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Woman wearing a G-string

A G-string (alternatively gee-string or gee string) is a type of underwear, a narrow piece of cloth, leather, or plastic, that covers or holds the genitals, passes between the buttocks, and is attached to a band around the hips, worn as swimwear or underwear by women and men. It is also a style of thong swimsuit whose rear area can become so narrow that it would disappear between the wearer's buttocks. The two terms G-string and thong are often used interchangeably; however, they can refer to distinct pieces of clothing. A G-string is one variety of thong. See the design and variety of thongs for details.

Etymology

The origin of the term "G-string" is obscure. Since the 19th century, the term geestring referred to the string which held the loincloth of Native Americans [1] and later referred to the narrow loincloth itself. William Safire in his Ode on a G-String quoted the usage of the word "G-string" for loincloth by Harper's Magazine 15 years after Beadle's and suggested that the magazine confused the word with the musical term G-string (i.e., the string for the G note). Safire also mentions the opinion of linguist Robert Hendrickson that G (or gee) stands for groin, which was a taboo word at these times.[2]

Edgar Rice Burroughs dressed his created novel-character, Tarzan, in a G-string for first time in his book The Son of Tarzan (1914) in chapter 26.[3] However, Korak, son of Tarzan, used a G-string before his father Tarzan did in the same book (chapter 20).[4]

Notes

  1. ^ John Hanson Beadle (1877) "Western Wilds, and the Men who Redeem Them: An Authentic Narrative" p. 249, digitized text at Google Books
  2. ^ "On Language; Ode on a G-String", by William Safire, The New York Times, August 4, 1991
  3. ^ The Son of Tarzan, chapter 26: "The doe-skin, he fashioned into a loin cloth, the rope he looped over one shoulder, and the knife he thrust into the belt formed by his gee string."
  4. ^ The Son of Tarzan, chapter 20: "Korak, The Killer, fondled his heavy spear. He played with the grass rope dangling from his G-string."

Wiktionary

Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

Contents

English

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Alternative spellings

Noun

Singular
G-string

Plural
G-strings

G-string (plural G-strings)

  1. (music) On a stringed musical instrument, the string that produces the note of G.
  2. A scant covering for the genitalia, especially one worn by a stripper.
  3. A type of loincloth or breech cloth.

Synonyms

Translations


Simple English

A G-string or thong is a narrow piece of cloth or leather, or plastic that passes between the buttocks. It is attached to a band around the hips. It can be worn as a swimwear or underwear by both men and women. The difference between a G-string and a thong is that a g-string has less material between the legs. This makes it look like a string. Variants of the thong or G-string include the "V-string" and the "T-string".

File:Thong
An example of a g-string

Contents

Origin

The G-string or thong is probably the earliest form of clothing known to mankind. It originated in the warmer climates of sub-Saharan Africa where clothing was first worn almost 75,000 years ago. Many tribal peoples, like some of the Khoisan people of southern Africa, wore thongs for many centuries. These early pieces of clothes were made to fit the male genitalia.

The G-string was first developed for men by primitive peoples. However, in modern days, Western thongs are usually worn by females. They first became popular in South America in the 1970s. In Brazil, it was originally a style of swimsuit that had a rear area which became so narrow, that it would disappear between the buttocks.

The origin of the term "G-string" is not fully known. The term was first written about by Americans in the late 1800s. They described the loincloth of Philippine natives. Others say the term came from from the g-string on an instrument. The origin of the word "thong" is from the Old English thwong, which is a flexible leather cord.

Precautions

G-strings may cause urinary tract infections (UTIs) in women, just like other types of underwear. Sliding the string against the anus and vagina can let bacteria get inside the body. It is necessary for the person who wears G-strings to keep the anus and vagina clean. Menstruating women can also continue to wear G-strings if they are using tampons and G-string panty liners. [1]

In other languages

  • In Lithuania, the G-string is often called "stringai", or more national name "siaurikės".
  • In Portugal and Brazil, the G-string is often referred called fio dental. This means "dental floss".
  • In Italy, the G-string is called "perizoma" or wrongly "tanga" (in Italian language "tanga" is a micro-panties).
  • In Turkey, the G-string is called "ipli külot" (ipli means "stringed" and külot means "underpants"). Inn Italy, it is also wrongly called "tanga".
  • In French, German and Dutch, the G-string is usually called "string", a loanword from English.
  • In Puerto Rico, a Spanish slang term often used for G-string is gistro. This is most commonly used by Reggaeton artists to refer to the underwear style.
  • In Argentina and Chile, G-String is widely known as colaless. In those countries, cola means buttocks. Colaless means "buttocks-less".
  • In the Japanese language and also in Cantonese, the G-string is widely known as T-back. This is because of its shape seen from behind. The word is sometimes confused with "tea bag". The term T-back is also commonly used in the Philippines. However, there are also several usages of the term "T-back" in English as well. These include Children's literature author E.L. Konigsburg's T-backs, T-shirts, Coat and Suit. In other kinds of the Chinese language, the G-string is commonly called as dingziku (丁字裤). It means "t character pants".
  • In Polish the G-string is usually called stringi, which is a pluralized loanword from English (literally: "strings").
  • In Australia only the term G-string is used. Thongs are a type of rubber footwear.

References

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