Dystmesis: Definition and Examples

Dystmesis (derives from the Greek dys, “bad” or “hard” temein, “to cut”) — A kind of tmesisOpens in new window, which consists in the separation of a compoundOpens in new window at a rather unusual or inappropriate position, and inserting another word between the syllablesOpens in new window.

Examples of Dystmesis

  1. Unbe-freakin-lievable
  2. Fan-bloody-tastic!
  3. A whole nother story

This figure rarely occurs, and when it does, it does so as a result of the user being overwhelmed with emotion, and consequently lose track of putting words together to express the intended thoughts, thereby taking recourse in the words that naturally come to mind.

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