Ellen in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, wonders about the origin of the exclamation jeezum pete! It’s a minced oath — that is, a way of avoiding saying “Jesus Christ!” most likely derived by combining it with St. Pete. There are dozens of similar euphemized exclamations, including gee whillikers, gee willikins, jumping jehosaphat, Judas Priest, jeepers, jiminy, jiminy crickets, jiminy christmas, and more. This is part of a complete episode.

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