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Superglossary - Literature
Category: General > Literature
Date & country: 11/12/2013, US
Words: 1716

Fourth Wall
Sometimes referred to as the 'third wall,' depending upon how a stagebuilder numbers the sides of th

An incomplete piece of literature--one the author never finished entirely--such as Coleridge's 'Kubl

Frame Narrative
The result of inserting one or more small stories within the body of a larger story that encompasses

Framing Method
Using the same features, wording, setting, situation, or topic at both the beginning and end of a li

Frankenstein Motif
A motif in which a created being turns upon its creator in what seems to be an inevitable fashion. T

A medieval profession akin to a cross between a landlord and a real estate agent. In the early medie

Free Indirect Discourse
A style of third-person narration that mingles within it traits from first-person narration, often s

Free Meter
Not to be confused with free verse, free meter refers to a type of Welsh poetry in which the meters

Free Morpheme
Any morpheme that can function by itself as a word, such as the two morphemes it and self found in t

Free Variation
A sound substitution that does not hinder understanding or meaning--such as pronouncing the first sy

Free Verse
Poetry based on the natural rhythms of phrases and normal pauses rather than the artificial constrai

French Scene
A numbering system for a play in which a new scene is numbered whenever characters exit or enter the

Freudian Criticism
A psychoanalytical approach to literature that seeks to understand the elements of a story or charac

Freudian Slip
A slip of the tongue in which a person means to say one thing, but accidentally substitutes another

Freytags Pyramid
A diagram of dramatic structure, one which shows complication and emotional tension rising like one

Freytags Triangle
Another term for Freytag's Pyramid (see above).

(also called spirant) In linguistics, any sound made by tightening but not completely closing the ai

Frons Scenae
At the back of the stage, this wall faced the audience and blocked the view of the players' tiring-h

Front Vowel
In linguistics, a vowel made with the ridge of the tongue located near the front of the oral cavity.

Fu Poetry
Flowery, irregular 'prose-poem' form of Chinese literature common during the Han period. It was firs

Full Rhyme
Another term for perfect rhyme, true rhyme, or exact rhyme, see above.

Function Word
A part of speech--usually abstract and existing in a limited number of examples--which marks grammat

Functional Shift
The linguistic equivalent of poetic anthimeria, in which one part of grammatical speech becomes anot

The runic alphabet used by the Norse and other Germanic tribes. The Anglo-Saxon letters ash, thorn,

Gair Llanw
In Welsh poetry such as the strict meters (cynghanedd), a common technique to fill out the necessary

The elevated seating areas at the back and sides of a theater.

Money-collectors employed by an acting company to take money at the admissions or entrances to a the

(also spelled geisa or geis, plural geissi) A magical taboo or restriction placed on a hero in Old I

A final couplet that appears at the end of a sonnet. See couplet and sonnet.

General Semantics
According to Algeo, 'A linguistic philosophy emphasizing the arbitrary nature of language to clarify

Generative Grammar
Another term for transformational grammar.

Genetic Classification
A grouping of languages based on their historical development from a common source.

A declension in any synthetic (i.e. Heavily inflected) language that indicates possession. In many O

A type or category of literature or film marked by certain shared features or conventions. The three

Geographical Dialect
(also called a regional dialect) A dialect that appears primarily in a geographic area, as opposed t

The northern branch of Indo-European, often subdivided into (1) East Germanic or Gothic, (2) West Ge

Ghost Characters
This term should not be confused with characters who happen to appear on stage as ghosts. Shakespear

Also called a semivowel, a glide is a diphthongized sound that accompanies another vowel. These soun

One of the theatres in London where Shakespeare performed. Shakespeare's acting company built it on

Any sound made using the glottis or the vocal cords.

The court poets in Northern Wales in the years 1000-1299 CE.

One of the two branches of the Celtic family of languages descended from Proto-Indo-European. Goidel

Golden Age Of Greece
The period around 400-499 BCE, when Athens was at its height of prestige, wealth, and military power

Golden Age Of Science Fiction
The period between 1930 and about 1955 in which a growing number of science fiction short stories ap

The word Gothic originally only referred to the Goths, one of the Germanic tribes that helped destro

Gothic Literature
Poetry, short stories, or novels designed to thrill readers by providing mystery and blood-curdling

Gothic Novel
A type of romance wildly popular between 1760 up until the 1820s that has influenced the ghost story

Gothic Romance
Another term for a Gothic novel.

(Old Norse 'greygoose') A section of the Codex Regius text that deals with wergild and Icelandic law

Extended anadiplosis (see above). Unlike regular anadiplosis, gradatio continues the pattern of repe

In linguistics, another term for ablaut.

Grammatical Function
A category for words in inflected languages--typical examples include aspect, mood, and tense for ve

Grammatical Gender
A grammatical category in most Indo-European languages. Three genders commonly appear for pronouns,

In a writing system, the smallest written mark or symbol that has meaning, and which cannot be subdi

Great Vowel Shift
A remarkable change in the pronunciation of English, thought to have occurred largely between 1400 a

Grimms Law
A formulation or rule of thumb for tracing a language-shift in the Germanic branch of proto-Indo-Eur

Kathleen Scott tells us that, in the elaborate medieval artwork found in illuminated manuscripts, gr

While the upper class paid two pennies to sit in the raised area with seats, and some nobles paid th

Group Genitive
A genitive construction in which the 's appears at the end of a phrase modifying a word rather than

Grue Language
In linguistic anthropology, any language using a single word to describe both the hue of green and t

A medieval organization that combined the qualities of a union, a vocational school, a trading corpo

Gustatory Imagery
Imagery dealing with taste. This is opposed to visual imagery, dealing with sight, auditory imagery,

The abbreviation that linguists and scholars of English use to refer to the Great Vowel Shift. See G

(Latin gyrus, a spiral) A gyre is a spiral or circular motion. W. B. Yeats uses the image of a gyre

(Greek, 'sacred writing', also called hagiology) The writing or general study of the lives of Christ

Another term for haikai renga or renku. See discussion under renku and renga.

Haikai Renga
Another term for renku. See discussion under renku and renga.

(pluralhaiku, from archaic Japanese)

Hair Side
The side of a sheet or parchment or vellum that once carried the animal's hair. It is generally dark

(Hebrew, 'celebrate,' possibly adopted as a loanword from Eblaite) A hymn of praise, specifically in

Hallelujah Meter
Verse written in stanzas with each stanza containing six iambic lines, four trimeter lines, and two

A term from Greek tragedy that literally means 'missing the mark.' Originally applied to an archer w

Hapax Legomenon
(pluralhapax legomena)

Harlem Renaissance
A dynamic period of writing, poetry, music, and art among black Americans during the 1920s and 1930s

Head Rhyme
Another term for alliteration--especially alliteration of consonants at the beginning of words, rath

Sometimes used synonymously with 'the aloft' and 'the above,' the term refers more specifically to t

Heavy-Stress Rhyme
Another term for a masculine ending in a rhyme.

Hell Mouth
Students should distinguish between the medieval and Renaissance meanings of hell mouth. (1) In medi

In linguistics, the branch of Indo-European including classical and modern Greek.

Hemingway Code
Hemingway's protagonists are usually 'Hemingway Code Heroes,' i.e., figures who try to follow a hype

As Arthur Quinn defines the term in Figures of Speech, hendiadys is a peculiar type of polysyndeton

Hengwrt Manuscript
(pronounced 'HENG-urt') One of the most important manuscripts of Chaucer's Canterbury Tales, along w

The worship of one god without denying the existence of other gods or spiritual powers, as opposed t

A line consisting of seven metrical feet. Also called septenary.

The seven territories or kingdoms making up Anglo-Saxon England--Northumbria, Mercia, East Anglia, K

The study of coats-of-arms and aristocratic insignia, or the creation of such items according to med

(from Greek, 'choice') A 'mistaken' or heterodox religious belief, i.e., one that does not agree wit

(Anglo-Saxon here + geatwe, 'army-gear') Heriot has two different meanings, depending upon whether w

(plural herma or hermai) In Greco-Roman archeology, a herm is a stone, bronze, or terracotta marker-

Heroic Age Of Greece
Also known as the Homeric Age, this is the period of time between 1200-800 BCE. The term is normally

Heroic Couplet
Two successive rhyming lines of iambic pentameter. The second line is usually end-stopped. It was co

A humorous poem taking the conventions of heroic Greek literature and using them to comic effect. Mo

A line consisting of six metrical feet. Very common in Greek and Latin literature, less common in En

High Comedy
Elegant comedies characterized by witty banter and sophisticated dialogue rather than the slapstick

High Vowel
Any vowel sound made with the jaw almost shut and the tongue elevated near the roof of the oral cavi

An unusual use of his, her, and their as the sign of the genitive by attaching them to the end of a


Historiated Initial
In the artwork of medieval manuscripts, an historiated initial is an enlarged, introductory letter i

Historical Dictionary
A dictionary that traces the changes in a word's meaning by listing its entries chronologically and

Historical Novel
A novel in which fictional characters take part in, influence, or witness real historical events and