pars pro toto

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Latin[edit]

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Etymology[edit]

From pars (part) + prō (for) + tōtō, ablative singular of tōtus (whole, entire).

Noun[edit]

pars prō tōtō m

  1. A type of metonymy in which an entity (person, object) is referred to by a (conspicuous) part, for the whole, e.g. a country by its capital.
    "Rome (says ...)" can just as well be a pars pro toto for Italy (in practice the Italian government) as a pars pro toto for the Roman Catholic church, notably the papacy as its universal government

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