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A.Word.A.Day--philogyny

Pronunciation RealAudio

philogyny (phi-LOJ-uh-nee) noun

Fondness of women.

[From Greek philogynia, from philo- (loving) + -gyn (woman).]

"`Hence I speculated,' he continued, `knowing you have been to the altar more than once, I wondered if you were indicating that your personal ontogeny recapitulated ... philogyny.' He wondered whether I was comparing my personal history of fondness for women (or at least for marriage) to the context of being representative of most men."
Jan Glidewell, I Think, Therefore I Mess Up, St. Petersburg Times (Florida), Feb 25, 1994.

"Applauding each leap or spin like a younger crowd might cheer on an Eddie Van Halen guitar solo, all-embracing L.A. seemed to audibly adore every sexy nanosecond. An exhilarating evening of edgy pop vigor, philogyny and physicality? Of course. Cheesy, too? Certainly. Welcome to rock 'n' roll."
Chris Willman, The Joffrey and Prince: A Funky Pas de Deux, The Los Angeles Times, Jul 24, 1993.

....

"I know the word for hatred of women is misogyny. Can you tell me the opposite of this term?" I get this question in my mail often. Today's word answers it. The counterparts of these words are misandry and philandry, hatred and love of men, respectively. And to complete the picture, there is an equal-opportunity term misanthropy, meaning hatred of humankind, where one doesn't discriminate on the basis of sex.

A word of note: one who practices philandry is a philandrist, not a philanderer which has an altogether different sense. How come we have two words with same roots but senses as opposite as Mars and Venus: philandry (love of men) vs. philander (to engage in frivolous love of women)? The answer lies in the many organic ways in which language evolves. The latter term comes from Greek philandros (loving of man), to refer to a woman who loves her husband. The term Philander was later used in literature to name a male character, apparently from the mistaken belief that it refers to a man who loves, rather than one who loves a man.

This week's AWAD features some lesser-known antonyms of everyday words.

-Anu Garg

X-Bonus

A calamity that affects everyone is only half a calamity. -Italian proverb

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