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Glossary of literary terms

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❶A pseudo-archaic form of diction affected by some writers, particularly those of historical fiction. A work that is characterized by extravagant theatricality and by the predominance of plot and physical action over characterization.

Literary Devices and Terms

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It's grammatically unrelated to the rest of the sentence. They are usually followed by an exclamation point. Refers to the way in which different works of literature interact with and relate to one another to construct meaning.

In Japanese poetry, a seasonal word or phrase required in haiku and renku. In Japanese poetry, a "cutting word" required in haiku and hokku. Art for art's sake. Level stress even accent. A short poem with a song-like quality, or designed to be set to music; often conveying feelings, emotions, or personal thoughts.

A work that is characterized by extravagant theatricality and by the predominance of plot and physical action over characterization. A multi-lined strophic verse form which flourished in Islamic Spain in the 11th century, written in Arabic or Hebrew.

Narrative point of view. A theory or practice in literature emphasizing scientific observation of life without idealization and often including elements of determinism. The creation of new words, some arising from acronyms, word combinations, direct translations, and the addition of prefixes or suffixes.

A genre of fiction that relies on narrative and possesses a considerable length, an expected complexity, and a sequential organization of action into story and plot distinctively.

This genre is flexible in form, although prose is the standard, focuses around one or more characters, and is continuously reshaped and reformed by a speaker. A lyrical poem, sometimes sung, that focuses on the glorification of a single subject and its meaning.

Often has an irregular stanza structure. An ottava rima was often used for long narratives, especially epics and mock heroic poems. Combining of various syntactic units, usually prepositions, without the use of conjunctions to form short and simple phrases.

A sequence of two or more words, forming a unit. A verb tense that describes actions just finished or continuing from the past into the present.

This can also imply that past actions have present effects. An interjected scene that takes the narrative forward in time from the current point of the story in literature, film, television and other media. A genre of Japanese collaborative poetry. In Japanese poetry , a form of popular collaborative linked verse formerly known as haikai no renga , or haikai. A form of collaborative poetry pioneered by Makoto Ooka in Japan in the s.

A measured pattern of words and phrases arranged by sound, time, or events. These patterns are [created] in verse or prose by use of stressed and unstressed syllables. A 14 line poem written in iambic pentameter. There are two types of sonnets: Group of lines offset by a space and then continuing with the next group of lines with a set pattern or number of lines. Adjective describing poetry with lines of the same meter and length throughout, but not organized into regular stanzas. Stream of consciousness writing.

A term where an entire idea is expressed by something smaller, such as a phrase or a single word; one part of the idea expresses the whole. This concept can also be reversed. The study of how words are arranged in a sentence.

In Japanese poetry, a tanka where the upper part is composed by one poet, and the lower part by another. A telestich is a poem or other form of writing in which the last letter, syllable or word of each line, paragraph or other recurring feature in the text spells out a word or a message. Theater of the Absurd. In Occitan lyric poetry , a final, shorter stanza cobla , addressed to a patron, lady, or friend. Varronian satire Menippean satire.

Repetition of the same word or phrase at the beginning of a line throughout a work or the section of a work. Speaker in a poem addresses a person not present or an animal, inanimate object, or concept as though it is a person.

The repetition of identical vowel sounds in different words in close proximity. Ballads may use refrains. A short but definite pause used for effect within a line of poetry. Chiasmus is a "crossing" or reversal of two elements; antimetabole, a form of chiasmus, is the reversal of the same words in a grammatical structure. Ask not what your country can do for you; ask wyat you can do for your country. You have seen how a man was made a slave; you shall see how a slave was made a man.

Common meter or hymn measure Emily Dickinson: Consonance is the counterpart of assonance; the partial or total identity of consonants in words whose main vowels differ. Owen uses this "impure rhyme" to convey the anguish of war and death.

Couplets end the pattern of a Shakespearean sonnet. Diction is usually used to describe the level of formality that a speaker uses. A type of poem, derived from the theater, in which a speaker addresses an internal listener or the reader. In some dramatic monologues, especially those by Robert Browning, the speaker may reveal his personality in unexpected and unflattering ways. A line ending in a full pause, usually indicated with a period or semicolon.

A line having no end punctuation but running over to the next line. A complete and detailed analysis of a work of literature, often word-by-word and line-by-line. A measured combination of heavy and light stresses.

The numbers of feet are given below. Hymn meter or common measure: Anastrophe is a form of literary device wherein the order of the noun and the adjective in the sentence is exchanged.

In standard parlance and writing the adjective comes before the noun but when one is employing an anastrophe the noun is followed by the adjective. This reversed order creates a dramatic impact and lends weight to the description offered by the adjective.

He spoke of times past and future, and dreamt of things to be. The word anecdote, phonetically pronounced an. The story is usually a reminiscence from the teller's life but at best is a related story of fact, as opposed to a contrived work of fiction. The origin of the word anecdote comes from the Greek Byzantine period, A. In his court, Justinian had a historian named Procopius who was a gifted writer who wrote many witty, amusing and somewhat bawdy accounts of court life.

After his secret writings did indeed become public and published, the term anecdote became commonly used for similar accounts. Here is an example of an anecdote about Winston Churchill: Anthropomorphism can be understood to be the act of lending a human quality, emotion or ambition to a non-human object or being. This act of lending a human element to a non-human subject is often employed in order to endear the latter to the readers or audience and increase the level of relativity between the two while also lending character to the subject.

An antithesis is used when the writer employs two sentences of contrasting meanings in close proximity to one another. Whether they are words or phrases of the same sentence, an antithesis is used to create a stark contrast using two divergent elements that come together to create one uniform whole. An antithesis plays on the complementary property of opposites to create one vivid picture. The purpose of using an antithesis in literature is to create a balance between opposite qualities and lend a greater insight into the subject.

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Literary Devices and Terms Literary Devices refers to the typical structures used by writers in their works to convey his or her messages in a simple manner to the readers. When employed properly, the different literary devices help readers to appreciate, interpret and analyze a literary work.

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Welcome to the website dedicated to literary devices (literary terms). Here you will find a list literary devices (literary terms) with definitions and examples. Here you will find a list literary devices (literary terms) with definitions and examples.

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study the following poetic devices. learn the definitions and click on the terms to see examples and get a more detailed explanation. when finished, try one of the quizzes that can be found at the bottom of the page. alliteration - is the repetition of initial consonant sounds. Literary Terms for High School Students. December 13, By place, event, or thing that is known from literature, history, religion, myth, politics, sports, science, or pop culture. anachronism. something located at a time when it could not have existed a literary work based on the imagination. figure of speech. language used in a.

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Reading and Literature – A Glossary of Literary Terms 2 Style: The distinctive way that a writer uses language including such factors as word choice, sentence length, arrangement, and complexity, and the use of figurative language and imagery. Suspense: A feeling of excitement, curiosity, or expectation about what will happen. Rhyme: The similarity or likeness of sound existing between two words. Example: “sat” and “cat” are perfect rhymes because the vowel and final consonant sounds are exactly the same.