415259385. p.1082
  62. ^ "Straw says dossier was 'embarrassing'". BBC News. 2003-06-24. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/3015272.stm. Retrieved 2007-08-12. 
  63. ^ Nadgers is one of many words dripping with sexual innuendo which emerged in the 1950s and 1960s to evade strict BBC censorship. The etymology is uncertain, but possibly based on "gonad". When Rambling Syd Rumpo on the radio show Round the Horne asked "What shall we do with a drunken nurker?", the answer he gave was "Hit him in the nadgers with the bosun's plunger...'til his bodgers dangle".
  64. ^ See Church dedication at Garngad and Royston: see also St. Rollox railway works and Glasgow St Rollox (UK Parliament constituency).
  65. ^ OED.
  66. ^ Polly Toynbee, 'Only Alan Johnson can prevent catastrophe,' The Guardian 15 May 2009. [21]
  67. ^ "UK | England | Leicestershire | Man fined for 'rude' Blair shirt". BBC News. 2006-06-30. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/leicestershire/5135150.stm. Retrieved 2010-02-14. 
  68. ^ Bhat, Devika (July 4, 2006). "Stallholders fined for offensive Blair T-shirts". The Times. http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/article682521.ece?print=yes&randnum=1151003209000. Retrieved 14 February 2010. Mr Rhodes said: “The word ‘bollocks’ has come to mean rubbish. It certainly doesn’t have the same shock value that it might have had when the Sex Pistols first used it on an album.”
  69. ^ The Flintstones, Season 1 Episode 23, The Astro' Nuts, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fuCbrPzPLAc







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