|Source||Isidore 1.36.5-6; Mosellanus ("syllepsis' "conglutinata conceptio") a5r; Sherry (1550) 30 ("silepsis," "concepcio"); Peacham (1577) F1r; Putt. (1589) 176 ("sillepsis," "the double supply"); Day 1599 82 ; Silva Rhetoricae (http://humanities.byu.edu/rhetoric/Silva.htm); JG Smith (1665) ("syllepsis"); Macbeth (1876)("syllepsis," "oratorical syllepsis"); De Mille (1882) ("synesis," "syllepsis"); Bullinger (1898) ("syllepsis; or, change in concord")|
|Synonyms||sillepsis, silepsis, syllempsis, conceptio, conglutinata conceptio, concepcio double supply, change in concord, synesis, synthesis|
|Etymology||from Gk. syn, "together" and lepsis, "taking"|
1. When a single word that governs or modifies two or more others must be understood differently with respect to each of those words. A combination of grammatical parallelism and semantic incongruity, often with a witty or comical effect. Not to be confused with zeugma. (Silva Rhetoricae)
2. Syllepsis, Comprehension: a figure of construction, when a nominative plural is joyned to a verb singular; or on the contrary: Or it is a comprehension of the more unworthy under the more worthy, &c.; SYLLEPSIS, Comprehensio, Comprehension, derived from [syllambano] comprehendo, to comprehend or contain. A figure of Construction, and is when a Nominative case plural is joyned to a Verb singular, or a Nominative singular to a Verb plural: or it is a comprehension of the more unworthy under the more worthy. (JG Smith)
3 a) Syllepsis is that figure in which a word is construed syntactically according to its meaning or import, not according to its mere narrow grammatical characteristics. It is also termed synesis or synthesis: "The adapting of the construction to the sense of the word, rather than to its gender or number," as when the Saviour is spoken of as "the Rock on whom we trust," instead of "in which." (Macbeth)
3 b)Oratorical Syllepsis must next be enumerated: a very delicate, beautiful figure when happily used; consisting in the employing of a word in two different senses at once, the one literal, the other figurative. (Macbeth)
4 a) 210. SYNESIS.
4 b) 123. OTHER FIGURES.
5. Grammatical Syllepsis, by which there is a change in the Ideas rather than in actual words, so that the concord is logical rather than grammatical... It is a figure by which one word, or the meaning of one word, is taken with another; or, when one word is used, and another idea is meant. When involving addition of words, or sense, it has already been described in Div. II. (Bullinger, 699-699)
1. [In the following example, "rend" governs both objects, but the first rending is figurative; the second, literal:]
1. You held your breath and the door for me
1. "Fix the problem, not the blame." —Dave Weinbaum
2. Syllepsis is threefold: viz.
(1) Of the Person: as, I and my father are safe.; Neither I nor you are wise.; Hear thou what I and the people with me do desire.
3 a) "While Providence supports,
3 b) Lear says of one of his daughters:
5. John 16:13, 14. -"When he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you unto all truth," etc. Here, though the word pneuma "Spirit," is neuter, the word ekeinos "He" is masculine; agreeing with the Divine Person rather than with the actual word "Spirit." (Bullinger, 699)
|Kind Of||Omission Series Identity|
|Related Figures||zeugma, ellipsis, metaphor, synthesis, figures of syntax|
|Notes||Note: Originally, syllepsis named that grammatical incongruity resulting when a word governing two or more others could not agree with both or all of them; for example, when a singular verb serves as the predicate to two subjects, singular and plural ("His boat and his riches is sinking"). In the rhetorical sense, syllepsis has more to do with applying the same single word to the others it governs in distinct senses (e.g., literal and metaphorical); thus, "His boat and his dreams sank." (Silva Rhetoricae)|
|Last Editor||Ioanna Malton|
|Editorial Notes||There are two entries in the db for "syllepsis" - sam|