Alphadictionary.com

Our Sponsors

Technical Translation
Website Translation Clip Art
 

Pulchritude

Use this forum to discuss past Good Words.

Pulchritude

Postby Dr. Goodword » Sun Nov 11, 2012 12:59 am

• pulchritude •


Pronunciation: pêl-krê-tyud • Hear it!

Part of Speech: Noun, mass (no plural)

Meaning: Lavish physical beauty.

Notes: This word is used much more often in the US than elsewhere in the English-speaking world, probably because it is less lovely than lovely itself. All the worse for the rest of the world, since this word is an expression of intensive beauty that avoids the bother of additional epithets, such as extreme and exorbitant. The adjective is pulchritudinous, a bit long but effective in catching ears when ears need to be caught.

In Play: Pulchritude is limited to physical beauty rather than the abstract kinds of beauty found in actions, personalities, and such: "Marjorie was a vision of feminine pulchritude that Randolph couldn't forget for days." Of course, physical pulchritude resides all around us, not just in ourselves: "The sumptuous pulchritude of the mountains dressed in the hot fall colors of hardwood forests was more than Mortimer's camera could capture."

Word History: Today's Good Word comes to us from Latin pulchritudo "beauty", the noun from pulcher "beautiful, fair in appearance". The Latin word had an abstract or moral sense as well as the physical one: "fine, noble, honorable", unlike its English counterpart. Several words seem related to this word except for an inexplicable replacement of the [L] with an [R], for example, Latin parere "bright or shining", German Farbe "color", and perhaps even German Forelle, that colorful fish, the trout. However, all these associations are highly speculative. (Today we thank Chris Berry for momentarily beautifying our lives with this pulchritudinous name for beauty.)
• The Good Dr. Goodword
User avatar
Dr. Goodword
Site Admin
 
Posts: 3560
Joined: Wed Feb 02, 2005 9:28 am
Location: Lewisburg, PA

Re: PULCHRITUDE

Postby MTC » Sun Nov 11, 2012 8:09 am

Many Texans may be unaware The International Contest of Pulchritude, model of all modern international beauty contests, began in Galveston in 1926. Such were passions surrounding the event that when Brazil's entrant failed to place the Brazillians began a rival contest in which the American contestant failed to place--tit for tat so to speak. But then, "Beauty and folly are generally companions." ~Baltasar Gracián
Last edited by MTC on Sun Nov 11, 2012 2:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
MTC
Grand Panjandrum
 
Posts: 1070
Joined: Mon Apr 05, 2010 11:40 am
Location: Pasadena

Re: PULCHRITUDE

Postby Perry Lassiter » Sun Nov 11, 2012 9:57 am

I have trouble using pulchritude in a serious way, because the word witself seems ugly to me. Perhaps the first syllable rhyming with bulk influences me. The connotations to me are always large but attractive women. I don't associate the word with the beauty of nature at all. I much prefer beauty, gorgeous, lovely, or even (gag) awesome, a great word runined by slang.
pl
Perry Lassiter
Grand Panjandrum
 
Posts: 2386
Joined: Wed Jan 03, 2007 12:41 pm
Location: RUSTON, LA

Re: PULCHRITUDE

Postby LukeJavan8 » Sun Nov 11, 2012 1:18 pm

I have an email contact who uses the user name
pulchritudinous as her handle. No narcissism there.
-----please, draw me a sheep-----
User avatar
LukeJavan8
Grand Panjandrum
 
Posts: 3472
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2009 6:16 pm
Location: Land of the Flat Water

Re: PULCHRITUDE

Postby batman » Wed Apr 30, 2014 6:46 am

Difficult word to pronounce by ordinary people. I have problems with this word.
batman
Junior Lexiterian
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2014 6:17 am

Re: PULCHRITUDE

Postby hello_kitty » Wed Apr 30, 2014 12:12 pm

Perry Lassiter wrote:The connotations to me are always large but attractive women. I don't associate the word with the beauty of nature at all. I much prefer beauty, gorgeous, lovely, or even (gag) awesome, a great word runined by slang.


I think Brienne from Grame of Thrones matches the description :D
hello_kitty
Junior Lexiterian
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2014 6:56 am

Re: PULCHRITUDE

Postby LukeJavan8 » Wed Apr 30, 2014 12:39 pm

Gotta love Brienne.
-----please, draw me a sheep-----
User avatar
LukeJavan8
Grand Panjandrum
 
Posts: 3472
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2009 6:16 pm
Location: Land of the Flat Water

Re: PULCHRITUDE

Postby bamaboy56 » Wed Apr 30, 2014 1:11 pm

At first blush, like Perry, I did not like this word. What a surprise when I read the Meaning section and found that it refers to lavish beauty! Just from the sound of the word I would have thought the definition would be something ugly. Again, a perfect example of why you shouldn't judge a book (or word) by its first impression.
Be who you are and say what you feel in your heart. Because those that matter, don't mind. And those that mind, don't matter.
User avatar
bamaboy56
Lexiterian
 
Posts: 350
Joined: Thu Feb 24, 2011 8:20 pm
Location: The Deep South

Re: PULCHRITUDE

Postby Philip Hudson » Sat May 03, 2014 2:51 am

I have always had trouble with the word pulchritude; not in pronouncing it but in appreciating it. But then I preferred Grace Kelley to Marilyn Monroe.
It is dark at night, but the Sun will come up and then we can see.
Philip Hudson
Grand Panjandrum
 
Posts: 1773
Joined: Thu Feb 23, 2006 4:41 am
Location: Texas

Re: PULCHRITUDE

Postby LukeJavan8 » Sat May 03, 2014 11:28 am

I still have the Princess's funeral on VHS.
Shows my preference.
-----please, draw me a sheep-----
User avatar
LukeJavan8
Grand Panjandrum
 
Posts: 3472
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2009 6:16 pm
Location: Land of the Flat Water

Re: PULCHRITUDE

Postby desire » Tue Oct 14, 2014 11:28 am

hello_kitty wrote:
Perry Lassiter wrote:The connotations to me are always large but attractive women. I don't associate the word with the beauty of nature at all. I much prefer beauty, gorgeous, lovely, or even (gag) awesome, a great word runined by slang.


I think Brienne from Grame of Thrones matches the description :D


exactly! very difficult word
desire
Junior Lexiterian
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Oct 14, 2014 11:05 am

Re: PULCHRITUDE

Postby LukeJavan8 » Tue Oct 14, 2014 11:34 am

Brienne fits the word to a T, for me.
Her inner pulchritude is very laudable and rare in that series.
-----please, draw me a sheep-----
User avatar
LukeJavan8
Grand Panjandrum
 
Posts: 3472
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2009 6:16 pm
Location: Land of the Flat Water

Re: PULCHRITUDE

Postby Philip Hudson » Tue Oct 14, 2014 4:37 pm

Having never heard of her, I Googled her. However I did not ogle her. Brienne of Tarth is described as "an unusually tall, muscular, and plain-looking woman" and Gwendoline Christie looks the part. Not having seen her in person, on the silver screen or on TV, I find her to look quite masculine. Her "official" photograph shows a strong, pleasant person but one without fire in he soul. Her nude scenes :oops: are certainly not revealing. What am I missing? I know nothing against her but, where is the pulchritude?
It is dark at night, but the Sun will come up and then we can see.
Philip Hudson
Grand Panjandrum
 
Posts: 1773
Joined: Thu Feb 23, 2006 4:41 am
Location: Texas

Re: PULCHRITUDE

Postby LukeJavan8 » Tue Oct 14, 2014 6:16 pm

Never seen her nude, but in Game of Thrones she is not
terribly pleasant, but extremely loyal, and the fire in her
soul is unquenchable. But of course that is the character
in the books and TV. As for the actress herself, I've never
seen her in anything else.
-----please, draw me a sheep-----
User avatar
LukeJavan8
Grand Panjandrum
 
Posts: 3472
Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2009 6:16 pm
Location: Land of the Flat Water


Return to Good Word Discussion

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Yahoo [Bot] and 1 guest