This article about women who’ve left the polygamous FLDS sect has an interesting clip, polyg, as a short form of polygamy with apparent adjectival usage. Here’s she’s talking about the rebellion she went through after her mother left polygamy behind:

“I think I was one of the first girls in the seventh grade to wear lipstick. I put henna in my hair to make it red. I wasn’t going to look like a little ‘polyg’ kid,” she said, using the slang “polyg” with all the contempt of a racial slur.

Clipping across the morpheme boundary – excellent! While examples aren’t exactly frequent (129,000 hits on Google, but that’s mostly hits for various chemical names) polyg does seem established as an adjective by those who use it. Some examples showed it being used as a noun, too, as in “where a lot of polygs went” and so on.

Another interesting use of this clipped form was here, where it’s short for polygraph.


3 thoughts on “Polyg

  1. mark (the ideophone) April 17, 2008 / 9:51 pm

    It’s probably clipping across the morpheme boundary because poly is too common as a (bounded) morpheme to be used on its own in this context. Cf. polyandry, polygyny, but also such words as polyclinic, polyester, polymath, and of course polyglot!

    (Lots of polygs went to the Conference on Multilingualism and the Information Society.)

  2. tulugaq April 18, 2008 / 11:27 am

    I agree. Plus, I would also say that the polyamory community’s rising publicity (and acceptance?) is more incentive not to use just “poly” without the g. The woman quoted was in school long before the word polyamory was coined (1992, according to the OED) but I’m sure these days the fundamentalist polygamists don’t like being lumped with poly “lifestylers” and vice versa.

  3. vica April 25, 2008 / 2:24 pm

    Umm, too much time in forensics land… Polyg was polygraph for me too. Time to return to Texas to revert to the, uh, “default” meaning!

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