Anapodoton (an’-a-po’-do-ton): A figure in which a main clause is suggested by the introduction of a subordinate clause, but that main clause never occurs.
Anapodoton is a kind of anacoluthon, since grammatical expectations are interrupted. If the expression trails off, leaving the subordinate clause incomplete, this is sometimes more specifically called anantapodoton. Anapodoton has also named what occurs when a main clause is omitted because the speaker interrupts himself/herself to revise the thought, leaving the initial clause grammatically unresolved but making use of it nonetheless by recasting its content into a new, grammatically complete sentence.
Before Donald Trump’s hair blinded his wife
A debate is not . . . A debate should not be a gaggle of Republican geese honking for attention. There should actually be a set set topic or question for the so-called debate, like: “This House would give Bobby Jindal a buzz cut.” Or, “This House believes George Pataki is too tall to be President.” Or, “This House believes Jeb Bush is a mama’s boy.”
The possibilities are endless, and they should all be ad hominem! Insults are much more exciting and substantive than anything else the frontrunners would have to say toward questions like: “Governor Christie, if elected what would be your first meal in the White House.” Or, “Senator Paul, have you ever considered naming one of your children Paul?” Or, “CEO Trump, how do you spell foreign?”
- Post your own anapodoton on the “Comments” page!
Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (rhetoric.byu.edu).