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Parataxis

 

Techniques > Use of language > Figures of speech > Parataxis

Method | Example | Discussion | See also

 

Description

Parataxis is the use of multiple independent clauses, with or without conjunctions.

Example

We went to the park and we sat down and we had a cup of tea.

In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep.

I came, I saw, I conquered.

Discussion

An independent clause stands alone, with an individual meaning. After a complete 'chunk' of meaning, we often pause for a moment to integrate it into prior understanding. Clauses are generally shorter than sentences. Therefore multiple independent clauses have a staccato effect, giving more punch and (perforce) having less flow.

Conjunctions connect clauses together into sentences and help create flow, yet if the clause is complete, the conjunction has less effect and may be omitted. Parataxis occurs with or without the conjunction.

Parataxis is the 'opposite' of Hypotaxis.

Classification: Grammar, Rearrangement

See also

Using syntax

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