How to Curse in Shakespeare

Do you find yourself using curse words too often? Can't think of any alternatives? You're still stuck in Anglo-Saxon times. Be modern: Think Elizabethan English.

To create your own curses, memorize some choice terms from the following list, two adjectives and a noun minimum per curse, please. Shakespeare must have had great fun blending these words. You can use the curses as written in each line or mix them up. For example, try “Thou bawdy bat-fowled barnacle,” or to sound more modern, try “You surly sheep-biting puttock.”

Combine words from each of the three columns below.

Adjective

Adjective

Noun

artless

base-court

apple-john

bawdy

bat-fowling

baggage

beslubbering

beef-witted

barnacle

bootless

beetle-headed

bladder

churlish

boil-brained

boar-pig

clouted

clay-brained

bum-bailey

cockered

clapper-clawed

bugbear

craven

common-kissing

canker-blossom

currish

crook-pated

clack-dish

dankish

dismal-dreaming

clotpole

errant

dread-bolted

death-token

fawning

earth-vexing

dewberry

fobbing

elf-skinned

flap-dragon

frothy

fen-sucked

flirt-gill

froward

fat-kidneyed

flax-wench

gleeking

flap-mouthed

foot-licker

goatish

fly-bitten

fustilarian

gorbellied

folly-fallen

giglet

infectious

full-gorged

haggard

loggerheaded

half-faced

hedge-pig

lumpish

hasty-witted

horn-beast

mammering

hedge-born

hugger-mugger

mangled

hell-hated

joithead

mewling

idle-headed

lewdster

paunchy

ill-breeding

lout

pribbling

ill-nurtured

maggot-pie

puking

knotty-pated

malt-worm

puny

milk-livered

mammet

rank

onion-eyed

minnow

reeky

plume-plucked

miscreant

roguish

pottle-deep

moldwarp

ruttish

pox-marked

mumble-news

saucy

reeling-ripe

nut-hook

spleeny

rough-hewn

pigeon-egg

spongy

rude-growing

pignut

surly

rump-fed

pumpion

tottering

shard-borne

puttock

unmuzzled

sheep-biting

rascal

vain

spur-galled

ratsbane

venomed

swag-bellied

scut

villainous

tardy-gaited

skainsmate

warped

tickle-brained

strumpet

wayward

toad-spotted

varlot

whoreson

wart-necked

vassal

weedy

unchin-snouted

whey-face

yeasty

weather-bitten

wagtail

Need more? Look up Shakespearean insults on the Internet. Or you can always read Shakespeare's plays and then make them up.

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