The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet Vocabulary

Alliteration repetition of consonant sounds at the beginning of words
Antagonist the character of force that opposes the main character
Aside an actor’s speech, directed to the audience, that is not supposed to be heard by other actors on stage
Blank Verse a poem with no rhyme but does have iambic pentameter
Characterization a description
Round A complex and fully developed character
Flat A character in the story who is known for a single or dominant trait
Static Characters who remain the same throughout the story
Dynamic A character that changes in a story, especially as a result of an event or problem
Climax a decisive moment that is of maximum intensity or is a major turning point in a plot
Comic Relief an amusing scene, incident, or speech introduced into serious or tragic elements, as in a play, in order to provide temporary relief from tension, or to intensify the dramatic action
Confidant a character in a story that the lead character confides in and trusts
Internal Conflict mental struggle arising from opposing demands or impulses
External Conflict struggle between a person and an outside force
Couplet a pair of successive lines of verse, especially a pair that rhyme and are of the same length
Diction style of speaking or writing as dependent upon choice of words
Dynamic Character a literary or dramatic character who undergoes an important inner change, as a change in personality or attitude
Exposition The part of the story where the characters, setting, and situation are introduced
Figurative Language language that contains or uses figures of speech, especially metaphors
Foil A foil is another character in a story who contrasts with the main character, usually to highlight one of their attributes
Foreshadowing When the author gives the reader clues about an event in the future
Iambic Pentameter a common meter in poetry consisting of an unrhymed line with five feet or accents, each foot containing an unaccented syllable and an accented syllable
Imagery Appeals to the senses and uses figurative language
Situational Irony Inconsistency in what’s expected and what actually happens
Dramatic Irony Inconsistency between what a character believes or says and what the reader knows to be true
Verbal Irony When a person says one thing and means the other
Metaphor a comparison without using the words like or as
Meter The rhythmical pattern of stressed and unstressed syllables in verse
Monologue a speech delivered by one person, or a long one-sided conversation
Mood The way a story makes you feel
Motif A central or recurring image or action in a literary work that is shared by other works and may serve an overall theme
Oxymoron A figure of speech that brings together contradictory words for effect, such as “jumbo shrimp” and “deafening silence.”
Personification Giving non-living things human characteristics
Protagonist The good guy or the main character of the story
Pun Wordplay that uses homonyms (two different words that are spelled identically) to deliver two or more meanings at the same time
Repetition Using sound, syllables, words, or phrases over and over
Rhyme Scheme Repetition of syllables at the end of a line of poetry
Simile a comparison using “like” or “as”
Soliloquy an act of speaking one’s thoughts aloud when by oneself or regardless of any hearers, especially by a character in a play
Sonnet A 14-line poem with a variable rhyme scheme
Stanza A grouping of lines
Subplot a subordinate plot in a play, novel, or similar work.
Symbol/Symbolism An object that stands for something other than itself
Theme the overall lesson the author is trying to teach
Tone A writer’s attitude toward the subject or audience
Tragedy an event causing great suffering, destruction, and distress, such as a serious accident, crime, or natural catastrophe
Word Play the witty exploitation of the meanings and ambiguities of words, especially in puns
Irony When reality is different than what appears to be true

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