late unpleasantness

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English[edit]

Noun[edit]

late unpleasantness (plural late unpleasantnesses)

  1. (euphemistic) A recent war, especially the American Civil War.
    • (Can we date this quote?) Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War, Brief History of the Grand Army of the Republic[1]:
      With membership limited strictly to "veterans of the late unpleasantness," the GAR encouraged the formation of Allied Orders to aid them in its various works.
    • 2003, Zane E. Finkelstein (referring to the Vietnam War), [2]:
      It is unlikely that anyone with significant knowledge of the Army or the late unpleasantness in Southeast Asia, upon reading these two sentences, would respond other than with a scatological barnyard expletive or some more genteel utterance representing the same level of acceptance.

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