As the human beings need ornaments to look more attractive, so as the language. In order to give some obvious form to the expressions, we have to use some device known as the Figures of Speech. The questions related with them appear a lot in NET, CTET, HTET PGT English and PGT English Lecture Recruitment.
As the title says, they are used to give some figures to your speech in order to make it more effective and suggestive. There are many figures of speech such as Simile, Metaphor, Alliteration, Hyperbole, Personification, etc. Let's do them one by one.
There is a comparison between two things apparently different but having one common feature beneath the surface. The comparison is commonly shown using like, as etc.
- She is as beautiful as a rose.
Here her beauty is compared with that of rose. So beauty is the common quality on the basis of which this comparison is possible.
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This is the extended form of Simile. The comparison is wide without the using of like or as.
- She is a rose.
This is the repetition of initial sounds or two or more consecutive words.
The fair breeze blew, the white foam flew,
The furrow followed free.
The repetitions of b 's, f 's and again f 's is the perfect use of Alliteration.
In this figure of speech, inanimate objects or abstract ideas are treated as if they were animate things or they are attributed with the human characteristics.
- The night's starred face
- The trees were laughing etc.
In both the sentences, the night and the trees are treated like human being and thus the use of personification has been made effectively.
Figures of Speech for Competitive Exams
In this figure of speech, there is the use of exaggeration to create more impression on the readers or listeners.
- Joseph, the hunter, killed four lions barehanded.
In Paradise Lost of John Milton, we compare Satan with Titanian or Leviathan and this comparison is based on exaggeration.
This figure of Speech consists of two successive lines of poetry rhyming with each other :
A little knowledge is a dangerous thing ;
Drink deep, or taste not the Pierian spring.
The last two words like thing and spring are rhyming with each other and are thus creating music.
Opposition of idea by balance of sharply contrasting words.
e.g. God made the country, and man made the town.
Onomatopoeia - Use of words which supposedly sound like what they mean such as splash, hiss etc.
Refrain - Repeated line at the end of the stanza.
Euphemism - Pleasant way of saying something unpleasant.
e.g. He breathed his last yesterday. in place of He died yesterday.
Caesura - It means pause.
e.g. He came, he saw me, he talked with me ...... and he went away.
We will do the rest of the figure of speech in the next blog.