Co-ome thou lost one

Figure of speech. In Aeolus Bloom thinks of a pair of lines from the opera Martha that later, in Sirens, he will hear sung: "Co-ome thou lost one, / Co-ome thou dear one." The division of the vowel reflects the fact that it straddles more than one note in the song, an effect known in musical theory as melisma. But the division also embodies the rhetorical principle of diaeresis, a sub-type of metaplasm in which a syllable is added to the pronunciation of a word.

JH 2023

Musical transcription of melisma in Handel's The Messiah.

Jazz melisma. Source:

The house style of The New Yorker, illustrated in a disapproving tweet.