[Ads-l] boi

Ben Zimmer bgzimmer at GMAIL.COM
Thu Jun 11 19:26:59 UTC 2020

On Thu, Jun 11, 2020 at 3:08 PM <dave at wilton.net> wrote:

> Rapper Antwan "Big Boi" Patton of Outkast allegedly began performing in
> 1992, but the earliest print reference to him that I've found is in
> "Popular
> Uprisings." Billboard, 12 March 1994, 20.
> I've also found a racehorse named "Big Boi" from 1987. (I suspect there are
> lots of re-spellings like this one over the years.)
> There is also this post to this list from 2002:
> http://listserv.linguistlist.org/pipermail/ads-l/2002-August/024809.html

>From the 2002 exchange:

>> What's the difference between a boy and a boi?
> Personal preference...bois are generally the cool ones who are, if not
> either goth, poly, bi/gay, or into BDSM, are at least tolerant of it.

For more on these and related meanings, see the Wikipedia entry:


More recently, "boi" has popped up in such compound forms as
"fuckboi"/"fuccboi" and "softboi." See e.g.:



The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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