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Leith on life: We live in a swearier age

I understand that it is a moral abomination to have sweary children, but at the same time almost nothing makes me laugh more.

By Sam Leith   June 2014

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“Children can swear precisely because they don’t yet have any sense of the obscene.” © Mindaugas Danys

“Oh,” said my four-year-old daughter, contemplating the water from her knocked-over glass spreading across the kitchen table. “Oh bladdy hell.”

My wife looked at me. I looked at the floor.

“BLADDY hell,” repeated Marlene with more emphasis and a world-weary shrug.

Alice’s eyebrow went up. “She didn’t learn that from me,” she said.

“Well she didn’t learn it from me, either,” I huffed. “If she was copying me she would have said ‘****ing…

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