120 AP Literary Terms

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Can you name the 120 AP Literary Terms?

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

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