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We have the largest database of literary terms explained, with examples and resources to assist. Explore the glossary with 547 terms defined.

Iambic Dimeter

Iambic dimeter is a type of meter used in poetry. It occurs when the writer uses two iambs per line of verse.

Passive Voice

Passive voice is a generally disliked grammatical construction of sentences in which the “object” comes before the “subject.”

Tanka Poetry

A tanka poem is an important form in Japanese poetry that follows a syllable pattern of 5-7-5-7-7.


Sibilance is a literary device in which consonant sounds are stressed. These are primarily “s” and “th” sounds.


An allusion is an indirect reference to, including but not limited to, an idea, event, or person. It is used within both prose and verse writing.


Irony occurs when an outcome is different than expected. It is very possible for one situation to strike one reader as ironic and another not.

Time flies when you’re having fun

“Time flies when you’re having fun” refers to the phenomenon that time appears to pass more quickly when engaged in something they enjoy.


Vernacular is a type of speech. It is used to refer to local dialects and common language used among everyday people.


Mood is the feeling created by the writer for the reader. It is what happens within a reader because of the tone the writer used in the poem.


An epilogue is an extra chapter at the end of a literary work. 

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