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(148 words)

[German version]

is the concealing description of a thing that can have disastrous effects if directly named or that can give offence. The word euphemism as a substantive belongs to εὐφημίζω, εὐφημέω (euphēmı́zō, euphēméō) ‘to pronounce words with a good portent’ (technical term since the Alexandrian grammarians).

Fear (esp. in the case of religious or superstitious euphemism) and shame are psychological factors in euphemism. Forms of euphemism: stand-in words (words that generalize as in e.g. membrum, words that suggest or paraphrase; also metaphors or foreign words),…

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Flury, Peter (Munich), “Euphemism”, in: Brill’s New Pauly, Antiquity volumes edited by: Hubert Cancik and , Helmuth Schneider, English Edition by: Christine F. Salazar, Classical Tradition volumes edited by: Manfred Landfester, English Edition by: Francis G. Gentry. Consulted online on 27 June 2019 <>
First published online: 2006
First print edition: 9789004122598, 20110510

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