Drama Terms Romeo & Juliet
Act A main division of a drama.
Shakespeare’s plays consist of five acts with each act subdivided into scenes.
Scene A small unit of a play in which there is no shift of locale or time.
Chorus Sets the scene, introducing the play or act, and giving the audience background or other information. The chorus often appears as the prologue.
Prologue The introduction to a literary work. It often sets the scene and gives background information for the story.
Aside A brief remark made by a character and intended to be heard by the audience but not by other characters.
Monologue A speech in a play that is spoken in the presence of other characters.
Soliloquy A speech given by a character alone on the stage.
The purpose of a soliloquy is to let the audience know what the character is thinking and feeling.
Tragedy A drama of human conflict which ends in defeat and suffering.
Often the main character has a tragic flaw which leads to his or her destruction.
Poetry A heightened form of language produced through rhythm and sound.
Prose normal, everyday language and writing
Iambic Pentameter Unstressed syllable followed by a stressed syllable (iamb) 10 syllables total
Blank Verse Verse written in iambic pentameter without end rhyme
Allusion A reference to a literary or historical person or event to explain a present situation.
Pun A play on words
Irony A contrast between what is and what appears to be.
Verbal Irony Contrast in which a character says one thing and means another.
Dramatic Irony Contrast in which the audience knows what the characters do not.
Paradox A statement which seems to contradict itself, but is at the same time logical. Example: So foul and fair a day I have not seen.” Macbeth
Foil A character who contrasts with another character, usually the protagonist, and in so doing, makes the personality of the other stand out
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