|Slang City Mail|
|August 21, 2003|
of the Week: arm candy (noun phrase)
Poor Nefertiti! Considered by many of her contemporaries to be the Hillary Clinton of ancient Egypt (she had just a little too much influence around the palace) the long-necked queen got no respect after her death. But while she was alive, she definitely would have qualified as arm candy in the looks department. This week’s term has several linguistic relatives, including ear candy (good music) and eye candy (an attractive person of either sex).
The idea of calling a woman candy is nothing new - attractive women have historically been given nicknames related to sweets. In the nineteenth century, good looking females were called jelly, because they jiggled when they walked. This word later became a more of a sexual reference, but new food groups were created to represent pretty girls. Tomato (technically a fruit!) and cookie came into vogue in the twenties and later, during the Second World War, cheesecake pictures of cutie pie starlets were painted on combat planes.
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