English 4 Lit Terms

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Allegory
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Work with two levels of meaning, a symbolic and literal one Most characters, objects, setting and events represent abstract ones.
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Alliteration
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Repetition of initial consonant sounds
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Allusion
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An indirect reference to a well-known person, place, event, literary work, or work of art
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Anaolgy
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a comparison between two things for the purpose of clarifying the familiar of the two objects
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Assonance
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Repetition of a vowel sound
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Conceit
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-extended metaphor comparison between to essentially unlike things that have something in common and is compared in various ways and at length
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Connotation
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emotional response evoked by a word in contrast to its literal meaning
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Consonance
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Repetition of consonant sounds within and at the end of words
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Couplet
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A pair of lines that end in rhyme
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Diction
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A writer’s or speaker’s choice of words.
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Dramatic Monolouge
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lyric poem in which a speaker addresses a silent or absent listener in a moment of high intensity or deep emotion, as if engaged in private conversation
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Elegy
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extended meditative poem in which the speaker focuses on death -often in tribute to someone who has died recently- or of an equally serious subject
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Epic Poem
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long narrative poem that traces the adventures of a hero whose actions consists of courageous, superhuman deeds which often represent the values and ideals of a nation and race
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Free Verse
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Poetry that does not have a regular meter or rhyme scheme
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Gothic Literature
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Characterized by grotesque characters, bizarre situations, and violent events
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Hyperbole
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A figure of speech that uses exaggeration to express strong emotion, make a point, or evoke humor
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Imagery
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Words or phrases that create vivid sensory experiences for the reader
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Dramatic Irony
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Occurs when the reader or viewer knows something that a character does not know
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Situational Irony
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Occurs when a character or the reader expects one thing to happen but something else actually happens
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Verbal Irony
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Occurs when a writer or a character says one thing but means another
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Kenning
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Metaphorical compound words or phrases substituted for simple nouns
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Lyric
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A short poem in which a single speaker expresses personal thoughts and feelings
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Metaphor
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A figure of speech that compares two things that have something in common, do not use like or as
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Metaphysical Poetry
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A style of poetry written by a group of 17th- century poets, approaches subjects such as religion death and love and analyze them logically and philosophically
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Meter
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Repetition of a regular rhythmic unit in a line of poetry
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Myth
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A traditional story, passed down through generations that explains why the world in the way it is
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Narrative Poem
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A poem that tells a story using elements of a character, setting and plot to develop a theme
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Neoclassicism
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Attitudes toward life and art that dominated English literature during the Restoration and 18th century Respected order, reason, and rules and viewed humans as limited and imperfect
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Ode
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Complex lyric poem that develops a serious and dignified theme Appeal to both the imagination and the intellect
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Oral Literature
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Literature that is passed from one generation to another by performance or word of mouth
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Oxymoron
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Brings together two contradictory terms
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Paradox
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A statement that seems to contradict itself but, in fact, reveals some element of truth
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Parody
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Writing that imitates either the style or the subject matter of a literary work for the purpose of criticism, humorous effect, or flattering tribute
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Pastoral
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Poem presenting shepherds in rural settings, usually in an idealized manner
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Personification
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A figure of speech in which an object or animal is given human feelings, thoughts, or attitudes
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Primary Sources
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Accounts of events written by people who were directly involved in or witness to the events -diaries, letters, wills, public documents
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Prose
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All forms of written or spoken expression that are not in verse
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Refrain
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A part of a stanza, consisting of one or more lines that are repeated regularly, sometimes with changes, often at the ends of succeeding stanzas
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Rhyme
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Occurs when the sounds of words accented vowels and all succeeding sounds are identical
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Romance
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Popular Narrative form since the Middle Ages. Refers to any imaginative adventure concerned with noble heroes, gallant love, a chivalric code of honor, daring deeds and supernatural events
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Romanticism
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Literary movement that flourished in Britain and Europe throughout much of the 19th century. Looked to nature for inspiration, idealized the distant past, and celebrated the individual
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Satire
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Literary technique in which ideas, customs, behaviors, or institutions are ridiculed for the purpose of improving society.
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Secondary Sources
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Accounts written by people who were not directly involved or witness to an event -history book
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Simile
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A figure of speech that compares two things that have something in common using a word (like or as)
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Soliloquy
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A speech in a dramatic work in which a character speaks his or her thoughts aloud
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Sonnet
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A lyric poem of 14 lines, commonly written in iambic pentameter Italian and English
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Symbol
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A person, place or object that has a concrete meaning in itself and also stands for something beyond itself, such as an idea or feeling
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Theme
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Underlying message that a writer wants the reader to understand Perception about life or human nature that the writer shares with the reader
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Tone
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Writer’s attitude towards his or her subject
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Tragedy
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A dramatic work that present the downfall of a dignified character who is involved in historically, morally or social significant events

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