Origins is an occasional post in which I delve into the history of a word or phrase.
Today's words are: Golly, Gosh, Gee
Today they are mostly used as mild forms of surprise.
They are actually euphemisms, which is basically the opposite of being blasphemous.
Gosh, used instead of God, has been around since 1757.
Golly was also used instead of God and began life in 1775. Seeing has how it originated in Britain I can hear certain people in the government saying things like, "By golly, we have to do something about those rebellious colonists in Boston."
Gee has several meanings:
1. Gee, as in to turn right, the opposite of haw. First known use about 1628.
2. Gee, as in the letter G.
3. Gee, as in a thousand dollars, came into use around 1818
4. And lastly, gee, as a euphemism, is used instead of Jesus. It originated in the United States and has only been in use since sometime between 1884 and 1895.
Other related mild oaths and euphemisms include: jeese, gee whiz, and jeepers, which all replace Jesus.
Gee willikers became popular in the mid-19th century. It is thought to be a substitution for saying, "Jerusalem!" or "Jee-roosalem!" as an expression of surprise.
You can read more about these words HERE.
A 1962 oldie by Sunny and the Sunliners from San Antonio, Texas.
Ten years later, The Stylistics. The words to this song are lovely.
Are you a gosh, golly, gee user? Are you familiar with either of the songs?