catachresis

[ kat-uh-kree-sis ]
/ ˌkæt əˈkri sɪs /

noun

misuse or strained use of words, as in a mixed metaphor, occurring either in error or for rhetorical effect.

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Origin of catachresis

First recorded in 1580–90; from Latin catachrēsis, from Greek katáchrēsis “a misuse or misapplication of a word or phrase” (derivative of katachrêsthai “to misuse”), equivalent to kata- verb prefix implying waste or consumption + chrêsis “use” (noun derivative of chrê(sthai) “to use, need”) + -sis verbal abstract noun suffix. See cata-, -sis

OTHER WORDS FROM catachresis

cat·a·chres·tic [kat-uh-kres-tik], /ˌkæt əˈkrɛs tɪk/, cat·a·chres·ti·cal, adjectivecat·a·chres·ti·cal·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for catachresis

British Dictionary definitions for catachresis

catachresis
/ (ˌkætəˈkriːsɪs) /

noun

the incorrect use of words, as luxuriant for luxurious

Derived forms of catachresis

catachrestic (ˌkætəˈkrɛstɪk) or catachrestical, adjectivecatachrestically, adverb

Word Origin for catachresis

C16: from Latin, from Greek katakhrēsis a misusing, from katakhrēsthai, from khrēsthai to use
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