Home Grammar What Is Synecdoche? Definition and Examples

What Is Synecdoche? Definition and Examples

What Is Synecdoche? Definition and Examples


While you inform somebody you’re going to “hit the books,” they in all probability image you in a library or a research session. While you say you want “a set of wheels,” you’re indicating that you just want a automobile (to get to mentioned library, maybe). These phrases are examples of synecdoche as a result of they use half of one thing to face in for the entire.

What’s synecdoche?

Synecdoche (pronounced sin-ek-duh-kee) is a determine of speech wherein a selected a part of one thing is used to seek advice from the entire thing. It comes from the Greek phrase synekdoche, which implies “simultaneous that means.”

For instance, utilizing synecdoche, the phrase threads means clothes, heels means high-heeled footwear, and a swimsuit is a businessperson who wears fits to work.

Synecdoche additionally works within the reverse route by substituting the entire thing for an element. Though these examples are tougher to return by, beneath we’ll take a look at some poems that use this system.

How is synecdoche used?

When you perceive the definition of synecdoche, you’ll begin to discover examples throughout you. However moreover being a cool literary time period to know, what does synecdoche imply on your writing?

Synecdoche is commonly utilized in literature and poetry to create vivid, memorable photos in a reader’s thoughts. For instance, the synecdoche boots on the bottom is often used to explain a military of troopers marching, the place the boots stand in for the entire soldier.

In The Starvation Video games: Mockingjay – Half 1 by Suzanne Collins, the narrator describes being descended upon by a military:

“The wind whips the snow into blinding swirls however doesn’t block out the sound of one other wave of trainers headed our approach.”

On this passage, the phrase “a wave of trainers” combines metaphor with synecdoche to create the picture of many troopers stampeding towards the narrator.

Synecdoche may also be used to convey complicated concepts extra concisely.

For instance, the poem “The World Is Too A lot With Us” by William Wordsworth opens with this line:

“The world is an excessive amount of with us; late and shortly.”

On this case, Wordsworth is substituting the entire for the half. When he says “the world,” he’s talking particularly of human society and its materials possessions (which turns into clear all through the poem). To sum up that grand and sophisticated topic in just a few phrases, Wordsworth reached for synecdoche.

Total, utilizing synecdoche can assist you enhance your essays by creating memorable imagery and conveying complicated concepts in a extra concise approach.

What’s the distinction between synecdoche and metonymy?

Synecdoche and metonymy are intently associated. Each figures of speech use one phrase to face in for one more. The distinction is that metonymy makes use of a associated phrase as a stand-in (e.g., calling the queen of England “the Crown”), whereas synecdoche makes use of a particular part or a part of its stand-in (e.g., calling a automobile “a set of wheels”).

The phrase “employed serving to arms” is synecdoche as a result of arms stand in for a employee’s physique, and arms are a portion of the physique. Alternatively, “lend me your ears” is metonymy as a result of what the speaker is asking for isn’t somebody’s head, however their consideration, and ears are usually not a unit of consideration.

Some individuals contemplate synecdoche a subset of metonymy, since each operate in the identical approach, however synecdoche has a narrower scope. Basically, metonymy depends extra on metaphor and symbolism, whereas synecdoche depends extra on bodily descriptions.

Examples of synecdoche

  • Faces within the crowd = particular individuals in a crowd
  • Mouths to feed = a bunch of hungry individuals
  • Hit the street = go away
  • Common or decaf? = common or decaf espresso
  • Hand in marriage = marriage proposal
  • All arms on deck = everybody should be accessible
  • Press the flesh = greet individuals
  • Order! = order within the court docket
  • Faces within the crowd, the place faces imply individuals
  • Mouths to feed, the place mouths imply hungry individuals
  • Press the flesh, the place flesh means arms, as in a handshake

Synecdoche FAQs

What’s synecdoche?

Synecdoche is a determine of speech that substitutes an element for a complete or a complete for an element.

How is synecdoche used?

Synecdoche is utilized in writing to create vivid imagery or to make complicated matters extra concise and memorable.

What’s the distinction between synecdoche and metonymy?

Each synecdoche and metonymy use substitution to create extra partaking writing. Synecdoche substitutes an element for a complete, whereas metonymy substitutes a associated object, idea, or concept.