Parentheses



[puh-ren-thuh-sis] /pəˈrɛn θə sɪs/

noun, plural parentheses
[puh-ren-thuh-seez] /pəˈrɛn θəˌsiz/ (Show IPA)
1.
either or both of a pair of signs () used in writing to mark off an interjected explanatory or qualifying remark, to indicate separate groupings of symbols in mathematics and symbolic logic, etc.
2.
Usually, parentheses. the material contained within these marks.
3.
Grammar. a qualifying, explanatory, or appositive word, phrase, clause, or sentence that interrupts a syntactic construction without otherwise affecting it, having often a characteristic intonation and indicated in writing by commas, parentheses, or dashes, as in William Smith—you must know him—is coming tonight.
4.
an interval.
/pəˈrɛnθɪsɪs/
noun (pl) -ses (-ˌsiːz)
1.
a phrase, often explanatory or qualifying, inserted into a passage with which it is not grammatically connected, and marked off by brackets, dashes, etc
2.
Also called bracket. either of a pair of characters, (), used to enclose such a phrase or as a sign of aggregation in mathematical or logical expressions
3.
an intervening occurrence; interlude; interval
4.
in parenthesis, inserted as a parenthesis
n.

1540s, “words, clauses, etc. inserted into a sentence,” from Middle French parenthèse (15c.), from Late Latin parenthesis “addition of a letter to a syllable in a word,” from Greek parenthesis, literally “a putting in beside,” from parentithenai “put in beside,” from para- “beside” (see para- (1)) + en- “in” + tithenai “put, place,” from PIE root *dhe- “to put, to do” (see factitious). Sense extension by 1715 from the inserted words to the curved brackets that indicate the words inserted.

A wooden parenthesis; the pillory. An iron parenthesis; a prison. [“Dictionary of Buckish Slang, University Wit and Pickpocket Eloquence,” London, 1811]

Punctuation marks — ( ) — used to separate elements in a sentence. Parentheses subordinate (see subordination) the material within them so that readers save most of their attention for the rest of the sentence: “Aunt Sarah (who is really my mother’s cousin) will be visiting next week.”

See left parenthesis, right parenthesis.
(1997-12-03)

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  • Parenthesis

    [puh-ren-thuh-sis] /pəˈrɛn θə sɪs/ noun, plural parentheses [puh-ren-thuh-seez] /pəˈrɛn θəˌsiz/ (Show IPA) 1. either or both of a pair of signs () used in writing to mark off an interjected explanatory or qualifying remark, to indicate separate groupings of symbols in mathematics and symbolic logic, etc. 2. Usually, parentheses. the material contained within these marks. […]

  • Parenthesize

    [puh-ren-thuh-sahyz] /pəˈrɛn θəˌsaɪz/ verb (used with object), parenthesized, parenthesizing. 1. to insert (a word, phrase, etc.) as a . 2. to put between marks of : to parenthesize the pronunciation of a word. 3. to interlard with parenthetic remarks, as a speech. /pəˈrɛnθɪˌsaɪz/ verb (transitive) 1. to place in parentheses 2. to insert as a […]



  • Parenthesized

    [puh-ren-thuh-sahyz] /pəˈrɛn θəˌsaɪz/ verb (used with object), parenthesized, parenthesizing. 1. to insert (a word, phrase, etc.) as a . 2. to put between marks of : to parenthesize the pronunciation of a word. 3. to interlard with parenthetic remarks, as a speech. /pəˈrɛnθɪˌsaɪz/ verb (transitive) 1. to place in parentheses 2. to insert as a […]

  • Parenthetic

    [par-uh n-thet-ik] /ˌpær ənˈθɛt ɪk/ adjective 1. of, pertaining to, noting, or of the nature of a : several unnecessary parenthetic remarks. 2. characterized by the use of .



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