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Re: "drag queen?"

Posted by Bob on May 06, 2006

In Reply to: "Drag queen?" posted by Dana Turner on May 06, 2006

: ...they've got "designer dyke" but not "drag queen?"
: i've heard two specific etimologies for the term 'drag queen.' one feels right to me, the other naught. any disscussion?
: 1) Vaudevillians (maybe minstrels?) who toured from theatre to theatre lovingly referred to their costumes & props as "drag"...Men who performed as women needed greater amounts of costumes, wigs, props, etc. and were ergo called, "drag queens."
: 2) Elizabethan theatres announced auditions for "feminine" roles [which were played by men since were not allowed to work in theatre] as: "Dress Required As Girl - D.R.A.G."

: Frankly, I find this second explanation absurdly specious. I've heard this similar "medieval abbreviation method" offered as a source for our ultimate four-letter word, "Fornication Under Consent of the King."

: Really, now? I had a medieval theatre graduate student swear to me that both were true. I just don't buy it. Any discussion?

I can't comment on the first explanation, but the second is patently absurd.