Talk:Beard (companion)

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This article was the subject of a VfD nomination at Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Beard (female companion). The consensus was keep. -- Karada 12:06, 12 July 2005 (UTC)


beard may have started this way, but is certainly now used by anyone, queers, breeders, kids going home for holidays...

How about changing "great many" to "some" - I think you're unlikely to find a citation describing the number of people who did this? Nwynder 16:18, 8 February 2007 (UTC)

I think this is a very narrow definition of "beard." It is often just used as a term to describe someone acting as an agent for another who doesn't want to be identified. For example, professional gamblers often use "beards" to place bets on sporting events so the house doesn't know it was placed by them (so odds are not changed, bets rejected or even patterns noted). See for example, The term is widespread in the gambling community and literature. CaperBill (talk) 14:42, 16 April 2013 (UTC)


Is there a reference for the origin of the term, or is this the author's assumption? I always thought it came from the idea of a fake beard as a disguise. 16:53, 2 March 2007 (UTC)

The term "beard" is not unique to the gay community at all -- at least as far back as the 50's and 60's, it was used in reference to situations where a married man who was having an affair would go out in public with his lover, and bring along a male friend -- the "beard" -- who would pose as the woman's date. This was a common practice for prominent men and celebrities -- it was often used in connection with some of John F. Kennedy's social outings in his years as a Senator. (I would expand the article with all of this, but really don't have the time right now to look up any citations or references...) StanislavJ 23:46, 3 August 2007 (UTC)
SJ is surely dead on with this: the scene where Woody Allen's character says "I'm only the beard", and the later scene in the warehouse for the "Macy's Day Parade" where he, Farrow's character, and the gangster all use the term in quick succession with no signs of incomprehension, are set in the 70s before gay slang was being borrowed into the mainstream; the director who put all the female actors in The Purple Rose of Cairo into 1930s underwear (hidden by their visible costumes) is unlikely to have repeatedly misportrayed the slang of a time he had himself experienced (when he was 40ish).
--Jerzyt 07:05, 4 May 2008 (UTC)

Omissions in rewrite[edit]

I refactored and reworded parts of what i found, but removed these:

  1. ... is derived from the notion that a man with a woman on his arm looks more masculine, like a man with a beard.
    Unsourced, and conflicts with the obvious theory that
    -- the heterosexual use came first,
    -- the original etymology was that having a beard with your date and putting on a fake beard are both means of concealment, and
    -- the "masculinity" theory is just folk etymology.
  2. In the early years of the gay rights movement, some homophile organizations required members to bring beards with them to meetings, for protection in case the police raided the meeting.[citation needed]
    vague (Required, not advised, and if so why? Protection against what, against an identifiable booking photo, bcz you didn't have a fake beard that the police would let you put on during booking?) and
    even when sourced, would violate SYNTH until a source is found to support its relevance: this is of no interest, unless some connection is made between actual fake beards at meetings and the quite different role of beards in our sense. A hypothetical fake beard is more similar to this sense than an actual fake beard, by the same degree that real and hypothetical ones differ from each other.
  3. Closeted gay men and lesbians may also take part in this kind of relationship to their mutual advantage. In the past many gay men and lesbians married in order to fit in with heterosexual society; this practice continues today, but less frequently in many countries (particularly in the developed world) where the society has become more accepting of "out" gay men and lesbians.
    Rambling and loosely connected; probably there should be a lk to the closet in the accompanying article, but the paragraph above is more pertinent to [[the closet] than to "beard", and should be added there, if it won't duplicate what's already there.
  4. This term should not be confused with fag hag.
    Nor should it be confused with Boston marriage or diesel dyke. We don't need to document what it's different from. Those trying to clear up such confusion in their own minds should also read fag hag, and deduce that they shouldn't be confused by the differences between the two articles. (Including a ref in the accompanying article is unnecessary, seldom useful, clutter, and may cause confusion in readers who remember 6 months later having seen "fag hag" in the article, but can't remember that it it was said to be different, not similar.

--Jerzyt 07:05, 4 May 2008 (UTC)

Suspicious wife?[edit]

I don't specifically remember her being suspicious, and rather recall the emphasis as being on how supportive she was. If someone can't come up with dialog that supports that, here on the talk page (i, at least, don't need a formal ref), IMO it should be taken out.
--Jerzyt 06:18, 9 July 2008 (UTC)

  • And while we're on the subject, is Tina single? Wasn't it her husband who got shot in the eyes, making her a widow?
    --Jerzyt 06:48, 9 July 2008 (UTC)

She would have been suspicious if Lou had arrived with Tina and not Danny. Danny warns Lou that he will be paying "two alamonies" if Lou's wife finds out about Tina. Apparently this is not the first time that Lou has been unfaithful while married. One can only assume that Lou met his current wife the same way he met Tina and so Danny-as-beard was definitely needed to allay any suspicions. Yes, Tina is single and a widow but the guy she dated after her husband's demise, as you know, still thinks they're a couple. God, what an incredibly funny movie.:) And to think I came to this site to find out the origin of the word "beard." — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 08:13, 24 December 2012 (UTC)


Oh, please, guys. Search alcoveiteiro in Google Brasil. That is why I leaved English Wikipedia, people talk to me in a patronising tone everytime wanting to know more about my native language and culture than me, wanting sources for stupid basic things that one may even find in Wikitionary, extrapolating policy to a really unnecessary far extent that doesn't improve distribution of knowledge, but rather blocks it.

It said "A translation of an infidelity-associated beard to Portuguese is alcoviteiro, but in the said language, it is not an LGBT-associated slang, being very known among Brazilians in general, and it can also mean a situation in which X and Y are both cheating each other with Z, while Z distracts both with his or her advices (so that Z is an alcoviteiro or alcoviteira to both and itself). In such meanings, it can be mildly offensive, but is most often jocose. The verb alcovitar translates roughly as "to pander" (to facilitate courtship or sexual relations), so alcoviteiro also translates as the most polite Portuguese word for English "pimp", so it is likely to be regarded as something of very poor taste calling someone by this term if the person in question has no minimal intimacy with the other to be good-tempered with obscene jokes."

There are lots of information of this kind accross Wikipedia. This article is little, doesn't say much and has no version in other Wikipedias, that is why I added this information. (talk) 21:24, 29 January 2013 (UTC)

It may be common knowledge in Brazil, but I couldn't find anything other than this dicdef in the Portuguese Wiktionary: [1]. I wish you luck.--Auric talk 21:50, 29 January 2013 (UTC)
Well, it depends. Among the youth in Rio at least it is mainly this kinda sexual slang, while in other parts of the country it means a person that is specially fond to gossips. I believe the sexual slang very probably derives from this meaning, as a fofoqueiro or alcoviteiro may be also referred to as leva-e-trás (that who takes and brings from a side to another). But it certainly isn't used only here. See the translation Google Translate and Word Referenge both give to alcoviteiro: As I said, it is kind of a polite term for a pimp, used jocosely among friends. It certainly won't be something that I expect to someone to have writen on... So yeah, luck wouldn't help. But thank you very much anyway. (talk) 06:28, 30 January 2013 (UTC)


There was some section about a random comic strip. I deleted it because I did not see the importance. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Bobjohnson111980 (talkcontribs) 11:53, 27 May 2014 (UTC)

Improving legibility in the section on Infidelity[edit]

To make the section on infidelity concealment more clear, perhaps placeholder names should be used instead of letters, as most people tend to remember names better than variables (at least, in my experience)?

For example, X and Y become Alice and Alec, Z become Chloe, and W become Bob (X and Y start with the same letter to indicate that they are the "intended" couple, Chloe and Bob start with different letters to indicate that they are not actually a couple). Gender-neutral names would probably be preferred, but I don't feel like finding a good set. Hppavilion1 (talk) 00:47, 1 August 2016 (UTC)

Added "History"[edit]

I added to the article some background history on the term "beard" and its usage. The section could still use expanding, such as examples on who in fact used the beard "disguise." Hopefully, this addition can give readers some insight on the practice during the early/mid twentieth century, and its importance.

Meganeyre (talk) 05:36, 13 February 2017 (UTC)