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PYRRHIC : In classical Greek or Latin poetry, this foot consists of two unaccented syllables--the opposite of a spondee . At best, a pyrrhic foot is an unusual aberration in English verse, and most prosodists (including me!) do not accept it as a foot at all because it contains no accented syllable. Normally, the context or prevailing iambs, trochees, or spondees in surrounding lines overwhelms any potential pyrrhic foot, and a speaker reading the foot aloud will tend artificially to stress either the first or last syllable. See meter for more information.
The . embassy in Beirut, Lebanon, is almost completely destroyed by a car-bomb explosion that kills 63 people, including the suicide bomber and 17 Americans. The terrorist attack was carried out in protest of the . military presence in 1975, a bloody civil war erupted in Lebanon, with Palestinian...
In the 18th and 19th centuries, Romantic and Victorian poets took hold of this folk-song form and wrote literary ballads, telling their own stories as Robert Burns did in “The Lass that Made the Bed to Me” and Christina Rossetti did in “Maude Clare”—or reimagining old legends, as Alfred, Lord Tennyson did with part of the Arthurian story in “The Lady of Shalott.” Ballads carry tales of tragic romance (Edgar Allan Poe’s “Annabel Lee”), of the honor of warriors (Rudyard Kipling’s “ The Ballad of East and West ”), of the despair of poverty (William Butler Yeats’ “The Ballad of Moll Magee”), of the secrets of brewing (Robert Louis Stevenson’s “ Heather Ale: A Galloway Legend ”), and of conversations across the divide between life and death (Thomas Hardy’s “Her Immortality”).... The combination of narrative propulsion, implied melody (ballads are often and very naturally set to music), and archetypal stories is irresistable.
A Greek term which means a bad place, or the opposite of Utopia. The negative characteristics of a dystopia serve as a warning of possible social and political developments to be avoided. Examples of modern novels which depict dystopias are Nineteen Eighty-four by George Orwell (1903-1950), and Brave New World by Aldous Huxley (1894-1963).
This webpage contains an alphabetical glossary of literary terms and their definitions . It focuses particularly on the material I most frequently teach (classical and medieval literature, the history of the English language, and science fiction narratives). Because the list is fairly lengthy, I have subdivided it into several pages. Hunt for the term you want alphabetically within each letter's webpage. You can supplement this knowledge by looking in the glossary in the back of your literature books, in dictionaries, and online more generally. Do note that entries marked with a tiny construction barrier ( )or the abbreviation TBA ("to be announced") are still in the process of being written or revised, so these entries will change as I polish them.