Adynaton

Adynaton is a kind of hyperboleOpens in new window that insinuates impossibility of what is stated as a result of extreme exaggeration beyond the bounds of truth used in its expression.

Examples of Adynaton

  1. “Beautiful things muddled together into an ugly mess! Love is heavy and light, bright and dark, hot and cold, sick and healthy, asleep and awake—it’s everything except what it is!”

    — (Shakespearean Romeo and Juliet, Romeo 1,1 pg9)

  2. “It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.”

    — (The Holy Bible, Mathew 19:24)

  3. “I will sooner have a beard grow in the palm of my hand than he shall get one of his cheek.”

    — (Shakespearean, 2 Henry IV 1,2 pg20-22)

  4. “One can expect an agreement between philosophers sooner than between clocks.”

    — (Seneca, The Pumpkinification of Claudius)

Adynaton or adynata (plural) can be interesting especially when used by writers and/or speakers to infer certain arguments. Nevertheless, such arguments or claims are highly fallacious and unrealistic.

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