General Question

Trustinglife's avatar

Where did the expression, "So help me Hannah," come from?

Asked by Trustinglife (6623points) March 30th, 2008 from iPhone

A new friend’s mom, who’s from the Midwest, would say that. She wondered where it came from, so I thought I’d ask Fluther!

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12 Answers

TheHaight's avatar

I’ve never heard that expression and my name is Hannah… Sorry I’m no help. :)

buster's avatar

it came from hannah montana

eambos's avatar

Ive heard “so help me God,” so I guessto prevent using His name in vain she replaced it with Hannah. I guess you could just say “so help me ____.”

bulbatron9's avatar

IMDb says it was an episode of The Love Boat but this is the first time I’ve heard that phrase.

gailcalled's avatar

It’s part of the common parlance; I can’t say when I first heard it, but decades ago probably.

Eamos’ suggestion that it is a minced oath is a good one.

Trustinglife's avatar

I’m amazed. I meant this question in part to see if I could stump Fluther. Alas, I can’t. You guys are amazing.

I have forwarded your answers to my friend, who will certainly be the newest Flutherer. :)

annaott22's avatar

I hear ” So help me Anna” all the time. LOL

Greyghost's avatar

Well, It doesn’t come from Montana. My Aunt, born and raised in Aberdeen Scotland, about 1913, moved to Canada in the 1930’s. She said it All The Time. I remember her using it back in the 60s and 70’s, and I doubt that she’d picked it up then. She was a devout Presbyterian. I seem to recall a biblical Hannah, perhaps the expression relates to her.

LucyAndrews's avatar

Came from the product called so help me Hannah cream for burns rashes and createdd for poison oak made in Carmel Ca in the 1950 and 1960 created by a man named Les Hannah

southerntalk's avatar

My mother used to this phrase to express anger or frustration with me after I said or did something that “irked” her. In the fifites, it was used as a threat not to take an argument any further, e.g. “Get out of the kitchen! So help me, Hannah.”
She was a 7th generation American who lived in the South.
I’m certain the company that named the cream Lucy Andrews mentioned above took it from the what must have been a more common phrases at the time.

Luckydog's avatar

I heard this phrase on an episode of Gunsmoke (late 1960’s) that I was watching the other day, and wondered its origin. I think it was Festus Hagan who said it.

creekriot's avatar

Obviously not its first use, but “so help me Hannah” is a phrase used in Jimmy Dean’s 1961 version of the song Smoke, Smoke, Smoke That Cigarette (written by Merle Travis and Tex Williams in the late 1940s).

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