War, sex and God: MPs' favourite words


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‘Housewife’ received essentially the most mentions inside the Fifties

Who used to be once the remainder MP to say “negroes” throughout the Commons? Which Leader’s favorite phrase was once “combat”? How time and again have MPs used swear phrases?

A new website created by the usage of the College of Glasgow, documenting the 7.6 million Parliamentary speeches made from 1803 to 2005, has the entire options.

A trawl All Through the 1.6 billion words spoken in Parliament over the past 200 years deals any other history of the nation’s fads and obsessions and the altering cultural tastes of our elected representatives.

Dr Marc Alexander, director of historical thesaurus of English, who was as soon as in charge of the challenge said throughout the 1800s “the issues that parliament favored have been liberty and justice however in more contemporary years it is animals and democracy”.

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Michael Heseltine opens the M4 motorway in 1971

The analysis revealed over time Individuals of Parliament have moved in opposition to extra non-public speeches and using extra slang.

There have been fewer fees in Latin and extra pop culture references – twentieth century inventions comparable to James Bond which was pointed out 132 occasions, Mickey Mouse, mentioned 278 times and Dracula Sixty Six occasions.

within the nineteenth century, by contrast, there have been slightly below 200 references to the Roman thinker Cicero.

The research discovered certain phrases were used extra repeatedly in sure courses of time.

Dr Alexander talked about the word “housewife” peaked within the Fifties. the use of the phrase “colonist” spiked throughout the 1850s, “nationalise” was once most used throughout the Forties, “nuclear” all over the 19 Sixties-Eighties and “motorway” was once freshest within the Seventies.

Dangerous language

There have been moderately few swear phrases used. In 28 cases of swearing three had been variations of the f-phrase, 17 have been references to “arse” or “arse-lickers” and eight situations of the p-word used on this 1969 quote from Eric Lubbock MP: “i will no longer think about how you’ve gotten managed to remain wakeful: I Have heard nothing then again piss and wind always I Have been within the Committee.”

There were distinctive variations between the house of Lords and the home of Commons, with the Commons being more combative of their use of language.

within the Lords, phrases an identical to “assume”, “believe” and “perhaps” had been used greater than throughout the Commons.


Most mentioned religions

  • Christianity or Christian was pointed out Forty Five,902 times
  • Judaism or Jewish was once as soon as pointed out 15,100 Sixty 5 instances
  • Islam or Muslim was once mentioned 5,291 events
  • Hinduism or Hindu used to be once mentioned 2,033
  • Sikhism or Sikh was pointed out 1,192 cases
  • Buddhism or Buddhist was once mentioned 506 circumstances

Leaders of political situations are continuously associated to specific phrases or speeches in their careers.

Unsurprisingly, Sir Winston Churchill’s most incessantly used verb used to be once “battle”.

Margaret Thatcher’s high phrases had been “useful useful resource”, “negotiation”, “strike”, “wage” and “productiveness”.

The University says Tony Blair’s most often used phrases have been “troop”, “euro”, “summit” and “pensioner”.

The MP recorded as being instructed to “shut up” probably the most in Parliament was Labour’s Dennis Skinner, who once stated Excessive Minster David Cameron as “dodgy Dave“.

Dr Alexander stated he believed “numerous politicians will look themselves up” the usage of the archive.

Cultural changes

The language used in Parliament presentations a shift in cultural attitudes.

inside the 1800s, when the British Empire used to be in full swing, foreigners were described the use of phrases comparable to “savage”, “wild” and “pre-civilised”. The word “negroes” was used Three,354 instances in whole.

It was once ultimate heard in the Commons in 1998, when then House secretary Jack Straw recited a poem through Winthrop Mackworth Praed, an MP and poet in the early Nineteenth Century.

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Tony Blair: Troop, euro, summit and pensioner

Most Probably the freshest time it was used to refer to a black particular particular person was once by means of the late Tony Benn in 1988, all over a debate on the Three Hundredth anniversary of the incredible Revolution, when he mentioned: “the rights of the Irish Catholics underneath William III had been fewer than those of the American negroes on the time of slavery”.

The word “intercourse” was talked about 23,722 circumstances, mostly to explain gender.

in the 1800s phrases reminiscent of “delicacy of her intercourse”, “frailties of the intercourse”, or “feebler intercourse” had been used.

The phrase “Combat” has been persistently used in Parliament given that 1800s – the easiest use used to be once during 1940-1949 when it used to be as soon as used a hundred And Seventy,661 occasions. the bottom used to be as soon as from 1800-1809 and it used to be once used Three,663.

throughout the 40’s the phrase “atomic” made a giant look for the primary time.

It was once as soon as mentioned 2,709 times, essentially as a consequence of the primary ever use of the atomic bomb over Nagasaki and Hiroshima.

Talk About of “nuclear” abruptly followed with the focal point transferring to nuclear weapons and power.

From 1950-1959 it was once talked about over 9,000 instances, considerably up from the earlier decade when it used to be once talked about fewer than 100 Fifty occasions. Throughout the Nineties “nuclear” mushroomed to twenty,892 mentions – the perfect decade to this point.


Which Excessive minister gave probably the most speeches as much as 2005?

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The record contains speeches made prior to, all the way through and after their time in energy, excluding for Tony Blair whose ultimate total will probably be higher because he remained in Parliament unless 2007.

  • Winston Churchill – 23,424
  • Arthur Balfour – 22,183
  • Margaret Thatcher – 18,699
  • Harold Wilson – 16,003
  • David Lloyd George – 15,127
  • Herbert Asquith – 13,226
  • Anthony Eden – 12,745
  • Andrew Bonar Legislation – Eleven,699
  • Edward Heath – Eleven,167
  • James Callaghan – Eleven,045
  • Harold Macmillian – 10,966
  • John Major – 10,405
  • Clement Atlee – 9,584
  • Tony Blair – 9,218
  • Stanley Baldwin -Eight,496
  • Ramsay Macdonald – 6,377
  • Neville Chamberlain – 6,278
  • Henry Campbell Bannerman – 6,239
  • John Russell – 5,038
  • William Gladstone – 5,025
  • Alec Douglas Living – 3,763
  • Benjamin Disraeli – Three,076



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