Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Entry: fetishy (adj.)

In context: "...Poutrincourt has a fetishy thing about transitions."

Definition: A neologism, but I included it because I was curious about the word fetish (n.).  Here are a few interesting excerpts from the OED:

(Note how you can see an interesting line of development here)

Originally: any of the objects used by the indigenous peoples of the Guinea coast and the neighbouring regions as amulets or means of enchantment, or regarded by them with superstitious dread.

By writers on anthropology (following C. de Brosses, Le Culte des Dieux Fétiches, 1760) used in wider sense: an inanimate object worshipped by preliterate peoples on account of its supposed inherent magical powers, or as being animated by a spirit.

Something irrationally reverenced.

An object, a non-sexual part of the body, or a particular action which abnormally serves as the stimulus to, or the end in itself of, sexual desire.

Other: An etymology worth reading as well:

Etymology:  < French fétiche, < Portuguese feitiço n. charm, sorcery (from which the earliest English forms are directly adopted) = Spanish hechizo in same sense; a subst. use of feitiço adj. ‘made by art, artificial, skilfully contrived’ = Spanish hechizo , Italian fattizio , Old French faitis (see featous adj.) < Latin factīcius factitious adj

SNOOT score: 1
Page: 1056

Source: Oxford English Dictionary   

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