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ENG1DB Examining Literary Devices: Definitions and Examples

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1 ENG1DB Examining Literary Devices: Definitions and Examples
Hooray for learning!

2 Literary Device Definition
Simile: A figure of speech that directly compares two unlike things, by employing the words "like" or "as“ within the comparison.

3 Literary Device Examples
Simile: Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you're going to get. Tucked safely in her bed, the little girl was as snug as a bug in a rug. All weekend long, Miranda was as busy as a bee.

4 Literary Device Definition
Metaphor: A direct comparison between two unlike things in order to suggest a resemblance and enhance or exemplify the characteristics of one or both objects/people being compared.

5 Literary Device Examples
Metaphor: All the world's a stage, And all the men and women merely players. High school is a prison of which there is no escape. Life is a rollercoaster filled with ups and downs.

6 Literary Device Definition
Onomatopoeia: A word that imitates a sound The naming of a thing or action by a vocal imitation of the sound associated with it

7 Literary Device Examples
Onomatopoeia: The hinges on the rusty door creaked loudly. The venomous snake hissed a warning to nearby hikers. The annoying fly buzzed passed William’s sweaty ear amid the dense summer heat.

8 Literary Device Definition
Hyperbole: An obvious and purposeful statement of exaggeration used for emphasis, dramatic effect, and to make a clear point.

9 Literary Device Examples
Hyperbole: I told you a million times that this was a bad idea! When I tripped on stage in front of the entire school, I almost died of embarrassment! I am so tired that I think I might sleep for a year!

10 Literary Device Definition
Personification: A literary device in which an inanimate object or abstract concept is given human qualities or abilities.

11 Literary Device Examples
Personification: The immense oak tree stretched its ancient arms high in the air, so that its twisted fingers could feel the radiant warmth of his close friend, the sun. The serene snow flakes quietly whispered to the people below that winter was on its way. Opportunity knocked boldly on the door, but fear could not bring itself to answer.

12 Literary Device Definition
Irony: The use of words to convey a meaning that is the direct opposite of its literal meaning or to defy readers’ expectations, and/or an incongruity between a situation developed in a text and the accompanying words or actions that are understood by the audience are not understood in the same way by the characters (verbal irony, situational irony, dramatic irony)

13 Literary Device Examples
Irony: “What a beautiful view,” he said, his voice dripping with irony, as he looked out the window at the dark, garbage-filled alley. (verbal irony) A bylaw officer gets his/her license suspended for unpaid parking tickets. (situational irony) In Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare, when Romeo finds Juliet in a drugged sleep, he incorrectly assumes her to be dead and kills himself because he feels that he cannot live without her, but the audience knows that she is alive. Upon awakening to find her lover dead beside her, Juliet then kills herself, adding to the tragedy of the play. (dramatic irony)

14 Literary Device Definition
Alliteration: The repetition of the same consonant sounds at the beginning of words or in stressed syllables within a series of words.

15 Literary Device Examples
Alliteration: The sly snake slithered slyly through the sand. Becky’s beagle barked and bayed, becoming bothersome for Billy. Around the rugged rock the ragged rascal ran.

16 Literary Device Definition
Allusion: A figure of speech that makes reference to recognizable people, places, events, literary works, myths, or works of art, either directly or by implication.

17 Literary Device Examples
Allusion: After my surgery, my intersecting stiches and my collection of jagged scars made me feel like Frankenstein’s monster. We could never find the right time to be together even though we both secretly knew we could make each other very happy. Every time I was single, he was dating someone. I was beginning to think that we were like Shakespeare’s star-crossed lovers; perhaps our love was not meant to be.

18 Literary Device Definition
Symbolism: The practice of representing a deeper meaning through symbols or attributing symbolic significance to objects, events, or relationships beyond their literal appearance.

19 Literary Device Examples
Symbolism: A wedding ring symbolizes never-ending, unbroken love and devotion. A bird flying high into the clouds symbolizes freedom. A snake in the grass symbolizes deceit and temptation.

20 Literary Device Definition
Imagery: Vivid, descriptive language that appeals to the reader’s five senses (sight, smell, taste, hearing, touch) and makes them feel as though they are experiencing a moment in the story with the character(s).

21 Literary Device Example #1
Imagery: I lay still and took another minute to smell: I smelled the warm, sweet, all-pervasive smell of sweat, as well as the sour dirty laundry spilling over the basket in the hallway. I could pick out the overwhelming smell of Claire’s putrid feet, and her hair that smelled like the ocean. The heat compounded the smells, doubled the fragrance. Howard always smelled and through the house his scent seemed always to be warm. His was a musky smell, as if the source of a muddy river, the Nile or the Mississippi, began right in his armpits. I had grown used to thinking of his smell as the fresh smell of hard work. That morning there was alfalfa on his pillow and cow manure embedded in his tennis shoes and the cuffs of his coveralls that lay by the bed.

22 Literary Device Example #2
Imagery: YOUR EXAMPLE! “The bright yellow school bus came to a stop with a screech on the street corner. The smell of gasoline filled my nostrils as I stepped anxiously onto the bus that I would ride every day for the next four years. The bus driver greeted me with a kind voice and smiling eyes. I eased myself into one of the stiff leather seats at the front. My tired eyes and yawning mouth became more prominent as the bus grew more stuffy and crowded with each stop. Everyone had an air of nervousness about them, exemplified by the make-up faced girls and cologne-scented guys. The ominous clouds followed our journey, filled with heavy, humid air outside, and inside, the bus was abuzz with the ever-present roar of chatter. Finally, we reached the front of White Oaks Secondary School, and my panic escalated. Bodies began to slowly file out of the vehicle, and I awkwardly squeezed my way through the throng of students until I was standing directly in front of the huge building. All of a sudden, for some reason the butterflies in my stomach disappeared, replaced with excitement. I couldn’t wait for grade nine to begin.”

23 Literary Device Definition
Oxymoron: A literary device in which contradictory terms appear side by side in order to create new meaning.

24 Literary Device Examples
Oxymoron: Jumbo shrimp Act natural You have to be cruel to be kind The walking dead

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