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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    Default I need your help

    What is zeugma,I can't master it,can you tell me something about it?

  2. #2
    Hanka is offline Senior Member
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    Jul 2005
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    Default Re: I need your help

    Im not a native speaker, but I found this on www.dictionary.com:

    A construction in which a single word, especially a verb or an adjective, is applied to two or more nouns when its sense is appropriate to only one of them or to both in different ways, as in He took my advice and my wallet.

    You could also try www.google.com and type define: zeugma. You will find several definitions there.

    Hanka

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
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    Default Re: I need your help

    Hanka's example is a deliberate use of zeugma intended to be witty. The verb "took" applies to "advice" in the sense of "heed" or "follow"; but to "wallet" in the sense of "carry off" or "steal".

    In other words, Hanka's sentence actually means: "He took my advice and he took my wallet".

    Sometimes though, zeugma can be unintentional. Here's an example:

    "He wore leather shoes and glasses."

    Here the word "leather" is only supposed to describe "shoes", but the way the sentence is written, it also appears to describe "glasses" -- leather glasses are not much use.

    Here's a more complicated example:

    "Police are looking for a six-year-old girl wearing a dress patterned with pink roses and yellow socks."

    The way the sentence is written, it appears that the girl's dress features a pattern of roses and socks, but that's not what is meant here. "Yellow socks" is supposed to go with "wearing", but instead it goes with "patterned". The intended zeugma doesnt work, but instead there is an unintended zeugma.

    Intended:

    ...a six-year-old girl wearing a dress patterned with pink roses
    and wearing yellow socks.

    Unintended:

    ...a six-year-old girl wearing a dress patterned with pink roses
    and patterned with yellow socks.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    Default Re: I need your help

    Thank you ,I have a better understanding .

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