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separation of a word into parts by inserting a word in the middle: abso-blooming-lutely
Abused, Confused, & Misused Words by Mary Embree Copyright © 2007, 2013 by Mary Embree


 (tmē′sĭs, mē′-)
n. pl. tme·ses (-sēz)
Separation of the parts of a compound word by one or more intervening words; for example, where I go ever instead of wherever I go.

[Late Latin tmēsis, from Greek, a cutting, from temnein, to cut; see tem- in Indo-European roots.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


(təˈmiːsɪs; ˈmiːsɪs)
(Grammar) interpolation of a word or group of words between the parts of a compound word
[C16: via Latin from Greek, literally: a cutting, from temnein to cut]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(ˈmi sɪs, təˈmi-)

the interpolation of one or more words between the parts of a compound word, as be thou ware for beware.
[1580–90; < Late Latin tmēsis < Greek tmḗsis a cutting =tmē-, variant s. of témnein to cut + -sis -sis]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.


The insertion of a word or part of a word in another word.
Dictionary of Unfamiliar Words by Diagram Group Copyright © 2008 by Diagram Visual Information Limited
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References in periodicals archive ?
Sometimes attending to the tmeses through which poets fill and overfill what might otherwise be overweeningly overspecified end terms, sometimes times identifying interpretation as a matter of inducing an opening (351), Hartman uncovers literary speech--that of the poet, that of the critic--as a matter of making "room in meaning itself" (352).
His eccentric margins, capricious word divisions, vagrant punctuation, tmeses, and promiscuously embracing parentheses, can be traced to the scholarly trappings which a Greek poem wears on a textbook page." What's more, although Cummings named all of his ten collections of verse (which, in the Collected Poems, run to over a thousand pages), he named only two of the poems themselves.