from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Witty dialog or response.
  • n. In dialog, a retort based on a punning use of another speaker's word or metaphor.


From Latin astĕïsmŏs ("the more refined style of speaking"), from Ancient Greek ἀστείσμός (asteismos) (Wiktionary)


  • (the transposition of letters in a word), asteismus (a figure of reply; a facetious or mocking answer), and figures of deliberate obscurity (enigma, noema, schematismus) are cited by such

    VERBATIM: The Language Quarterly Vol XI No 3


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