Term Definition
ANALOGY a similarity between like features of two things, on which a comparison may be based
ANTAGONIST a person who is opposed to, struggles against, or competes with another; opponent; adversary
BLANK VERSE Unrhymed verse, especially the unrhymed iambic pentameter most frequently used in English dramatic, epic, and reflective verse
CHARACTERIZATION the act of characterizing or describing the individual quality of a person or thing
CLIMAX the highest or most intense point in the development or resolution of something; culmination
CONFLICT to come into collision or disagreement; be contradictory, at variance, or in opposition; clash
COUPLET a pair of successive lines of verse, especially a pair that rhyme and are of the same length
DICTION style of speaking or writing as dependent upon choice of words
FIGURATIVE LANGUAGE language that contains or uses figures of speech, especially metaphors
FOIL to prevent the success of; frustrate; balk
FORESHADOWING to show or indicate beforehand; prefigure
IAMBIC METER Iambic meter is lines of poetry containing iambs
IAMBIC PENTAMETER a line of verse with five metrical feet, each consisting of one short (or unstressed) syllable followed by one long (or stressed) syllable
IRONY the use of words to convey a meaning that is the opposite of its literal meaning
METAPHOR a figure of speech in which a term or phrase is applied to something to which it is not literally applicable in order to suggest a resemblance, as in “A mighty fortress is our God.”
PROTAGONIST the leading character, hero, or heroine of a drama or other literary work
PUN the humorous use of a word or phrase so as to emphasize or suggest its different meanings or applications, or the use of words that are alike or nearly alike in sound but different in meaning; a play on words
MONOLOGUE a form of dramatic entertainment, comedic solo, or the like by a single speaker
OXYMORON a figure of speech by which a locution produces an incongruous, seemingly self-contradictory effect, as in “cruel kindness” or “to make haste slowly.”
PERSONIFICATION the attribution of human nature or character to animals, inanimate objects, or abstract notions, especially as a rhetorical figure.
SIMILE a figure of speech in which two unlike things are explicitly compared, as in “she is like a rose.”
SOLILOQUY an utterance or discourse by a person who is talking to himself or herself or is disregardful of or oblivious to any hearers present (often used as a device in drama to disclose a character's innermost thoughts)
SONNET a poem, properly expressive of a single, complete thought, idea, or sentiment, of 14 lines, usually in iambic pentameter, with rhymes arranged according to one of certain definite schemes, being in the strict or Italian form divided
SYMBOL something used for or regarded as representing something else; a material object representing something, often something immaterial; emblem, token, or sign
SUSPENSE a state or condition of mental uncertainty or excitement, as in awaiting a decision or outcome, usually accompanied by a degree of apprehension or anxiety
THEME a subject of discourse, discussion, meditation, or composition; topic

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