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transposition of normal word order; most often found in Latin in the case of prepositions and the words they control (form of hyperbaton)


reversing the order of repeated words or phrases (chiastic structure AB-BA) to intensify the final formulation, to present alternatives, or to show contrast

Ad Hominem

in an argument, this is an attack on the person rather than on the opponent's ideas. It comes from the Latin meaning "against the man"


expression of doubt (often feigned) by which a speaker appears uncertain of what he should think, say, or do


use of an older or obsolete form


lack of conjunctions between coordinate phrases, clauses, or words


a harsh metaphor involving the use of a word beyond its strict sphere


the use of slang in writing, often to create local color and to provide an informal tone


repetition of a word or phrase after an intervening word or phrase


From the Greek, didactic writing means "teaching." Didactic works have the primary aim of teaching or instructing especially ethical or moral principles


Repeats the beginning word of a clause or sentence at the end


a more acceptable and usually more pleasant way of saying something that might be inappropriate or uncomfortable; also often used to obscure reality of a situation


use of two words connected by a conjunction, instead of subordinating one to the other, to express a single complex idea


consists of raising one or more questions and then proceeding to answer them, usually at some length


writing successive independent clauses, with coordinating conjunctions or no conjunctions


understatement, for intensification, by denying the contrary of the thing being affirmed (meiosis)


term used to describe writing that borders on lecturing; it is scholarly or academic and often overly difficult and distant


use of superfluous or redundant language, often enriching the thought


quoting a maxim or wise saying to apply a general truth to the situation; concluding or summing foregoing material by offering a single statement of general wisdom


the format of a formal argument; consists of a major premise, minor premise, and a conclusion.

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