jesus h christ

Jesus H. Christ

Jesus H. Christ is an example of slang serving as a mild profanity. The expression can be used in an angry, wry, sarcastic, cynical, exasperated, or even joking tone. The expression implies that the Christ is a surname rather than a title (Christ comes from the Greek christos meaning "anointed.")

Etymology

The expression dates to at least the late 19th century, although according to Mark Twain it was already old in 1850, and likely originates with the ancient Christian three-letter symbolism IHS (the Christogram).

Using the name of Jesus Christ as an oath has been common for many centuries, but the precise origins of the letter H in the expression Jesus H. Christ are obscure. While many explanations have been proposed, some serious and many humorous, the most widely accepted derivation is from the divine monogram of Christian symbolism. The symbol, derived from the first three letters of the Greek name of Jesus (Ιησούς), is transliterated IHS, IHC, JHS or JHC. Since the transliteration IHS gave rise to the backronym Iesus Hominum Salvator (Latin for "Jesus savior of men"), it is plausible that JHC similarly led to Jesus H. Christ.

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