the repetition of identical or similar consonant sounds, normally at the
beginnings of words. "Gnus never know pneumonia"
a reference in a work of literature to something outside the work, especially to a well-known historical or literary event, person, or work.
a figure of speech characterized by strongly contrasting words, clauses, sentences, or ideas, as in "Man proposes; God disposes."
a figure of speech in which someone (usually, but not always absent), some abstract quality, or a nonexistent personage is directly addressed as though present.
the repetition of identical or similar vowel sounds. "A land laid waste with all its young men slain" repeats the same "a" sound in "laid," "waste," and "slain."
a four-line stanza rhymed abcd with four feet in lines one and three and three feet in lines two and four.
unrhymed iambic pentameter.
a harsh, unpleasant combination of sounds or tones. It may be an unconscious flaw in the poet's music, resulting in harshness of sound or difficulty of articulation, or it may be used consciously for effect, as Browning and Eliot often use it.
a pause, usually near the middle of a line of verse, usually indicated by the sense of the line, and often greater than the normal pause.
an ingenious and fanciful notion or conception, usually expressed through an elaborate analogy, and pointing to a striking parallel between two seemingly dissimilar things. Brief metaphor
the repetition of similar consonant sounds in a group of words. The term usually refers to words in which the ending consonants are the same but the vowels that precede them are different.
a two-line stanza, usually with end-rhymes the same
devices of sound
the techniques of deploying the sound of words, especially in poetry. Among devices of sound are rhyme, alliteration, assonance, consonance, and onomatopoeia. The devices are used for many reasons, including creating a general effect of pleasant or of discordant sound, to imitate another sound, or to reflect a meaning.
the use of words in a literary work. may be described as formal (the level of usage common in serious books and formal discourse), informal (the level of usage found in the relaxed but polite conversation of cultivated people), colloquial (the everyday usage of a group, possibly including terms and constructions accepted in that group but not universally acceptable), or slang (a group of newly coined words which are not acceptable for formal usage as yet).
poem which is intended primarily to teach a lesson.
a poem which employs a dramatic form or some element or elements of dramatic techniques as a means of achieving poetic ends.
- a sustained and formal poem setting forth the poet's meditations upon death or another solemn theme
a line with a pause at the end. Lines that end with a period, a comma, a colon, a semicolon, an exclamation point, or a question mark are end-stopped lines.
the continuation of the sense and grammatical construction from one line of poetry to the next.
an implied analogy, or comparison, which is carried throughout a stanza or an entire poem.
a style in which combinations of words pleasant to the ear predominate.
rhyme that appears correct from spelling, but is half-rhyme or slant rhyme from the pronunciation.
a rhyme of two syllables, one stressed and one unstressed, as "waken" and "forsaken" and "audition" and "rendition." Double rhyme
writing that uses figures of speech (as opposed to literal language or that which is actual or specifically denoted) such as metaphor, irony, and simile.
poetry which is not written in a traditional meter but is still rhythmical.
two end-stopped iambic pentameter lines rhymed aa, bb, cc with the thought usually completed in the two-line unit.
a deliberate, extravagant, and often outrageous exaggeration. It may be used for either serious or comic effect.
the images of a literary work; the sensory details of a work; the figurative language of a work.
the contrast between actual meaning and the suggestion of another meaning
that occurs within a line, rather than at the end.
any short poem that presents a single speaker who expresses thoughts and feelings.
rhyme that falls on the stressed and concluding syllables of the rhyme-words.
a figurative use of language in which a comparison is expressed without the use of a comparative term like "as," "like," or "than."
the repetition of a regular rhythmic unit in a line of poetry
- a figure of speech which is characterized by the substitution of a term naming an object closely associated with the word in mind for the word itself.
the mingling of one metaphor with another immediately following with which the first is incongruous.
a non-dramatic poem which tells a story or presents a narrative, whether simple or complex, long or short.
an eight-line stanza.
the use of words whose sound suggests their meaning. Examples are "buzz," "hiss," or "honk."
- a form of paradox that combines a pair of contrary terms into a single expression. This combination usually serves the purpose of shocking the reader into awareness.
a situation or action or feeling that appears to be contradictory but on inspection turns out to be true or at least to make sense.
similar grammatical structure within a line or lines of poetis characteristic of Asian poetry, being notably present in the Psalms, and it seems to be the controlling principle of the poetry of Walt Whitman, as in the following lines:
a restatement of ideas in such a way as to retain the meaning while changing the diction and form.
a kind of metaphor that gives inanimate objects or abstract ideas human characteristics.
a group of syllables in verse usually consisting of one accented syllable and one or two unaccented syllables associated with it.
a play on words that are identical or similar in sound but have sharply diverse meanings.
a four-line stanza with any combination of rhymes
- a group of words forming a phrase or sentence and consisting of one or more lines repeated at intervals in a poem, usually at the end of a stanza.
close similarity or identity of sound between accented syllables occupying corresponding positions in two or more lines of verse.
a seven-line stanza of iambic pentameter rhymed ababbcc, used by Chaucer and other medieval poets.
recurrence of stressed and unstressed syllables.
a type of irony in which a person appears to be praising something but is actually insulting it.
writing that seeks to arouse a reader's disapproval of an object by ridicule.
a system for describing the meter of a poem by identifying the number and the type(s) of feet per line.
a six-line stanza.
a directly expressed comparison; a figure of speech comparing two objects, usually with "like," "as," or "than."
normally a fourteen-line iambic pentameter poem.
usually a repeated grouping of three or more lines with the same meter and rhyme scheme.
the management of language for a specific effect.
the arrangement of materials within a work; the relationship of the parts of a work to the whole; the logical divisions of a work.
the mode of expression in language; the characteristic manner of expression of an author.
something that is simultaneously itself and a sign of something else.
a form of metaphor which in mentioning a part signifies the whole.
the ordering of words into patterns or sentences. If a poet shifts words from the usual word order, you know you are dealing with an older style of poetry or a poet who wants to shift emphasis onto a particular word.
a stanza of three lines in which each line ends with the same rhyme.
a three-line stanza rhymed aba, bcb, cdc,etc.
the main thought expressed by a work. In poetry, it is the abstract concept which is made concrete through its representation in person, action, and image in the work.
the manner in which an author expresses his or her attitude; the intonation of the voice that expresses meaning.
the opposite of hyperbole. It is a kind of irony that deliberately represents something as being much less than it really is.
a nineteen-line poem divided into five tercets and a final quatrain.