Also the term given a weapon that is good for clearing out entrenched defenders. One notable example of this is the Thompson submachine gun, more popularly known as the 'Tommy Gun.' It was used by American and British forces in World War II, as well as by criminals and law enforcement in the U.S. from its invention in the mid 1930s to its replacement by machine pistols and more modern assault rifles based on the German MP-40 Schmeisser machine pistol from the end of World War II. This term was used infrequently, the preferred version being trench-broom, due to the 'sweeping' motion associated with its use.


Kenzilla: I don't know I'd agree with you there. Think of it the other way around- it's not the fact that the gun is named trench-plow which is also a name for the penis. It's the fact that the words trench and plow are being used to represent the vagina and penis respectively. The fact that the gun has the same name here becomes almost irrelevant. In fact, the gun has a far better claim on the most literal interpretation of the term; you use one to clear out an actual trench. My point is that the link between the gun and sex in this case really is being driven from the other side; the usage of trench-plow to mean a penis is more of a stretch than the usage of it to mean the gun.
I'd just like to point out here that there are legitimate points of contention by any linguist, anthropologist, or minority group that the English language and culture are embedded with subliminal meanings.

In this case, we see the definition of a trench plow as a weapon of war. This word also exists as colloquialism to mean penis. Look at the shape of missiles and rockets. Not to mention that guns, the primary weapons of war, expel hot lead in explosive bursts.

Maybe these examples aren't enough to convince you. But the next time you begin to roll your eyes at a feminist, a civil rights advocate, or any other activist, think about all the other words in our language that convey this kind of message.

Trench"-plow", Trench"-plough` (?) v. t.

To plow with deep furrows, for the purpose of loosening the land to a greater depth than usual.

 

© Webster 1913.

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