American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. The omission of conjunctions from constructions in which they would normally be used, as in "Are all thy conquests, glories, triumphs, spoils,/Shrunk to this little measure?” ( Shakespeare).
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. In rhetoric, a figure of speech consisting in the omission of connectives, as in the following passage:
- n. It is the opposite of polysyndeton, which is a multiplication of connectives.
- n. rhetoric A stylistic scheme in which conjunctions are deliberately omitted from a series of words, phrases, clauses.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. (Rhet.) A figure which omits the connective. It stands opposed to
- n. the omission of conjunctions where they would normally be used
- From Ancient Greek ἀσύνδετον (asundeton, "unconnected"). (Wiktionary)
- Late Latin, from Greek asundeton, from neuter of asundetos, without conjunctions : a-, not; see a-1 + sundetos, bound together (from sundein, to bind together : sun-, syn- + dein, to bind). (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“W. Sean McLaughlin, of Alexandria, Virginia, wrote, I was immediately inspired by the arcane grammatical term asyndeton [defined in the American Heritage Dictionary as 'the omission of conjunctions from constructions in which they would normally be used'] and thought minor modifications might yield the right meaning: a-senditon.”
“ The "asyndeton" would seem to mark a pause, unless some words have dropped out.”
“This figure often occurs public address with others such as antithesis, anaphora, asyndeton, climax, epistrophe and symploce.”
“Therefore the figure asyndeton, whereby conjunctions are omitted, is highly commended by writers of rhetoric.”
“Grant points out to me the asyndeton following _quaere ... sintne_.”
“According to the manuscripts the preceding line ends with VTAR; I have printed Heinsius 'VSVS, since there would otherwise be an asyndeton between _utar_ and _aspiciam_.”
“= The asyndeton in this distich is odd, given the preceding series of connectives.”
“Lot makes his summons urgent: "Rise, go forth" -- effective asyndeton.”
“The asyndeton of the last clause marks the writer's (or speaker's) indignation.”
“A certain abruptness characterizes the style at this point, first, by the use of the asyndeton: "morning came" or "became light" ( 'or); then, by the use of successive perfects, also in v. 4 (K.S. 119).”
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