Allusion: a reference to a well-known person, place, event, literary work, or work of art.
Allusion versus Illusion Do not confuse allusion with the word illusion. An illusion is something that gives a false sense of reality (Think David Blaine).
Examples of Allusion As the cave’s roof collapsed, he was swallowed up like Jonah. Who is Jonah and what happened to him?
Examples of Allusions Jonah was a biblical figure that was swallowed by a whale and then spit out; this saved his life. Why would the speaker use this allusion? How does it help you to better understand his or her point?
Examples of Allusions Sandy didn’t like to spend money. She was no Scrooge or anything, but she only bought the bare necessities. Who was Scrooge, and where did we meet him?
Examples of Allusions Scrooge was a character in A Christmas Carol, a novel by Charles Dickens. When you call someone a “Scrooge”, what are you saying? How does this help someone better understand what you are trying to say?
Examples of Allusions Listen to and follow along with the lyrics to this popular Byrds’ song… Can you recognize the allusion?
“Turn, Turn, Turn” The Byrds To everything, turn, turn, turn There is a season, turn, turn, turn And a time for every purpose under heaven A time to be born, a time to die A time to plant, a time to reap A time to kill, a time to heal A time to laugh, a time to weep A time to build up, a time to break down A time to dance, a time to mourn A time to cast away stones A time to gather stones together A time of love, a time of hate A time of war, a time of peace A time you may embrace A time to refrain from embracing A time to gain, a time to lose A time to rend, a time to sew A time of love, a time of hate A time of peace, I swear it's not too late
Allusions It is an allusion to Ecclesiastes 3:1-8… And a time for every matter under heaven: A time to be born, and a time to die; A time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted; A time to kill, and a time to heal; A time to break down, and a time to build up; A time to weep, and a time to laugh; A time to mourn, and a time to dance; A time to throw away stones, and a time to gather stones together; A time to embrace, And a time to refrain from embracing; A time to seek, and a time to lose; A time to keep, and a time to throw away; A time to tear, and a time to sew; A time to keep silence, and a time to speak; A time to love, and a time to hate, A time for war, and a time for peace.