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Posted: 9/16/2004 1:30:16 PM EDT
Subject: re: origin

In the 16th and 17th centuries, everything had to be transported by ship.

It was also before commercial fertilizer's invention, so large shipments

of manure were common. It was always shipped dry, because in dry

form it weighed a lot less than when wet. But once water (at sea) hit it,

it not only became heavier, but the process of fermentation began again,

of which a by-product is methane gas.

As the stuff was stored below decks in bundles you can see what could (and did) happen. All ships had leaks. Some water would get into the hold, even a little bit. The manure got wet and methane began to build up below decks. And the first time someone came below at night with a lantern,... BOOOOM!
Several ships were destroyed in this manner before it was determined just what was happening.

After that, the bundles of manure were always stamped with the term "Ship High In Transit" on them which meant for the sailors to stow it high enough off the lower decks so that any water that came into the hold would not touch this volatile cargo and start the production of methane. Thus evolved the term "S.H.I.T," which has come down through the centuries and is in use to this very day.

Link Posted: 9/16/2004 1:32:18 PM EDT
Link Posted: 9/16/2004 1:32:20 PM EDT
That doesnt match what South Park said about the origin of the word SHIT.
Link Posted: 9/16/2004 1:32:42 PM EDT
Sounds like a crap trap.

I say BS.
Link Posted: 9/16/2004 1:32:44 PM EDT
not sure whether BS or not, but it sure sounds good, doesn't it?
Link Posted: 9/16/2004 1:35:14 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/16/2004 1:35:40 PM EDT by Prefect]
Snopes. Learn it. Love it. Live it.

Link Posted: 9/16/2004 1:36:39 PM EDT
look at the Oxford English Dictionary - to the best of my knowledge it is the authority on the etymology of most English words.
Link Posted: 9/16/2004 1:40:58 PM EDT
its not the origin, that email has been going around for years

Link Posted: 9/16/2004 1:56:09 PM EDT
I doubt seriously that manure was ever shipped in large quantities… I suspect local manufacture would suffice.
Link Posted: 9/16/2004 2:04:07 PM EDT
Looks like a case for the Myth Busters!
Link Posted: 9/16/2004 2:04:52 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/16/2004 2:28:31 PM EDT by ar50troll]
It's true...not really...
Shit is a very old word, with an Old English root. *Scítan is the Old English word. It has cognates in most of the other Germanic languages and shares a common Germanic root with modern equivalents like the German scheissen.

*Scítan, however, doesn't appear in extant Old English texts and is only assumed to have existed in Old English. The verb to shit dates the Middle English period (c. 1308), and the noun form is from the 16th century. The interjection is of quite recent vintage, not found until the 1920s.

In 2002, an alleged acronymic origin for shit appeared on the Internet. According to this tale, the word is from an acronym for Ship High In Transit, referring to barges carrying manure. This is a complete fabrication and absurd on its face. All it takes to disprove it is to look up the word in any decent dictionary. Remember, anytime someone posits an acronymic word origin, chances are that it is utterly false.
Link Posted: 9/16/2004 2:26:05 PM EDT
Yeah, good story none the less.
Link Posted: 9/16/2004 2:52:45 PM EDT
Quit beating around the bush. If you're talking about Michael Moore just say so.
Link Posted: 9/16/2004 2:54:38 PM EDT

Originally Posted By 667:
Quit beating around the bush. If you're talking about Michael Moore just say so.

I guess it is false then, nothing could life michael moore high enough without breaking whatever is holding him.
Link Posted: 9/16/2004 2:57:03 PM EDT
The rule of thumb in etymology is this: if the offered explanation seems plausible at first glance, it's almost certainly wrong.
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