CATACHRESIS, n. An abuse of a trope or of words; a figure in rhetoric, when one word is abusively put for another, or when a word is too far wrested from its true signification; as, a voice beautiful to the ear.

A catachresis is a trope which borrows the name of one thing to express another, or a harsh trope; as when Milton, speaking of Raphaels descent from heaven, says, he sails between worlds and worlds. Here the novelty of the word sails enlivens the image. So in scripture we read of the blood of the grape. Deut. 32.