120 AP Literary Terms

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Can you name the 120 AP Literary Terms?

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

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