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54 Cards in this Set

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Absolute

a word free from limitations or qualifications ("best" "all")

adage

a familiar proverb or wise saying

ad hominem arguemnt

an argument attacking an individual's charachter rather than his positin on an issue

allegory

a literary work in which characters, objects, or actions represent abstractions

alliteration

the repetition of intitial sounds in successive or neighboring words

allusion

a reference to something literary, mythological, etc.

anaphora

repititon of words or phrases at beginning of phrases

antecedent

word, phrase, or clause to which a pronoun refers

antithesis

a statement in which two opposing ideas are balanced

aphorism

a concise statement that expresses succinctly a general truth or idea, often using rhyme or balance

apostrophe

a figure of speech in which one directly addresses an absent or imaginary person

aysyndeton

a series of things presented without conjuctions

bathos

insincere or overly sentimental quality of writing/speech to evoke pity

chiasmus

"ask not what you can do for your country but what your country can do for you"

colloquialism

slang not accepted in formal writing

complex sentence

one independent and one dependent

compound sentence

two independent clauses joined by a conjunction

conceit

a fanciful, particularly clever extended metaphore

cumalitive sentence

main independent clause is elaborated by modifying phrases

deductive reasoning

"The sun rises every morning; therefore, the sun will rise on tuesday morning."


From general to specific

inductive reasoning

"Every cat I have ever seen has four legs; cats are four legged animals."


From specific to general

dissonance

harsh, inharmonious, or discordant sounds

elegy

a formal poem presenting a mediation on death or another solemn theme

ellipsis

"Some people prefer cats; others, dogs."

epigram

brief paradoxical saying

epithet

a nickname to point out a characteristic of a person

frame device

a story within a story


Chaucer's "Canterbury Tales"

homily

moralistic lecture

hubris

excessive pride or arrogance that results in the downfall of the protagonist

invective

highly emotional verbal attack

limerick

light verse consisting of five lines of regular rhythm, in which the first, second, and fifth lines rhyme, and the second and third lines rhyme

litotes

a type of understatment


Describing a war scene as "It was not a pretty picture."

malaproism

"The doctor wrote a SUBSCRIPTION"

maxim

a concise statement offering advice

metonymy

"The pen (writing) is mightier than the sword (fighting)."

non sequiter

illogical, "does not follow"

oxymoron

"controlled sanity"

parable

simple story that illustrates moral lesson

paradox

apparently contradictory statement that contains some truth

parenthetical

comment that inturrupts the immediate subject

pedantic

excessive display of learning/scholarship

phillipic

strong verbal denunciation

sarcasm

harsh, cutting language to ridicule

satire

use of humor to emphasize human weakness

scapegoat

person that bears the blame for another

surrealism

artistic movement emphasizing imagination and characterized by incongruous juxtapositions and lack of conscious control

syllepsis

a word is used in two difference senses

syllogism

"All men are mortal; Socrates is a man; therefore, Socrates is mortal."

synecdoche

referring to a car as "wheels"

synesthesia

"a loud color."


"a sweet sound."

syntax

sentence structure

tautology

needless repitition which adds no meaning

trite

overused

vernacular

everyday speech of a particular country or region