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circumlocution

[sur-kuhm-loh-kyoo-shuhn]
noun
1.
a roundabout or indirect way of speaking; the use of more words than necessary to express an idea.
2.
a roundabout expression.

Origin:
1375–1425; late Middle English < Latin circumlocūtiōn- (stem of circumlocūtiō). See circum-, locution

circumlocutory [sur-kuhm-lok-yuh-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee] , circumlocutional, circumlocutionary, adjective
uncircumlocutory, adjective


1. rambling, meandering, verbosity, prolixity.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
circumlocution (ˌsɜːkəmləˈkjuːʃən)
 
n
1.  an indirect way of expressing something
2.  an indirect expression
 
circumlocutory
 
adj

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

circumlocution
c.1510, from L. circumlocutionem (a loan-translation of Gk. periphrasis) "speaking around" (the topic), from circum- "around" + locutionem (nom. locutio) "a speaking," from stem of loqui "to speak."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary
circumlocution [(sur-kuhm-loh-kyooh-shuhn)]

Roundabout speech or writing: “The driveway was not unlike that military training device known as an obstacle course” is a circumlocution for “The driveway resembled an obstacle course.” Circumlocution comes from Latin words meaning “speaking around.”

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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