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Synecdoche

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  • Synecdoche (from Greek, meaning literally simultaneous understanding) is a figure of speech in which one of the following occurs:

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    • A part of something is used for the whole (e.g., hands for sailors, Ol’ Blue Eyes for Frank Sinatra).
    • A whole is used for a part (e.g., the law for police).
    • A specific is thing is used for a general thing (e.g., John Hancock for signature, Coke for all colas, Wall Street for the financial industry).
    • A non-specific term is used for a specific thing (e.g., the good book for The Bible).
    • A material is used for the object made of that material (e.g., plastic for credit card).
    • A container is used for its contents (e.g., flask for liquor).
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    Comments

    1. Chris Johnston says:

      What is the difference between synecdoche and metonymy, then?

    2. Jake Daniel says:

      Your third dot-point has a syntax error. “A specific is thing is…”

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