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Trying to find out what double words in a sentence are called. I know there's got to be a word for it. There is for everything!


  • I had had a good day, until you arrived.
  • We know better now that that is complete bullshit.
  • I gave her her hat back.
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closed as too localized by Daniel, Jasper Loy, FumbleFingers, tchrist, Robusto Jul 12 '12 at 0:11

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The closest word I can think of is polyptoton, but I know that's not quite right here. If it just occurs naturally in language, there may not be a word for it. – Cameron Jul 12 '12 at 0:04
Tut tut! I don't think this question will survive long! – FumbleFingers Jul 12 '12 at 0:07
Looks like this question is going away soon, but I found another word from rhetoric that could fit, depending on the construction: Anadiplosis. – Cameron Jul 12 '12 at 0:12
@Cameron That looks like a word to describe the messy disaster that occurs when a giant anaconda tries to swallow a diplodocus. :) – tchrist Jul 12 '12 at 0:16

I'm afraid it's not the case that every possible concept has a single accepted representative term in the English language. Double words as you described them is as appropriate as anything else we could cook up.

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There is no special phrase for double words, in a grammatical sense, although there are a few poetical terms you could use. Perhaps you are thinking of Alliteration?

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