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She calved

Posted by Smokey Stover on November 25, 2007

In Reply to: She calved posted by Dale on November 25, 2007

: where did the phrase 'she calved' come from?

Without context or qualification, it would refer either to a cow or whale which had just had a calf, or to an iceberg or glacier from which a part had split off, if you're accustomed to attributing female gender to icebergs or glaciers. Occasionally you will see a figurative or tranferred use, and sometimes "to calve" is used where most people would say "cave in." I can imagine poets using the phrase as a synonym for "gave birth" in contexts notinvolving cows or whales or other creatures whose young are called calves.