I read somewhere recently where the word "yo" has been officially added to the English language. A friend and I have an argument as to where this word came from... Could someone offer some insight on this form of getting one's attention?
Webster's has it around for centuries, coming from Middle English. There's usually no semantic explanation for interjections other than forming a distinct sound.
I've always understood "Yo" to be a South Philadelphia slang greeting.
Frank Pierce
Everybody remembers "Yo, heave-ho, and a bottle of rum." For whatever it's worth.
"Officially"? Since when did we have an official approve English words?

At any rate, while it's been around for a long time, it became much more popular as a result of the movie "Rocky".

Frank Pierce
I would guess that some words pre-date even those which we can trace back to Sumar. I recall hearing some young kids on the street in Bergen Norway greeting each other with "yo". It was natural and normal; I doubt that they picked it up from any curent media source.

I further guess that I could have walked into any paleolithic cave in Europe 20000 years BCE, said yo, smiled, and somebody there would have looked up, smiled and said "yo."

Lingua franca!

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