• We are slowly getting set up here. Why not sign up and get the discussion going?

What is a Paraprosdokian

Welcome to EnglishForum.com!
Are you ready to improve your English? Sign up free today!
Sign up

englishgeek

Member
Sep 23, 2020
63
1
8
Have you ever heard of a paraprosdokian? A paraprosdokian is a figure of speech which is surprising to a reader or listener, where they need to reinterpret the first part of the sentence. It is usually in humor, making it popular with comedians and satirists.

The word comes from Greek and means "against expectation".

What are some good examples of a paraprosdokian?

"I haven't slept for ten days, because that would be too long." Mitch Hedberg

I've had a perfectly wonderful evening, but this wasn't it." - Groucho Marx

Homophones (words that sound the same but have different meanings and spellings) can be used to make a paraprosdokian.

Such as: "Frog parking only. All other others will be toad".

"Do you ever wake up, kiss the person sleeping beside you and feel glad that you are alive? I just did and apparently will not be allowed on this airline again."

"He who laughs last thinks slowest".

"I used to be indecisive, but now I'm not so sure."

If you search Google you will find many examples of funny paraprosdokians. Could you find something funny? Or can't understand it, please share it here.