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Posted by David FG on August 01, 2005

In Reply to: Step- posted by Victoria S Dennis on August 01, 2005

: : Can anyone tell me the origin of the prefix "step" in relation terms, e.g. "stepmother"?

: It derives from Old English "steop", which is related to Old English "astieped", meaning "bereaved". In other words, you only have a "stepmother" because you have been bereaved of your real one. (This usage pre-dates divorce on demand by a thousand years or so.)

Reminds me of a joke:

First man: Do you have a step-ladder?

Second man: I can do better than that, I have a real ladder.

Rather silly, but it amused me.


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