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Metonymy Definition

The substitution of one word for another with which it is associated.


Metonymy Poem Example

"The Crown" for the British monarchy.
"The press" for the news media.
"A dish" for an entrée.
"The Pentagon", a building, to refer to the organization that occupies it, the U.S. Department of Defense.
"The White House" for the President of the United States and his administration, by the same token as above.


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Other Metonymy Definition

[n] substituting the name of an attribute or feature for the name of the thing itself (as in `they counted heads')

Misc. Definitions

\Me*ton"y*my\ (?; 277), n. [L. metonymia, Gr. ?; ?, indicating change + ?, for ? a name: cf. F. m['e]tonymie. See {Name}.] (Rhet.) A trope in which one word is put for another that suggests it; as, we say, a man keeps a good table instead of good provisions; we read Virgil, that is, his poems; a man has a warm heart, that is, warm affections.

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