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Hot Gypsy Woman

The Romani have long had an ambiguous status in Western societies and popular culture: alien enough to serve as a convenient Other, but geographically near at hand. As a result they have tended to be both vilified and exoticized, and while the Gypsy Curse is a byproduct of the former, the Hot Gypsy Woman is an example of the latter.

The Hot Gypsy Woman has fairly standardized features. She has olive skin, raven-black hair which she wears loose, a low-waisted long skirt with a slit up the side, a bare midriff, bare feet and plenty of jewellery. She also tends to have a fiery personality and to be overt in her sexuality, making her an Ethical Slut. (In Real Life, Romani culture expects women to hide their body shapes and to be sexually demure.)

This trope is Older Than Steam and tends to be mostly encountered in stories set in the early modern era. While Romani characters are seen as traditional in Europe, in Americas the same archetype can be incarnated as the Spicy Latina.


Examples:

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  • Angelina Lemke from Stephen King's Thinner. (To prove that, look up and see who plays her in The Movie.)
  • Esmeralda in The Hunchback of Notre Dame, who is probably the Trope Codifier.
    • She is possibly a subversion, as although she fits the appearance, in the book she is quite innocent and a virgin, rather than fiery and worldly. Furthermore, she was raised by Gypsies, but not one by birth.
  • Sangarre in Michel Strogoff by Jules Verne:
    Near him, the Gypsy Sangarre, a thirty-year-old woman, dusky of skin, tall, statuesque, with magnificent eyes and gilded hair, stood in a superb posture... Gypsy women are generally attractive, and more than one prominent Russian landlord, who profess to emulate the British in eccentricity, hasn't hesitated to pick his wife among their number.
  • "Makar Chudra", a short story by Maxim Gorky, is essentially about the ill-fated romance between the proud and fierce Hot Gypsy Woman Radda and the proud and charming gypsy man Loyko Zobar.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Near miss: Although both hot and a gypsy, Jenny Calendar from Buffy the Vampire Slayer probably doesn't count, as she was only revealed to be of gypsy extraction after about a season, and was portrayed merely as a Hot Teacher.
    • Though we don't see her (until a flash back in Angel), the gypsy that Angelus tortured and ate most certainly counts as all we know about her is that she was beautiful, a Romani, dumb, and her death was enough of an insult for her clan to curse Angelus with his soul and the remnants to dedicate their lives to maintaining said curse.
  • Edmund Blackadder's autobiography is, shall we say, slightly embellished with this trope.
    It's a steaming rollercoaster of a novel, crammed with sizzling gypsies!
  • The IMF employed hot gypsy acrobat Crystal Walker in the Mission: Impossible two-parter "Old Man Out". Crystal staged a prolonged Cat Fight with Cinnamon Carter as distraction.
  • In the Mystery Science Theater 3000 episode Catalina Caper, Tom Servo has a crush on the ethnically-ambiguous "Creepy Girl", and sings to her:
    Oh, what are you, Creepy Girl? Are you French, or Italian, or one of those swarthy Gypsy types? heh heh.
  • In an episode of Bonanza Little Joe rescues and falls for an young gypsy girl who is believed to be a witch by her people due to strange events happening around her. It turns out to be hoax perpetrated by her spurned lover who Little Joe is forced to kill. She is proven innocent and goes back to her family, which is probably the best way for Joe to fall victim to the Cartwright Curse.

    Music 
  • The song "Bohémienne aux yeux noirs" by Tino Rossi:
    "Bohemian with big dark eyes
    Your dusk-colored hair
    And the sheen of your brown skin
    Are prettier than the moonlight
    Bohemian with big dark eyes
    I shivered with tender hope
    I would like you to be mine"
  • The song "Gypsy Woman" by Hilary Duff:
    "She can swallow knives, she can swallow lives
    Golden black stare, but the night of your demise
    Try to run away with the gypsy woman
    Good today but gone for good
    Can't get away with the gypsy woman"
  • Don Williams "I Recall A Gypsy Woman":
    "I recall a gypsy woman
    Silver spangles in her eyes
    Ivory skin against the moonlight
    And the taste of life's sweet wine"
  • The Impressions' song "Gypsy Woman" (later covered by Santana):
    "From nowhere through a caravan
    Around the campfire light
    A lovely woman in motion
    With hair as dark as night
    Her eyes were like that
    Of a cat in the dark
    They hypnotize me with love
    She was a gypsy woman"
  • Cher's "Gypsies, Tramps and Thieves." I was born in the wagon of a traveling show..."
  • "My Maria" (originally by B.W. Stevenson, Covered Up by Brooks & Dunn): "Gypsy lady, you're a miracle worker for me."
  • Played for Laughs in the Benny Hill song "Rachel".
  • Shakira has a song called "Gypsy". Yes, it's a Spicy Latina singing about how she's a Hot Gypsy Woman.
    "I'm a gypsy
    But are you coming with me
    I might steal your clothes and wear them if they fit me
    I never made agreements just like a gypsy
    And I won't back down 'cause life's already hurt me
    And I won't cry
    I'm too young to die
    If you're gonna quit me"
  • Bob Dylan's "One More Cup of Coffee"
  • Tim Buckley's "Gypsy Woman":
    "Mama, every time you turn around the fire.
    Mama, keep me in between the devil and the sky.
    And every time you look my way,
    Mama how you hypnotize."
  • A Rare Male Example is the male protagonist of the Scottish border ballad "The Raggle Taggle Gypsies," who seduces a lord's wife and persuades her to run away with him.
    "What care I for my house and my land,
    What care I for my money, oh?
    I'd rather have a kiss from the yellow Gypsy's lips,
    I'm away with the raggle taggle gypsies, oh!"
  • The gypsy "queen" from Tommy, described in "The Hawker (Eyesight To The Blind)" and fleshed out in "Acid Queen". She combines this trope with elements of the Snake Oil Salesman, using acid (and, according to some interpretations, sex) to "cure" the underaged protagonist of his blindness and deafness.
    "I'm the gypsy, the Acid Queen,
    Pay before we start!
    I'm the gypsy, I'm guaranteed
    To tear your soul apart!"
  • "La Paternera" by Gino D'Auri tells the tale of an exotic gypsy singer who bring misfortune to her lovers.
  • "Beautiful Gypsy," a Gershwin song that was cut from the 1927 musical Rosalie.

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  • GLOW's Little Egypt.

    Theater 
  • Zerbinette in Moliere's Les Fourberies de Scapin.
  • The title character of the opera Carmen by Bizet, based on a novella by Prosper Mérimée.
  • The title character of the opera La Zingara by Donizetti.
  • The Soviet Union had founded an entire theatre specifically for performances involving Russian Gypsy musicians and artists and about the life of Russian Gypsies generally. But while the female performers are a living embodiment of this trope, they are far way from their real, nomadic brethren, even more visible when they're together.
  • Though Il trovatore has no named characters of this type, the "Anvil Chorus" sings the praises of "la zingarella."
  • Anything Goes originally had Hope compare herself to one in "The Gypsy In Me," though revivals remove the song or reassign it to Sir Evelyn.

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