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n combining form
(Biology) indicating a turning towards, development in the direction of, or affinity to: heliotrope.
[from Greek tropos a turn]
a. any literary or rhetorical device, as metaphor, metonymy, synecdoche, and irony, that consists in the use of words in other than their literal sense.
b. an instance of this.
2. a phrase, sentence, or verse formerly interpolated in a liturgical text to amplify or embellish.
[1525–35; < Latin tropus figure in rhetoric < Greek trópos turn, turn or figure of speech, akin to trépein to turn]
a combining form meaning “one turned toward” that specified by the initial element (heliotrope); also occurring in concrete nouns that correspond to abstract nouns ending in -tropy or -tropism: allotrope.