Webster's New Universal Unabridged Dictionary defines pleonasm as:
A common pleonasm is from whence. Because whence means from where, this phrase means from from where.
I have found pleonasms quite interesting and write them down whenever I encounter them in speech or print. One of my favorites is I was thinking in my own mind ..., all words of which are clearly necessary <sarcasm>, to avoid confusion with I was thinking in your own mind ..., which happens quite frequently. A terser statement would be I was thinking in my mind ..., but this still is unsatisfactory. A better statement would be I was thinking ..., and the speaker would trust that the listener would not suffer confusion about the thought occurring in someone else's mind.
Our modern age of acronyms is quite confusing. Take PIN number, pleonastic because PIN stands for Personal Identification Number. Some of these are included below.
To submit a pleonasm or for other relevant comments, email me. Enjoy !
11.5% APR (although "APR" means that interest is charged on the balance only) ABM missile ABS system AC current ACT test AMOCO Oil Co. APL programming language ATM machine BASIC Code BBS System CAD design CNN news network DC current DMZ zone DOS operating system GMT time Geirangerfjorden (Fjord Fjord Fjord) HIV virus ISBN number ISDN network LCD display LED diode MIDI Interface Mount Fujiyama (Mount Mountain) NATO organization NFS File System PIN number RAM (or ROM) memory Rio Grande River (Big River River) Ruidoso River (Noisy River River) SALT talks or SALT treaty SAT test SCSI Interface SEATO organization START talks or START treaty The La Brea Tar Pits (The The Tar Tar Pits) The Los Altos Hills (The The Hills Hills) VIN number floccinoccinihlipilification (from 4 latin words meaning "nothing") the hoi polloi (the the many) hot water heater