The Corner

Re: Incredibly Nixonian

Rich: That is the rhetorical figure known as “praeteritio.” Arthur Quinn,

in his 1982 book Figures of Speech, has this to say:

“If I were to declare any figure inherently disreputable (which, of course,

I will not), this would be the one. Neither will I mention that the only

American president who repeatedly used the praeteritio was also the only one

who had to resign. I will not mention it, despite its obvious relevance to

our present discussion, because anything that might be interpreted as a

political statement would be entirely inappropriate in a book like this.”

Recommended

The Latest