also heeltap, 1680s, "one of the bits of leather that are stacked up to make a shoe heel" (see heel (n.1)); meaning "bit of liquor left in a glass or bottle" first recorded 1767; the exact connection is uncertain unless it be "the last or final part." Related: Heeltaps.
A jolly dog, is one who has no conversation in company, but "fill about, what's the toast, damn your heel-taps," and roars out an obscene ballad when he gets drunk. [The Batchelor, March 28, 1767]
also mother-fucker, by 1956, usually simply an intensive of fucker. It is implied in clipped form mother (with the context made clear) by 1928; motherfucking is by 1906. Abbreviation m.f. (for motherfucking) is in a rendition of soldier talk in Pound's "Pisan Cantos" (1948).
A short time after he returned, appellant drew a six-shooter and told deceased, in a loud tone of voice, that he would shoot his God damn heart out, and called him a mother-fucking son of a bitch. He held his pistol on him a little while, and then put it in his pocket, and stood there some time. [account of Puryear vs. State of Texas in Court of Criminal Appeals of Texas, "The Southwestern Reporter," vol. 98, 1907, p. 258. The homicide at the center of the case took place in Austin, Texas, March 3, 1906]
umbelliferous European plant long cultivated as food, 1660s, sellery, from French céleri (17c., originally sceleri d'Italie), said by French sources to be from Italian (Lombard dialect) seleri (singular selero), from Late Latin selinon, from Greek selinon "parsley" (in Medieval Greek "celery"), a word of uncertain origin. The c- spelling, attested by 1719 in English, is from French. Middle English words for "wild celery" were acheand selinum.
[O]ne day, in a weak and hungry moment, my roommate and I succumbed to a bit of larceny. A greengrocer's truck had parked down the street and was left unattended. We grabbed the first crate we could off the back. It turned out to be celery. For two days we ate nothing but celery and used up more calories chewing than we realized in energy. "Damn it," I said to my roommate, "What're we going to do? We can't starve." "That's funny," he replied. "I thought we could." [Chuck Jones, "Chuck Amuck," 1989]
early 15c., of persons, "to perceive, distinguish;" also, of things, "to refer to, relate to, pertain to," from Old French concerner (15c.) and directly from Medieval Latin concernere "concern, touch, belong to," figurative use of Late Latin concernere "to sift, mix as in a sieve," from assimilated form of Latin com "with, together" (see con-) + cernere "to sift," hence "perceive, comprehend" (from PIE root *krei- "to sieve," thus "discriminate, distinguish").
Apparently the sense of the first element shifted to intensive in Medieval Latin. From late 15c. as "to affect the interest of, be of importance to;" hence the meaning "to worry, disturb, make uneasy or anxious" (17c.). Reflexive use "busy, occupy, engage" ("concern oneself") is from 1630s. Related: Concerned; concerning.
Used imperatively from 1803 (compare similar use of confound); often rendered in dialect as consarn (1832), probably a euphemism for damn (compare concerned). Letter opening to whom it may concern attested by 1740.