Bowdlerization

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Dictionary Meaning and Definition on 'Bowdlerization'

Bowdlerization Meaning and Definition from WordNet (r) 2.0
    bowdlerization n
  1. written material that has been bowdlerized [syn: bowdlerisation]
  2. the act of deleting or modifying all passages considered to be indecent [syn: bowdlerisation]
Bowdlerization Meaning and Definition from Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)
    Bowdlerize \Bowd"ler*ize\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Bowdlerized; p. pr. & vb. n. Bowdlerizing.] [After Dr. Thomas Bowdler, an English physician, who published an expurgated edition of Shakespeare in 1818.] To expurgate, as a book, by omitting or modifying the parts considered offensive. It is a grave defect in the splendid tale of Tom Jones . . . that a Bowlderized version of it would be hardly intelligible as a tale. --F. Harrison. -- Bowd`ler*i*za"tion, n. -- Bowd"ler*ism, n.
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Wikipedia Meaning and Definition on 'Bowdlerization'


Expurgation is a form of censorship which involves purging anything deemed noxious or offensive, usually from an artistic work.

It has also been called bowdlerization, after Thomas Bowdler, who in 1818 published an expurgated edition of William Shakespeare's work that he considered to be more appropriate for women and children. He similarly edited Edward Gibbon's Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire.

A work that has been subjected to expurgation is sometimes called a fig-leaf edition, a figurative extension from the meme of strategically placed fig leaves to hide the groin or breasts of nudes in paintings or statuary.

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