Figures of Speech

Figures of Speech :

A figure of speech is a form of speech in which words are used out of their ordinary meaning. In other words, a figure of speech is an artful deviation from the direct way of saying something in order to gain strength and freshness of expression.

Figures of speech are divided into two main groups.

• The Schemes

• The Tropes

Scheme Involves transference order.

Schemes of balance :

Schemes of balance include Parallelism and Antithesis.

Parallelism : Parallelism is an arrangement of phrases, sentences and paragraphs so that elements of equal importance are equally developed and similarly developed.

Some Books are to be tasted others to be Swallowed and a few to be chewed and digested.

Antithesis : It is literary technique in which opposite or strongly contrasting statements are balanced against each other for emphasis.

Man Proposes, God Disposes.

Schemes of repetition :

Schemes of balance include Alliteration, Assonance, Anaphora, Epistrophe, Anadiplosis and Epanalepsis.

Alliteration : Alliteration is the initial or medial repetition of similar consonants in stressed syllabus in a sequence of nearby words.

Round the rock runs the river – Tennyson

Assonance : Assonance is resemblance or similarity in sound between vowels in two or more syllabus in a sequence of nearby words.

A host of golden daffodils – William Wordsworth

Anaphora : Anaphora is a term associated with the device of repetition in which the same expression is repeated at the beginning of two or more lines, clauses or sentences.

Walk in faith…Walk in truth…Walk in light…Walk in with Christ.

Give me the strength lightly to bear my joys and sorrows.

Give me the strength to make my love fruitful in services. - Rabindranath Tagore

Epistrophe : Epistrophe is the repetition of words or phrases at the end of every successive clause.

I’ll have my bond! Speak not against my bond! I’ve sworn an oath I’ll have my bond! (BY Shakespeare in The Merchant of Venice)

Anadiplosis : Anadiplosis is a term associated with the repetition in which the word or words at the end of one clause recur at the beginning of the next.

In equality of income leads to poverty. Poverty leads to fear, mistrust and ill will. Fear, Mistrust and ill-will lead to war. War is the creation of capitalism.

Simile : Simile is the figure of speech in which a similarity between two subjects is directly expressed. Most similes are introduced as or like.

He was as high as a kite.

The shark‘s jaw gripped like a clamp.

Metaphor : Metaphor is a figure of speech based on comparison that is implied rather than directly expressed.

He was a lion in the flight.

Hyperbole : It is the figure of speech based on exaggeration.

Rivers of blood

Litotes : Litotes is the figure of speech in which an affirmative is expressed by stating a negative or the opposite of what one means.

I‘m sure you’d never do that.(It means I’m sure you would do that)

Climax : Climax is a term used to indicate the arrangement of words, phrases events or ideas in rising order of importance.

Like this baseless fabric this vision
The cloud clapped towers, the gorgeous palaces
The solemn temples, the great globe itself
Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve.
BY Shakespeare In fiction and drama the climax is the turning point of the plot.

Irony : Irony is a form of speech used to convey a meaning which is opposite to the literal meaning of the word.

Cordelia in King Lear refers to her unnatural sisters as – the jewel of our father.

Paradox : Paradox is a statement that seems contradictory or absurd and yet is true.

Action goes on but actors are motionless.

Oxymoron : In oxymoron two contradictory terms are brought together.

Wise fool, sad joy, the sound of silence.

Onomatopoeia : It refers to use of words in which the sense is suggested by the sound.

Hiss, buzz, gurgle, sizzle, splash

Personification : It is the figure of speech which endows animals, ideas, abstractions and inanimate objects with human form, character or feelings.

The breeze whispered.

The trees sighed and moaned.

Transferred Ephithet : HYPELLAGE is also called Transferred Ephithet. It is the figure of speech in which a descriptive adjective is transferred from the noun to which it naturally belongs to another noun.

Paul passed a sleepless night.

In this example the night was not sleepless .It was Paul who was sleepless.

Euphemism : Euphemism is a figure of speech in which an indirect statement is substituted for a direct one in an effort to avoid bluntness.

Passed away is euphemism used to for the term died.

Figures of Speech :

Irregular Verbs Index

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Figures of Speech