AP Language and Composition Glossary of Literary and Rhetorical Terms
Terms in this set (80)
Lauguage descirbing ideas and qualities rather than observable or specific things, people or places.
The subject of the sentence performs the action.
An indirect reference to something with which the reader is supposed to be familiar.
An event or situation that may be interpreted in more than one way.
A comparison to a directly parallel case.
A brief recounting of a relevant episode.
Explanatory notes added to a text to explain, clarify, or prompt futher thought.
The word, phrase, or clause referred to by a pronoun.
A figure of speech that directly addresses an absent or imaginary person or personified abstraction, such as liberty or love. The effect may add familiarity or emotional intensity.
Attitude of the author/tone
A writer's attitude toward his subject matter revealed through diction, figurative language, and organization.
Art or literature characterized by a realistic view of people and the world; sticks to traditional themes and structures.
Language that describes specific, observable things, peoples or places, rather than ideas or qualities.
Word choice, particularly as an element of style.
Ordinary or familiar type of conversation.
Implied meaning rather than literal meaning.
the literal, explicit meaning of a word, without its connotations.
The diction used by a group which practices a similar profession or activity.
Language or dialect of a particular country, language or dialect of a regional clan or group, plain everyday speech.
A term used to describe fiction, nonfiction or poety that teaches a specific lesson or moral or provides a model of correct behavior or thinking.
A folk saying with a lesson
A story, fictional or non fictional, in which characters, things, and events represent qualities or concepts.
A terse statement which expresses a general truth or moral principle.
This term literally means "sermon," but more informally, it can include any serious talk, speech, or lecture involving moral or spiritual advice.
The deliberate omission of a word or phrase from prose done for effect by the author.
A short poem with a clever twist at the end, or a concise and witty statement.
A quotation or aphorism at the beginnning of a literary work suggestive of theme.
A more agreeable or less offensive substitute for generally unpleasant words or concepts.
The act of interpreting or discovering the meaning of a text.
The opposite of "literal language"; writing that is not meant to be taken literally
A common, often used expression that doesn't make sense if you take it literally.
Making an implied comparsion, not using "like," "as," or other such words.
Using words such as "like" or "as" to make a direct comparison between two very different things.
The major category into which a literary work fits.
Writing characterized by gloom, mystery, fear and/or death.
Word or words that create a picture in the reader's mind.
An emotionall violent, verbal denunciation or attack using strong, abusive language.
When the opposite of what you expect to happen does.
When you say something and mean the opposite/something different.
When the audience of a drama, play, movie, etc. knows something that the character doesn't and would be surprised to find out.
Found in the plot of a book, story, or movie.
Placing things side by side for the purposes of comparison.
The atmosphere created by the literature and accomplished through word choice.
An author's stance that distances himself from personal involvement.
When apparently contradictory terms are grouped together and suggest a paradox.
A seemingly contradictory statement which is actually true.
Sentence construction which places equal grammatical construction near each other, or repeats identical grammatical patterns.
Repetition or a word, phrase, or clause at the beginning of two or more sentences in a row.
Two opposite or contrasting words, phrases, or clauses, or even ideas, with parallel structure.
An idea that is set off from the rest of the sentence.
An exaggerated imitation of a serious work for humorous purposes.
The subject of the sentence receives the action.
Observing strict adherence to formal rules or literal meaning at the expense of a wider view.
The fictional mask or narrator that tells a story.
The art of effective communication.
A question not asked for information but for effect.
Art or literature characterized by an idealistic, perhaps unrealistic view of people and the world, and an emphasis on nature.
A generally bitter comment that is ironically worded.
A work that reveals a critical attitude toward some element of life to a humorous effect.
A group of words (including subject and verb) that expresses a complete thought.
A word or group or words placed beside a noun or noun substitute to supplement its meaning.
A grammatical unit that contains both a subject and a verb.
Contains one independent clause.
Contains at least two independent clauses but no dependent clauses.
Contains only one independent clause and at least one dependent clause.
contains two or more independent clauses and at least one dependent clause.
One in which two parallel elements are set off against each other like equal weights on a scale.
A complex sentence in which the main clause comes first and the subordinate clause follows.
When the main idea is not completed until the end of the sentence.
States an idea
Issues a command.
Sentences incorporating interrogative pronouns.
The choices in diction, tone, and syntax that a writer makes.
Anything that represents or stands for somthing else.
Grammatical arrangement of words.
The central idea or message of a work.
The sentence or groups of sentences that directly expresses the author's opinion, purpose, meaning, or proposition.
Smooth movement from one paragraph (or idea) to another.
the ironice minimizing of fact, presents something as less significant than it is.
A particular form of understatement, generated by denying the opposite of the statement which otherwise would be used.