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prolepsis

[proh-lep-sis] /proʊˈlɛp sɪs/
noun, plural prolepses
[proh-lep-seez] /proʊˈlɛp siz/ (Show IPA)
1.
Rhetoric. the anticipation of possible objections in order to answer them in advance.
2.
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.
3.
the use of a descriptive word in anticipation of its becoming applicable.
4.
a fundamental conception or assumption in Epicureanism or Stoicism arising spontaneously in the mind without conscious reflection; thought provoked by sense perception.
5.
Pathology. the return of an attack of a periodic disease or of a paroxysm before the expected time or at progressively shorter intervals.
Origin
1570-1580
1570-80; < Late Latin prolēpsis < Greek prólēpsis anticipation, preconception, equivalent to prolēp- (verbid stem of prolambánein to anticipate (pro- pro-2 + lambánein to take)) + -sis -sis
Related forms
proleptic
[proh-lep-tik] /proʊˈlɛp tɪk/ (Show IPA),
proleptical, adjective
proleptically, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for prolepsis

prolepsis

/prəʊˈlɛpsɪs/
noun (pl) -ses (-siːz)
1.
a rhetorical device by which objections are anticipated and answered in advance
2.
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
Derived Forms
proleptic, adjective
Word Origin
C16: via Late Latin from Greek: anticipation, from prolambanein to anticipate, from pro-² + lambanein to take
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for prolepsis
n.

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.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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prolepsis in Medicine

prolepsis pro·lep·sis (prō-lěp'sĭs)
n. pro·lep·ses (-sēz)
The return of paroxysms of a recurrent disease at intervals that progressively become shorter.


pro·lep'tic (-lěp'tĭk) adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Encyclopedia Article for prolepsis

a figure of speech in which a future act or development is represented as if already accomplished or existing. The following lines from John Keats's "Isabella" (1820), for example, proleptically anticipate the assassination of a living character:So the two brothers and their murdered manRode past fair

Learn more about prolepsis with a free trial on Britannica.com
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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