How can we help?

You can also find more resources in our Help Center.

9th Grade English Literary Terms

STUDY
PLAY
tragedy
a dramatic work of serious events that leads to the downfall of the protagonist
tragic flaw
the character flaw or error of a tragic hero that leads to his downfall
monologue
a long, uninterrupted speech by one character addressing other characters onstage
soliloquy
a long, uninterrupted speech by one character addressing himself and the audience
aside
a character's words intended to be heard by some or none of the characters onstage and the audience
metaphor
the representation of one thing by calling it something else
simile
a comparison of two unlike things using "like" or "as"
symbol
a person, place, object, or idea that represents something else
foreshadowing
hints of things to come
comic relief
a humorous interlude intended to relieve dramatic tension
dramatic irony
when the audience knows something that a character does not know
imagery
the use of vivid language that appeals to the senses
euphemism
the substitution of a mild, indirect, or vague expression for one thought to be offensive, harsh, or blunt
allusion
a reference in a piece of literature to another piece of literature, art, music, or history
personification
to give a non-human thing human characteristics
oxymoron
two contrasting terms that appear in conjunction
rhyme
repetition of identical or similar sounds in two or more different words
alliteration
the repetition of initial sounds in consecutive words
onomatopoeia
a word that imitates the sound it represents
apostrophe
explicit address to an absent person or an abstract entity
denouement
the conclusion of a story; the unravelling / untying of the complexities of the plot
paradox
a statement or idea that contradicts itself