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antonomasia

[an-tuh-nuh-mey-zhuh]
noun
  1. Rhetoric. the identification of a person by an epithet or appellative that is not the person's name, as his lordship.
  2. the use of the name of a person who was distinguished by a particular characteristic, as Don Juan or Annie Oakley, to designate a person or group of persons having the same characteristic.
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Origin of antonomasia

1580–90; < Latin < Greek, verbid of antonomázein to call by a new name, equivalent to ant- ant- + onomat- stem of ónoma name + -ia -ia
Related formsan·to·no·mas·tic [an-tuh-noh-mas-tik] /ˌæn tə noʊˈmæs tɪk/, an·to·no·mas·ti·cal, adjectivean·to·no·mas·ti·cal·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for antonomasia

Historical Examples of antonomasia

  • Antonomasia is, whych for ye proper name putteth some other word: As: the Archebyshop confuted the errour, for Cranmer.

    A Treatise of Schemes and Tropes

    Richard Sherry


British Dictionary definitions for antonomasia

antonomasia

noun rhetoric
  1. the substitution of a title or epithet for a proper name, such as his highness
  2. the use of a proper name for an ideahe is a Daniel come to judgment
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Derived Formsantonomastic (ˌæntənəˈmæstɪk), adjectiveantonomastically, adverb

Word Origin for antonomasia

C16: via Latin from Greek, from antonomazein to name differently, from onoma name
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for antonomasia

n.

use of an epithet for a proper name (or vice versa; e.g. His Holiness for the name of a pope), 1580s, from Latin, from Greek antonomasia, from antonomazein "to name instead, call by a new name," from anti "instead" (see anti-) + onomazein "to name," from onoma "name" (see name (n.)).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper