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Antisthecon

 

Techniques > Use of language > Figures of speech > Antisthecon

Method | Example | Discussion | See also

 

Description

Antisthecon occurs where a word is altered by changing a sound, syllable or letter within it.

Example

'Parse the sorlt!' he said, in his lovely country accent.

Auntie's-the-con; uncle's the pro.

Mary, Mary, are you vary good? Do you cary wood for the fire?

Oh loook, it's a skelington!

Discussion

Antisthecon can occur where an incorrect pronunciation or spelling of a word is used. There is a range of words like this, from 'seccetry' for 'secretary' to 'definate' for 'definite'. These typically happen when a person spells the word in the way they pronounce it.

Puns use antisthecon when they change the spelling or sound of a word for humorous effect.

The distortion of antisthecon may cause confusion and hence a pause to think harder about the meaning.

Antisthecon is a form of metaplasm, which is a general term for changing of a word's spelling.

Antisthecon is also known as wrenched rhyme, where the word is distorted in order to rhyme in a poem (eg. 'love' may be pronounced 'lerv' to rhyme with 'serve'. This may be bad or clever poetry (often depending on your point of view).

Antisthecon is sometimes spelled antistoechon or antistoecon.

It comes from the Greek 'anti-', meaning 'against' and 'stoicheon', meaning 'letter order.'

Classification: Distortion, Substitution

See also

Confusion principle

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