English glossary 6


English Glossary 6

Agreement – A grammatical relationship between words in which the choice of one element determines the form of another (The girl runs; he talked to himself regularly). Also called concord.

Anaphoric – A form of referencing in which a pronoun or noun phrase points backwards to something mentioned earlier in a discourse (The film was breathtaking and the audience watched it in silence).

Apostrophe – In a literary context apostrophe is a figure of speech in which a thing, place, quality, idea, dead or absent person is addressed as if present and capable of understanding.

Apposition – A sequence of nouns or noun phrases that have the same meaning (my neighbour, the builder, came to see me yesterday).

Aspect – The timescale of the action expressed by a verb, which may be complete or in progress. There are two forms : progressive and perfect.

Baby talk – A simplified form of speech used by adults to children, or the immature language forms used by children.

Ballad – A ballad is a traditional and popular song-like form of poetry that tells a story and was originally a musical accompaniment to dance.

Base – The minimal form of a word, to which affixes can be added.

Blank verse – Unrhymed poetry with a very disciplined verse form (iambic pentameter) in which each line will usually have ten syllables and five stresses.

Caretaker speech – The distinct speech of adults when they talk to children, also called motherese.

Chaining – The linking of adjacency pairs in a conversation.

Clipping – Abbreviation e.g. where gymnasium becomes gym.

Cohesion – Links and connections which unite the elements of a discourse or text.

Conceit – A witty conception, often juxtaposing incongruous or paradoxical ideas or images. The metaphysical


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