anticlimax

All Sources -
Updated Media sources (1) About encyclopedia.com content Print Topic Share Topic
views updated

an·ti·cli·max / ˌantēˈklīˌmaks; ˌantī-/ • n. a disappointing end to an exciting or impressive series of events. DERIVATIVES: an·ti·cli·mac·tic / -klīˈmaktik/ adj. an·ti·cli·mac·ti·cal·ly / -klīˈmaktik(ə)lē/ adv.

views updated

ANTICLIMAX.
1. In RHETORIC, a descent from the elevated and important to the low and trivial: ‘Here thou, Great Anna! whom three realms obey, / Dost sometimes counsel take—and sometimes Tea’ (Pope, The Rape of the Lock, 1712).

2. In drama, the lowered state after a CLIMAX; in life, an outcome that fails to live up to expectation. See BATHOS, FIGURE OF SPEECH.