There are plenty of topics that make people uncomfortable. To get around this discomfort, speakers and writers have been employing euphemisms for centuries.
A euphemism is “the substitution of an agreeable or inoffensive expression for one that may offend or suggest something unpleasant.”1“euphemism,” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/euphemism. Accessed 10/10/2022.. The word itself comes from the Greek εὐφημισμος euphēmismós, from the noun εὐφημια euphēmía meaning “good speech” (an antonym of βλᾰσφημιᾱ blasphēmia “deceitful speech”).
Euphemisms are often used to avoid subjects that are usually considered impolite or taboo:
It’s easy to see why people use euphemisms; who wants to discuss unpleasant or offensive matters directly? But should a writer employ them in their writing?Continue reading “On the Use of Euphemisms”