Posted by Henry on June 02, 2003
In Reply to: I swan posted by ESC on June 02, 2003
: : 'I swan!'', means ''swear.''
: From the archives:
: The Oxford English Dictionary has "swan" as a verb, labeled U.S. slang, derived probably (it says) from northern England dialectal "Is' wan," literally "I shall warrant" = I'll be bound; later taken as a mincing substitute for "swear." The first use in print recorded in the dictionary is from the year 1823.
Ilza, Are you moonlighting from the Poetry Archives? Does Stephen know?