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also ap·o·phthegm  (ăp′ə-thĕm′)
A terse, witty, instructive saying; a maxim.

[Greek apophthegma, from apophthengesthai, to speak plainly : apo-, intensive pref.; see apo- + phthengesthai, phtheg-, to speak.]

ap′o·theg·mat′ic (-thĕg-măt′ĭk), ap′o·theg·mat′i·cal (-ĭ-kəl) adj.
ap′o·theg·mat′i·cal·ly adv.


a variant spelling of apophthegm


or ap•o•phthegm

(ˈæp əˌθɛm)

a short, pithy saying.
[1545–55; < Greek apóphthegma <apophtheg-, variant s. of apophthéngesthai to speak out]
ap`o•theg•mat′ic (-θɛgˈmæt ɪk) adj.


- A terse, pointed saying or pithy maxim; it is pronounced AP-uh-them and may also be spelled apophthegm.
See also related terms for pointed.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.apothegm - a short pithy instructive saying
axiom, maxim - a saying that is widely accepted on its own merits
References in classic literature ?
To this last apothegm poor Hepzibah responded with a sigh so deep and heavy that it almost rustled Uncle Venner quite away, like a withered leaf,--as he was,--before an autumnal gale.
IT WAS shown in the last paper that the political apothegm there examined does not require that the legislative, executive, and judiciary departments should be wholly unconnected with each other.
Let no one deem himself happy before his end," were the words of Solon; and here was a new and brilliant proof of the wisdom of the old apothegm.
Law XV provides the mathematical foundation for Lamennais's apothegm, which states: "Centralization breeds apoplexy at the center and anemia at the extremities," Large organizations, probably epitomized by federal governments, seem to be susceptible to the concept that regulations can become a substitute for management, Today, for example, the U.
Aristotle could not have been more perspicuous in the following apothegm on the precarious relationship between alimentary pleasure and excess: "people are blamed, not for undergoing them [bodily pleasures], desiring them, and loving them, but rather for doing so in a certain way, namely, in excess" (NE, VII, 4).
In Mathiason, the Court relied on custody as the missing piece that justified the deliberate falsehood that induced the suspect to confess; in Burbine, the majority stressed the "ignorance is bliss" apothegm to validate the Miranda waiver.
TO the cold, implacable universe, the late Pina Bausch offered her own response--the succinct apothegm, "Tanzt, tanzt sonst sind wir verloren" ("dance, dance, or else we are lost").
His words grant him no access to either heaven or the king because they are without adequate place--just as his bower has failed to provide a safe place, to represent successfully his secure place at court, so the topoi of the apothegm have failed to represent adequately his plight, and he must search for his own genre.
Looking back to the experience that had inspired his famous apothegm to freedom abroad in 1846 ("I breathe, and lo
The author closes with the apothegm, "No strategist deliberately designs a strategy to fail.
Terrence's apothegm was echoed in Dilthey's notion of verstehen and more recently in Davidson's principle of charity in his influential challenge to "conceptual relativism.