, literary criticism, and PHILOLOGY
, a style that reflects the usage of an earlier period (literary archaism
) and an out-of-date or old-fashioned word or phrase (a lexical archaism
). Literary archaism
occurs when a style is modelled on older works, so as to revive earlier practices or achieve a desired effect. Lexical archaisms
are a common feature of such a style and of such registers as religion and law. Archaism is often a consequence of purism and may rest on the belief that language and life in days of yore were plainer, more democratic, and more natural. Such archaisms as ere
I pray you, are often used for effect, especially in the dialogue of historical novels: ‘Dear father, prithee add thyself to that venerable company ere the soup cools’ ( Margaret in Charles Reade's The Cloister and the Hearth
/ ˈärkēˌizəm; ˈärkā-/
a thing that is very old or old-fashioned.
an archaic word or style of language or art.
the use or conscious imitation of very old or old-fashioned styles or features in language or art.
/ ˌärkēˈistik; ˌärkā-/ adj.