Extreme Literary and Rhetorical Terms

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A commonly understood subjective cultural and/or emotional association that some word or phrase carries.
An independent clause joined by one or more dependent clauses. It usually has a subordinator such as because, since, after, although, or when or a relative pronoun such as that, wh
The deliberate repetition of a word or phrase at the beginning of several successive verses, clauses, or paragraphs.
A figure of speech that directly compares two different things, usually by employing the words 'like', 'as', or 'than'.
The dictionary definition of a word.
A literary genre/style in which vices, follies, abuses, and shortcomings are held up to ridicule, ideally with the intent of shaming individuals, and society itself, into improveme
A substitution for an expression that may offend or suggest something unpleasant to the receiver, using instead an agreeable or less offensive expression or to make it less trouble
The writer's or the speaker's distinctive vocabulary choices and style of expression in a poem or story.
A figure of speech in the form of a question posed for its persuasive effect without the expectation of a reply.
One of several forms of poetry originating in Europe mainly Great Britain and Italy and commonly have 14 lines.
The specific mode of fiction represented in performance.
A form of literary art in which language is used for its aesthetic and evocative qualities in addition to, or in lieu of, its apparent meaning.
Humor that is viewed as dark, morbid, cruel, offensive to some, and or graphic in nature and is yet, still found funny.
A repetition of similar sounds in two or more words and is most often used in poetry and songs.
A commonly used metrical line in traditional verse and verse drama. The term describes the particular rhythm that the words establish in that line which is comprised of five feet.
The act of determining and (usually) graphically representing the metrical character of a line of verse.
The person who tells the story to the audience. Often either the protagonist or the author.
The commencement of two or more words of a word group with the same letter, as in apt alligators artful aid.
The juxtaposition of contrasting ideas in balanced phrases. In other words, two opposite things.
An original thought, spoken or written in a memorable form or in a concise statement.
Use of bare expressions, likely to be ignored or misunderstood by a hearer or reader because of the bluntness.
The repetition of the same consonant two or more times in short succession, as in 'pitter patter' or in 'all mammals named Sam are clammy'.
A work created to mock, comment on, or trivialise an original work, its subject, author, style, or some other target, by means of humorous, satiric or ironic imitation.
A figure of speech used in rhetoric in which a thing or concept is not called by its own name, but by the name of something intimately associated with that thing or concept.
Usually incorrect argumentation in reasoning resulting in a misconception or presumption.
A person/personified thing in a story that is usually relatable to the reader.
A literary and theatrical form consisting of a written or spoken conversational exchange between two or more people.
A short impressionistic scene that focuses on one moment or gives a trenchant impression about a character, an idea, or a setting and sometimes an object.
A relationship between two discourse segments often overtly marked by markers such as but or however.
Pause in a line of verse shown in scansion by two vertical lines ( || ).
A kind of reasoning that constructs or evaluates propositions that are abstractions of observations.
A very short form of Japanese poetry with 3 phrases.
A figure of speech in which understatement is employed for rhetorical effect when an idea is expressed by a denial of its opposite, principally via double negatives.
Something which represents an idea, a physical entity or a process but is distinct from it.
A narrative mode that seeks to portray an individual's point of view by giving the written equivalent of the character's thought processes, either in a loose interior monologue, or
A phrase describing the use of mundane realism depicting everyday experiences in art and entertainment.
A set of agreed, stipulated or generally accepted standards, norms, social norms or criteria, often taking the form of a custom.
A type of lyrical verse structured in three major parts: the strophe, the antistrophe, and the epode.
The line or lines that are repeated in music or in verse; the 'chorus' of a song.
Events between the falling action and the actual ending scene of the drama or narrative and thus serves as the conclusion of the story.
The basic rhythmic structure of a verse or lines in verse.
When a work of literature refers to another work or pop culture item
The sudden realization or comprehension of the (larger) essence or meaning of something. When a lightbulb goes off in your head.
An expression, word, or phrase that has a figurative meaning that is comprehended in regard to a common use of that expression that is separate from the literal meaning or definiti
The simple repeating of a word, within a sentence or a poetical line, with no particular placement of the words, in order to emphasize.
A literary figure of speech that uses an image, story or tangible thing to represent a less tangible thing or some intangible quality or idea.
The flaw of a protagonist/antagonist that leads to his/her downfall.
The treatment of inanimate objects as if they had human feelings, thought, or sensations.
The part of a story after the exposition in which the plot thickens and it leads up to the climax.
When a writer establishes a different version of their self in a work.
A statement that expresses a possible scenario.
The usage of figurative language in literature, or a figure of speech in which words are used in a sense different from their literal meaning.
A literary studying method involves a detailed yet relatively objective examination of structure, style, imagery, and other aspects of a work.
A rhyme in the final syllable(s) of a verse (the most common kind)
A likeness or resemblance of the truth, reality or a fact's probability.
Circumlocution. the use of a longer phrasing in place of a possible shorter form of expression; a roundabout or indirect manner of writing or speaking.
A sentence that contains a subject and a verb, and it expresses a complete thought.
The repetition of vowel sounds in a sentence or line of poetry.
A form of word play which suggests two or more meanings, by exploiting multiple meanings of words, or of similar-sounding words, for an intended humorous or rhetorical effect.
The literary mode in which each and every character is referred to by the narrator as 'he', 'she', 'it', or 'they', but never as 'I' or 'we'
A protagonist whose character is at least in some regards conspicuously contrary to that of the archetypal hero.
A section of a composition or speech that is an intentional change of subject.
A noun or noun phrase that renames another noun right beside it.
Two independent clauses joined by a coordinator. The coordinators are as follows: for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so.
The set of methods the author of a literary, theatrical, cinematic, or musical story uses to convey the plot to the audience.
Attempts to show that a conclusion necessarily follows from a set of premises or hypotheses.
The point of view of one character through their eyes.
A Greek word meaning 'character' that is used to describe the guiding beliefs or ideals that characterize a community, nation, or ideology.
Rhyme that occurs in a single line of verse.
“A sharp, bitter, or cutting expression or remark; a bitter jibe or taunt.”
A variety of a language that is a characteristic of a particular group of the language's speakers.
The use of words to create sounds.
A succinct fictional story, in prose or verse, that features animals, mythical creatures, plants, inanimate objects, or forces of nature which are anthropomorphized, and that illus
The use of exaggeration as a rhetorical device or figure of speech.
The greek word for an appeal to the audience's emotions.
A phrase, quotation, or poem that is set at the beginning of a document or component.
When someone mentions something by accident that they say they are not going to mention.
A decline viewed in disappointing contrast with a previous rise in the plot of a story.
The main character (or 'protagonist') in a tragedy.
The number of lines in a verse, the number of syllables in each line and the arrangement of those syllables as long or short, accented or unaccented.
A literary technique that is a part of composition, which encompasses the attitudes toward the subject and toward the audience implied in a literary work.
A stylistic device employed at the sentence level, characterized as a sentence that is not grammatically complete until the final clause or phrase.
High point in a story before the falling action.
Set off within or as if within parentheses; qualifying or explanatory.
Sentence made from two independent clauses and one or more dependent clauses.
Narrative composed of loosely connected incidents, each one more or less self-contained, often connected by a central character or characters. It is one way of constructing a plot.
An author that interjects his/her commentary in the middle of a story.
A rhetorical device, literary technique, or situation in which there is a sharp incongruity or discordance that goes beyond the simple and evident intention of words or actions.
A succinct story, in prose or verse, which illustrates one or more instructive principles, or lessons, or (sometimes) a normative principle.
A lengthy narrative poem, ordinarily concerning a serious subject containing details of heroic deeds and events significant to a culture or nation.
The main character (the central or primary personal figure) of a literary, theatrical, cinematic, or musical narrative, around whom the events of the narrative's plot revolve and w
Any recurring element that has symbolic significance in a story.
A plot device whereby a seemingly inextricable problem is suddenly and abruptly solved with the contrived and unexpected intervention of some new event, character, ability, or obje
The time, location, and everything in which a story takes place, and initiates the main backdrop and mood for a story.
A pyramid that says a drama is divided into five parts, or acts, which some refer to as a dramatic arc: exposition, rising action, climax, falling action, and dénouement.
Main clause is split in two, subordinate parts intruding. Ex. White men, at the bottom of their hearts, know this.
A category of literary composition determined by literary technique, tone, content, or even (as in the case of fiction) length.
A figure of speech in which part of something is used to describe the whole.
When you say two different things that contradict and there is no visible solution.
Provides the background information needed to properly understand the story, such as the protagonist, the antagonist, the basic conflict, and the setting. It ends with the inciting
A series of marks that usually indicate an intentional omission of a word or sentence or whole section from the original text being quoted.
When inanimate objects/animals are given humanlike characteristics.
A Latin phrase denoting the literary and artistic narrative technique wherein the relation of a story begins either at the mid-point or at the conclusion, rather than at the beginn
Latin expression meaning seize the day.
A genre or mode of literature that combines elements of both horror and romance.
The most typical form of written language, applying ordinary grammatical structure and natural flow of speech rather than rhythmic structure (as in traditional poetry).
A simple and concrete saying popularly known and repeated, which expresses a truth, based on common sense or the practical experience of humanity. Not an aphorism.
A balance of two or more similar words, phrases, or clauses.
Words, and groups of words, that exaggerate or alter the usual meanings of the component words.
An important term in philosophy, psychology, rhetoric and religion. Originally a word meaning 'a ground', 'a plea', 'an opinion', 'an expectation', 'word,' 'speech,' 'account,' 're
When two propositions, taken together, yield two conclusions which form the logical, usually opposite inversions of each other.
A form of art based on human suffering that offers its audience pleasure.
A visually powerful description that vividly recreates something or someone in words.
An interjected scene that takes the narrative back in time from the current point the story has reached.
A form of verse, often a narrative set to music.
Used in literature to refer to descriptive language that evokes emotional responses. There are many different types of it.
A moral anecdote, brief or extended, real or fictitious, used to illustrate a point. Another word for example.
The repetition of the same word or words at the end of successive phrases, clauses or sentences. It is an extremely emphatic device because of the emphasis placed on the last word
The way a person feels about an idea/concept, event, or another person that can be quickly determined through facial expressions, gestures and in the tone of voice used.
A form of speech which contains an expression of less strength than what would be expected.
Any verse comprised of unrhymed lines all in the same meter, usually iambic pentameter.
Literary work or cartoon that exaggerates the physical features, dress, or mannerisms of an individual or derides the ideas and actions of an organization, institution, movement, e
A genre in literature, art or music that depicts such shepherd life in an idealized manner, for urban audiences.
A broad idea, message, or moral of a story. The message may be about life, society, or human nature.
A figure of speech that combines contradictory terms. Not irony, metaphor, or simile.
A narrative technique whereby an introductory main story is composed, at least in part, for the purpose of setting the stage for a fictitious narrative or organizing a set of short
The comparison of two pairs which have the same relationship. Ex. hot is to cold as fire is to ice
The direct address of an absent person, a place, or an abstraction.
'a discourse in which, certain things having been supposed, something different from the things supposed results of necessity because these things are so.'
A single person, who is patently not the poet, utters the speech that makes up the whole of the poem, in a specific situation at a critical moment.
Using the same pattern of words to show that two or more ideas have the same level of importance in one sentence.
A principle of classical rhetoric, poetry and theatrical theory that was about the fitness or otherwise of a style to a theatrical subject.
The main driving force of a plot of a story, usually between a protagonist and an antagonist.
Inner voice, internal speech, or verbal stream of consciousness is thinking in words.
A symbolic representation in art of a deeply felt pattern of human experience.
A novel written as a series of documents. The usual form is letters, although diary entries, newspaper clippings and other documents are sometimes used.
A form of poetry that refrains from consistent meter patterns, rhyme, or any other musical pattern.
A pair of lines of meter in poetry. It usually consists of two lines that rhyme and have the same meter. Could also be iambic pentameter.
When something is not clear and could have multiple meanings
A piece of writing which is often written from an author's personal point of view.
A brief, clever, and usually memorable statement.
The grotesque or inappropriate use of a word.
A short and amusing or interesting story about a real incident or person to reveal a truth.
A story told from the point of view of someone who knows everything about all characters and their emotions.
A narrator or author who does not always tell the complete and correct truth.
A genre of poetry that expresses personal and emotional feelings.
A literary archetype referring to a character that rejects established norms and conventions, has been rejected by society, and has the self as the center of his or her own existen
A 'countdown' or a list of items.
The breaking of a syntactic unit (a phrase, clause, or sentence) by the end of a line or between two verses. Basically when a sentence is split into two lines.
An ancient tale with either little or no real historical components.
A literary device in which an author suggests certain plot developments that might come later in the story.
The repetition of words in successive clauses, but in transposed grammatical order. Ex. 'I know what I like, and I like what I know'
A mournful, melancholic or plaintive poem, especially a funeral song or a lament for the dead.
A puzzling or inexplicable occurrence or situation.
The person/thing working against the protagonist

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