The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #11353 Message #84130
Posted By: Murray on Saltspring
04-Jun-99 - 11:41 PM
Thread Name: I give up. What's a HOGEYE?
Subject: RE: I give up. What's a HOGEYE?
Sorry, Margarita, but I think your suspicion is correct. I can't find an outright definition just now, but there are one or two suggestive references. In a book of shanties published about 1920 the author appeals to the experience of old salts, who know what the term means, and refuses to be any clearer. Legman (Horn Book, 1964, p. 401), talking about Hugill's unpublished unexpurgated collection, says that without it and one other manuscript "it would be impossible, in future times, actually to assess their erotic content from the absolutely terrified hints and dark implications (as about 'hog-eye') in all the printed chantey collections." The term isn't in Partridge's Dictionary of Slang, or its late revision by Beale, but I think a little reflection will bring the (maybe reluctant) conclusion that h-e means what it looks like, i.e. [to put it primly] the female pudendum. Sorry about that. Perhaps other Mudcatters will argue. Cheers Murray