Literary Device Stations

Table 1: Personification
a figure of speech in which an object or animal is given human feelings,
thoughts, or attitudes.
EX: 1. The ice cream called my name from the freezer.
2. Time creeps up on you when there is a deadline.
3. The Fire Ran wild.
4. My alarm sprang to life at 6:05 AM.
Table 2: Idiom
a group of words established by usage as having a meaning not
predictable from those of the individual words.
EX: 1. Break the Ice (to say or do something that reduces social
2. Once in a Blue Moon (something that happens very rarely)
3. Achilles’ Heel (a weak spot in someone who is usually quite strongFrom Homer’s ​Iliad)
4. Get the Ball Rolling (initiate action)
Table 3: Imagery
The sensory details or figurative language used to describe, arouse emotion, or represent
abstractions. On a physical level, imagery uses terms related to the five senses.
EX: 1. ​I could hear the popping and crackling as mom dropped the bacon into the frying pan, and
soon the salty, greasy smell wafted toward me.
2. A host, of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.
Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle on the Milky Way
(“Daffodils” by William Wordsworth)
Table 4: Foreshadowing
the use of hints and clues to suggest what will happen later in a
EX: 1. Hans in​ Frozen ​singing “Love is an Open door:”
I've been searching my whole life to​ find my own place​ (then he tries to steal Arendelle)
2. ​1984​ by George Orwell:
“[i]n the end the Party would announce that two and two made five, and you would have
to believe it.” (Winston gets tortured by O’brien in miniluv and does eventually accept
this fact)
Table 5: Allusion
A direct or indirect reference to something which is presumably commonly known, such
as an event, book, myth, place, or work of art. Allusions can be historical, literary,
religious, topical, or mythical.
EX: 1. Disney’s ​The Lion King​ is a continuous allusion to Shakespeare’s ​Hamlet​. Simba is
Hamlet, Mufasa is king hamlet, scar is claudius (King H’s Brother), etc.
2. Any time someone says “Big Brother is watching,” they are alluding to Orwell’s ​1984.
Table 6: Flashback
a scene in a novel, short story, etc., set in a time earlier than the main
EX: 1. In Disney’s ​Up, ​there is a flashback showing Carl meeting ellie,
marrying her, growing old with her, etc.
2. In Orwell’s ​1984​, Winston has a flashback about his experience with the
prole prostitute.
Table 7: Alliteration
repetition of the same or similar consonant sounds in words that are
close together.
EX: 1. “​s​he ​s​ells ​s​ea ​s​hells on the ​S​ea ​S​hore”
2. “​F​rom​ f​orth the ​f​atal loins of these two​ f​oes…”- ​Romeo and Juliet
by Shakespeare
Table 8: Colloquialism
The use of ​slang​ or ​informalities​ in speech or writing. Not generally acceptable for
formal writing, colloquialisms give a work a conversational, familiar tone. Colloquial
expressions in writing include local or regional dialects.
EX: 1. “y’all” – you alL
2. “gonna”- Going to
3. “Sick, dude.” - That is quite wonderful, friend.
4. “He’s ​out of his head​ if he thinks I’m ​gonna go for​ such a stupid idea.”- He is rather
unintelligent if he believes i will agree to his idea.
Table 9: Hyperbole
a figure of speech that uses an incredible exaggeration or overstatement,
for effect.
EX: 1. “If I told you once, I’ve told you a million times…”
2. “I can smell pizza from a mile away.”
3. “This class has ​literally​ gone on forever.”