Meaning: model, example, standard, original, classic.
Elemental patterns of ritual, mythology and folklore that recur in the legends, ceremonies and stories of the most diverse cultures.
In literature, applies to narrative designs, character types, or images which are said to be identifiable in a wide variety of works of literature, as well as myths, and even ritualized modes of social behavior.
Example: Over 300 different versions of the Cinderella tale exist from around the world, and all of them have certain archetypal characteristics: wicked step-mother, mean sisters, handsome prince who rescues the girl. These common characteristics are qualities that strike a strong emotional reaction in all who own the story.
This is not a literary term, but it confused more than one student. So, I am including it here.
coin (intransitive verb) means "to invent."
Thus, to "coin a verb" is to "invent a verb."
Shakespeare "coined" more than 1,700 words by changing nouns to verbs, making verbs adjectives, making new combination of words paired together, etc.
Example: Olivia: "There lies your way, due west."
Viola: "Then westward ho!"
From Shakespeare's Twelfth Night, Act III, Scene I, Line 135.
Some words Shakespeare coined: advertising, alligator, anchovy, countless, gust, investment, obscene, puke, puppy dog, tranquil, zany.
Originally in Greek meant "an inscription."
Extended to encompass a very short poem whether amorous (sexual love), elegiac (longing for the past), meditative (contemplative), anecdotal (description, story, episode), or satiric (witty, sarcasm).
Poem is polished, condensed, and pointed, often with a witty end.
In his epigram "On a Volunteer Singer" Coleridge explains:
Swans sing before they die—'twere no bad thing
Should certain people die before they sing!
From Greek paian meaning "hymn to Apollo" (Paian or Paion, being a name for Apollo).
Any song of joy, praise or triumph.
Shakespeare's Hamlet, the protagonist offers a paean to man:
What a piece of work is man, how noble in reason,
how infinite his faculties, in form and moving how
express and admirable, in action how like an angel,
in apprehension, how like a god: the beauty of the
world, the paragon of animals . . . . (II, ii, 292-95)
A play on words that are either identical in sound (homonyms) or similar in sound, but are sharply diverse in meaning.
Example: "Thou art Peter (Petros) and upon this rock (petra) I will build my church."
Early puns had roots in serious literature, that like Shakespeare, can also have a comical effect in a very serious situation.
Example: In Romeo and Juliet, while bleeding to death, Mercutio says "Ask for me tomorrow and you shall find me a grave man."
By the eighteenth century and after, the literary use of puns has been almost exclusively comic.
Equivoque: the use of a single word or phrase which has two disparate meanings, in a context which makes both meanings equally relevant.
Example: An epitaph suggested for a bank teller, which states, "He checked his cash, cashed in his checks. And left his window. Who is next?"
Translation of "purpureus . . . Pannus" from Horace's Ars Poetica.
Signifies a sudden heightening of rhythm, diction, and figurative language that makes a section of verse or prose—especially a descriptive passage—stand out from its context.
Sometimes applied to a set piece, separable and quotable, in which an author rises to an occasion.
Example: From the 1999 film Cider House Rules, in which Dr. Wilbur Larch (Michael Caine) salutes the boy orphans crowded in the attic bedroom with, "Goodnight, you princes of Maine. You kings of New England," thereby heightening just how precious these orphaned lads and the struggling orphanage are to the doctor.
Example: Shakespeare's eulogy of England by the dying John of Gaunt in Shakespeare's Richard II (Act II, Scene I, lines 40-43). The dying John says:
This royal throne of kings, this scept'red isle,
This earth of majesty, this seat of Mars,
This other Eden, demi-paradise . . . .
Words in an essay that alert the reader to a change in tone, direction, section, or category.
Examples: however, on the other hand, contrary to, and now, next, following, etc.
Time Examples: At one in the morning, by sunset, at noon, etc.