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Contrast within parallel phrases (not to be confused with the ordinary use of the word to mean “extreme opposite”): “Many are called, but few are chosen.” The term can also refer to literary characters who, though not necessarily antagonists, represent opposite personal characteristics or moral views.
Calling attention to something by dismissing it: “No one would suggest that those who are homeless elected to live on the streets willingly.”
A statement of hesitation, also known as dubitatio, in which characters express to themselves an actual or feigned doubt or dilemma: “Should I strike now, or bide my time?”
Abrupt discontinuation of a statement: “If you say that one more time, I’m gonna –”
Interruption of thought to directly address a person or a personification: “So, I ask you, dear reader, what would you have me do?”
Absence of conjunctions: “We cannot dedicate, we cannot consecrate, we cannot hallow this ground.”
Exaggeration, often with sequential enhancement: “You found my purse? You are a hero, a prince, a god!”
A rant of abusive language: “Calling you an idiot would be an insult to stupid people. Are you always this stupid, or are you just making a special effort today?”
Excessive braggadocio: “I am the very model of a modern major-general. I’ve information vegetable, animal, and mineral.” Also known as verborum bombus.
An abbreviated expression or telegrammatic statement: “‘Morning,’ he mumbled as he stumbled out of bed”; “I have three words for you, buddy: pot, kettle, black.”