Acyrologia (ak-ir-o-lo'-gi-a) is an unintended use of the wrong word often by someone attempting to sound educated or erudite. “O, villain! Thou wilt be condemned into everlasting redemption for this!” Much Ado About Nothing, 4.2.38. Dogberry used “redemption” instead of “damnation.” The modern term for this figure is malapropism. Malapropism is a neologismA new, deliberately invented word. inspired by the name of the character Mrs. Malaprop, in Richard Sheridan's The Rivals, 1775. Her name is an abbreviated portmanteauA neologism created by combining two words. that combines the prefix mal. meaning bad, with appropriate.
Quotes including the Figure of Speech Acyrologia
Let the watch come forth. Masters, I charge you in the
Prince’s name, accuse these men.
This man said, sir, that Don John, the
Prince’s brother, was a villain.
Write down Prince John a villain. Why,
this is flat perjury, to call a prince’s brother villain!