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BS: Omitted noun figure of speech

28 Feb 14 - 03:15 PM (#3605962)
Subject: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: GUEST,weerover

The \Greeks have a word for everything, it's said. I'm sure there is a word for an adjective with its noun omitted, as in "I haven't the foggiest [idea]" or "A word in your shell-like [ear]", but I can't find it. Anyone?


28 Feb 14 - 03:46 PM (#3605971)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Jack the Sailor

I think those figures of speech may be unique to the UK, or maybe even just England. If that is the case, the Greeks would not have need for such a word.


28 Feb 14 - 03:53 PM (#3605973)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Ebbie

JtS, in America we do use 'I haven't the foggiest' and similar constructions. Not 'shell-like' and the like, though.


28 Feb 14 - 04:01 PM (#3605978)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Jack the Sailor

I don't know anyone who does who isn't a bit of an anglophile. I was trying to be humourous. That fell flat. Though the possibility that the Greeks don't watch Downton Abby or "Masterpiece Mystery" still remains.

:-)


28 Feb 14 - 04:13 PM (#3605982)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: GUEST,weerover

Jack, certainly not "just England", as I am somewhat north of Hadrian's wall.

wr


28 Feb 14 - 05:10 PM (#3605991)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: MartinRyan

An elided referent?

Regards


28 Feb 14 - 05:13 PM (#3605994)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Mrrzy

I believe it is called an ellipsis, like the ...'s you spell it with. Not that I'm ending sentences with prepositions, or the like.


28 Feb 14 - 05:22 PM (#3606000)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: MartinRyan

Yep, Mrrzy. I had it in my head that the primary meaning of "ellipsis" was that ... In fact it isn't - though I think my suggestion is reasonable and more specific.

Regards


28 Feb 14 - 06:40 PM (#3606025)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Jim Dixon

If this truly is a thing that needs a name, we ought to be able to think of a few more examples.

"New York's finest" comes to mind.

"Finest what?" I would always think, when I first heard this expression.

It's something of a cliche, and it always refers to police officers. It's even used as a slogan on the official NYPD web site. I've never heard any other police department use a phrase like it.

It's arguable that "finest" is a noun. Is it ever used as a noun in any other context?

If "finest" is an adjective, then I don't know what the missing noun would be.


28 Feb 14 - 06:44 PM (#3606026)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Doug Chadwick

The process of omitting the last word in a phrase is common in Cockney rhyming slang.
Thus
       "hair"   (Barnet Fair)   - "She looks good, nice Barnet"
       "skint" (boracic lint)   - "I'd go for a pint but I'm boracic"
       "hat"    (tit for tat)      - "It's cold out today, I think I'll wear my titfer"

The Wiki entry for Cockney rhyming slang includes the following:
The construction involves replacing a common word with a rhyming phrase of two or three words and then, in almost all cases, omitting the secondary rhyming word (which is thereafter implied), in a process called hemiteleia.

So it would seem that "hemiteleia" may be the word that you're looking for.

DC


28 Feb 14 - 07:07 PM (#3606036)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: McGrath of Harlow

What happens in rhyming slang is that the rhyming word tends to be dropped - which of course is going to be the last word.

But it's a different linguistic trick really than dropping the noun where no rhyme is involved.

The Greeks used to go in for "stock epithets", such as in "wine-dark sea" or "ox-eyed Hera", especially Homer, to such an extent that they are referred to as "Homeric epithets". "New York's finest" and "foggiest notion" etc are really examples of the same thing in English. I wonder if the Greeks ever went in for dropped the noun and talking about "the wine dark" on its own. Seems quite likely to me.


28 Feb 14 - 07:11 PM (#3606038)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: GUEST

Foggiest is being used as the noun.


28 Feb 14 - 07:41 PM (#3606043)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Doug Chadwick

McGoH, I don't see why it should be considered a different linguistic trick. In each case the dropped word is implied. The fact that one of them started out as a rhyme just makes a special case.

DC


28 Feb 14 - 08:02 PM (#3606053)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Lighter

"Hemiteleia" isn't in the OED or any other authority I can find in English - except for Philip Howard's "A Word in Your Ear" (1983), where he applies it specifically to rhyming slang. That seems to be where Bill Bryson and Wikipedia found it.

You mean the Greeks had a special name for a secondary feature of Cockney rhyming slang?

Give me a break.

Presumably Howard discovered it in a Greek rhetoric, but if so it must mean something a little different in Greek. It looks to me as though it means "half completion," but personally I have even less Greek than Latin.

At any rate, the more familiar "ellipsis" would seem to be sufficient, unless you want to sound one up on the OED.


28 Feb 14 - 08:05 PM (#3606055)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: GUEST,ketchdana

"Hey dude, nice move! You're the cat's!"
I know in general what it means, but not whether it refers to pajamas or a meow.
(And I am somewhat west-southwest of Hadrian's. 'Bout three thousand miles.)


28 Feb 14 - 10:01 PM (#3606075)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: McGrath of Harlow

The difference is because the missing word in rhyming slang is just part of the phrase, on itself it wouldn't carry the meaning. "Boracic lint" means skint, and hence so does "boracic". But "lint" on its own does not.

In contrast "foggiest" implies "foggiest notion", but then that is also the essential meaning of "notion" on its own.
..........."

There's no particular reason to assume the Ancient Greeks did not go in for rhyming slang. It would be fun to find out that they did. But I suppose that might be hoping for too much.


01 Mar 14 - 12:58 AM (#3606100)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: meself

'Drop of the pure'? A 'pint of plain'.

A 'summit' meaning a gathering of big-shots (used anachronistically in The Tudors, btw).

A 'tough'.

A 'bad-ass' - from a 'bad-assed (fellow)'.

A "mother' - from a 'motherf@#$%^!'

A 'one', 'two', 'five', 'ten', etc., as denomination of currency. Or as hours of the clock, for that matter.

'Cell' for cell-phone.

In one community in which I lived for a time, a person might refer to their common-law spouse as "my common-law".


01 Mar 14 - 01:24 AM (#3606104)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Bert

Lighter, surely you mean "A word in your shell like" ;-)


01 Mar 14 - 01:33 AM (#3606107)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Bert

And what do you call that special case where the adjective and noun are morphed into a single non-word. Like 'Donkey's Years', becoming 'Yonks'.


01 Mar 14 - 04:55 AM (#3606132)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Doug Chadwick

"Teleia" is a name attached to the ancient Greek godess Hera (Hera Teleia) to refer to her adult, or complete form as distinct from that as a girl (Hera Pais).

"Hemi" is half, as in hemisphere.

So "hemiteleia" could be used for "half complete" as suggested by Lighter. Although it has previously only been found in reference to rhyming slang, it refers to the truncation rather than the rhyming. It is just as valid to use it to describe the examples given in the opening post.

DC


01 Mar 14 - 05:26 AM (#3606136)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: GUEST, topsie

I assumed that 'the cat's' was 'the cat's whiskers'; pajamas and/or meow simply didn't occur to me - I assume from the spelling that they are US expressions.

I assume 'Yonks' derives from a form of back slang.


01 Mar 14 - 05:39 AM (#3606139)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Bert

Yonks is a shortening of the expression "Donkey's years"


01 Mar 14 - 06:24 AM (#3606143)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: GUEST, topsie

Yes Bert, but the fact that in 'Donkey's years' the 'Y' comes after the '[D]onk[ey]' and in 'Yonks' it comes before it suggests a reversal - hence back slang.


01 Mar 14 - 08:38 AM (#3606158)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Lighter

So is "hemiteleia" an actual term of ancient Greek rhetoric, or did Howard coin it himself?

It seems to be applied in English solely to rhyming slang - and then only since 1983.

Nothing very specific is being elided in "New York's Finest." (Journalists have adapted the phrase to just about every other city police force in America, BTW.)

Think of "the old" and "the young," "the rich" and "the poor." Etc. The only name for this I can think of is "nominalization," which just means "noun-izing."


01 Mar 14 - 10:18 AM (#3606177)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: GUEST,leeneia

Lighter, I think you've nailed it. Nominalization.

The reference to 'shelllike' reminds me of a non-pertinent passage from Wodehouse.
==========
Bertie Wooster: Ah well, if winter comes, can spring be far behind?

Fair Damsel: You know your Shelley.

Bertie Wooster: I am?


01 Mar 14 - 10:22 AM (#3606179)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Lighter

But what did he think of Kipling?


01 Mar 14 - 11:46 AM (#3606201)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Ebbie

Surely, omitting the ending noun is akin to omitting the beginning verb?

"I haven't the foggiest."

"No idea".

??


01 Mar 14 - 11:58 AM (#3606203)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Lighter

It only communicates, however, if what's missing is so obvious as to be unnecessary.

For rhyming slang, those unfamiliar with the full phrase are left mystified - or to guess, knowing that a rhyming phrase might be lurking behind it - just what is meant by a seemingly irrelevant or randomly selected word.

It's a trick of language we septics don't worry about.


01 Mar 14 - 12:06 PM (#3606207)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Stilly River Sage

Idiomatic items in speech are what make the learning of a new language so difficult.

ellipsis : the act of leaving out one or more words that are not necessary for a phrase to be understood

: a sign (such as . . .) used in printed text to show that words have been left out


I think the word you want is Metalepsis. It's a word or figure of speech used in a new (or shortened) context, in this case, it is a shortened version of something that is already a figure of speech (a synecdoche - "shell like ear" = you listen/talk to you).

Just a guess. And a pleasure to wander through some of the rhetorical terms I haven't used much since grad school.

SRS


01 Mar 14 - 12:12 PM (#3606210)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Doug Chadwick

So is "hemiteleia" an actual term of ancient Greek rhetoric, or did Howard coin it himself?

I suspect that it is a modern construction, like "television" which is cobbled together from both Greek and Latin. I can't imagine the ancient Greeks or the Romans foresaw Logie Baird's invention.

There is a whole range of supermarket items offered under the name of "Tesco's Finest".

DC


01 Mar 14 - 12:50 PM (#3606220)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Lighter

Thanks, DC.

SRS, the OED defines "metalepsis" rather differently:

"the metonymical substitution of one word for another which is itself a metonym; (more generally) any metaphorical usage resulting from a series or succession of figurative substitutions."

Rhyming slang deals in fairly arbitrary rhyme rather than in metaphor per se, so "metalepsis" seems not to apply. And even if it did, no one would know what you were talking about. At least with "ellipsis" you have a chance.

Arthur Quinn's "Figures of Speech" (1982) affords these examples of metalepsis:

"Paul will speak [figuratively] of 'preaching the cross,' the cross being [literally] the instrument of crucifixion and the crucifixion of Jesus being [literally] the cause of the redemption - Paul was [figuratively] preaching redemption."

Or Shakespeare: "'My father's grave/ Did utter forth a voice.' It was not the grave, nor the body within the grave, but something that was once within the body that did the uttering."

That metalepsis. Ya can't beat it.


01 Mar 14 - 02:14 PM (#3606241)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Richard Bridge

I used to call it "an implied noun" or "an implied reference". Honestly I did.


01 Mar 14 - 03:11 PM (#3606250)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: GUEST,Eliza

Lighter, if you're one of the septics, perhaps antibiotics are called for?


01 Mar 14 - 03:12 PM (#3606252)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: GUEST,Eliza

are, not area!


01 Mar 14 - 04:26 PM (#3606272)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Nigel Parsons

are, not area!
What a confusing language.
Surely 'are' is also an 'area' (of 100 sq metres)


01 Mar 14 - 04:27 PM (#3606273)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: JennieG

Not sure if this refers to the same pattern of speech, but a way of speaking which has been around for some time (and which, I must say, gives me a considerable dose of the irrits) are the unfinished "as" phrases - for instance, "that baby is as cute as". As cute as what? Another baby? a gorilla?

I find it as annoying as.


01 Mar 14 - 04:28 PM (#3606274)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Nigel Parsons

Of course, in places where the pronunciation of 'our' is similar to the pronunciation of 'are', you could point to a plot of land and say "That are our are" and confuse everyone :-)


01 Mar 14 - 04:58 PM (#3606279)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: GUEST,Eliza

Hahahaha Nigel! In Norfolk, the word 'hour' is also pronounced 'are'. I suppose one could say, "For an are, that are our are."


01 Mar 14 - 06:59 PM (#3606295)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Stilly River Sage

Lighter, it made more sense when I was comparing variations on "metaphor" and their definitions, but I didn't go the to the OED. Now I can't retrace the example I was using that made that one work best.

Anyone ready to tackle catachresis?

SRS


01 Mar 14 - 09:16 PM (#3606317)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Airymouse

On topic: It has become common for the guy who waits on you to hand you the plate and say,"Enjoy." In a region of the U.S. that comprises West Va, western VA, Ohio,western PA, western NY, Indiana, and Eastern Tennessee "to be" is often left out. For example, "The house needs painted." Most people outside this region would say, "The house needs to be painted," or "The house needs painting." We have an exam for foreign students, (something about "English as a foreign language")and the people who grade it think the above ellipsis is incorrect. They are wrong. Consider "I now pronounce you (to be) man and wife" or "The dog wants (to go) out."
Off topic: Is there a difference between "metalepsis" and "apposition"?
Only an idiot like me would fret over "more specific", because it's used by everybody. Is it possible to more specify something? I think of "specify" as an on-off ____. Either you specified something or you didn't.


01 Mar 14 - 09:19 PM (#3606318)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Richard Bridge

"man and wife" are nouns. "Out" is not.

"Enjoy" is a colloquialism imported from Yiddisch, isn't it?


02 Mar 14 - 01:19 AM (#3606344)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: meself

"the people who grade it think the above ellipsis is incorrect"

It is indeed 'incorrect' - in the sense that it is not 'standard' English, which is what, presumably, is being marked for. Whether or not an argument can be made that 'the above ellipsis' is consistent with other English usage is beside the point: all that matters is whether it's 'standard' or not - and it ain't. If in time it becomes widespread enough, it will be recognized as standard English, and, no doubt, marked accordingly.


02 Mar 14 - 03:25 AM (#3606355)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Ebbie

The first time I heard the injunction "enjoy" from a waiter, I was traveling in California and I was charmed. I thought it was a delightful bit of solicitation. Somehow it traveled north and round about until it seems everyone uses it. Hard to believe everyone means it.


02 Mar 14 - 03:41 AM (#3606356)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: MGM∑Lion

I'm reminded of Kingsley Amis's misanthropic eponym in One Fat Englishman who, enjoined by an American shop assistant as he left the store to "Have a nice day", turned round and replied "I'll have any kind of day I bloody well like". [To this effect, anyhow -- cited from memory].

I don't think 'catachresis' quite covers the OP enquiry. It could perhaps be identified as a variety of aposeopesis?

~M~


02 Mar 14 - 04:03 AM (#3606362)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: GUEST, topsie

To 'want out' usually involves a desire to extricate oneself from an involvement that is causing problems, rather than just wanting to go through a door.


02 Mar 14 - 05:16 AM (#3606369)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Long Firm Freddie

In the OP's examples an adjective, or an adjectival phrase, stands in place of the noun.

So I think it could well be a substantive adjective (or possibly a substantive adjectival phrase):

Substantive

LFF


02 Mar 14 - 06:22 AM (#3606377)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Doug Chadwick

"Substantive adjective" fills the bill for me.

DC


02 Mar 14 - 10:49 AM (#3606426)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: meself

"Substantive adjective" seems to do the job. Note, however, that the examples in the OP seem [to be] of a sub-genre: each is an abbreviation of a specific, established expression, and a listener almost 'hears' the dropped-off words; i.e., 'notion' & 'ear'. The examples given in the article linked above do not immediately elicit the 'missing' words; in fact, we don't notice that anything is missing, and if it should be brought to our attention, we need to ponder, however briefly, the possibilities.

Last night I was thinking about the lyric "the land of the free, the home of the brave", and feeling that it wasn't quite the same thing as 'the foggiest', etc. - the reason being that, if we stop to think about it, we have to decide if we're singing about 'the free men', 'the free men & women', 'the free men, women & children', 'the free people', etc. - the missing matter doesn't spring to mind.


02 Mar 14 - 05:19 PM (#3606534)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: McGrath of Harlow

"I could tell you a lot about him but..."


02 Mar 14 - 06:32 PM (#3606559)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Jack the Sailor

I agree meself,

"I haven't the foggiest" expresses the idea in full without even knowing the specific intended noun whether it be "idea", "Notion", "clue", whatever, but their example.

"there is a gulf between the rich and the poor," without context, begs more questions than it answers.

It could be between countries, between individuals, in a certain country, to school districts even to the relative skills of folk singers, "His voice is rich" hers is poor"

There is certainly a substantive difference between the example in the article and Weerover's example. I would suggest that his example better fits the definition.


03 Mar 14 - 12:47 AM (#3606623)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: MGM∑Lion

McGrath's two posts above is a precise example of aposiopesis, which I suggested above.

The use of an adjective as a collective abstract noun to indicate all those subsumed by its description, as in 'Land of the free', 'The poor are always with us', &c, is a basic part of the language & has been so since time immemorial, & not quite the same as using part of a conventional phrase [eg 'your shell-like'] as an innuendo towards the meaning implied.

~M~


03 Mar 14 - 06:35 AM (#3606680)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: bubblyrat

While we are on the subject (loosely) could any of you Americans explain something to me ?? Why is it that you have started referring to "The "Kursk" Soviet Submarine, or The" George Washington" Aircraft Carrier ,and ,very recently , The "Costa Concordia" Cruise Ship ? In the Uk ,we would say "The Cruise Ship"Costa Concordia" , not the other way round ! I mean, Shirley Temple sang about "The Good Ship Lollipop", NOT "The Lollipop Good Ship " !! What's going on here ??

Roger former member of the crew of The Aircraft Carrier Eagle , NOT The Eagle Aircraft Carrier !!


03 Mar 14 - 08:13 AM (#3606714)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Lighter

> In the Uk ,we would say "The Cruise Ship"Costa Concordia"

For now.

Oddly enough, the recent American trend is an inexplicable reversion to eighteenth century usage.

The Scots Magazine, 1785: "On the 19th current, arrived in this bay the Hebe frigate, with his Royal Highness Prince William Henry, Commodore Gower, &c. attended by the Mutine cutter."

Maybe TV news wants to put the most significant word at the end of the sentence. (It's a cruise ship or a submarine that sank - the one you may have heard about without noticing the name.)


03 Mar 14 - 08:25 AM (#3606716)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: MGM∑Lion

It goes back, tho, to rather before TV news. Think of all the songs with ships' names in them:

The bonnie ship 'The Diamond';
The gallant frigate 'Amphitryte', she lay on Plymouth Sound;
It was on the good ship 'Venus';
I shipped aboard a Limey barque the Hotspur

~M~


03 Mar 14 - 08:29 AM (#3606718)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Uncle_DaveO

This figure of speech certainly is EXTREMELY common in the US. As in . . .

"She called me on my cell [phone]"
"She's wearing nylons [stockings]"
"I'm listening to music on my cassette [player or recorder]"
"Listen to your transistor [radio]"

and on and on

Dave Oesterreich


03 Mar 14 - 08:47 AM (#3606724)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Jack the Sailor

What about the "Pop singer Adele" or the "delinquint Bieber"?


03 Mar 14 - 02:32 PM (#3606826)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Gurney

In NZ, it is common to hear the the comparative item missed out.

It's as cold as! The car's as fast as! The shoes were as cheap as!


04 Mar 14 - 01:05 AM (#3606951)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Jack the Sailor

"It's as cold as! The car's as fast as! The shoes were as cheap as! "

A lot of people in North America, mostly male Cheech and Chong fans might ad "sh*t" to each of those. IMHO that is about the same as leaving the noun out.

:-D


04 Mar 14 - 04:10 AM (#3606978)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: GUEST, topsie

Ah - so THAT's why they leave it out! So you can put in any four-letter word that takes your fancy.


04 Mar 14 - 06:34 AM (#3607030)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: gnu

Delightful read!


04 Mar 14 - 06:40 AM (#3607034)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: GUEST,DŠithŪ

Some "substantive adjectives" have now become standard,I think. For example, aerial antennae are now just called aerials in the UK.


04 Mar 14 - 06:49 AM (#3607035)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: MartinRyan

Briny


04 Mar 14 - 10:46 AM (#3607119)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: meself

the Great Beyond

the wild blue yonder - or even just 'the wild blue'

the briny deep (with apologies to Ryan Martin)

semi (i.e., transport truck)

nothing but/everything but

When I was a young buck, I frequented a tavern in which the most popular dish was the "one with" - some manner of fat sausage on a kaiser bun.


04 Mar 14 - 02:33 PM (#3607199)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: meself

Whoops! Apologies again - to Martin Ryan ... !


04 Mar 14 - 05:40 PM (#3607255)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Long Firm Freddie

A touch of the verbals

Down the local


04 Mar 14 - 11:14 PM (#3607314)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: Amos

Catachresis was rendered obsolete, culturally, by Richard Sheridan when he wrote The Rivals. They have been malapropisms ever since--an evolutionary ineffability, certainly.


05 Mar 14 - 03:28 AM (#3607335)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: MGM∑Lion

Amos: But 'catachresis' has wider application than merely that of 'malapropism'; referring to any misuse of a word, thru inappropriateness, e.g., rather than only of mistaken substitution of a near homonym.

I remember, for instance, the main character in John Wyndham's The Midwich Cuckoos denouncing "Mother Nature" as a catachresis, on the grounds that Nature, as an entity, is cruel and unfeeling, rather than warm & nurturing as that sentimental phrase would imply.

Worth wiki-ing to find the various applications of the word.

~M~


05 Mar 14 - 10:22 AM (#3607415)
Subject: RE: BS: Omitted noun figure of speech
From: GUEST,mayomick

Great read, but this could end up in Pseud(o-intellectuals') Corner!