Sunday 16 December 2018


The above term, from the Ancient Greek πλεονάζω for I am superfluous, can be used to describe the phenomena of unnecessary repetition, like referring to one’s PIN number, saving something in PDF format, or making a visit to the ATM machine (this particular foible is called the RAS syndrome, RAS itself an initialism for “redundant acronym syndrome”).
Pleonasm also occurs especially when it comes to invoking topology or a group that’s customarily named in a different language—such as blaming the incident on the al Qaeda, visiting the Milky Way Galaxy, being extracted from the La Brea Tar Pits, or surveying Table Mesa or the Rock of Gibraltar.