English 10 Literary Terms

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42 terms

alliteration

a figure of speech that repeats the same initial sound in tow or more nearby words in poetry or prose.

allusion

a reference in a literary work to a familiar person, place, event, or thing

antithesis

a figure of speech that uses an opposition or contrast of ideas for effect (creates tension)

archetype

a universal symbol, story pattern, theme, or character that appears often in leterature, film, and art and is easily recognizable.

diction

an author's word choice.

digression

moving away from the main plot or theme by presenting additional information that may or may not be relevant

figurative language

symbolic language that literary devices use to create special effects or feelings; this symbolic language makes comparisons, exaggerates and means differnt things based on its context.

figures of speech

literary devices used to create special effects or feelings by making comparisons or exaggerations.

hyperbole

a figure of speech that exaggerates or overstates for dramatic effect.

metaphor

a figure of speech in which an indirect comparison is made. usually, the comparison is made using a "to be" verb.

metonymy

a figure of speech that substitutes one word for another that is closely related or a word that describe part of a whole.

personification

a figure of speech that embodies an inanimate object with human characteristics.

simile

a figure of speech in which a direct comparison is made using like or as.

understatement

a figure of speech that states an idea with restraint to emphasize what is written. the common usage of not bad to mean good is an example.

genre

a literary type or form

homophone

words that sound the same but have different spellings and meanings.

idiom

a phrase where the words together have a different meaning than the dictionary definition of the individual words.

imagery

words or phrases, sensory details, a write uses to represent objects, feelings, actions, or idea to appeal to our senses.

inference

a reasonable conclusion about a character or event in a literary work drawn from the limited facts made available.

irony

when the audience knows something the characters do not; the use of a word or phrase to mean the exact opposite of its literal or normal meaning; when the unexpected occurs.

assonance

the repetition of the same vowel sound in two or more nearby words; the repetition may occur any where in the word.

blank verse

a verse from consisting of unrhymed iambic pentameter lines; this verse is the closest to spoken english.

characterization

the method an author uses to describe characters and their personalities ( what a character say, does, and reveals).

consonance

the repetition of the same cononant sound before or after a different vowel in two or more nearby words; it is similar to alliteration, but it is not confine to the initial sound in a word.

couplet

two lines of poetry with the same meter and which often rhyme.

free verse

poetry that does not have a regular meter or a rhyme scheme

mood

the feelings a piece of literature arouses in a reader; overall the atmosphere of the work reflects it.

theme

expresses an opinion or makes a statement about the main ideas or topics of the literary work.

cinquain

a five-line stanza of any meter or rhyme scheme.

prose

writing or speaking int he usual or ordinary form (not poetry).

quatrain

a four-line stanza of any meter or rhyme stanza.

tone

a writer's attitude toward the subject.

oxymoron

a combination of contradictory terms that form a new word or title.

allegory

an extended metaphor in which people, things, and actions represent an idea or generalization about life; they often have strong moral lessons.

ballad

a poem in verse form that tells a story (narrative poem) and that contains a refrain; ballads traditionally were meant to be sung.

emjambent

the running over a sentence or thought from one line to another

haiku

a form of japanese petry that has three lines consisting of 17 syllables: first line, 5 syllables; second line; 7 syllables' third lines, 5 syllables. The subject has traditionally been nature.

onomatopoeia

the use of a word whose sound suggests its meaning.

anaphora

repetition of a word or phrase at the beginning of success clauses, phrases, lines, etc.

pathetic fallacy

attributionof human feelings and characteristics to nature or inanimate things.

point of view (first person)

the narrator is a character in the story who can reveal only personal thoughts and feelings and what he or she sees and is told by other characters. the narrator cannot tell us thoughts of other characters.

point of view (omniscient)

the narrator is an all-knowing outsider who can enter the minds of other characters.

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