When I was thirteen years old (1958) I wanted to make explosives. By reading hundreds of chemistry texts I eventually learned how, although in the process I came across so many Greek words that I began then to search for interesting looking words in books devoted to unusual words. I came across callipyginous meaning well-shaped buttocks.
Before I started blogging, that is to say when I was but a mere mortal, I would pepper my speech with the word whenever the occasion would arise. Since I have entered the divine universe of blogging I would like to see the word used more throughout the blogosphere.
Now that you have been alerted to the word you will most likely notice that it is used in serious works of literature:
Notes from Another Country, Callipygian (Callipygous) - My Favorite Word
This is a word about which it would be possible to generate many bad puns, thereby making an ass of oneself and becoming the butt of jokes. The subject matter—and the rather beautiful form of the word itself—has lent itself to adoption by word-hungry authors, even though the first recorded use was only in 1880. Thomas Pynchon wrote in Gravity’s Rainbow: "Those dusky Afro-Scandinavian buttocks, which combine the callipygian rondure observed among the races of the Dark Continent with the taut and noble musculature of sturdy Olaf, our blond Northern cousin”. Its origin is in Greek kallipugos, used to describe a famous statue of Aphrodite; that comes from kallos, beauty (as in calligraphy, or callisthenics, or the lily called hemerocallis) plus puge, buttocks.
But sometimes words do not do justice, so in order to give you more than just the definition of the word, let me show you women with callipygian charms:
[For modesty sake and so as not to shock the casual reader who alights upon my site, the full view is available by clicking on the partial images. Most likely NSFW unless you work for Playboy]
For more photos of wonderful butts click here but caution: all are NSFW.
I offer these images to all red-blooded Americans and ask: Do you really think it doesn't matter whether we live under Christianity or Islam? That all religions are the same?
A tip of the turban to Tor's Rants [now defunct blog] for leading us to the ultimate callipygian model, Venus:
"Callipygian Venus” Sculpture (100 B.C.)
Museo Archeologico Nazionale, Naples
Photo: Design Toscano
After Hellenistic original, National Archaeological Museum, Naples
Venus, thought to be more beautiful than any mortal woman, demurely admires her reflection in this sculpture called “Callipygian,” meaning “of the beautiful buttocks.” Although the late Hellenistic original once stood at the center of a pool in Nero’s Domus Aurea in Rome, it was considered “dangerously erotic"; and was included amongst other such artworks in a secret cabinet when relocated to Naples in 1802. This designer resin gallery version is cast directly from a 19th-century antique.