the automatic repetition by someone of words spoken in his or her presence, esp. as a symptom of mental disorder
Origin of echolaliaModern Latin ; from echo (see echo) + -lalia, speech defect ; from Classical Greek lalia, speech ; from lalein, to talk, prattle ; from reduplicated, reduplication of Indo-European echoic an unverified form la- (as in Classical Latin lallare, German lallen, to lull)
- Psychiatry The immediate and involuntary repetition of words or phrases just spoken by others, often a symptom of autism or some types of schizophrenia.
- An infant's repetition of the sounds made by others, a normal occurrence in childhood development.
Origin of echolaliaecho + Greek laliā, talk (from lalos, talkative).
(countable and uncountable, plural echolalias)
- (clinical psychology) The immediate, involuntary, and repetitive echoing of words or phrases spoken by another.
- An infant's repetitive imitation of vocal sounds spoken by another person, occurring naturally during childhood development.
- Any apparently meaningless, repetitious noises, especially voices.
From echo + -lalia.