Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A striptease artist.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun An erotic dancer who removes their clothes as a form of entertainment; a stripper.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun a performer who provides erotic entertainment by undressing to music

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[From ecdysis.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Coined by H. L. Mencken from ecdysis (on the model of enthusiast etc.).

Examples

  • The two decades mentioned saw articles and books by H.L. Mencken, who reflected a modern, mature view of language (and who coined the word ecdysiast for

    VERBATIM: The Language Quarterly Vol XX No 1

  • So distinct was her wit and elegant striptease, that H.L. Mencken coined the term "ecdysiast" to describe her high-class act.

    Fern Siegel: Stage Door Theater Reviews: In Praise Of Patti LuPone, Gypsy, And South Pacific

  • Considering that the roots of the word "ecdysiast" have to do with molting, this is particularly charming to me.

    The Return of the Return of Burlesque

  • Mencken is the one who coined the word 'ecdysiast' in her honor, Abbott says.

    NPR Topics: News

  • Mencken is the one who coined the word 'ecdysiast' in her honor, Abbott says.

    NPR Topics: News

  • Mencken is the one who coined the word 'ecdysiast' in her honor, Abbott says.

    NPR Topics: News

  • Who ever thought the music that's supposed to signal it's time to take off your shirt, line up with the gym bunnies and unleash your inner ecdysiast would be played for CHILDREN.

    Recycling

  • Who ever thought the music that's supposed to signal it's time to take off your shirt, line up with the gym bunnies and unleash your inner ecdysiast would be played for CHILDREN.

    Recycling

  • Who ever thought the music that's supposed to signal it's time to take off your shirt, line up with the gym bunnies and unleash your inner ecdysiast would be played for CHILDREN.

    Recycling

  • Who ever thought the music that's supposed to signal it's time to take off your shirt, line up with the gym bunnies and unleash your inner ecdysiast would be played for CHILDREN.

    Recycling

Comments

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  • Now THAT's entertainment.

    October 14, 2008

  • Coined by H.L. Mencken, c./pre-1940 from ecdysis, Greek word referring to the shedding of an outer layer of skin in snakes, crustaceans and insects; or moulting.

    Gypsy Rose Lee took an objection apparently:

    "Ecdysiast, he calls me! Why, the man Mencken…has been reading books! Dictionaries! We don't wear feathers and molt them off…What does he know about stripping?"

    (Clearly she'd been reading a dictionary or two herself.)

    March 29, 2009