Foul Mouthed Miss
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very year for 600 years in our little town, a language ritual takes place to sanctify words that are in danger of being lost through disuse. The poets and writers of Durham, recognize that any language would be less colourful without these words. So, in the interests of preserving the whole language, they maintain the ritual of the 'foul mouthed miss'. The event honours the martyr who in ce1410, was said to have been ripped from limb to limb for telling the Puba of the time, in the words of the day, in a cool deliberate tone, to 'kiss my ass'.

A town's person is selected to represent the martyr of old. The lucky miss rides the river raft wearing the ancient costume and speaking this year's chosen expletives. Words that are unacceptable in everyday conversation and are only spoken in whispers, shouted in anger, written in rebellion, or uttered without shame by the vulgar are at risk of becoming condemned to obscurity. This years 'foul mouthed miss', pure of thought and heart, speaks without malice those words so precious and irreplaceable.

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