Monday, 23 December 2013

Callipygian - Nice Bum's the Word

Nice buttocks, Posterior, Ass, Arse,
Photo (still) by Mislav Marohnic. Or is it? Yes it is.


Adjective. Late 18th century.
[from Greek kallipugos (epithet of the statue of Venus),
from kalli-, kallos beauty + puge buttocks: see -IAN.]

Pertaining to or having well-shaped buttocks.

callipygous adjective E20

What? More buttocks? And the same buttocks? Well, yes, they are the same buttocks from when I wrote about buttocks before, although with some crafty photoediting, I have changed it just enough that the average person won't realise it's the same picture. Go on - check; it's particularly gratifying if you quickly flick back and forth between the posts. Anyway, why have I used the same picture to illustrate callipygian? Well it is, first and foremost, a photo of a particularly callipygous pair of glutes, but secondly, do you have any idea how difficult it is to find a tasteful, not-overtly-sexualised, un-weird picture of a bottom? One that's suitable for Lexicolatry's high standards of taste and decorum? I'll tell you: it's very difficult indeed.

And callipygian is such a wonderful word - so classical and cultivated - that Lexicolatry could not possibly pass it by. Most early references to callipygian relate to the famous statue Venus Callipyge which, unsurprisingly, has a most callipygian (and emphasised) posterior itself. And, just like those Rumpy Romans and Gluteus Greeks, as we're still in the habit of commenting on and lauding people's callipygous qualities (J-Lo's bingo call springs firmly to mind), then we should at least have a good word for doing so. If we are going to do that. And I'm not saying that we should. Or that I do. Anyway ...

Are you callipygian?

Are J-Lo and Kylie truly worthy of their callipygous accolades?

Do please leave your most well-rounded, firmly-constructed thoughts below.


  1. This is a delightful word indeed.

    And I feel somehow obliged to report that my first reaction to opening this post was "hey...I've seen that bum somewhere before!"

    Well played, Lexicolatry. Well played.

  2. What is the verb for someone who likes hairy buttocks please? I think it begins with a, b or c as I once tried to read the dictionary and I only got as far as c but I’m pretty sure liked of hairy buttocks was in there!