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#114251 - 10/23/03 05:37 AM whats it called
jennieho Offline

Registered: 10/23/03
Posts: 2
Does anyone know what the word is for putting a word in the middle of another word. For example fan-swear word-tastic?

#114252 - 10/23/03 05:56 AM Re: whats it called
sjmaxq Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 07/20/03
Posts: 3230
Loc: Te Ika a Maui
Main Entry:tmesis
Etymology:Late Latin, from Greek tm*sis act of cutting, from temnein to cutó more at TOME

: separation of parts of a compound word by the intervention of one or more words (as what place soever for whatsoever place)

noho ora mai

#114253 - 10/23/03 06:54 AM Re: whats it called
Faldage Offline
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Registered: 12/01/00
Posts: 13803
Tmesis is a term of rhetoric. A more common word would be infix. It doesn't even have to be a word that gets stuck in there. Some language conservatives will maintain that the proper plural of handful is not handfuls but handsful. In this example the -s- is an infix.

Tmesis does sound fancier if you're trying to impress someone.

#114254 - 10/23/03 07:00 AM Re: whats it called
jlt Offline

Registered: 10/23/03
Posts: 2
I think the word you're looking for jennieho is a similie. However, many people get confused of what it is and make up fancy names like tmesis.

#114255 - 10/23/03 07:27 AM In all sincerity
Jackie Offline

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Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 11613
Loc: Louisville, Kentucky
Excuse me, you two-or-one, but. If you have come here honestly seeking information and/or fun interaction, I sincerely welcome you aBoard. However, if you have come here for the purpose of playing tricks and/or insulting my friends, then I just as sincerely invite you to leave.

#114256 - 10/23/03 07:42 AM Re: whats it called
of troy Offline
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Registered: 10/17/00
Posts: 5400
Loc: rego park
a similie
isn't a similie an expression of comparision? characterized by an as in the middle?
Red as Rose.
Green as new cheese!

and-- you caught Jackie at the wrong moment.. otherwise she would have said.. we love fun and games... but not in the Q & A sections.. go down Wordplay!

but she is right, we want word play, not tag team rudeness..

There is a game of boggle going on now, and one of Hogwash--(a game were people make up definations to obscure words, and the players vote on which one they think is best..there are some sort of archane rules, and scoring, which can be found a few pages back in the Wordplay section.)

my other obsession

#114257 - 10/23/03 08:33 AM Re: In all sincerity
jlt Offline

Registered: 10/23/03
Posts: 2
i dont understand what you mean by you two/one. I was simply answering a question but i obviously got it wrong. sorry to cause such an outrage.

#114258 - 10/23/03 10:36 AM Re: In all sincerity
dodyskin Offline

Registered: 04/24/02
Posts: 475
Loc: manchester uk
tmesis is the term all right, it is distinguished by being the only word in the OED to begin tm. I know this because it was ont' box t'other night as a question on QI ( and because I checked, never trust a man over 6'4).
tmesis n (pl. tmeses) the separation of parts of a compound word by an intervening word ( used informally for emphasis e.g. I can't find it any-blooming-where)
Origin C16: from Greek tmesis 'cutting'.

#114259 - 10/23/03 10:41 AM Re: In all sincerity
belMarduk Offline
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Registered: 09/28/00
Posts: 2891
However, many people get confused of what it is and make up fancy names like tmesis.

It might be a good idea to look it up before making this type of sweeping/ill-thought-out/insulting statement jlt.

I've learned that, no matter how much I know, there is always going to be somebody that knows a little (or a lot more) than I do. There are very smart people here and I take my hat off to them for knowing all this stuff.

A one minute google would have shown you that the word does exist and would have prevented you from (I like to think inadvertently) trying to belittle somebody, and from (definitely) belittling yourself in this manner.



Ooof, it's several hours later and I'm catching up on these threads. I meant this to be a "check the depth before you jump in" statement jlt but it seems rather harsh when I reread it now. I hope I did not hurt your feelings, and if I did I apologize.

#114260 - 10/23/03 11:54 AM Let a simile be your umbrella
AnnaStrophic Offline
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Registered: 03/15/00
Posts: 6511
Loc: lower upstate New York
Spell it right, jlt, and you might have some people taking your buffoonery seriously.

Rhetorically, jennieho, this is a good resource: http://humanities.byu.edu/rhetoric/silva.htm


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