Pop the Cherry is a slang phrase, used to express losing one’s virginity in a literal or figurative way; having a first shot at something.
In the literal interpretation, it refers to the breaking of the hymen in the first sexual experience of a woman.
Fruit in general had been associated with sex in the European culture, the link retaining its origins from the biblical story of the Forbidden Fruit.
The association of cherry with virginity is coming from the similar shape of a cherry stone and the female mons pubis.
The initial form of the phrase dates back to the 1920’s, when losing one’s virginity was referred to as “losing one’s cherry” for both men and women.
The expression had evolved to its current form in the 1970’s, when “popping the cherry” was referring to the breaking of the hymen at the first sexual intercourse.
The phrase had evolved further since the 70’s, and people today use it for any kind of first experience, from sex to skydiving to getting properly toasted for the first time.
While not necessarily rude, the expression retains a certain amount of vulgarity, seeing as how many people consider discussing sex improper.
The first Urban Dictionary entry on the subject was written in 2003.
- Dictionary.com – Pop the Cherry