- circumlocutory; roundabout.
- Grammar. noting a construction of two or more words having the same syntactic function as an inflected word, as of Mr. Smith in the son of Mr. Smith, which is equivalent to Mr. Smith's in Mr. Smith's son.
Origin of periphrastic
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for periphrastic
He might be described as the last of the periphrastic humorists.Old and New Masters
The periphrastic tenses are formed on the same principles as in Mth.
Periphrastic epithets are part of the original and common stock of the Teutonic poetry.Epic and Romance
W. P. Ker
Using these as auxiliaries the finite verb makes a whole series of periphrastic tenses.
In conversation they generally use a periphrastic epithet, such as the All-Good.The Coming Race
Edward Bulwer Lytton
- employing or involving periphrasis
- expressed in two or more words rather than by an inflected form of one: used esp of a tense of a verb where the alternative element is an auxiliary verb. For example, He does go and He will go involve periphrastic tenses
Word Origin and History for periphrastic
1805, from French périphrastique and directly from Greek periphrastikos, from periphrazein (see periphrasis). Related: Periphrastical (1630s).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper