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in poetics, an incorrect turn of speech used as a stylistic element; a figure of speech generally used to create a “low” style. As with other figures of speech, there are different types of solecisms. These are solecism formed by addition (pleonasm), by omission (ellipsis), and by substitution. The last type is divided into morphological solecism, or enallage, as in “of taking a walk there can be no question” or “citizen, don’t let’s,” and syntactical solecism, or anacoluthon, as in “I order that a warning be given that he should calm his madness, and that there is a limit to everything.”
In linguistics, solecism is an incorrect choice of a grammatical form for a syntactic structure. An example is the incorrect colloquial Russian use of skol’ko vremia (“what time is it?”) instead of the correct skol’ko vremeni. Here the nominative form of vremia (“time”) is incorrectly used after skol’ko (“how much”) instead of the grammatically correct genitive (vremeni). Another example is the French Quoiqu’il est tard (incorrect use of indicative for subjunctive) instead of the correct Quoiqu’il soit tard.
Solecisms may result from the influence of dialectical speech. They may also be caused by violation of the rules for agreement of parts of a sentence. An example of this is “Anyone who needs care in a sanatorium, it is necessary to provide it” instead of “. . . will be provided with it.” Solecisms may also result from violation of the rules for agreement of main and subordinate clauses, as in “I am ashamed, as an honorable officer” (A. S. Griboedov).