Prolepsis definition

prō-lĕpsĭs
Frequency:
The anticipation and answering of an objection or argument before one's opponent has put it forward.
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(rhetoric) The assignment of something to a period of time that precedes it.
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(logic) The anticipation of an objection to an argument.
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(grammar, rhetoric) A construction that consists of placing an element in a syntactic unit before that to which it would logically correspond.
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(philosophy, epistemology) A so-called "preconception", i.e. a pre-theoretical notion which can lead to true knowledge of the world.
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(botany) Growth in which lateral branches develop from a lateral meristem, after the formation of a bud or following a period of dormancy, when the lateral meristem is split from a terminal meristem.
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The anachronistic representation of something as existing before its proper or historical time, as in the precolonial United States.
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The assignment of something, such as an event or name, to a time that precedes it, as in If you tell the cops, you're a dead man.
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The use of a descriptive word in anticipation of the act or circumstances that would make it applicable, as dry in They drained the lake dry.
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An anticipating.
  • The describing of an event as taking place before it could have done so.
  • The treating of a future event as if it had already happened.
  • The anticipating and answering of an argument before one's opponent has a chance to advance it.
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Other Word Forms

Noun

Singular:
prolepsis
Plural:
prolepses

Origin of prolepsis

  • Late Latin prolēpsis from Greek from prolambanein to anticipate pro- before pro–2 lambanein lēp- to take

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • From Latin prolepsis, from Ancient Greek πρόληψις (prolepsis, “preconception, anticipation"), from προλαμβάνω (prolambano, “take beforehand, anticipate")

    From Wiktionary