Originally Posted by Addie
If the stick and wood come from the era of Charles Dickens, I wasn't around then. I was born a couple of days too late.
But I have heard the word "fag" used in English movies. It has always been used in reference to a cigarette.
Yes, a "fag" is a British slang term for a cigarette - possible from the analogy with sticks?
"Faggot" in reference to a bundle of sticks pre-dates Dickens by about 400 years and was defined as a legal measurement for a bundle of sticks in the 15th century.
If you are tired out you may describe yourself as "fagged" as used by Jane Austen in several of her novels (from an old word meaning "to droop").
"Fag" and "Fagging is/was used in English public schools (such as Eton and Harrow and others) for the system whereby younger boys were required to do fetching and carrying for older boys. The boy was the "fag" and the jobs he had to do were referred to as "fagging". I don't think that, in the general run of things, there was anything, shall we say, "inappropriate" in the set-up.
Oh, and in English-English a faggot, as in the expression "Silly old faggot", was a fussy old woman.
My old English teacher was very keen on the derivation of words & was easily distracted from the intended lesson by one of us asking about a word. We may not all have got straight "A"s in English literature but we ended up with a very large vocabulary and very good at crosswords!!
Oh dear, getting off topic again.