Reply
Thread Tools Display Modes
#1
Old 04-21-2005, 10:26 AM
Guest
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: ...and around the corner
Posts: 1,426
Definition and origin of "pearl-clutching"?

SDMB archives and Google haven't shed much light, so I'd like to ask the masses if you could explain what "pearl-clutching" means? From context I'm guessing it's similar to "bluenose" or "puritanical." Any help with definition and origin would be appreciated. Thanks!
#2
Old 04-21-2005, 10:30 AM
Guest
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Amongst the Simi-ans
Posts: 6,169
I apologize for not having a definitive answer, but I always just assumed it had to do with the stereotypical image of an uptight, puritanical woman clutching at her pearls when ruffled or morally mortified.
#3
Old 04-21-2005, 10:42 AM
Charter Member
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Anderson, IN,USA
Posts: 14,587
There is an expression or two that refer to one's virginity as a pearl. This is just another wild guess.
#4
Old 04-21-2005, 11:05 AM
Charter Member
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Middle Tennessee
Posts: 3,195
Quote:
Originally Posted by TellMeI'mNotCrazy
I apologize for not having a definitive answer, but I always just assumed it had to do with the stereotypical image of an uptight, puritanical woman clutching at her pearls when ruffled or morally mortified.
I agree with this answer. It's the first mental image that came to me when I read the OP.
#5
Old 04-21-2005, 11:32 AM
Charter Member
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: U.S.A.
Posts: 32,893
The expression refers specifically to a pearl necklace, which is seen as the type of ornamentation worn by a woman who is old-fashioned, staid, prissy, conservative, or just plain unfashionable. Think of the frumpy dress of someone like Dana Carvey's Church Lady character, who doesn't happen to wear pearls, but does have the unfashionable hairstyle, eyeglasses, and neck-to-ankle drab, shapeless outfit.

Such women are supposedly easily shocked or mortified by "vulgar" displays of lewdness or intimacy and in their anxiety, they might clutch at or fiddle with their pearl necklaces. That's the image being invoked.

Quote:
There is an expression or two that refer to one's virginity as a pearl. This is just another wild guess.
That's not what's being referenced.
#6
Old 04-21-2005, 11:57 AM
Eve Eve is offline
Guest
Join Date: Dec 1999
Posts: 22,064
Quote:
Originally Posted by acsenray
The expression refers specifically to a pearl necklace, which is seen as the type of ornamentation worn by a woman who is old-fashioned, staid, prissy, conservative, or just plain unfashionable.
Well, really!

[Simultaneously clutches pearls and glares through lorgnette]
#7
Old 04-21-2005, 12:01 PM
Guest
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: slightly north of center
Posts: 4,466
Quote:
Originally Posted by acsenray
The expression refers specifically to a pearl necklace, which is seen as the type of ornamentation worn by a woman who is old-fashioned, staid, prissy, conservative, or just plain unfashionable. Think of the frumpy dress of someone like Dana Carvey's Church Lady character, who doesn't happen to wear pearls, but does have the unfashionable hairstyle, eyeglasses, and neck-to-ankle drab, shapeless outfit.
Do you have a cite for this, or are you going on contextual use?
#8
Old 04-21-2005, 12:06 PM
Charter Member
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Leesburg, GA
Posts: 28,201
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eve
Well, really!

[Simultaneously clutches pearls and glares through lorgnette]
Hoardes of indignant dowagers are going to descend on ascenray glaring through their lorgnettes and saying "Well, really!. Then ascenray will be beaten about the head with strands of one, three and five pearls.

I am glad I am not ascenray!
#9
Old 04-21-2005, 12:37 PM
Eve Eve is offline
Guest
Join Date: Dec 1999
Posts: 22,064
Quote:
Originally Posted by swampbear
Hoardes of indignant dowagers are going to descend on ascenray . . .
" . . . I vill show the vorld that I can be its mistress. I shall perfect my own rice of pippleŚa rice of indignant dowagers vhich vill conquer the vorld!"
#10
Old 04-28-2005, 04:13 PM
Guest
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Montreal
Posts: 20,201
To "clutch your pearls" means to be alarmed or suddenly dismayed -- to "get excited" as in "Don't get excited."

The definition I read for it referenced it as being "from the prima donna's clutching her pearls when she hits a wrong note."
#11
Old 01-20-2012, 10:42 PM
Charter Member
Join Date: Jun 1999
Location: Rochester, NY, USA
Posts: 1,016
This thread was referenced in Slate!

http://slate.com/articles/double...og_clich_.html


Powers &8^]
Reply

┬ź Previous Thread | Next Thread ┬╗
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 01:14 AM.

Copyright © 2017
Best Topics: illustrator italics half track vehicle canon 20d charger clorox outdoor bleach gi joe carrier skeleton electrocuted rice with sugar steroids from doctor one legged sex 3.4 chevy engine youtube zoomed in crumbling shoe soles braunschweiger recipes ripping metal floyd's tomb long distance sailing sharing razors sacre bleu translation bumper badger radiator flush frequency rim shot basketball dumpling sauce name average medieval height man xy vhs rewinders circular farms blood purple text to landline shovel teeth 1800 fuck you dell shipping cost colonel montoya cows downstairs kilgore rangerettes requirements one word movie quotes how old can you be and still be in high school how do cats survive the winter funny 12 days of christmas owed child support after 18 how to catch a rat in the house how to not be a crybaby why do i sleep on the edge of the bed shaggy dog story examples vincent gray sixth sense which actor has starred in the most movies why put steak on black eye how long does a funeral mass last cinemax after dark actors bank error in your favor statute of limitations how to reheat hamburger helper rent a chipper shredder home depot why did gregory sierra leave barney miller navy and marines relationship how to make salt stick to popcorn pea sized lump under skin on arm in the pipe, five by five water shut off valve keeps turning largest square in a circle t rowe price 401k hardship withdrawal went right over his head not talking to family members why does food taste bitter all of a sudden alcoholic drink that tastes like dr pepper medical term for boogers are mongoose bikes any good listerine vs hydrogen peroxide