Language Techniques

Topics: Linguistics, Figure of speech, Word Pages: 5 (480 words) Published: April 7, 2013
Language Techniques

Simile- Comparing two different things using the words “like”, “as” or “then”.

- eg “He looks like a dog”, “He ran as fast as a cheetah”.

Metaphor- Comparing two different things without using the words “like”,

“as” or “then”.

- eg “He is a dog”.

Personification- Giving non-human things human qualities.

- eg “The trees were dancing in the wind”.

Onomatopoeia- Sound words eg “crash”, “bang”, “boom”.

Alliteration- Where the first letter of almost every word in a short space (or a

whole sentence) are the same.

- eg “Busy bees buzzing bountifully”.

Foreshadowing- When an event or phrase is used to highlight what is likely to

happen later on in the text.

- eg “The fog had overcome the town and was an ominous

warning to something sinister happening”.

Accumulation- Saying the same idea or viewpoint in different ways.

- eg “He is annoying. He just won’t leave me alone. He just

doesn’t get it”.

Enjambment- Where there is no punctuation at the end of a line in a poem or


Imagery- Language used to create an image in the reader’s mind.

Allusion- Not directly saying something, bur referring to it.

- eg “I will carry my cross” which is biblical allusion, for eg.

Repetition- Saying the same word or phrase over and over.

- eg “Bones, bones, bones!”

Rhetorical Question- A question that is posed yet is not expected to be

answered (usually because it is quite obvious).

- eg “To be or not to be?”

Emotive/evocative language- Meant to add greater meaning, depth etc to the

idea being conveyed or argued for.

High Modality Language- Language used which is all encompassing and is


- eg “All were blind; All were hurt”.

Low Modality Language- Opposite of high modality.

- eg “Some were hurt, I think”.

Hyperbole- Another word for exaggeration. So, whenever there is

exaggeration then the technique used is hyperbole.

- eg “The girl broke her nail and thought that is was the end of the


Euphemism- A nice way of saying something horrible.


eg “He passed away” instead of “he died”.

Cliché- An overused saying.

- eg “The pot calling the kettle black”.

Binary Opposition- When two things that are complete opposites are placed

near each other in a text.

- eg “love and hate”.

Juxtaposition- Contrasting two or more different things.

- eg “Josh was always on time while John was always late”.

Oxymoron- When two completely opposite things are put together as a term.

- eg “Valley Heights”, “terrible beauty”.

Symbolism- When something is used to represent ideas or qualities.

- eg Kevin Rudd’s apology speech.

Inverted Syntax- Saying or writing something in an unusual way/manner,

primarily based on the structure of the sentence (like Yoda from Star Wars,


- eg “Your eyes had once” (you would usually write this as

“your eyes once had).

Capitalisation- When a word or term is wholly capitalised, indicating some

form of importance or significance.
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