kentaurides (ken-tar-EE-deez) — noun: the female centaur.Yep, there’s a special word for lady centaurs, even though they weren’t popular even back in the day. According to Wikipedia, the best-known in Greek mythology was Hylonome, and she’s only known for killing herself when her centaur husband dies in battle. That sets the bar pretty low for female centaurs making something of themselves. Perhaps as a result of not being all that interesting, these figures show up more in art than they do in literature.
|second-century mosaic, via wikipedia|
|seventh-century relief inexplicably depicting medusa as a centaur, via wikipedia|
When I think about the logistics of a female version of these randy, barechested horsedudes, it seems logical that there would be a lot of the various geeky media, but I can only think of three off the top of my head. The “Pastoral Symphony” segment of the original Fantasia features some whose brazen toplessness seems surprising, given how the film was released back in 1940. (If Ariel and her type wore clamshell bras, should the Fantasia centaurettes be wearing horseshoe bras?)
And then there’s Golden Axe, a game that’s yielded some interesting bits for word nerds previously on this blog. In the second arcade installment f the game, you could play as a female centaur named Dora, who’s easily the most bad-ass character to get saddled with that name ever, even if her weapon is a weird, American Gladiators-style jousting Q-tip.
Previous words of the week after the jump.