Also found in: Thesaurus, Medical, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
2. A construction in which one word or phrase is understood to fill a parallel syntactic role in two or more clauses or phrases, as with the verb was in She was upstairs, and her husband downstairs.
(Literary & Literary Critical Terms) a figure of speech in which a word is used to modify or govern two or more words although appropriate to only one of them or making a different sense with each, as in the sentence Mr. Pickwick took his hat and his leave (Charles Dickens)
[C16: via Latin from Greek: a yoking, from zeugnunai to yoke]
the use of a word to modify or govern two or more words when it is appropriate to only one of them or is appropriate to each but in a different way, as in to wage war and peace or He caught a trout and a bad cold.
[1515–25; < Greek zeûgma=zeug(nýnai) to join, yoke + -ma n. suffix of result]
zeug•mat′ic (-ˈmæt ɪk) adj.
the use of a word grammatically related to two adjacent words, but inappropriate for one of them, as in “he loved both his wife and his wallet.” — zeugmatic, adj.See also: Rhetoric and Rhetorical Devices
Switch to new thesaurus
|Noun||1.||zeugma - use of a word to govern two or more words though appropriate to only one; "`Mr. Pickwick took his hat and his leave' is an example of zeugma"|
syllepsis - use of a word to govern two or more words though agreeing in number or case etc. with only one