Monthly Archives: August 2013


Antistasis (an-ti’-sta-sis): The repetition of a word in a contrary sense. Often, simply synonymous with antanaclasis.

If you believe you’re covered by the cope of heavan, you will cope more readily with everything under the sun.

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Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (


Metabasis (me-ta’-ba-sis): A transitional statement in which one explains what has been and what will be said.

Now that I’ve offered a broad justification for going to Hell, I’d like to turn our attention specifically to Syria and explain why cutting through Syria is possibly the best way to get to Hell.

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Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (


Ampliatio (am’-pli-a’-ti-o): Using the name of something or someone before it has obtained that name or after the reason for that name has ceased. A form of epitheton.

(1) Good morning Ms. President! Mommy and Daddy will be so proud. Here’s your lunch. Have fun at school! Bye bye Ms. President!

(2) Stop calling me “Studly.” Those days are gone forever. Why don’t you just call me “Quits” and bring me another beer and a bowl of chips?  Who farted?

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Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (


Pareuresis (par-yur-ee’-sis): To put forward a convincing excuse.

Hank, when I was diagnosed with cancer I panicked. Fearful of my family’s future, I started cooking meth to pay my medical bills and to save my family from financial ruin. I thought for sure that I was going to die. Who could have known? Now I’m nearly a billionaire, Skyler and I have a very successful carwash, and I’m totally cured of cancer.

Now, I have an offer to make.

How would you like 10-million dollars and a 50 percent stake in the car wash? Our families can have what they really deserve and we can quietly bring this nasty little episode in our lives to an end.

If you refuse, I’m going to have to give you a 100 percent stake in a bullet to the head.

What’ll it be Hank?

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Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (


Chiasmus (ki-az’-mus): 1. Repetition of ideas in inverted order.  2. Repetition of grammatical structures in inverted order (not to be mistaken with antimetabole, in which identical words are repeated and inverted).

1. I’m having trouble understanding what “brotherhood” means, especially on the streets of Cairo. “Brotherhood” means what brotherhood does, so what does brotherhood mean in Cairo?

2. To hope for freedom may be freedom’s spark. Freedom’s fire starts with hoping to be free. Fear puts out the fire that hope lit.

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Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (


Diazeugma (di-a-zoog’-ma): The figure by which a single subject governs several verbs or verbal constructions (usually arranged in parallel fashion and expressing a similar idea); the opposite of zeugma.

A: Anthony Weiner’s shocking photographic forays mangled his political career, roughed up his marriage, and kicked his supporters in the crotch. I think we’ve seen him go under once and for all.

B: Under where?

A: That’s not funny.

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Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (

Inter se pugnantia

Inter se pugnantia (in’-ter-say-pug-nan’-ti-a): Using direct address to reprove someone before an audience, pointing out the contradictions in that person’s character, often between what a person does and says.

He says he’s a leader, but the plutocrats pull his strings. He says he’s a peacemaker, but we’re mired in wars. He says he’s our friend, but he spies on us all. He says he loves his neighbor, but he lives in a fortress.

Puppet. Warmonger. Traitor. Liar.

What can we do?

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Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (


Period: The periodic sentence, characterized by the suspension of the completion of sense until its end. This has been more possible and favored in Greek and Latin, languages already favoring the end position for the verb, but has been approximated in uninflected languages such as English. [This figure may also engender surprise or suspense–consequences of what Kenneth Burke views as ‘appeals’ of information.]

Wonderful people, stunning landscapes, delicious food, spine-tingling vodka, relaxing stretched-out days, delightful twilight nights: Iceland!

I visited Iceland last week.

I will remember Iceland for the rest of my life!

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Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” ( Bracketed text inserted by Gorgias.