echolalia

The repetition of other people's words or sounds is echolalia. When the toddler you babysit repeats everything you say, over and over again, you can call it "annoying," or you can call it echolalia.

Echolalia is a psychiatric term that's used to describe what some people with mental disorders or autism tend to do, automatically repeat what they hear other people say. There's no meaning intended in echolalia — it's simply a mechanical echoing of sounds. Babies do this too, when they're learning to speak. The word echolalia combines the Greek word for "resound, or echo," with lalia, or "speech."

Definitions of echolalia
1

n (psychiatry) mechanical and meaningless repetition of the words of another person (as in schizophrenia)

Type of:
repeating, repetition
the act of doing or performing again

n an infant's repetition of sounds uttered by others

Type of:
echo
a reply that repeats what has just been said

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