Hypozeugma

An Introduction to Hypozeugma

Hypozeugma (derived from the Greek combination ‘hypo’ “slightly” and ‘zeugma’ “yoke or join” in which some rhetorician literally termed as “the rearwarder”), is a kind of zeugma in which the word or phraseOpens in new window that serves all the clauses in a syntactical construction are placed at the end of the construction.

In a typical construction of hypozeugma, the linking word(s) follows after the words it connects.

    For example,
  • ‘Hours, days, weeks, months, and years seemed to slip away.

Without the hypozeugma this would read:

  • “Hours seemed to slip away, days seemed to slip away, weeks seemed to slip away.

Hypozeugma like its other zeugma-siblings serves to unite separate lines and clauses within those lines; and this strongly suggests continuity and congruity of sense.

Notable Examples of Hypozeugma
  • My mates that want to keep me company,
    And my neighbors, who dwelt next to my wall,
    The friends that swore they would not stick to die
    In my quarrel: they are fled from me all.
  • In this example, the words “fled from me all” serve all the three clauses, requiring but one congruity and sense.
  • “Assure yourself that Damon to his Pythias, Pylades to his Orestes, Titus to his Gysippus, Theseus to his Pyrothus, Scipio to his Laelius, was never found more faithful than Euphues will be to his Philautus.”
  • — John Lyly, Euphues

    The words “was never found more faithful than Euphues will be to his Philautus.” serves all the preceding clauses, in one sense and congruity.
  • “Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears …”
  • — Marc Anthony, Julius Caesar

    The phrase “lend me your ears” serves all the words that come, in one single sense agreement .
Further Readings:
Ad Herennium 4.27.38; Susenbrotus 26;
Sherry 29; Peacham (1577)K2v.; Silva Rhetoricae, Figures | Hypozeugma Opens in new window