Literary Terms

Flashcards by gurleen_kang, updated more than 1 year ago
Created by gurleen_kang over 7 years ago


pre-health English Flashcards on Literary Terms, created by gurleen_kang on 09/23/2013.

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Question Answer
Allegory when the characters or setting of a literary work represent general concepts, moral qualities, political or religious beliefs, real persons from history etc.
Allusion a brief reference, either explicit or indirect, to a person, place or event from real life/ history, or to other literature which may occur in any part of a literary work.
Alliteration the repetition of the same sound at the beginning of words in close succession
ambiguity use of a word or expression or idea to signify or express two or more things diverse and even contradictory attitudes feelings at the same time
anachronism when an element of a story is placed where it doesn’t belong chronologically
anagram the letters of a word or phrase are transposed to form a new word
analogy an extended comparison based on a partial resemblance between two different things
anaphora is the repetition of a word or group of words at the beginning of successive sentences/clauses/lines
epistrophe occurs when each sentence/clause/line ends with the same word.
apostrophe addressing an absent or dead person, a thing, or an abstract idea as if it were alive or present
archetype any idea, character, action, object, institution, event or setting containing essential characteristics which are primitive, general, universal and recur frequently throughout literature, mythology and folklore
assonance the close repetition of identical-sounding vowel sounds, especially in stressed syllables
atmosphere It may establish a feeling that it sets up readers' expectations as to what will happen in the text.
bathos It is false or forced emotion in literature that is humorous rather than touching.
black comedy humorous treatment of horrific, shocking and macabre subjects
carpe diem in Latin this means “seize the day.”
chronology the sequence in which events happen in a work of literature. This is sometimes called a timeline
conceit a complex metaphor which is usually part of a larger pattern of imagery that combines objects and concepts in unconventional ways.
consonance close repetition of identical consonant sounds which occur after different vowel sounds
denotation the thing to which the word specifically (the dictionary definition of a word);
connotation consist of the associated meanings it implies or suggests
diction refers to the selection of words, the vocabulary used in a text.
didactic any work of literature which teaches or instructs is called didactic.
epithet an adjective or phrase expressing some quality or attribute which is characteristic of a person or thing or typifies it
euphony the quality of having pleasant, easily pronounced or smooth-flowing sounds, free from harshness
cacophony he use of harsh-sounding words that are hard to pronounce in close succession which may result from a variety of causes
figure (also called a trope) any literary device which produces a certain effect in writing
metaphor n implicit comparison without using like or as
simile a comparison using like or as
irony saying the opposite of what one really means
satire using comedy as a “weapon” to criticise something
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