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Glossary of literary terms

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❶Suspense — technique that keeps the reader guessing what will happen next. Climax - the turning point in a literary work.

Literary Devices and Terms




A Study of Nine Plays. Volume of Schweizer anglistische Arbeiten. Narr Francke Attempto, Garner's Modern English Usage 4 ed. Stanford University Press, Volume 1, Eastern culture.

The Hokuseido Press, The Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics: Pictures of the Heart: The Hyakunin Isshu in Word and Image. University of Hawaii Press, Dictionary of the Literature of the Iberian Peninsula: Greenwood Publishing Group, Een bloemlezing uit de klassieke Japanese literatuur.

An Anthology, Beginnings To Columbia University Press, Volume of Memoirs of the American Philosophical Society. American Philosophical Society, Retrieved from " https: Wikipedia glossaries Literary criticism Literary theory Literary terminology Literature lists. Pages with citations lacking titles Pages with citations having bare URLs. Views Read Edit View history. In other projects Wikimedia Commons. This page was last edited on 4 September , at By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

An acrostic in which the first letter of every word, strophe or verse follows the order of the alphabet. Noun used to describe the stress put on a certain syllable while speaking a word. For example, there has been disagreement over the pronunciation of "Abora" in line 41 of "Kubla Khan" by Samuel Taylor Coleridge. According to Herbert Tucker of the website For Better For Verse, the accent is on the first and last syllable of the word, making its pronunciation: Accentual verse is common in children's poetry.

Nursery rhymes and the less well-known skipping-rope rhymes are the most common form of accentual verse in the English Language. An acrostic is a poem or other form of writing in which the first letter, syllable, or word of each line, paragraph, or other recurring feature in the text spells out a word or a message.

An Acrostic by Edgar Allan Poe. A word or phrase which modifies a noun or pronoun, grammatically added to describe, identify, or quantify the related noun or pronoun.

A describing word used to modify a verb, adjective, or another adverb. Typically ending in -ly, adverbs answer the questions when, how, and how many times. A type of writing in which the settings, characters, and events stand for other specific people, events, or ideas. A figure of speech that makes a reference to, or representation of, people, places, events, literary work, myths, or works of art, either directly or by implication.

An interjected scene that takes the narrative back in time from the current point the story has reached.

A version of the foot in poetry in which the first two syllables of a line are unstressed, followed by a stressed syllable.

Intercept the syllables in and ter are unstressed followed by cept which is stressed. A short account of a particular incident or event, especially of an interesting or amusing nature. The adversary of the hero or protagonist of a drama or other literary work: Iago is the antagonist [18] of Othello. The omission of conjunctions between clauses.

An example is when John F. Kennedy said on January the 20th " Verse written in iambic pentameter without rhyme. Also known as "lexis" and "word choice," the term refers to the words selected for use in any oral, written, or literary expression. Diction often centers on opening a great array of lexical possibilities with the connotation of words by maintaining first the denotation of words.

A line in poetry that ends in a pause—indicated by a specific punctuation, such as a period or a semicolon. The continuing of a syntactic unit over the end of a line. Enjambment occurs when the sense of the line overflows the meter and line break. A long poem that narrates the victories and adventures of a hero.

It can be identified by lofty or elegant diction. An interjected scene that takes the narrative forward in time from the current point of the story in literature, film, television, and other media. Prose written in a terse, haikai style, accompanied by haiku. Broad genre comprising the related forms haiku haikai-renga and haibun. A line from a poem hat has six feet in its meter. Another name for hexameter is "The Alexandrine. In Japanese poetry , the opening stanza of a renga or renku haikai no renga.

A figure of speech that alters the syntactic order of the words in a sentence or separates normally-associated words. Flashback - the method of returning to an earlier point in time for the purpose of making the present clearer.

Foreshadowing - hint of what is to come in a literary work. Genre — type or category to which a literary work belongs. Hyperbole — extreme exaggeration to add meaning. Imagery — language that appeals to the five senses. Metaphor — an implied comparison between dissimilar objects: Motif - a recurring feature of a literary work that is related to the theme. Onomatopoeia — use of a word whose sound imitates its meaning: Oxymoron — phrase that consists of two words that are contradictory: Personification — figure of speech in which non-human things are given human characteristics.

Plot - The sequence of events in a literary work. Point of view - the vantage point or perspective from which a literary work is told…. Protagonist - the main character in a literary work. Rhyme — repetition of similar or identical sounds: Setting - The time and place of a literary work.

Simile — a direct comparison of dissimilar objects, usually using like or as: Speaker — voice in a poem; the person or thing that is speaking. Stanza — group of lines forming a unit in a poem.

Suspense — technique that keeps the reader guessing what will happen next. Theme — the underlying main idea of a literary work.


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rows · The Concise Dictionary of Literary Terms. Oxford Univ. Press, ISBN Chris Baldick. The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Literary Terms. Oxford Univ. Press, ISBN X. Edwin Barton & G. A. Hudson. Contemporary Guide To Literary Terms. Houghton-Mifflin, ISBN Mark .

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Alliteration is a literary device where words are used in quick succession and begin with letters belonging to the same sound group. Whether it is the consonant sound or a specific vowel group, the alliteration involves creating a repetition of .

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Lit Terms for the Lanese Midterm! Learn with flashcards, games, and more — for free. This webpage contains an alphabetical glossary of literary terms and their definitions. It focuses particularly on the material I most frequently teach (classical and medieval literature, the history of the English language, and science fiction narratives).

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Browse through our list of literary devices and literary terms with definitions, examples, and usage tips. Explore each device in depth through literature. Literary Terms. Essential Literary Terms. HAVERLING HIGH SCHOOL ENGLISH DEPARTMENT'S OFFICIAL LIST. As it says, this list is official. Except for the first five terms, which belong in a group, it is alphabetized. There is a link to a printable version of this list at the bottom of the page.