pornography

pornography

[pawr-nog-ruh-fee]
noun
obscene writings, drawings, photographs, or the like, especially those having little or no artistic merit.

Origin:
1840–50; < Greek pornográph(os) writing about harlots (porno-, combining form of pórnē harlot + -graphos -graph) + -y3

pornographic [pawr-nuh-graf-ik] , adjective
pornographically, adverb
antipornographic, adjective
antipornography, noun, adjective
nonpornographic, adjective
unpornographic, adjective

lewd, obscene, pornographic, profanatory, profane.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
pornography (pɔːˈnɒɡrəfɪ)
 
n
1.  writings, pictures, films, etc, designed to stimulate sexual excitement
2.  the production of such material
 
[C19: from Greek pornographos writing of harlots, from pornē a harlot + graphein to write]
 
por'nographer
 
n
 
pornographic
 
adj
 
porno'graphically
 
adv

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

pornography
1857, "description of prostitutes," from Fr. pornographie, from Gk. pornographos "(one) writing of prostitutes," from porne "prostitute," originally "bought, purchased" (with an original notion, probably of "female slave sold for prostitution;" related to pernanai "to sell," from PIE root per- "to traffic
in, to sell," cf. L. pretium "price") + graphein "to write." Originally used of classical art and writing; application to modern examples began 1880s. Main modern meaning "salacious writing or pictures" represents a slight shift from the etymology, though classical depictions of prostitution usually had this quality.
"I shall not today attempt further to define the kinds of material I understand to be embraced within that shorthand description [hard-core pornography]; and perhaps I could never succeed in intelligibly doing so. But I know it when I see it, and the motion picture involved in this case is not that." [U.S. Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart, concurring opinion, "Jacobellis v. Ohio," 1964]
Pornographer is earliest form of the word, attested from 1850. Pornocracy (1860) is "the dominating influence of harlots," used specifically of the government of Rome during the first half of the 10th century by Theodora and her daughters.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

pornography definition


Books, photographs, magazines, art, or music designed to excite sexual impulses and considered by public authorities or public opinion as in violation of accepted standards of sexual morality. American courts have not yet settled on a satisfactory definition of what constitutes pornographic material. (See obscenity.)

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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FOLDOC
Computing Dictionary

pornography definition

application
Still and moving images, usually of women, in varying states of nudity, posing or performing erotic acts with men, women, animals, machines, or other props. Some say it degrades women, some say it corrupts young boys (who down-load it from the World-Wide Web or exchange it on floppy disks). Most of it is in the form of JPEG images. Many web sites offer porn of all sorts, almost always for a subscription. It is said that these are a driving force in the evolution of new technology and techniques for the web. Advertisments for them certainly constitute a significant proportion of all spam. There are even pornographic computer games, an early example being Mac Playmate.
Beware - many institutions, particularly universities, have strict rules against their computers and networks being used to transfer or store such things, and you might get corrupted.
(2002-03-08)

The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010 http://foldoc.org
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