Antitheton


Antitheton (an-tith’-e-ton): A proof or composition constructed of contraries. Antitheton is closely related to and sometimes confused with the figure of speech that juxtaposes opposing terms, antithesis. However, it is more properly considered a figure of thought (=Topic of Invention: Contraries [a topic of invention in which one considers opposite or incompatible things that are of the same kind (if they are of different kinds, the topic of similarity / difference is more appropriate). Because contraries occur in pairs and exclude one another, they are useful in arguments because one can establish one’s case indirectly, proving one’s own assertion by discrediting the contrary]).

What you hope will inspire fear in your enemies and induce them to capitulate may actually inspire your enemies to hope more fervently for victory.  Theirs will be a quality of hope that you, my friend, should absolutely fear!

  • Post your own antitheton on the “Comments” page!

Definitions courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

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