conversa'tional im'plicature

Philos., Ling.
an inference that can be drawn from an utterance, as from one that is seemingly illogical or irrelevant, by examining the degree to which it conforms to the canons of normal conversation and the way it functions pragmatically within the situation, as when “The phone is ringing,” said in a situation where both speaker and listener can clearly hear the phone, can be taken as a suggestion to answer the phone.

Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.


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