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#17240 - 01/28/01 11:15 AM Re: Callipygian
wwh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 01/18/01
Posts: 13858
I don't see why. Surely in private that would be a compliment, and in no way vulgar. Women are proud of their decolletage, why should they not be proud of the similarly entrancing contours of the reverse? Might it not even be proof that the honeymoon has not been forgotten?


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#17241 - 01/28/01 11:30 AM Re: Callipygian
wow Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 11/25/00
Posts: 3439
Loc: New England, USA
That's an interesting point wwh makes.
Are there words that are used almost entirely in private ?
wow


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#17242 - 01/28/01 02:05 PM Callipygian may NOT be a compliment
TEd Remington Offline
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Registered: 07/17/00
Posts: 3467
Loc: Marion NC
>Surely in private that would be a compliment,

I think you will find that callipygian is a medical-genetic term in the main. It refers to the genetic tendency of certain African peoples to have ( almost always in the females) very large butts. And I DO mean large. Hips might easily measure 60 or more inches in circumference. One woman I knew in DC who was built this way had hips that exceeded 80 inches. For you metric folks, that's TWO meters!!!

_________________________
TEd

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#17243 - 01/28/01 02:42 PM Re: Callipygian MAY be a compliment
tsuwm Offline
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Registered: 04/03/00
Posts: 10522
Loc: this too shall pass
teD, you've got callipygian slightly crossed with
steatopygia
, which are quite different, as a matter of fat.

callipygian - of, pertaining to, or having well-shaped or finely developed buttocks

steatopygia - an abnormal accumulation of fat in and behind the hips and thighs, found (more markedly in women than in men) as a racial characteristic of certain peoples, esp. the Hottentots and Bushmen of South Africa.

p.s. - the Greek Callipygos is the name of a famous statue of Venus.


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#17244 - 01/29/01 03:25 AM Re: Fowles
jmh Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/22/00
Posts: 1981
>"The novelist is still a god, since he creates (and not even the most aleatory avant garde modern novel has managed to extirpate its author completely). . . ." Fowles, The French Lieutenant's Woman, p. 106.

This was written before "Satanic Verses". Salman Rushdie didn't manage it completely but he had a very creditable try.


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#17245 - 01/29/01 05:09 AM Re: Callipygian MAY be a compliment
Marianna Offline
addict

Registered: 01/09/01
Posts: 427
Loc: Spain
I agree with tswum that callipygic is not the same as steatopygic, and is not necessarily a negative word to use for someone. When I studied History of Art I learnt that "steatopygia" was one of the features of the oddly-named prehistoric Venuses (i.e. Willendorf Venus). These statuettes markedly emphasise those body parts which are linked to reproductive ability: the breasts, buttocks, pubic area and so on. In other words, these bits are disproportionately fat.

I have only ever heard "callipygic" in a medical context, though I have read it in fiction. It seemed to carry no negative connotations at all, and simply refer to a shapely body.




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#17246 - 01/29/01 08:11 AM Re: Callipygian MAY be a compliment
TEd Remington Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 07/17/00
Posts: 3467
Loc: Marion NC
>teD, you've got callipygian slightly crossed with steatopygia, which are quite different, as a matter of fat.

You know, I started to look that up, but relied on something I had learned many years ago that turned out to be quite incorrect. I remember the conversation quite clearly! A friend who was a law student told us of a final exam question in which a woman with very large buttocks was called Cally Pigeon. I had a blank look on my face apparently, because Rich explained to me that Cally Pigeon was a pun name for a person who had extremely large buttocks, and he went so far as to explain the bit about the African tribal connection. The things one mislearns when one is a tallow youth. Perhaps I'll file suet against Rich. I'll just have to find a way of shortening the story.

_________________________
TEd

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#17247 - 01/29/01 08:15 AM Re: Callipygian MAY be a compliment
TEd Remington Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 07/17/00
Posts: 3467
Loc: Marion NC
>I have only ever heard "callipygic" in a medical context, though I have read it in fiction. It seemed to carry no negative connotations at all, and simply refer to a shapely body.

I think, the next time Peggy and I observe a shapely female, I will say "what a great callipygic aspect she has," rather than, "Nice butt!" Which always seems to get me in trouble. Actually that's not true. Peggy always seems to make a comment that allows her man to admit that he did indeed notice the nice butt without drawing wrath.

_________________________
TEd

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#17248 - 01/29/01 11:14 AM Re: what's the use?
Hyla Offline
addict

Registered: 12/14/00
Posts: 544
Loc: San Francisco, CA
Gene Wolfe, who exhumes archaisms and obsolete words to make the settings of his science-fantasies (e.g., "Book of the New Sun") ring true

Have to second this - really amazing use of vocabulary, gives an exotic feel. As an example, I couldn't help but notice that he describes the "hylas singing in the trees at dusk," when he could just say "tree frog."

Another author whose use of words is admirable, and who gives one an education in quite a few interesting Scots words as well: Dorothy Dunnet, who wrote the Chronicles of Lymond. They're a six-book series of historical fiction set in Scotland in the 1500s, with a great hero/anti-hero, truly gripping suspense at times - good, solid stuff.


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#17249 - 01/29/01 11:41 AM Re: Callipygian MAY be a compliment
Jackie Offline

Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 11609
Loc: Louisville, Kentucky
Ted: 'a matter of fat'--Rich, tallow, suet, shortening.
Clever, my friend, clever!

Tsuwm--
(note I am actually posting on topic, please)--I can't think of any particular words that Laurie King has made me go look up, though I have learned about some concepts that were of great interest. She does use vocabulary a cut above most popular writers. Ex: "We are the refuse of the world, the offscouring of all things." ('To Play the Fool',
p. 54.) "Offscouring": coined, perhaps? But clear and unusual. I certainly don't feel talked down to when I read her. One of her books included the pronunciation of the
name Siobhan. (sp.?)


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