Extreme Literary and Rhetorical Terms

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Can you name the literary/rhetorical terms?

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DefinitionTerm
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
Attempts to show that a conclusion necessarily follows from a set of premises or hypotheses.
An interjected scene that takes the narrative back in time from the current point the story has reached.
The deliberate repetition of a word or phrase at the beginning of several successive verses, clauses, or paragraphs.
A phrase describing the use of mundane realism depicting everyday experiences in art and entertainment.
When you say two different things that contradict and there is no visible solution.
Two independent clauses joined by a coordinator. The coordinators are as follows: for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so.
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.
An author that interjects his/her commentary in the middle of a story.
The greek word for an appeal to the audience's emotions.
The main character (or 'protagonist') in a tragedy.
Something which represents an idea, a physical entity or a process but is distinct from it.
A decline viewed in disappointing contrast with a previous rise in the plot of a story.
When a writer establishes a different version of their self in a work.
A principle of classical rhetoric, poetry and theatrical theory that was about the fitness or otherwise of a style to a theatrical subject.
A set of agreed, stipulated or generally accepted standards, norms, social norms or criteria, often taking the form of a custom.
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
Used in literature to refer to descriptive language that evokes emotional responses. There are many different types of it.
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
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
A literary studying method involves a detailed yet relatively objective examination of structure, style, imagery, and other aspects of a work.
“A sharp, bitter, or cutting expression or remark; a bitter jibe or taunt.”
The treatment of inanimate objects as if they had human feelings, thought, or sensations.
A lengthy narrative poem, ordinarily concerning a serious subject containing details of heroic deeds and events significant to a culture or nation.
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 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 stylistic device employed at the sentence level, characterized as a sentence that is not grammatically complete until the final clause or phrase.
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 literary device in which an author suggests certain plot developments that might come later in the story.
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 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.
One of several forms of poetry originating in Europe mainly Great Britain and Italy and commonly have 14 lines.
The commencement of two or more words of a word group with the same letter, as in apt alligators artful aid.
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 literary and theatrical form consisting of a written or spoken conversational exchange between two or more people.
The flaw of a protagonist/antagonist that leads to his/her downfall.
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 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.
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 symbolic representation in art of a deeply felt pattern of human experience.
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.
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 person/personified thing in a story that is usually relatable to the reader.
The basic rhythmic structure of a verse or lines in verse.
A genre or mode of literature that combines elements of both horror and romance.
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
An ancient tale with either little or no real historical components.
Set off within or as if within parentheses; qualifying or explanatory.
A relationship between two discourse segments often overtly marked by markers such as but or however.
A short and amusing or interesting story about a real incident or person to reveal a truth.
A 'countdown' or a list of items.
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.
DefinitionTerm
A figure of speech in the form of a question posed for its persuasive effect without the expectation of a reply.
Any recurring element that has symbolic significance in a story.
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.
The simple repeating of a word, within a sentence or a poetical line, with no particular placement of the words, in order to emphasize.
When something is not clear and could have multiple meanings
'a discourse in which, certain things having been supposed, something different from the things supposed results of necessity because these things are so.'
A broad idea, message, or moral of a story. The message may be about life, society, or human nature.
A succinct story, in prose or verse, which illustrates one or more instructive principles, or lessons, or (sometimes) a normative principle.
The writer's or the speaker's distinctive vocabulary choices and style of expression in a poem or story.
Pause in a line of verse shown in scansion by two vertical lines ( || ).
The specific mode of fiction represented in performance.
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 balance of two or more similar words, phrases, or clauses.
A category of literary composition determined by literary technique, tone, content, or even (as in the case of fiction) length.
A protagonist whose character is at least in some regards conspicuously contrary to that of the archetypal hero.
When two propositions, taken together, yield two conclusions which form the logical, usually opposite inversions of each other.
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.
A kind of reasoning that constructs or evaluates propositions that are abstractions of observations.
A form of speech which contains an expression of less strength than what would be expected.
A noun or noun phrase that renames another noun right beside it.
The use of exaggeration as a rhetorical device or figure of speech.
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.
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
The sudden realization or comprehension of the (larger) essence or meaning of something. When a lightbulb goes off in your head.
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 grotesque or inappropriate use of a word.
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 repetition of vowel sounds in a sentence or line of poetry.
The person/thing working against the protagonist
A variety of a language that is a characteristic of a particular group of the language's speakers.
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
Any verse comprised of unrhymed lines all in the same meter, usually iambic pentameter.
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 literary technique that is a part of composition, which encompasses the attitudes toward the subject and toward the audience implied in a literary work.
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 phrase, quotation, or poem that is set at the beginning of a document or component.
Words, and groups of words, that exaggerate or alter the usual meanings of the component words.
A sentence that contains a subject and a verb, and it expresses a complete thought.
A figure of speech in which part of something is used to describe the whole.
A Greek word meaning 'character' that is used to describe the guiding beliefs or ideals that characterize a community, nation, or ideology.
A very short form of Japanese poetry with 3 phrases.
The repetition of words in successive clauses, but in transposed grammatical order. Ex. 'I know what I like, and I like what I know'
When inanimate objects/animals are given humanlike characteristics.
When a work of literature refers to another work or pop culture item
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.
A rhyme in the final syllable(s) of a verse (the most common kind)
A moral anecdote, brief or extended, real or fictitious, used to illustrate a point. Another word for example.
A story told from the point of view of someone who knows everything about all characters and their emotions.
Events between the falling action and the actual ending scene of the drama or narrative and thus serves as the conclusion of the story.
High point in a story before the falling action.
The direct address of an absent person, a place, or an abstraction.
The line or lines that are repeated in music or in verse; the 'chorus' of a song.
DefinitionTerm
The comparison of two pairs which have the same relationship. Ex. hot is to cold as fire is to ice
Main clause is split in two, subordinate parts intruding. Ex. White men, at the bottom of their hearts, know this.
The person who tells the story to the audience. Often either the protagonist or the author.
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.
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
A narrator or author who does not always tell the complete and correct truth.
When someone mentions something by accident that they say they are not going to mention.
The time, location, and everything in which a story takes place, and initiates the main backdrop and mood for a story.
A form of poetry that refrains from consistent meter patterns, rhyme, or any other musical pattern.
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
The act of determining and (usually) graphically representing the metrical character of a line of verse.
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
A statement that expresses a possible scenario.
Inner voice, internal speech, or verbal stream of consciousness is thinking in words.
A genre in literature, art or music that depicts such shepherd life in an idealized manner, for urban audiences.
The juxtaposition of contrasting ideas in balanced phrases. In other words, two opposite things.
Use of bare expressions, likely to be ignored or misunderstood by a hearer or reader because of the bluntness.
Usually incorrect argumentation in reasoning resulting in a misconception or presumption.
A genre of poetry that expresses personal and emotional feelings.
A type of lyrical verse structured in three major parts: the strophe, the antistrophe, and the epode.
Latin expression meaning seize the day.
A series of marks that usually indicate an intentional omission of a word or sentence or whole section from the original text being quoted.
The part of a story after the exposition in which the plot thickens and it leads up to the climax.
A likeness or resemblance of the truth, reality or a fact's probability.
A form of verse, often a narrative set to music.
A puzzling or inexplicable occurrence or situation.
A section of a composition or speech that is an intentional change of subject.
The set of methods the author of a literary, theatrical, cinematic, or musical story uses to convey the plot to the audience.
Sentence made from two independent clauses and one or more dependent clauses.
Using the same pattern of words to show that two or more ideas have the same level of importance in one sentence.
The point of view of one character through their eyes.
A figure of speech that directly compares two different things, usually by employing the words 'like', 'as', or 'than'.
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.
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
A mournful, melancholic or plaintive poem, especially a funeral song or a lament for the dead.
The use of words to create sounds.
A form of art based on human suffering that offers its audience pleasure.
The main driving force of a plot of a story, usually between a protagonist and an antagonist.
Humor that is viewed as dark, morbid, cruel, offensive to some, and or graphic in nature and is yet, still found funny.
A piece of writing which is often written from an author's personal point of view.
An original thought, spoken or written in a memorable form or in a concise statement.
A repetition of similar sounds in two or more words and is most often used in poetry and songs.
The dictionary definition of a word.
Rhyme that occurs in a single line of verse.
A figure of speech that combines contradictory terms. Not irony, metaphor, or simile.
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 visually powerful description that vividly recreates something or someone in words.
A commonly understood subjective cultural and/or emotional association that some word or phrase carries.
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.
A brief, clever, and usually memorable statement.
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

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