Description of the structure of a language, consisting of the sounds (see phonology); the meaningful combinations of these sounds into words or parts of words, called morphemes; and the arrangement of the morphemes into phrases and sentences, called syntax.
[Gr.,=significant] in general, the study of the relationship between words and meanings. The empirical study of word meanings and sentence meanings in existing languages is a branch of linguistics; the abstract study of meaning in relation to language or symbolic logic systems is a branch of philosophy.
From Dictionary of Linguistics and Phonetics A traditional term for the study of the rules governing the way words are combined to form sentences in a language. In this use, syntax is opposed to morphology, the study of word structure.
[Lat.,=point], the use of special signs in writing to clarify how words are used; the term also refers to the signs themselves. In every language, besides the sounds of the words that are strung together there are other features, such as tone, accent, and pauses, that are equally significant (see grammar and phonetics).
Grammatical part of speech for what someone or something does, experiences, or is. Verbs are of crucial importance to the construction of the sentence. The rules governing the correct use and spelling of verbs are complex, involving consideration of number, voice, mood, aspect, and tense.
From Good Word Guide Nouns are the names of things, places, or people. The main division of nouns is into ‘countable’ and ‘uncountable’: countable nouns are those which can be preceded by a or the, or by a number or word denoting number . . . Uncountable nouns are nouns of mass.
From Dictionary of Linguistics and Phonetics A term used in the grammatical classification of words to refer to a heterogeneous group of items whose most frequent function is to specify the mode of action of the verb.
From The Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics A poet’s deliberate incorporation of identifiable elements from other sources, preceding or contemporaneous, textual or extratextual. A. may be used merely to display knowledge, as in some Alexandrian poems; to appeal to those sharing experience or knowledge with the poet; or to enrich a poem by incorporating further meaning.
From The Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics The repetition of the sound of an initial consonant or consonant cluster in stressed syllables close enough to each other for the ear to be affected.
From The Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics The traditional term for words which seem to imitate the things they refer to, as in this line from Collins’ “Ode to Evening”: “Now the air is hushed, somewhere the weak-eyed bat / With short shrill shriek flits by on leathern wing.”
In the arts, the use of symbols to concentrate or intensify meaning, making the work more subjective than objective. In the visual arts, symbols have been used in works throughout the ages to transmit a message or idea, for example, the religious symbolism of ancient Egyptian art, Gothic art, and Renaissance art.
From The Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics A figure of speech most conservatively defined as an explicit comparison using “like” or “as”—e.g. “black, naked women with necks / wound round and round with wire / like the necks of light bulbs” (Elizabeth Bishop).
Figure of speech using an analogy or close comparison between two things that are not normally treated as if they had anything in common. Metaphor is a common means of extending the uses and references of words.
From Encyclopedia of Postmodernism A trope is a figure of speech that denotes or connotes meaning through a chain of associations. It employs a word or phrase out of its ordinary usage in order to further demonstrate or illustrate a particular idea.
From Encyclopedia of Postmodernism Synecdoche means literally understanding one thing with another; as a rhetorical trope, the substitution of part for whole or vice versa. When defined as the use of an attribute or adjunct as a substitution for that of the thing meant, synecdoche is directly related to metonymy.