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Adianoeta

 

Techniques > Use of language > Figures of speech > Adianoeta

Method | Example | Discussion | See also

 

Description

Adianoeta occurs where a word or phrase is used with a clear meaning, yet a second, more subtle, meaning also exists.

Example

'That play was rubbish!'
'Indeed, sir. When I think of the play, I shall think of you.'

I go with your heart.
(I am giving you my love - or maybe I am stealing your affection, taking it away with me).

Discussion

This is a subtle and clever way of playing with words and meaning.

Adianoeta may be used in insults, where the obvious meaning is harmless, yet the second meaning (which may be denied) is insulting.

The multiple meanings possible also makes it popular with poets.

Classification: Meaning

See also

 

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