solecism

noun so·le·cism \ ˈsä-lə-ˌsi-zəm , ˈsō- \

Definition of solecism

1 : an ungrammatical combination of words in a sentence; also : a minor blunder in speech
2 : something deviating from the proper, normal, or accepted order
3 : a breach of etiquette or decorum

solecistic

play \ˌsä-lə-ˈsi-stik, ˌsō-\ adjective

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Examples of solecism in a Sentence

  1. the solecism of asking one's hosts how much something in their house cost them

Recent Examples of solecism from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'solecism.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Did You Know?

The city of Soloi had a reputation for bad grammar. Located in Cilicia, an ancient coastal nation in Asia Minor, it was populated by Athenian colonists called soloikos (literally "inhabitant of Soloi"). According to historians, the colonists of Soloi allowed their native Athenian Greek to be corrupted and they fell to using words incorrectly. As a result, soloikos gained a new meaning: "speaking incorrectly." The Greeks used that sense as the basis of soloikismos, meaning "an ungrammatical combination of words." That root in turn gave rise to the Latin soloecismus, the direct ancestor of the English word solecism. Nowadays, solecism can refer to social blunders as well as sloppy syntax.

Origin and Etymology of solecism

Latin soloecismus, from Greek soloikismos, from soloikos speaking incorrectly, literally, inhabitant of Soloi, from Soloi, city in ancient Cilicia where a substandard form of Attic was spoken

Other Grammar and Linguistics Terms


SOLECISM Defined for English Language Learners

solecism

noun

Definition of solecism for English Language Learners

  • : a mistake in speech or writing

  • : an impolite or improper way of behaving



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