AP English Lit Terms

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DefinitionTerm
The author's feeling
Exaggeration
The techniques of deploying the sound of words, especially in poetry
Word choice
Bits of information given by the author to better develop the work
A figure of speech using indirection to avoid offensive bluntness (i.e. 'passed away' as opposed to 'died')
A metrical line of verse consisting of six feet
The vantage point of a story in which the narrator can know, see, and report whatever he or she chooses
A combination of opposites; the union of contradictory terms
The actual meaning of something
A quality of some fictional narrators whose word the reader can trust
Something that is simultaneously itself and a sign of something else
Characterized by incongruities or distortions
The theme, meaning, or position that a writer undertakes to prove or support
The framework, or arrangement of materials within a work; the relationship of the parts of a work to the whole; the logical divisions of a work
A question asked for effect, not in expectation of a reply
A literary term referring to how a person, situation, statement, or circumstance is not as it would actually seem; many times it is the exact opposite of what it appears to be. Typ
A seven-line stanza of iambic pentameter rhymed ababbcc, used by Chaucer and other medieval poets
A pair or group of words that has a subject and predicate, but is not a sentence on its own; part of a sentence
To change
Usually a repeated grouping of three or more lines with the same meter and rhyme scheme
A type of figurative language in which a statement is made that says that one thing is something else but, literally, it is not
The devices used in effective or persuasive language
The management of language for a specific effect
A story designed to suggest a principle, illustrate a moral, or answer a question
DefinitionTerm
A grammatical mood expressing commands, direct requests and prohibitions
The use of material unrelated to the subject of a work
Alternating lines of iambic tetrameter and iambic trimeter
A statement that seems to be self-contradicting but, in fact, is true
A line containing five feet
The use of words whose sound suggests their meaning
A metrical foot consisting of one long and two short syllables or of one stressed and two unstressed syllables
A brief, clever, often memorable statement
Phrases or sentences with very similar grammatical structure
A line with a pause at the end
Repetition of vowel sounds
Writing that seeks to arouse a reader's disapproval of an object by ridicule
The structure of a sentence; the arrangement of words in a sentence
Explicitly instructive
A general phrase for the linguistic devices or techniques that a writer can use
A three-line stanza rhymed aba, bcb, cdc
A sentence that is not grammatically complete until the final clause or phrase
Unrhymed iambic pentameter
Referencing a well known work (such as Shakespeare's many references to the Bible)
A traditional form for English poetry, commonly used for epic and narrative poetry; it refers to poems constructed from a sequence of rhyming pairs of iambic pentameter lines. The
Literal meaning of a word
A characteristic of a literary genre (often unrealistic) that is understood and accepted by audiences because it has come, through usage and time, to be recognized as a familiar te
A line of four feet
Any of several possible vantage points from which a story is told
A form of reasoning in which two statements are made and a conclusion is drawn from them
DefinitionTerm
The use of words to mean something other than their literal meaning
A directly expressed comparison; a figure of speech comparing two objects, usually with 'like,' 'as,' or 'than.'
Poetry that is not written in traditional meter but is still rhythmical
Implied meaning of a word
A speech in which a character who is alone speaks his or her thoughts aloud
Repetition of initial sounds in a set of words
The main thought expressed by a work, the meaning of the work as a whole
A two syllable foot with an unaccented syllable followed by an accented one
Normally a fourteen-line iambic pentameter poem
Direct address of an abstract person or object
A conventional pattern, expression, character, or idea
The manner in which an author expresses his or her attitude; the intonation of the voice that expresses meaning
A figurative use of language that endows the nonhuman (ideas, inanimate objects, animals, abstractions) with human characteristics
All of the sensory perceptions referred to in a work; words or phrases used to create a 'mental picture'
The special language of a profession or group
Rhyme that occurs in a single line of verse
A composition that imitates the style of another composition normally for comic effect
Songlike
A type of symbolism in which everything in a work is representative of something (i.e. 'Young Goodman Brown')
The methods involved in telling a story; the procedures used by a writer of stories or accounts
Preceding in time or order; pre-existing
Intentional vagueness
The omission of a word or several words that would otherwise be required by the remaining elements
The mode of expression in language; the characteristic manner of expression of an author
The background to a story; the physical location of a play, story, or novel

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