1. Parenthesis is a term denoting an aside or extra remark that is added to a sentence; it is normally marked off by brackets, commas, or dashes, and the rest of the sentence is grammatically complete without it. Parentheses can be single words, phrases, or whole clauses:

• In Italian, a language he had been told was the same as Rumanian, he asked to be directed to the British Legation —Olivia Manning, 1960

• He and Moira (then a milkman's pretty daughter) grovelled together long and effectively enough to cause the eventual birth of their son Rick —Tim Winton, Shallows, 1985

• On Thursday I come back from work to an empty house —Kate is spending the night at a girlfriend's house again —and the stillness and solitude calm me down —Angela Lambert, 1989

• Once, I told one of the men to do something, and he —my father, that is —asked me what it would be like if I couldn't order men around any more —D. Leon, 2006.

2. Parentheses (plural) are, in printing terminology, round brackets. See brackets.

Modern English usage. 2014.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Parenthesis — Pa*ren the*sis (p[.a]*r[e^]n th[ e]*s[i^]s), n.; pl. {Parentheses}. [NL., fr. Gr. pare nqesis, fr. parentiqe nai to put in beside, insert; para beside + en in + tiqe nai to put, place. See {Para }, {En }, 2, and {Thesis}.] [1913 Webster] 1. A… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Parenthesis — may be:*Parenthesis, either of the curved bracket ( ) punctuation marks that together make a set of parentheses *Parenthesis (rhetoric), an explanatory or qualifying word, clause, or sentence …   Wikipedia

  • parenthesis — (n.) 1540s, words, clauses, etc. inserted into a sentence, from M.Fr. parenthèse, from L.L. parenthesis addition of a letter to a syllable in a word, from Gk. parenthesis, lit. a putting in beside, from parentithenai put in beside, from para… …   Etymology dictionary

  • Parenthesis — Parenthesis, griech., Parenthese, Schaltsatz, eingeschobener Satz, der keinen Bestandtheil des Hauptsatzes bildet, gewöhnlich durch die ebenfalls P. genannten Zeichen () od. [] od. – – eingeklammert wird; in der Algebra gehören die mit dem… …   Herders Conversations-Lexikon

  • parenthesis — index insertion Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • parenthesis — ► NOUN (pl. parentheses) 1) a word or phrase inserted as an explanation or afterthought, in writing usually marked off by brackets, dashes, or commas. 2) (parentheses) a pair of round brackets () used to include such a word or phrase. ORIGIN… …   English terms dictionary

  • parenthesis — [pə ren′thə sis] n. pl. parentheses [pə ren′thəsēz΄] [LL < Gr < parentithenai, to put beside < para , beside (see PARA 1) + entithenai, to insert < en , in + tithenai, to put, place: see DO1] 1. an additional word, clause, etc. placed …   English World dictionary

  • parenthesis — noun 1 parentheses (esp. AmE) marks around extra information in writing ⇨ See also ↑bracket VERB + PARENTHESES ▪ enclose sth in parentheses, give sth in parentheses, put sth in parentheses ▪ The prices are given in parentheses. PREPOS …   Collocations dictionary

  • parenthesis — pa|ren|the|sis [pəˈrenθısıs] n plural parentheses [ si:z] [C usually plural] [Date: 1500 1600; : Late Latin; Origin: Greek, from parentithenai to put in ] 1.) a round ↑bracket in parentheses ▪ The figures in parentheses refer to page numbers …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • parenthesis — [[t]pəre̱nθəsiːz[/t]] parentheses 1) N COUNT: usu pl Parentheses are a pair of curved marks that you put around words or numbers to indicate that they are additional, separate, or less important. (This sentence is in parentheses.) Syn: bracket 2) …   English dictionary

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