Definition of topos in English:


Line breaks: topos
Pronunciation: /ˈtɒpɒs

noun (plural topoi /ˈtɒpɔɪ/)

  • A traditional theme or formula in literature: it is not easy to distinguish fact from topos in these documents
    More example sentences
    • These are traditional Renaissance topoi of the fortune-telling of the natural world; nonetheless, they underscore the patriarchal view of Egypt's troubles as stemming, naturally, from women.
    • Irony has a critical function against an empty or insipid Romanticism and romantic topoi, for instance the Parisian dream and, moreover, the Orient that has become a commonplace.
    • Perhaps most usefully, however, the book offers a repertoire of rhetorical suggestions, topoi for the specific topic of rhetoric (hence the Aristotelian force of the title-it is a Rhetoric of Rhetoric for rhetoricians).


1940s: from Greek, literally 'place'.

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Pronunciation: ˌkɒlərəˈtjʊərə
elaborate ornamentation of a vocal melody