Of Bitter Orange Behinds and Swedish Beards

Nicholas C. Rossis

From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's books Kallipygos Venus. 1st century BC statue

I was chatting with Ali Isaac and I joked that the Greeks (notorious for their ogling) probably have as many words for behinds, as the Inuit have for snow. Ti prove my point, I mentioned that Homer uses the word καλλίπυγος (kallipygos) to describe Venus’ beautiful behind, as early as 3,500 years ago. Incidentally, the same name was used to describe a famous 1st century BC statue of Venus, seen on the right.

Mind you, kallipygos is not to be confused with φαρδοκάπουλη (fardokapouli), which simply means a woman has wide hips.

Even better, Greeks seem to carry on this fine tradition. The other day I heard in Corfu a woman described as νερατζόκωλη (neradjokoli, lit. bitter orange-arsed): she was from Arta – a region famous for its bitter oranges.

Indeed, in the hilarious slang.gr (sorry, only available in Greek), I counted at least eighty (!)…

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Courtney M. Wendleton

I'm an author with an associate's in psychology. Interested in a lot of different things, and love controversy. The more controversial the better, but that's not all I'm interested in. Can be a bit confusing at times, but that's normal!

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