An Introduction to Epanados

Epanados (derives from the Greek word ‘epánodos’ literally means “recapitulation” or “a return”), is a figure of speech in which words or parts of a phraseOpens in new window that describe a subjectOpens in new window in the beginning of a sentence is reiterated and diversified upon conclusion of the sentence, mainly to create emphasis and add rhetorical elegance.

Simply put by Peacham’sOpens in new window definition; “Epanados is when we iterate by parts the whole spoken before”.

    For instance:
  • Love is right because there is only one right love.”
Other Examples of Epanados
  • Whether the worst, the child accurst,
    Or else the cruel mother?
    The mother worst, the child accurst,
    As bad the one as th’other.
  • “For we are a fragrance of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing;
    to the one an aroma from death to death, to the other an aroma from life to life”.
  • — 2. Cor. 2. 15.16.

Epanados is an important device; it is quite instrumental for rhetors and writers as they use it to achieve artistic effect in their works. Often used to reiterate significant concepts of a speech, epanados goes a long way to add flair in literary works in certain ways that stimulate the readers' interest.

Further Readings:
Peacham; Ad Herennium