(Plain sex talk of several kinds, not for kids or the sexually modest.)

Yesterday’s morning name, and it was clear to me when I woke up that this was the vulgar sexual noun snatch ‘woman’s genitals’. and not the grabbing snatch or the stealing / kidnapping snatch or the weightlifting snatch — but then it turns out they’re all related.

Overview from NOAD2:

verb snatch: quickly seize (something) in a rude or eager way: she snatched a cookie from the plate | figurative: a victory snatched from the jaws of defeat. – informal steal (something) or kidnap (someone), typically by seizing or grabbing suddenly: a mission to snatch Winston Churchill.

noun snatch: 1 an act of snatching or quickly seizing something: a quick snatch of breath. – a short spell of doing something: brief snatches of sleep. – a fragment of song or talk: picking up snatches of conversation. – informal a kidnapping or theft.

2 (weightlifting) the rapid raising of a weight from the floor to above the head in one movement.

3 vulgar slang a woman’s genitals.

The thieving sense, embodied in a movie:


Snatch (stylised as snatch) is a 2000 British crime comedy film written and directed by Guy Ritchie, featuring an ensemble cast. Set in the London criminal underworld, the film contains two intertwined plots: one dealing with the search for a stolen diamond, the other with a small-time boxing promoter (Jason Statham) who finds himself under the thumb of a ruthless gangster (Alan Ford) who is ready and willing to have his subordinates carry out severe and sadistic acts of violence.

The film features an assortment of characters, including Irish Traveller Mickey O’Neil (Brad Pitt), referred to as a “pikey”, arms-dealer Boris “the Blade” Yurinov (Rade Šerbedžija), professional thief and gambling addict Franky “Four-Fingers” (Benicio del Toro), American gangster-jeweller Abraham Denovitz known as “Cousin Avi” (Dennis Farina), and bounty hunter Bullet-Tooth Tony (Vinnie Jones). It is also distinguished by a kinetic direction and editing style, an intricate double plot featuring numerous ironic twists of chance and causality, and a fast pace. (Wikipedia link)

And the weightlifting sense:


The snatch is the first of two lifts contested in the sport of weightlifting (also known as Olympic weightlifting) followed by the clean and jerk. The objective of the snatch is to lift the barbell from the ground to overhead in one continuous motion. … In the squat snatch, the lifter lifts the bar as high as possible and pulls themselves under it in a squat position, receiving the bar overhead with the arms straight, decreasing the necessary height of the bar, therefore increasing the amount of weight that the lifter may successfully lift. (Wikipedia link)

And on to the sex stuff, from GDoS:

[[< Standard English] snatch, to grab] in sexual contexts: (a) sexual intercourse, esp. quick or illicit or with a prostitute [first cite 1538] (b) the vagina [negative image] [first cite 1785] (c) (US prison) a male homosexal [1950 dictionary cite] (d) a collective term for women in general, as viewed as the route to sexual intercourse [first cite 1950 in that same dictionary, but then other cites] (e) a woman [first cite 1952 James Jones From Here to Eternity] (f) (US gay) the anus [dictionary cites from 1950 and 1972]

The first step is from ‘sexual intercourse’ (viewed negatively) to ‘vagina’ (viewed negatively), and then the senses radiate in familiar ways: from the vagina to a woman viewed as a sexual object (a metonymy) to a woman in general; from the vagina to the (male) anus viewed as a sexual organ (a metaphor); and then from the anus so viewed to a man viewed as a sexual object (a metonymy); and to a male homosexual in general..

Slang snatch ‘vagina’ has come up in passing twice on this blog:

on 1/20/16, in “butt/booty, dial/call”: Green’s Dictionary of Slang gives two senses (front and rear) of this booty:

the vagina, hence by metonymy, a woman, esp. as a sex-object and generic, for sex (whether with a man or a woman): first cite c1908 [on the metonymy for ‘woman’, compare similar uses of cuntsnatchpiece of ass, etc.; on the generic use for ‘sex, sexual relations’, compare the usage in I need some ass / dick / etc.]

the buttocks, the rectum: first cite 1926

on 3/22/17 , in “The news for beavers”, with two mentions of sexual snatch as an alternative to box, pussy, cunt (and beaver)

It was probably inevitable that the sexual sense should get crossed with other senses, as in this double-entendre texty slogan:


It has also occurred to me to take advantage of the original ‘grab’ sense of the verb snatch to float an alternative to the names Helmet Grabpussy and Squire Grabpussy (and Lord Dampnut): Deacon Snatch-Snatch.

One Response to “snatch”

  1. arnold zwicky Says:

    From a friend in the LGBT-and-friends area of Facebook who has recently moved to a heavily gay town, from which he reports:

    In my new home town …, there is a … supermarket in which perhaps 70% or 80% of the male customers are gay.
    One evening, I saw a very handsome dark-haired muscular man in the check-out line wearing a blue muscle tank top.
    On the front, it said:
    and on the back it said:

    Nice example of gay male snatch.

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