120 AP Literary Terms

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Can you name the 120 AP Literary Terms?

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Definition/ExampleLiterary Term
Any writing that isn't poetry or drama
10 syllable line made up of 5 feet with each foot containing an unaccented followed by an accented syllable
An all-knowing narrator
The struggle in the plot
One who changes as the result of actions in the plot
Any literary work with a happy ending
Ex: much of the spoken language in Huckleberry Finn
A three beat rhythm with two unstressed syllables followed by a stressed syllable
A harsh combination of sounds
A brief quotation at the beginning of a literary work
A story where the conflict overcomes the main character
Traditionally a fourteen line love poem
Ex: Owen goes over the ocean
The way a writer uses language
Ex: 'she passed away' as opposed to 'she died'
The opposite of hyperbole
Figure of speech where the subject is not alive
A two syllable beat with a stressed and then an unstressed syllable
Ex: boom, crash, bang, jitterbug
The repeated use of the same grammatical structure in a sentence
A short narrative poem written in songlike stanza form
A metaphor developed at length
Word Choice
What a word suggests beyond its basic definition
A recording of the thoughts and emotional experience of a character on one or more levels of consciousness
The writer's or speaker's attitude
A sudden flash of insight
The art of effective communication, especially persuasive discourse
A comparison using like, as, or so
Non-literal language
A statement of the opposite of what is meant. bitter or cutting speech
Anything that appeals to the senses
The perspective from which a story is told
A short speech made by an actor onstage to the audience
A figure of speech in which an explicit comparison is made between two unlike things
A usually formal poem expressing sorrow or lamentation for the dead
The running over of a sentence from one verse or stanza to the next in poetry
A protagonist who carries the action of the literary piece but does not embody the classic characteristics of courage, strength and nobility
A label given to a literary work whose main purpose is to give guidance in moral, ethical, or religious matters
A reasonable conclusion drawn by the reader
Definition/ExampleLiterary Term
The events following the resolution of the final conflict of the plot
A four line stanza
A short, emotionally expressive poem
The use of a proper noun as a common name
Insolence, arrogance, or pride...leads to the protagonist's downfall
Ex: bittersweet living, living death, jumbo shrimp
An error in diction caused by the substitution of one word for another similar in sound but different in meaning
Short story illustraing a moral or religious lesson
Quality of being intentionally unclear
An emotional cleansing through expression of emotion
The opposite of parallel construction
The ability of a work to appeal to a wide segment of the reading public
A form of satire that elevates low characters and low situations by using elevated language in literary traditions of the epic
Ex: Arrayed and Said or Fine and Rhyme
Ex: any soap opera
A smooth, pleasant arrangement of sounds
The main character or force which creates conflict
Ex: All nerds wear glasses
Humorous use of a word involving two interpretations of meaning
'God from the machine'
A pause in a line of poetry
A figure of speech that replaces the name of something with a word or phrase closely associated with it
A literary form in which some or all of the characters are embodiments of abstract ideas. A story which carries a second meaning
An interruption by the introduction of an earlier event or past experience
The main character
Ex: To sit in solemn silence'
Compares an unfamiliar object or place by comparing it to the familiar
Repetition of a line, stanza, or phrase
The quality of a literary work which appeals to emotion
Two ideas presented closely together for contrast
Ex: My only love sprung from my only hate
A literary type classified by form and technique
The organizational pattern of a work
Poetry with no fixed metrical pattern or representation
The use of humor to ridicule and expose the shortcomings and failings of society
A sentence that delivers its point at the end
Ex: FOR ti fy
Latin for 'in the middle of things'
A character, situation or symbol that is familiar to people from all cultures because it occurs frequently in literature, myth, religion or folklore
The atmosphere or feeling a literary work gives the reader
Definition/ExampleLiterary Term
A humorous play depending on an exaggerated, improbable situation
The expression of the opposite of what is intended
The ryhtmical pattern of a poem
Narrow in point of view or approach
The stage setting of a play
A dramatic monologue
A rhetorical device consisting of a switch in the normal word order
The central idea of a literary work
The repetition at close intervals of the final consonant sounds of accented syllables or important words
Ex: All hands on deck
The time and place in which the action of the plot occurs
Attribution of human characteristics to an animal or inanimate object
A satirical imitation of a poem or other writing
A reference to something in previous literature or history
Two succesive rhyming lines
The arrangement of details in such an order that the unimportant suddenly appears at the point where the critical detail should be
A story that explains the origins of God's heroes or natural phenomenon
A short pithy statement of a principle or precept
Hints of what is to come
A witty, pointed, terse saying
Ex: I'm so hungry that I could eat a horse
The telling of a story or an account of an event or series of events
Unrhymed poetry written in iambic pentameter
A word's most literal and limited meaning
A stereotypical character
A word or group of words used to characterize a person.
A simple one-dimensional character
The way an author chooses to join words into phrases, clauses, and sentences
The true, actual events...not figurative
A poem, play, or story that celebrates and idealizes a simple life
Language describing ideas and qualities rather than specific things. people, or places
Something that has a deeper meaning
Seize the day
Extravagant language
A character who contrasts with the main character
A complex or far-fetched comparison
A character centering about a single quality, one that does not grow or change during the action of the plot
Elevating someone to the level of God
A radical change in a character
An element within a story that is out of its time frame

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