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Just in time for Valentine's Day, we bring you some words of love and attraction. Impress your significant other!

canoodle – to kiss and cuddle amorously

Perhaps a better definition is from an 1859 British publication: "A sly kiss, and a squeeze, and a pressure of the foot or so, and a variety of harmless endearing blandishments, known to our American cousins (who are great adepts at sweet-hearting) under the generic name of conoodling. Our quote today also illustrates the sense of light intimacy.
    Only a month ago, Hollywood's golden couple broke the sad news that their fairytale marriage was the Pitts. So what were Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston doing playing the loved-up couple on a secret dinner date in a posh Los Angeles restaurant? ... they made no attempt to hide their obvious affection for one another as they spent the next three hours canoodling over a candle-lit dinner. A source tells us: "Brad and Jennifer came in giggling and holding hands, they looked totally happy. Over dinner they were whispering and chatting quite intimately - they couldn't keep their hands off each other."
    – The Mirror, Feb. 2, 2005
And since a picture is worth a thousand words, you might want to check here.
 
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Oh no! Frown

And there I was thinking I was in with a chance to be Jennifer's next inamorata! Frown


Build a man a fire and he's warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he's warm for the rest of his life.
 
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As I was grocery shopping yesterday, I saw in one of those rags that Jennifer was begging him to come back to her. Of course those newspapers are about as reliable as the weather predictions, but if it is true, I can't believe it. I have never been one of these women to fall all over Brad Pitt. A word came to mind as to what I think of him, but I just looked it up, and dictionary.com described it as "offensive slang" so I'd best not use it! Anyway, I have always thought that Jennifer could have done better!

Yep, arnie, you would be perfect for her!
 
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Having seen these eulogistic comments about this Aniston lady, I took a look at the picture. Moderately attractive, I agree - but very deficient in the upper storey if the picture is to be trusted. Not to my taste, I fear.


Richard English
 
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Arnie - surely she doesn't realize you're available to the likes of her, or she'd be dissing Pitt in a heartbeat.

Richard - I actually guffawed at your comment!


*******
"Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.
~Dalai Lama
 
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I actually guffawed at your comment!

Me, too! She is beautiful. And, her figure is very nice. That picture doesn't do her "upper story" justice!
 
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Quote "...Me, too! She is beautiful...."

Hmm. So why is her companion wearing dark glasses?


Richard English
 
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So why is her companion wearing dark glasses?
He doesn't want to be dazzled by her beauty. Cool


Build a man a fire and he's warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he's warm for the rest of his life.
 
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The word 'epigamic', though rarely found outside of scientific writings on natural selection, would seem wonderfully apt for everyday speech. For example, one could speak of a tight-fitting, alluring dress as epigamic. I'll give examples of a dry scientific use, and of a rare non-scientific one.

epigamic – (of a trait or behavior) tending to attract a mate, such as large antlers or bright colors. (See picture here )
    He was commanding, brave, dignified and surprisingly epigamic, as Livia pointed out. – Allan Massie, Augustus

    Darwin introduced the concept of sexual selection, a special case of natural selection in which selection is acting on variations in the ability to obtain mates. Darwin identified two modes by which sexual selection could operate: contest competition: among members of one sex for access to mates – known as intrasexual selection – and competition to attract members of the other sex, referred to as epigamic selection.
    – Charles W. Fox, Evolutionary Ecology (excerpted)
Intriguingly, the science literature tends to conceive of and define epigamic traits as male displays attracting the female, shouting out 'choose me'. But of course, the female too has her attractive mechanisms.

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tending to attract a mate

What a great word! It seems to be that chemistry that exists between a man and woman, correct? In other words, Jennifer Aniston isn't epigamic to Richard, and Brad Pitt isn't epigamic to me (referring to above posts).
 
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I find witty banter to be overpoweringly epigamic. Oh yes, I can see the usefulness of this word. Thanks!


*******
"Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.
~Dalai Lama
 
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I'm going to have to remember this one, too - much better than 'appealing' or whatever.

Isn't it interesting that we're one of the few (the only?) species where the female has to put on a colour show to attract the male? Personally, I think a hell of a lot of men would look loads better if they wore a little make-up. Not everyone has the kind of face that would suit being completely done-up, but a few touch-ups to hide imperfections and enhance attractive features wouldn't go amiss - why should women be the only ones whose natural imperfections are deemed unacceptable for society to view?

And of course, it's only been in the last century or so that men have stopped wearing the stuff, more's the pity.
 
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Yes, and all the books talk about men dressing well, too. Sometimes men still do . . . but it's rare.


*******
"Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.
~Dalai Lama
 
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Shu and I were talking about this just tonight. Think about it, with most animals, though not all, the male is the beautiful one, and the female is the "plain Jane." Cats and dogs of course are an exception. However, think of the great buck deer with his antlers and the gorgeous red Cardinal and the stunning Peacock, compared to their not as attractive female counterparts.

Personally, I think a hell of a lot of men would look loads better if they wore a little make-up.

Big Grin I love that thought, Cat!
 
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Quote "...Personally, I think a hell of a lot of men would look loads better if they wore a little make-up...."

I used to book a man who had worked all his life in the cosmetics business and he claimed that the men in the Royal Family, had used makeup for many years. Max Factor, he said, was the cosmetic of choice. And of course, all TV personalities are made up. Even I, when I have made training videos, have had to go to the makeup room and have some gorgeous young thing powder my face!


Richard English
 
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Personally, I think a hell of a lot of men would look loads better if they wore a little make-up...And of course, it's only been in the last century or so that men have stopped wearing the stuff, more's the pity.

I see men wearing make-up everyday...hmm, must be a British thing.
 
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The obsolete word tentiginous has an interesting pair of meanings.
. . .1. Stiff; stretched; strained.
. . .2. Lustful, or pertaining to lust.
I trust no comment is necessary.


A lesson about unreliability: Charles Elster's published book gives:

[alphabetically:] bathycolpian; callicolpian; colpkinophilia; colpocoquette; colposinquanonia; colpotantia, meaning (in a different order):
–– attraction to small-breasted women
–– drawing attention to the breasts to arouse sexual interest
–– having an ample bosom with deep cleavage
–– having beautiful breasts
–– placing the breasts above all other physical attributes in one's estimation of the attractiveness of a woman
–– woman who knows she has an attractive bosom and who makes good use of its allure

You can see the common factor. Elster explains, "Greek kolpos, bosom".

But colpo does not mean 'bosom', but rather a very different part of the anatomy. So how can this be? Could it be that Elster just made up these 'words' and passed them on as if they were real ones, but got tripped up by his own misunderstanding of this root?

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If kolpo means bosom in Greek, could it be that the "k" changed to a "c," similar to the way the word "epicaricacy" evolved from the Greek word?
 
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Gr. kolpos bosom, womb

Charles once wrote to me that there were two errors in his book; he wouldn't tell me what they were, but this evidently isn't one of them.

good luck in finding them!

and yes, the English combining form is colpo-
 
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Gr. kolpos bosom, womb
The Greeks were a little confused there, weren't they?


Build a man a fire and he's warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he's warm for the rest of his life.
 
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here's what one of the online medical dictionaries has for colpo-: Combining form from the Greek kolpos meaning a fold, cleft, or hollow and usually referring to the vagina.

those words Elster proposed certainly look like the work of some classical language student having a good time.
 
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I entered kolpos into Google and got 3,520 choices.

Is there a museamuse in the house?
 
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Scholar Eric Partridge says, in Shakespeare's Bawdy:
It was a Frenchman who coined the term demi-vierge, 'a girl or woman still undervirginated, yet far from innocent with her compliance in vulval digitation and mamma-caresses': fear-held from frankness, they may be habitual c.t.'s

The term was introduced into English by Marcel Prévost's novel Les Demi-vierge (1894, tr. 1895). Our long quotes give noted authors' very different perspectives. Note Lawrence's sad sense of being trapped in an unhappy limbo, "so intimate, and utterly out of touch".
    Sinclair Lewis, Babbitt: "Why don't you divorce Zilla?"
    "Why don't I! If I only could! But honestly, I'd be tickled to death if she'd really go making love with somebody. Fat chance! Of course she'll flirt with anything--you know how she holds hands and laughs--that laugh--that horrible brassy laugh--the way she yaps, 'You naughty man, you better be careful or my big husband will be after you!'--and the guy looking me over and thinking, 'Why, you cute little thing, you run away now or I'll spank you!' And she'll let him go just far enough so she gets some excitement out of it and then she'll begin to do the injured innocent and have a beautiful time wailing, 'I didn't think you were that kind of a person.' They talk about these demi-vierges in stories--"
    "These WHATS?"
    "--but the wise, hard, corseted, old married women like Zilla are worse than any bobbed-haired girl that ever went boldly out into this-here storm of life--and kept her umbrella slid up her sleeve!

    T. H. Lawrence, Lady Chatterly's Lover: He wanted to say something later to Connie about the demi-vierges business...the half-virgin state of her affairs. But he could not bring himself to do it. He was at once too intimate with her and not intimate enough. He was so very much at one with her, in his mind and hers, but bodily they were non-existent to one another, and neither could bear to drag in the corpus delicti. They were so intimate, and utterly out of touch.

    Germaine Greer When I left school I was faced with this ghastly thing called dating. I didn't know what the hell it was supposed to be about. … my convent training just said: look, by all means, if you want to make love to a man, do it and take the consequences, but this ignoble business of groping and finger-fucking, keep out of it. It's vile and it's called hypocrisy. It's no use being a demi-vierge; you have to be either fiercely virginal or fiercely non-virginal.
    The habit of a lifetime: Germaine Greer looks back fondly on her strange, sex-obsessed school days as a convent girl, The Guardian, Nov. 27, 2003

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nictitate – to wink
Add the prefix con- = 'with' to the same 'wink' root, and you get our word connive, literally to wink together at.
    Terry's Guide to Cuba [1921] gave tourists precise directions to Havana's waterfront red-light district – "the prurient spot resorted to by courtesans, varying in complexion from peach white to coal black, 15-year-old flappers and ebony antiques; chiefly outlanders who unblushingly loll about heavy-eyed and languorous, in abbreviated and diaphanous costumes; nictitating with incendiary eyes at passing masculinity; studiously displaying their physical charms or luring the stranger with flaming words or maliciously imperious gestures."
    – Louis A. Perez, Jr., On Becoming Cuban : Identity, Nationality, and Culture
Bonus words:
prurient
– having or causing an excessive interest in sex
[from Latin for 'to itch; have a craving'.]

diaphanous – so light and delicate as to be see-through
[Greek dia through + phainein to show. Thus related to 'phantom']
. . .(also fig: vague or insubstantial: diaphanous hopes)

courtesan – a prostitute, especially one with wealthy or upper-class clients.
[Wikipedia delicately says "a person paid and/or supported for the giving of social companionship and intimate liaisons to one or more partners. The word is generally reserved for those who enjoyed the most social status for such services."]
 
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callipygous or callipygian – having shapely buttocks
    Nurse Sue Ann Duckett despised Aaryf, and that was another one of the numerous fetching traits about Nurse Duckett that Youssarian enjoyed. He enjoyed Nurse Sue Ann Duckett's long white legs and supple, callipygous ass …
    – Joseph Heller, Catch 22

    The Greeks, who had a word for everything, provided us with a lovely one to describe the sleekly rounded, well-proportioned bottom. In five flowing syllables, the word "callipygian" says it all and says it ever so much more suavely than does the lame literal rendering, "having beautiful buttocks."
    . . .All of this was updated, in pretty stark terms, when a reader wrote to me in desperation asking, "Do you know where I can buy a foam-rubber fanny?" I replied that I never heard of poopdeck falsies, but if I did I would fill her in with a view toward filling her out.
    – Abigail van Buren The Best Of Dear Abby
Bonus: Tutu was euphemistic baby talk in 19th century French for cucu, a derivative of cul, a rather coarse word for the backside. It was originally applied to the tight fitting underwear worn by dancers and then to the dress covering the underwear.
 
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there is a physiological condition known as stiatopygia (sp?) which means having large buttocks. Women in some African tribes have the condition in so marked a way as to actually have shelving of their hips.

I recall in my grad school anthro class, one student inquiring as to the spelling of the word. The prof started out, "f..a...t...a...
 
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Well - this brings to mind my favorite Rap song (ok, one of the very few that I like) by Sir Mix-a-lot:

I Like Big Butts for the full lyric, click here.


I'm tired of magazines
Saying flat butts are the thing
Take the average black man and ask him that
She gotta pack much back

So Fellas (yeah) Fellas(yeah)
Has your girlfriend got the butt (hell yeah)
Well shake it, shake it, shake it, shake it, shake that healthy butt
Baby got back . . . .

So your girlfriend throws a Honda
Playin workout tapes by Fonda
But Fonda ain't got a motor in the back of her Honda
My anaconda don't want none unless you've got buns hun
You can do side bends or sit-ups, but please don't lose that butt


*******
"Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.
~Dalai Lama
 
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Oh, everyone is going to think that I am a "Friends" freak...but does anyone remember when Ross sang that to Emma, his and Rachel's baby, and the baby was laughing and giggling? It was just great! Big Grin
 
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BTW, my logophile friend sent me this word that he found on the Internet:

'callicolpos'-- a coinage in 1967, meaning beautiful breasts.

He recalls that a 'colposcope' is an optical device for examining the uterine cervix, and he too wonders how the confusion arose with "colpos."
 
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coquette – an insincerely flirtatious woman [adj. coquettish]

Webster's 1913 puts it well: she "endeavors to attract admiration from a desire to gratify vanity". I think of the opening scene in Gone With the Wind, where Scarlett, surrounded by a crowd of admiring young men, flirts with them all.

The rare masculine form, coquet, seems to be the original. Derived from Old French coc from Late Latin coccus, rooster.

to coquet – 1. to trifle or dally in love 2. to deal playfully instead of seriously as, we have coquetted with political crime
    Popularity, I have always thought, may aptly be compared to a coquette – the more you woo her, the more apt is she to elude your embrace.
    – John Tyler, U.S. President 1841-1845 (nicknamed Accidental President and His Accidency)

    "You've remained so faithful to dear Charlie, though you could have married dozens of times. Melly and I have often said how loyal you were to his memory when everyone else said you were just a heartless coquette." Scarlett passed over this tactless confidence.
    – Margaret Mitchell, Gone With the Wind
 
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canoodle – to kiss and cuddle amorously
"A sly kiss, and a squeeze, and a pressure of the foot or so, and a variety of harmless endearing blandishments"
light intimacy
Apparently the term can be used as a euphemism for more aggressive activity. Here's the start of a long article in today's Chicago Tribune magazine, about a 76-year old sex therapist.
    We've been talking for a while when Dr. Renshaw reaches into her metal desk and pulls out two pipe cleaners. She keeps talking as she fiddles with the pipe cleaners, one purple and the other pink, bending them this way and that. For all I know it's a nervous habit, a way to keep her hands busy while she talks to a reported. Until I notice that she has made the purple pipe cleaner into a little stick figure of an anatomically correct – and aroused – man. He's lying on his back atop the desk and she is positioning the little pink pipe cleaner over him. [T]he pipe-cleaner couple are canoodling on the desktop.
 
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