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Figaro rips the innards out of things people say and reveals the rhetorical tricks and pratfalls. For terms and definitions, click here.
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    Brand, Insult, and Use Endorsements

    Nicknames and insults, sales pitches, and figures of character.

     These are the figures of Ethos, argument by character. You’ll also find figures of Pathos (argument by emotion) and Logos (argument by logic).

    ad hominem
    The character attack.

    ampliatio (am-plee-OT-ee-oh)
    The worn-out label.

    anamnesis (ah-nam-NEE-sis)
    The memory figure. It quotes an authority from the past.

    anthropopatheia (AN-thro-po-pa-THEE-a)
    The God is my co-pilot figure.

    antirrhesis (an-ter-REE-sis)
    The “Oh, yeah?” argument.

    antonomasia (an-to-no-MAY-sia)
    The descriptive nickname.

    apodixis (a-po-DIX-is)
    The everybody-knows-it-or-does-it figure.

    apomnemonysis (a-pom-nem-o-NIE-sis)
    The figure that quotes an authority.

    bomphiologia (bom-phi-o-LO-gia)
    The chest-beating figure.

    cacemphaton (cak-EM-pha-ton)
    Foul language.

    charientismus (chah-ren-TIS-muss)
    The figure of graceful mockery.

    Bringing up an opponent’s past sins to make him look like a shmuck.

    dialogismus (die-ah-log-IS mus)
    The one-person conversation.

    diaphora (die-AH-for-ah)
    Repetition that describes a character.

    effictio (ef-FIK-tio)
    The body figure.

    The figure of praise.

    ennoia (en-NOY-a)
    The figure of faint praise.

    Argument by character. It’s one of the three kinds of argument; the other two are pathos (argument by emotion) and logos (argument by logic).

    eucharistia (eu-ka-RIS-tia)
    The thanksgiving figure.

    indignatio (in-dig-NOT-io)
    The figure of scorn. Like a cohortatio, it makes the foe look like a jerk.

    The technique of planting negative ideas in the audience’s head.

    jeremiad (jer-e MI-ad)
    Prophecy of doom; also called cataplexis.

    martyria (mar-TEER-ia)
    A figure that recalls the speaker’s own experience.

    meiosis (mie-OH-sis)
    The shrinking figure.
    Also see this. And this.

    mempsis (MEMP-sis)
    The figure of reproach.

    mycterismus (mik-terr-IS-muss)
    The sneer.

    paradiastole (pa-rah-die-ASS-toh-lee)
    The label flip.

    pareuresis (pa-ROOR-eh-sis)
    The overwhelming excuse.
    Also see this.

    periphrasis (per-IF-ra-sis)
    The figure that swaps a descriptive phrase for a proper name, or vice versa.
    Also see this.

    prosopopoeia (pro-so-po-PEE-uh)
    The figure of personification.
    Also see this.

    reductio ad absurdum
    Taking an opponent’s argument to its illogical conclusion.

    tapinosis (tap-in-OH-is)
    The belittling nickname.
    Also see this.