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Quiz about Literary Lexicon  C
Quiz about Literary Lexicon  C

Literary Lexicon - "C" Trivia Quiz

Match the Literary Terms

Time for me to dust off that old English degree and think back to my university literature courses! I've provided you with ten literary terms that start with the letter "C".

A matching quiz by trident. Estimated time: 3 mins.
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3 mins
Match Quiz
Quiz #
Jun 09 24
# Qns
Avg Score
9 / 10
Last 3 plays: colavs33 (10/10), Liam12 (8/10), daver852 (10/10).
(a) Drag-and-drop from the right to the left, or (b) click on a right side answer box and then on a left side box to move it.
1. An idea that is overused and lacking in original thought  
2. The repetition of consonant sounds  
3. An accounting of events over time (real or imagined)  
4. Two consecutive lines in a poem that share rhyme and meter  
5. An inversion in grammar of a previous sentiment  
6. A device in which a plotline is left (temporarily or permanently) unresolved  
7. A deliberate exaggeration of a character's traits  
8. The use of harsh, discordant sounds in writing  
9. An extended (sometimes far-fetched) metaphor  
10. An intentional pause placed in a line of poetry  

Select each answer

1. An idea that is overused and lacking in original thought
2. The repetition of consonant sounds
3. An accounting of events over time (real or imagined)
4. Two consecutive lines in a poem that share rhyme and meter
5. An inversion in grammar of a previous sentiment
6. A device in which a plotline is left (temporarily or permanently) unresolved
7. A deliberate exaggeration of a character's traits
8. The use of harsh, discordant sounds in writing
9. An extended (sometimes far-fetched) metaphor
10. An intentional pause placed in a line of poetry

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Quiz Answer Key and Fun Facts
1. An idea that is overused and lacking in original thought

Answer: cliche

A cliché refers to an expression, idea, or element that has become overused to the point of losing its original meaning, impact, or novelty. Clichés often emerge from phrases, scenarios, or character types that were once innovative or evocative but have since been rendered predictable and trite through excessive repetition. In other words, a cliché is a worn-out, overly familiar concept that no longer provokes thought or emotion.

Writers and critics typically view clichés as indicative of lazy or unoriginal writing, as they fail to provide fresh perspectives or engage the audience in meaningful ways. A real-world example of a cliché can be found in the phrase "time heals all wounds." While this saying might offer comfort, its overuse has rendered it somewhat hollow and unconvincing in conveying genuine solace or wisdom.
2. The repetition of consonant sounds

Answer: consonance

Consonance refers to the repetition of consonant sounds, typically at the end or in the middle of words, in close proximity within a line or passage of text. Unlike alliteration, which focuses on the repetition of initial consonant sounds, consonance emphasizes recurring consonant sounds regardless of their placement within the word. This literary device is often used to create aural harmony, emphasize certain words or themes, and enhance the overall musicality and rhythm of a text. Consonance can be found in various forms of writing, including poetry, prose, and speeches.

A real-world example of consonance is present in the poem "The Raven" by Edgar Allan Poe, specifically in the line, "And the silken, sad, uncertain rustling of each purple curtain." In this line, the repeated 's' and 'r' sounds create a sense of hushed movement and enhance the eerie, melancholic atmosphere of the poem.
3. An accounting of events over time (real or imagined)

Answer: chronicle

A chronicle is a detailed account of events in chronological order, often focusing on historical or significant occurrences. Chronicles are typically written in prose and are intended to provide a comprehensive record of events as they unfolded over time. Chronicles can discuss real-world historical events or be a fictional accounting as narrated by a character or narrator. This form of writing is essential for preserving historical records and providing insights into the cultural, social, and political contexts of different periods.

A real-world example of a chronicle is "The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle", a collection of annals documenting the history of the Anglo-Saxons in England. Examples of fictional chronicles are "The Chronicles of Narnia" and "The Spiderwick Chronicles". As is common with these examples, the narrative lasts over several works.
4. Two consecutive lines in a poem that share rhyme and meter

Answer: couplet

A couplet is a pair of consecutive lines of poetry that typically rhyme and have the same meter, forming a complete thought or syntactical unit. Couplets are often used to provide emphasis, create a sense of closure, or convey a succinct message within a poem. They can stand alone as a complete poem or be integrated into larger poetic forms such as sonnets, epics, and narrative poems. Couplets are known for their brevity, rhythmic precision, and the memorable quality that their rhyme scheme imparts.

A notable example of a couplet can be found in the works of William Shakespeare, particularly in his sonnets. For instance, in Sonnet 18, Shakespeare concludes with the couplet: "So long as men can breathe or eyes can see, / So long lives this, and this gives life to thee." This closing couplet encapsulates the enduring power of poetry to immortalize beauty and love, reinforcing the theme of the sonnet with a resonant, rhyming statement.
5. An inversion in grammar of a previous sentiment

Answer: chiasmus

Chiasmus is a rhetorical device in which the structure of words, phrases, or clauses is reversed in parallel expressions, creating a mirror-like effect that emphasizes the contrast or relationship between the two parts. This literary technique often enhances the meaning, impact, and memorability of the text by presenting ideas in an inverted manner. To make it a bit clearer, chiasmus involves flipping the order of elements in two related expressions (which can be represented in an "ABBA" structure) to highlight a deeper connection or juxtaposition between them.

A modern-day example of chiasmus is found in the phrase, "The things you own end up owning you," popularized by Chuck Palahniuk's novel "Fight Club". This statement reflects the idea that material possessions, which people often acquire in pursuit of happiness or status, can ultimately exert control over their lives. By reversing the structure--starting with the subject "things you own" and concluding with "owning you"--Palahniuk underscores the ironic and often overlooked consequence of consumerism.
6. A device in which a plotline is left (temporarily or permanently) unresolved

Answer: cliffhanger

A cliffhanger is a narrative device used to create suspense and tension by abruptly ending a section of a story (or even the story in its entirety) at a crucial or dramatic moment, leaving the outcome unresolved and compelling the audience to continue reading to find out what happens next. This technique is commonly employed in literature, television, and film to maintain audience interest and anticipation for future developments in the plot.

An example of a cliffhanger can be found in Lois Lowry's novel "The Giver". Near the end of the book, the protagonist, Jonas, makes a daring escape from his dystopian society, fleeing with a young baby named Gabriel. The novel ends with Jonas and Gabriel riding a sled through a snowy landscape, uncertain of what lies ahead and whether they will find safety and freedom. This unresolved ending leaves readers on the edge of their seats, eager to discover the fate of the characters and the outcome of their journey.
7. A deliberate exaggeration of a character's traits

Answer: caricature

Caricature refers to an exaggerated portrayal of a character or archetype, often with distinctive and exaggerated features or traits, for comedic, satirical, or dramatic effect. Caricature involves the creation of characters who embody extreme or exaggerated characteristics, making them larger-than-life and often serving as vehicles for social commentary or criticism.

A classic example of caricature can be found in Sir John Falstaff, a character in William Shakespeare's plays "Henry IV, Part 1" and "Henry IV, Part 2". Falstaff is depicted as a larger-than-life figure, known for his excessive wit, boisterousness, gluttony, and cowardice. While Falstaff possesses depth and complexity as a character, he is deliberately portrayed in an exaggerated manner, often serving as a comedic foil to the more serious themes and characters in the plays.
8. The use of harsh, discordant sounds in writing

Answer: cacophony

Cacophony refers to the intentional use of harsh, discordant, or jarring sounds in language to create a sense of chaos, disharmony, or tension. This technique involves arranging words or phrases in a way that produces unpleasant or grating sounds, often to evoke a specific mood or atmosphere in the reader. Cacophony involves the deliberate creation of noise or dissonance through language.

An example of cacophony can be found in John Updike's poem "Player Piano". In the excerpt "My stick fingers click with a snicker / And, chuckling, they knuckle the keys," the repetitive use of harsh consonant sounds, like "ck" and "n," creates a cacophony of noise, almost guttural in nature.
9. An extended (sometimes far-fetched) metaphor

Answer: conceit

A conceit is a metaphor or comparison between two seemingly unrelated things, often extended throughout a poem or literary work. Unlike a traditional metaphor, which typically draws a comparison between two elements that share some common characteristics, a conceit often involves a more elaborate or far-fetched comparison, often incorporating elements of wit, irony, or paradox.

An example of a conceit can be found in John Donne's poem "The Flea". In this poem, Donne compares the act of two lovers being united through the biting of a flea to the act of sexual intercourse. Despite the seemingly incongruous nature of the comparison, Donne extends the metaphor throughout the poem, exploring the idea of physical intimacy and the merging of identities in a playful and inventive manner.
10. An intentional pause placed in a line of poetry

Answer: caesura

A caesura refers to a deliberate pause or break in a line of poetry, usually marked by punctuation or a natural rhythmical pause in speech. This pause disrupts the flow of the verse, serving various purposes such as emphasizing certain words or ideas, creating a sense of rhythm, or highlighting a change in tone or thought.

An example of a caesura can be found in Alexander Pope's "An Essay on Criticism", specifically in the lines "to err is human; to forgive, divine." The semicolon in this line acts as a caesura, punctuating the statement and creating a brief pause between the phrases "to err is human" and "to forgive, divine." This pause allows readers to contemplate each part of the aphorism separately, emphasizing the contrast between human fallibility and divine forgiveness.
Source: Author trident

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