Questions tagged [figures-of-speech]

This tag should be used when asking a question about a figure of speech, such as when asking how to incoporate a certain type of rhetorical device in your writing or which kind of rhetorical device could help you convey your intentions to your readers.

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Can we treat a word as a different thing, and then use preposition that don't naturally cooccur with it?

Can we treat a word as a different thing, and then use preposition that don't naturally cooccur with it? I don't know if this is considered a metaphor, but this is rarely done. For example, I was ...
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Can you create your own figure of speech and use them in your writing?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HYsz1hP0BFo The term "star walking" is used, and I thought it was a metonymy since he's saying star walking instead of space walking as when we say "...
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Can you combine any number of figures of speech into a single one?

Can you combine any number of figures of speech into a single one? By that, I mean can you combine as many as you want into one. Let's say you want to use a metaphor and then combine it with irony, or ...
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Is this a valid metonymy?

Is this a valid metonymy? She flirted with the raunchy snarls of men. She flirted with degenerate men. Are these two the same? I thought you can do this, but someone told me this was nonsensical. ...
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What do you call the technique of using idioms to form new idioms to allude to something?

On English Language Learners there was a question about the lyrics "Wake me up inside" regarding the grammatical correctness and meaning of the words. I am wondering if there is a name for ...
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Can you use the landscape and personification to imply what a person is thinking?

Can you use the landscape and personification to imply what a person is thinking? Example: The forest thought that these branches could be good for hanging myself (suicide). Is this a valid figure ...
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Can I use rain as a metaphor for war?

"Avalon falls to these lands. The red blood poured from the sky." Using Avalon instead of rain. Is this a metaphor and is this a valid metaphor? I am trying to see if this makes any sense ...
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What do you call the act of "misusing" metaphors?

What do you call the act of "misusing" metaphors or using it in a way that's not accepted or considered wrong by most authors. I am trying to find the word, because there are no clear rules ...
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Can we use personification this way?

Can we use personification this way? Say His bold eyes swam through the forest. Instead of saying: He boldly ran through the forest. I am wondering if this type of metaphorical language is ...
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Can you use personification and then refer to the inanimate thing as a part of your body? [closed]

Can you use personification and then refer to the inanimate thing as a part of your body? For example: The mournful hills, full of violent rivers, cried my lost uncle. It sounds like an odd thing to ...
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When does figurative language go too far?

I like using figurative language to lighten up my writing. However, I'm not sure how far you can take some stylistic devices, such as personification. Please take a look at this example: “XYZ is a ...
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Using colors as words

He was clad with white and silver bracelets. Can we use colors such as white and use them as a substitute for other words like "white clothes"? He was clad with white linen and silver bracelets. ...
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Adding a double-meaning to a phrase/sentence by "layering" our writing with meanings

"He traveled all his life to grasp the light, and he did." The light can be interpreted as something divine or something associated with the forces of good, but the phrase "grasp the light" could be ...
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How can we distinguish good metaphors from bad ones?

How can we distinguish good metaphors from bad ones? I feel like a lot of figurative languages can border nonsense, but how much nonsense is too much nonsense? Are there rules or standards that ...
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What kind of metaphor is "colors of the wind"?

What kind of metaphor is "color of the wind"? I am not sure it's a metaphor, because we're attributing some traits that shouldn't be associated to wind. It's a figure of speech, but I don't know if it'...
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Is it okay to put an inversion in a song lyrics?

In the dark alley of my youth, light, it shone from the cloud-ladden sky. I've been listening to the chirping in the trees. Lately, I felt a bit more free. I am wondering if this is ...
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Ironic Juxtaposition or Antithesis?

The human animal is a beautiful and terrible creature, capable of limitless compassion and unfathomable cruelty. This is taken from the lyrics Sophia by The Crüxshadows. It had stuck with me for so ...
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Is this 'complex' metaphor an oxymoron? [closed]

This is from the lyrics "The Edge of Dawn" from Fire Emblem Three Houses: Yet still I hide Behind this mask that I have become My blackened heart Scorched by flames of a force I can'...
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What kind of metaphor is "trees in the wind"? [closed]

What kind of metaphor is "trees in the wind"? I saw God in the Forest Teachin' Tai Chi To the trees in the wind Bowing to the sea Excerpt from http://www.bensollee.com/panning-for-...
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Is writing literary devices in a narrative essay (reflective) always good?

In narrative essays, writing literary devices almost always makes the reader feel more of what is in the story. However, sometimes I like writing reflective narratives, where thoughts of the character ...
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When does a phrase change from "quote" to "expression coined by"?

"The best-laid plans of mice and men oft go awry" comes from Robert Burns's To a Mouse. It is a commonly used expression, though the "mice and men" part is often omitted nowadays. In fact, not every ...
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When is using a simile better than giving a literal description?

Definition of simile : a figure of speech comparing two unlike things that is often introduced by like or as (as in cheeks like roses) Similes are nice tools that every narrator has (even if I'...
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Combining an idiom with a metonymy

I am not sure if this is possible. I would like to use a metonymy with an idiom, and it doesn't seem to be something people ever did, so it feels wrong. I have the following sentence: He was in ...
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Using spoonerism for a non-humoristic purpose

I found this interesting figure of speech called spoonerism. Here's the article: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spoonerism Now, I have been wondering if spoonerism can be used in a non-humoristic ...
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Can metaphors be used for other purposes than for stylistic effect and to form an allegory?

I was wondering if there were other uses for metaphors other than forming an allegory and for stylistic effect, that is, adding more flair to a description that would be otherwise dull. I've done some ...
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Are there situations where using an anastrophe is ill-advised?

I wrote a (unrhymed) couplet, because I couldn't find a good enough example: She ran the comb through her hair ebony As the night fell upon the land of light. Is there a situation where ...
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Is there such a thing as a "cinematographic metaphor" in novels?

What I mean by "cinematographic metaphor" is that, instead of expressing metaphors using words, you use images that are imprinted in your mind through descriptions in a novel. Here's what I mean: We ...
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Is this an oxymoron, and what would be the purpose of making seemingly illogical statements in writing? [closed]

Here's a piece of writing I came up with: The rolling billows rocked the mighty galleon cradling it madly as if it were but a mere child. There are many seeming contradictions: When we think "...
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Language specific rhetorical devices and their influence on non-English native writers [closed]

NOTE: I've heavily rephrased the original question in a last attempt to clarify it. Background to the question While studying Portuguese literature in secondary school, one learns several rhetorical ...
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Is alliteration distracting and not very valuable/interesting for the reader?

I tend to use alliteration a lot. This is an example from a story I'm writing: "Let me get this straight," Aru said, sliding on her dress. She always felt frosty after failed fornication. "You're ...
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Can someone give me an example of a figure of speech that could realistically be confused for a literal statement?

As the title says: Can someone give me an example of a figure of speech, that the hearer might realistically be confused and think was intended literally? Or someone makes a literal statement that ...
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Metaphor or Personification

Recently, on a school test, I was given a poem comprehension. One of the questions was : What is the figure of speech in "...the trees start whispering among themselves? (A) Metaphor (B) ...
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Rhetoric vs Figure of Speech

From Wikipedia, I learned that figure of speech is change of general usage of words. When it's a change of the ordinary or expected pattern of words, it is called "scheme", while when it's a change of ...
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What literary techniques are evident in this quote?

What literary techniques are evident in the following quote? I read each bullet scar in the Quai stonework With an eerie familiar feeling, And started at the stricken, sunny exposure of ...
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Rhetorical devices in Frankenstein

I wanted clarification on what techniques are employed in the following quote: I was benevolent and good but misery made me a fiend. Is this an example of high modality, antithesis - or is there ...
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