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Gay Code Language Faces Extinction

Gay Code Language Faces Extinction


Researchers at the University of Cambridge said that Polari, a code language spoken by the gay community in the U.K. until the 1970s, and used in the title of the 1990 Morrissey album Bona Drag, could soon be extinct.

The Press Association reports that "of the 3,524 languages named in the database, around 150 are in an extremely critical condition with some retaining only a handful of known speakers."

The endangered languages include Polari, with its disputed origins that could date back as far as the 16th century when market traders and circus workers spoke the language.

The language was used in the title of the Morrissey compilation album Bona Drag, which means "nice outfit." The former Smiths front man also explored the subculture slang in "Piccadilly Palare," a track from the album.

Researchers at Cambridge hope the project will allow them to gather more information about the endangered languages and to find associated folklore, stories and myths, reports the Press Association.

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