Nov 1, 2005

Zeugma: n. zoog`-muh.

A construction in which a word, usually the main verb, governs two or more nouns when its sense is appropriate to only one of them or to both in different ways; in which there is a disparity in the way that the parallel members relate to the governing word.

Example: The two senses of the word "common" in Oscar Wilde's sentence, Oh, flowers are as common here as people are in London, or of the word "grew" in I grew alfalfa and bored.