Like all "swear' words, the interpretation is in the way it is said. It is "bloody" impossible to translate that into the written word. The phrase "bloody bastard" in Australia can be a term of affection to description of an outright bad person and all shades between depending on how it is said and the inflection of the voice. it also depends on the context in which it is said. So all the discussion on various slang swear words is country, context and inflection specific
Bloody oath, mate!
(Read: That's true, my friend.)
I agree with all of the above. Yes, Dorothy, I'd say you're right that it's one of the milder swear words, probably on a par with bugger and maybe sod?
It's also a legitimate adjective, eg. it was a bloody battle. I get mock-scandalised kids at school relishing in asking why Mary Tudor was known as "Bloody Mary".
Janny, that's interesting. I'd not heard that before about Christ's blood.
Dorothy - they didn't threaten to wash my mouth out; they actually did! I wasn't particularly foul mouthed, but the occasional one did slip out, and I got wasted for it. Always the same soap - Imperial Leather. Blah...............it tasted foul. Now I'm 23, I just get vile looks and threats if I dare to swear in front of my youngest brother. Not that I do, but even if I did, he knows it ain't right.
We were not threatened with 'Lifebuoy blindness' (if you've ever seen the movie "A Christmas Story" you should get the reference) but a spanking or possibly a slap across the mouth could happen.