a sentence that, by leaving the completion of its main clause to the end, produces an effect of suspense, as in Unable to join the others at the dance because of my sprained ankle, I went to a movie.
Compare loose sentence.
Origin of periodic sentence
First recorded in 1895–1900
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
rhetoric a sentence in which the completion of the main clause is left to the end, thus creating an effect of suspense
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