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Alternative forms[edit]


From Ancient Greek ἀναφορά (anaphorá, a carrying back), from ἀνά (aná, up) + φέρω (phérō, I carry).


  • IPA(key): /ænəˈfɔɹə/, /ənˈæfəɹə/
    • (file)


anaphora (countable and uncountable, plural anaphoras or anaphors or anaphora)

Examples (rhetoric)
  • “Mad world! Mad kings! Mad composition!”
    Shakespeare, King John (II i.)
Examples (expression referring to a preceding expression)
  • That's John's car. He [referring to "John"] won't want to see you sitting on it [referring to the car].
  • John had a drink. So did [referring to "had a drink"] Mark.
  • John had been feeling rather dehydrated. Mark was even more so [referring to "dehydrated"].
  1. (rhetoric) The repetition of a phrase at the beginning of phrases, sentences, or verses, used for emphasis.
    • [1835, L[arret] Langley, A Manual of the Figures of Rhetoric, [], Doncaster: Printed by C. White, Baxter-Gate, OCLC 1062248511, page 73:
      Anaphora elegantly begins
      With the same word or phrase successive lines.
    Antonyms: epiphora, epistrophe
  2. (linguistics) An expression that can refer to virtually any referent, the specific referent being defined by context.
  3. (linguistics) An expression that refers to a preceding expression.
    Hypernym: endophora
    Coordinate terms: cataphora, exophora, homophora
  4. (Christianity) The most solemn part of the Divine Liturgy or the Mass during which the offerings of bread and wine are consecrated as body and blood of Christ

Derived terms[edit]

Usage notes[edit]

  • In linguistics, the terms anaphor and anaphora are sometimes used interchangeably, although in some theories, a distinction is made between them. See the Wikipedia article.


See also[edit]



  1. plural of anaphor

Further reading[edit]