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a universal symbol; personified abstraction; ex: death portrayed as "grim reaper"


repetition of the same word or phrase at the beginning of successive phrases or clauses


address or invocation to something that is inanimate


recurrent designs, patterns of action, character types, themes or images which are identifiable in a wide range of literature; ex: femme fatale


a style in which conjunctions are omitted, usually producing a fast-paced, more rapid prose; ex: Caesar's famous lines, "I came, I saw, I conquered"


figure of speechin which the order of the terms in the first of two parallel clauses is reversed in the second; ex: "Pleasure's a sin, and sometimes sin's a pleasure"


a comparison of two unlikely things that is drawn out within a piece of literature, in particular an extended metaphor within the poem; ex: Hair might be spun gold, teeth like stars or pearls, etc.


what is suggested by a word, apart from what it explicity describes, often referred to as the implied meaning of a word; ex: awesome, sweet, gay, f*ggot


stressed syllable followed by two unstressed ones; ex: can-a-da, hol-i-day, cel-e-brate


a direct and specific meaning; the "dictionary meaning" of a word


lament upon the death of a particular person


the continuation of a sentence from one line or couplet of a poem to the next


part of the structure that sets the scene, introduces and identifies characters, and establishes the situation at the beginning of a story or play


falling action


unstressed syllable followed by a stressed one; ex: for-give, re-morse, re-peat


the location of one thing as being adjacent with another; this creates a certain effect, reveals an attitude or accomplishes some purpose of the writer


figure of speech that emphasizes its subject by conscious understatement; ex: "not bad" as a comment about something especially well done


DOES NOT use "like" or "as"


the more or less regular pattern of stressed and unstressed syllables in a line of poetry


figure of speech in which an attribute or commonly associated feature is used to name or designate something as in "The White House announced today..."


recurrent device, formula, or situation that often serves as a signal for the appearance of a character or event; ex: in M. Night Shamalan's movies cold and/or red doorknobs signal presence of ghosts


statement that seems contradictory but may actually be true; ex: "fight for peace"

parallel structure

the use of similar forms in writing for nouns, verbs, phrases, or thoughts; ex: lying, crying, dying no more

periodic sentence

a sentence which is not grammatically correct until the end; ex: "The child, who looked as if she were being chased by demons, ran."

petrarchan sonnet

divides the poem into one section of 8 lines (octave) and a second section of six (sestet); 8 then 6--patriarchal


the analysis of verse to show its meter

shakespearean sonnet

divides poem into three units of four lines each and a final unit of two lines; usually abab cdcd efef gg

shaped verse

shaped to look like an object; ex: Ellen Hopkin's novels


DOES use "like" or "as"

stock character

a character who appears in a number of stories or plays; ex: cruel stepmother, femme fatale, etc.


when a part is used to signify a whole; ex: "All hands on deck!", "head of cattle"

terza rima

"three rhymes"; verse form consisting of three line stanzas in which the second line of each rhymes with the first and third of the next (or 2 line stanzas where second line of each rhymes)


stressed syllable followed by an unstressed one; ex: car-wash, out-side, day-ton, off-spring


verse form consisting of 19 lines divided into 6 stanzas--five tercets (3 lines) and one quatrain (4 lines)


blindly or excessively devoted or adoring


given to lying


a quality that arouses emotions (especially pity or sorrow)


used to describe writing that borders on lecturing; marked by a narrow focus on or display of learning especially its trivial aspects


inclined toward or displaying love

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