Literary Terms Handout
Part I Notes
Figurative Language: using figures of speech to
enrich description and create meaning.
These can include:
Analogy (Metaphor & Simile)
Alliteration & Consonance
A more general, often more vague, comparison
NOT using “like” or “as”
Ex. “Brandon is a bear in the morning when he
does not have his coffee”
This compares Brandon to a bear in many aspects.
This could mean that he looks, smells, sounds, or
acts like a bear.
Similes- a specific comparison of one trait; uses
the words “like” or “as”
Ex. “Brandon looks like John Travolta.”
This compares Brandon to John on the basis of
Ex. “Brandon is as sweet as sugar.”
This compares Brandon to sugar on the basis that
both things are sweet.
The repetition of the same vowel sounds to create
special emphasis or rhythm
Ex. Angry Alligators Argue Abundantly
The repetition of words with the same consonant
sound to create an emphasis or rhythm. Examples
from Jim Wayne Miller’s Brier Poems:
Attaching themselves to walls, they sit like locusts
clutching tree bark in a seventeenth summer.
Silence is the scratching of their feet on scattered
They crawl on me, creep into my ears and cling
The use of words whose sounds call up or “echo”
Style & Tone
Style- the writer’s choice of words and sentence
Tone- the writer’s attitude conveyed through
specific word choices and structures.
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