"That's a great deal to make one word mean," Alice said in a thoughtful tone. "When I make a word do a lot of work like that," said Humpty Dumpty, "I always pay it extra."
Wednesday, 19 August 2009
Ellipsis and aposiopesis
Ellipsis (plural ellipses) is a mark or series of marks that indicate an intentional omission of a word or a phrase from the original text. An ellipsis can also be used to indicate a pause in speech, an unfinished thought or, at the end of a sentence, a trailing off into silence (aposiopesis).
The most common form of an ellipsis is a row of three periods or full stops (...). Forms encountered less often are: three asterisks (***), one em dash (—), multiple en dashes (––), and the Unicode Ellipsis symbol (…).
The triple-dot punctuation mark is also called a suspension point, points of ellipsis, periods of ellipsis, or colloquially, dot-dot-dot.
I use aposiopesis a lot; I have the habit of ending sentences with an elipsis as a way of suggesting I could have written a lot more had I so wished...
My daughter Helen commented in November 2008 in her Blog that she was now keeping a notebook of new words that she came across during her reading. "This week I bought a lovely little leather bound book to write new words in as I read them . I've added a few from "1984", but my favourite has to be persiflage (from the French persifler) which means banter." I later discovered that my older daughter, Bryony, also kept a similar notebook.
This inspired me to create a Word blog. This will include both new words, favourite words and the origins of phrases that we commonly use. A definition and some comment, perhaps even a relevant quotation, will acompany the word or phrase.
“I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me.” - Winnie the Pooh
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I am a 65 year old happily married man who lives near Liverpool in the
UK. I'm a blogger - and nowadays that seems to be my main occupation. Rambles from My Chair
is my main blog. I’m a retired local government executive - now
studying how to survive a neurological disorder that gives me various
problems but, hopefully, a whole new outlook on life and an increased
sense of humour and perspective. There is a saying in Sweden "man måste
vara frisk för att orka vara sjuk" ~ "you have to be well to cope with
I enjoy most forms of communication and postcards are a special
Scriptor Senex is Latin for Old Writer. My real name is John but I've almost forgotten that nowadays...
“He’s not so old. He’s just the age that he is, that’s all.” (Gerald Hammond)