Definition of syllepsis in English:


Line breaks: syl|lep¦sis
Pronunciation: /sɪˈlɛpsɪs

noun (plural syllepses /-siːz/)

  • 1A figure of speech in which a word is applied to two others of which it grammatically suits only one (e.g. neither they nor it is working).
    More example sentences
    • Probably the most common type, however, is syllepsis, where a word is understood differently in relation to two or more other words which it modifies or governs.
    • A strong syllepsis in French, ‘Mauvais Genres’ was the title of an exhibit and debate where ‘gore’ and horror film and literature were explored.
    • More complex instances of authorial disruptions might be labeled narratological syllepses.
  • 1.1 another term for zeugma.





late Middle English: via late Latin from Greek sullēpsis 'taking together'.

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Pronunciation: meɪdʒ
a magician or learned person