A Greek term that derived in Latin pleonasmus it is the farthest etymological antecedent of the word pleonasm , which is used in our language to name a class of Figure of speech . This consists in the use of terms that reinforce what was said in an expression but that do not add valuable information since, without them, the phrase would be understood equally.
In others words , pleonasm implies adding certain concepts to an expression that are not essential for it to be understood, but which can contribute to emphasize what has been expressed. For example: "Get out immediately!", “When I'm sad, I climb up and lock myself in the attic”, "The manager is nothing but a mute who does not speak".
Although useful for expressiveness, pleonasm can also be considered as a defect or lack of language . The redundancy It implies a repetition of content from the aggregate of data that is not necessary, so they should be omitted.
Returning to the previous examples, when the verb is used "leave" it is not necessary to clarify that the end of the journey is "outside"since it is impossible "Go inside". In sense similar, it must be said that you cannot "rise" down. On the other hand, detail that a "Mute" is unable to "talk" It is also redundant.
The expression "I saw with my own eyes how the criminal shot the victim" it's a pleonasm (you can't "see" with the eyes of another person ), although redundancy can be accepted as a way of highlighting that the individual was a direct witness to the fact in question. The phrase “We need a fair Justice”On the other hand, it also constitutes a habitual pleonasm: although logic indicates that Justice is "Fair", he Power of attorney It is not always.
In this way, it is easy to distinguish between the pleonasm that takes place as a result of a misuse of the language and that which is intentionally elaborated with the desire to highlight a idea . In the hands of a skilled writer, this figure of rhetoric can beautify a work, underline certain concepts before leaving them and change the subject, squeeze out the meaning of a word to the fullest; In everyday speech, when it constitutes a mistake, it does nothing but dirty the tongue and impoverish the communication.
It should be noted that, although there are certain pleonasms that we can easily notice in language popular and that are usually a matter of mockery (as with those already mentioned "to go outside" and "go up"), it is difficult to declare yourself innocent of the incorrect use of this figure; Let's look at some expressions that combine concepts unnecessarily and that most Spanish-speaking people often use in oral communication: "come here"; "Shut your mouth"; "future plans"; "fly through the air"; "appointment".
As you can see, it is not about buildings of incorrect aspect or little cult; However, once analyzed, all of them are redundant. This does not mean that we should stop using them, since language is not an equation with only one result; On the contrary, it is flexible and adapts to the needs of its speakers, and in its contradictions its most captivating aspect often resides.
He oxymoron It is the literary figure that complements pleonasm, since it is based on the use of two concepts that oppose meaning to construct an expression that gives rise to a new concept. At first glance, an oxymoron presents an absurd idea that must be interpreted in an unclear way, as a metaphor. Let's see some examples: "dress me slowly I'm in a hurry", "dreadful pleasures and horrendous sweetnesses", "love is blind sight", "eternal moment".