The anatomy of euphemism in Aristophanic comedy
This chapter is in effect a lexicon of euphemistic expressions in Aristophanes. Under six headings (all-purpose expressions; death; age, appearance and disabilities; vices and crimes; politics; and—outnumbering all the others combined—sex and scatology), it catalogues and briefly discusses over 140 words and phrases used for euphemistic purposes in the eleven comedies. Their distribution across the corpus is also examined: they are more frequent in the later plays, and women speakers use them proportionately more than twice as often as men; they often cluster in particular scenes, or in the speeches of particular characters, and they provide ample material for jokes based on ambiguity.
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