Definition of prolepsis in English:

prolepsis

noun

mass nounRhetoric
  • 1The anticipation and answering of possible objections in rhetorical speech.

    • ‘Drexler's book Engines of Creation is an extraordinary exercise in prolepsis: he meticulously refutes every technical objection he can anticipate.’
    • ‘For Gilio, prolepsis was a ‘figure,’ a rhetorical device employed to augment the beauty of the work.’
    expectation, prediction, forecast
    View synonyms
  • 2The representation of a thing as existing before it actually does or did so, as in he was a dead man when he entered.

    ‘the destruction of the Vendôme Column and his part in it are foreshadowed in moments of haunting prolepsis’
    Compare with analepsis

Origin

Late Middle English (as a term in rhetoric): via late Latin from Greek prolēpsis, from prolambanein ‘anticipate’, from pro ‘before’ + lambanein ‘take’.

Pronunciation

prolepsis

/prəʊˈlɛpsɪs//prəʊˈliːpsɪs/