Medical Definition of Pleonasm

  • Medical Author:
    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.

Pleonasm: An excess in the number of parts or in the size of a growth. Pleonasm comes from a Greek word (pleonasmos) meaning exaggeration or redundancy.

A pleonasm in language is also a redundancy. It is the use of more words than those necessary to denote mere sense as, for example, in "a false lie."

Reviewed on 9/7/2018

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