Ecphonesis (ec-pho-nee’-sis): An emotional exclamation.

Donald in the 5th Grade

Donald: “Owwww. Owwww. Waaaaah. Mommy.”

Gym Teacher: “It’s just a soccer ball. It can’t hurt that much to kick it.  In fact, it shouldn’t hurt at all. What the heck is going on here?”

Donald: “I am cold in these stupid shorts. I want to go inside and put my pants on.”

Gym Teacher: “Sorry. You’re going to have to just keep crying for your mommy or admit what you really want.”

Donald: “What’s that?”

Gym Teacher: “You want to go inside so you can steal things from the other guys’ backpacks and lockers, just like you did last time. If you don’t get back out there on the field, I’ll be meeting with your mother–it will be warm and cordial, but this time I won’t relent. You’re going down boy.”

Donald: “Waaaah.”

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetoricae” (

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