|This article does not cite any references or sources. (May 2009)|
A parachronism (from the Greek "παρά," "on the side," and "χρόνος," "time") is anything that appears in a temporal context (time period) in which, though not sufficiently out of place as to be impossible, it is not normally found. The item is often an object, but may be an idiomatic expression, a technology, a philosophical idea, a musical style, a material, a custom, or anything else sufficiently closely bound to a particular period as to seem strange when encountered in a later era.
Parachronisms are objects or ideas which were once common, but are now considered rare or inappropriate. They often take the form of obsolete technology or outdated fashion. This is different from a prochronism, in which the object or idea has not yet been invented when the situation takes place, and therefore could not have existed at the time. Thus, examples of parachronisms could include a suburban housewife in the United States around 1960 using a washboard for laundry (after washing machines had become the norm), or a teenager from that time period being an avid fan of ragtime music.