32 terms

Literary Terms

Literary terms to study as you prepare for the English II EOC
STUDY
PLAY
allusion
A reference to another work of literature, person, or event
metaphor
A figure of speech that compares two things without using a comparing word like or as
simile
A comparison using like or as
alliteration
Repetition of consonant sounds.
protagonist
Main character in fiction or drama
antagonist
A character or force in conflict with the main character
climax
Most exciting moment of the story; turning point
conflict
A struggle between opposing forces
denotation
Dictionary definition of a word
connotation
An idea or feeling that a word brings up for a person in addition to its literal or primary meaning.
diction
Author's choice of words
hyperbole
An extreme exaggeration
personification
An object or abstract idea given human qualities or human form (e.g., Flowers danced about the lawn.).
imagery
Description that appeals to the senses (sight, sound, smell, touch, taste)
dramatic irony
when the meaning of the situation is understood by the audience but not by the characters in the play.
symbol
An object or action in a literary work that means more than itself, that stands for something beyond itself.
theme
Central idea of a work of literature
verbal irony
A figure of speech in which what is said is the opposite of what is meant; saracasm
irony
when the opposite of what is expected happens
idiom
A common, often used expression that doesn't make sense if you take it literally.
onomatopoeia
A word that imitates the sound it represents.
extended metaphor
A metaphor that continues beyond it's initial use, can be developed at great length
assonance
Repetition of vowel sounds
anaphora
The repetition of a word or phrase at the beginning of successive clauses
archetype
A prototype or original model
oxymoron
A figure of speech that combines two contradictory terms.
paradox
A contradiction or dilemma
syntax
Sentence structure
mood
How the reader feels about the text while reading.
tone
An attitude of a writer toward a subject or an audience
inference
A conclusion reached on the basis of evidence and reasoning
euphemism
An indirect, less offensive way of saying something that is considered unpleasant

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