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Dec 10, 2010This week's theme
What to avoid when using words
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Words made with combining forms
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A.Word.A.Daywith Anu Garg
MEANING:noun: Drawing attention to something while claiming to be passing over it.
ETYMOLOGY:From Latin paralipsis, from Greek paraleipsis (an omission), from paraleipein (to leave on one side), from para- (side) + leipein (to leave). First recorded use: 1550.
NOTES:Paralipsis is especially handy in politics to point out an opponent's faults. It typically involves these phrases:
"not to mention"
"to say nothing of"
"I won't speak of"
USAGE:"Political correctness has breathed new life into the paralepsis, the rhetorical device whereby we make a statement by first announcing that we are not going to make it. When pundits write 'No one is suggesting...' the American eye reads 'I'm suggesting.'"
Florence King; If 'Words Mean Things', Then All is Lost; Times-Dispatch (Richmond, Virginia); Feb 19, 1995.
See more usage examples of paralipsis in Vocabulary.com's dictionary.
A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:When one has been threatened with a great injustice, one accepts a smaller as a favour. -Jane Welsh Carlyle, letter writer (1801-1866)
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