120 AP Literary Terms

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Can you name the 120 AP Literary Terms?

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

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