Word: Sordid

In Book X of Metamorphosis, Ovid tells the tale of Pygmalion who is disgusted by the “sordid indecency” of the feminine spirit. The Oxford English Dictionary defines Sordid as, “Of a coarse, gross, or inferior character or nature; befitting or appertaining to a mean person or thing; menial.” What seems inconsistent to Pygmalion’s moral stand is his acceptance of a piece of marble as the replacement for a real woman. Pygmalion worships the idea of woman but as a result ends up worshiping the superficial. The OED also defines Sordid as, “Of persons, their character, etc.: Inclined to what is low, mean, or ignoble; esp. moved by selfish or mercenary motives; influenced only by material considerations.”


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