- Rhetoric. the anticipation of possible objections in order to answer them in advance.
- the assigning of a person, event, etc., to a period earlier than the actual one; the representation of something in the future as if it already existed or had occurred; prochronism.
- the use of a descriptive word in anticipation of its becoming applicable.
- a fundamental conception or assumption in Epicureanism or Stoicism arising spontaneously in the mind without conscious reflection; thought provoked by sense perception.
- Pathology. the return of an attack of a periodic disease or of a paroxysm before the expected time or at progressively shorter intervals.
Origin of prolepsis
Examples from the Web for proleptic
"Hopeless is here used in a proleptic or anticipatory way" (Hales).
The italics are ours, but the proleptic idea is a happy invention of the author himself.
Is Mr. Rossetti acquainted with the proleptic use of adjectives and participles?Ephemera Critica
John Churton Collins
The adjective is redundant and "proleptic," as the bird must be "enthralled" before it can be called "captive."
Proleptic: 'The flame-tips would become bright and furnish a good omen for your prayer'.
- a rhetorical device by which objections are anticipated and answered in advance
- use of a word after a verb in anticipation of its becoming applicable through the action of the verb, as flat in hammer it flat
Word Origin and History for proleptic
1570s, "the taking of something anticipated as already done or existing," from Latin prolepsis, from Greek prolepsis "an anticipating," literally "a taking beforehand," from prolambanein "to take before," from pro- "before" (see pro-) + lambanein "to take" (see analemma). Related: Proleptic; proleptical; proleptically.
- The return of paroxysms of a recurrent disease at intervals that progressively become shorter.