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definition of the word hypocorism

by the Wiktionnary

Late Latin hypocorisma, a loan from Ancient Greek noun ὑποκόρισμα (hypokórisma) from the verb ὑποκορίζομαι (hypokorízomai), to talk in a childish manner). The Ancient Greek verb ὑποκορίζομαι (hypokorízomai) is compounded from ὑπό (hypo-), under, beneath, secretly) + κορίζομαι (korízomai), to caress). In the verb you can see the word κόρος (kóros), boy) or κόρη (kórē), girl).



hypocorism (plural hypocorisms)

  1. A term of endearment; a pet name.
    • 2003, Mark Steven Morton, The Lover's Tongue[1]:
      Cabbage, however, has enjoyed unlikely success as a hypocorism, a usage that dates back to the mid nineteenth century; this usage arose as a direct translation of chou, which French lovers had been calling each other for a long time: "Oh, mon petit chou"—"Oh, my little cabbage."

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