7 Feb 2015

Repetition of phrases and clauses

All the figures of repetition from the previous post - 'Repetition of words' have the same names and meanings when we discuss phrases and clauses though there is a few new, specific to these longer structures, which I am going to present.

Isocolon (Bicolon, tricolon, tetracolon...) is the repetition of similar grammatical form, a kind of parallelism.
'Pity is the feeling which arrests the mind in the presence of whatsoever is grave and constant in human sufferings and unites it with the sufferer. Terror is the feeling which arrests the mind in the presence of whatsoever is grave and constant in human sufferings and unites it with the secret cause...'
(A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man by James Joyce)

The structure, grammar, meter and rhythm of these sentences are parallel; also there is the repetition of the ending with the slight differences in the beginnings of the sentences. 

Harley Davidson’s slogan (Bicolon)
'American by Birth. Rebel by Choice.'

I came. I saw. I bought. (Tricolon)

Symploce (repetition of the same phrases/words at the beginning - anaphora, and the repetition of different but the same words/phrases at the end of lines, sentences - epistrophe. Together they create symploce. 

'Against yourself you are calling him,
against the laws you are calling him,
against the democratic constitution you are calling him'
Aeschines

Chiasmus (Antimetabole) 
These two figures of repetition are not the same, but for me, and some others, I think, it is not so much important to be able to distinguish between them. In this figure, the structures are repeated but in the inverse order. I think that there is beauty in it, therefore, I like the word: chiasmus. :)
  • 'You stood up for America, now America must stand up for you.'
    Barack Obama – December 14, 2011.
  • When the going gets tough, the tough get going.
  • 'Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country.'
    John F. Kennedy
  • 'Eat to live, not live to eat.'
    Socrates
  • 'I go where I please, and I please where I go.'
    Attributed to Duke Nukem
  • 'In America, you can always find a party. In Soviet Russia, Party always finds you!'
    Yakov Smirnoff
  • 'If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.'
You may find more information at Literary Devices and at Silvia Retorica - Figures of Repetition.  


1 comments:

nancy john said...

English is one of the most important languages in the world. It can even be said to be the single most important language.Other languages are important too

IELTS Academic