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Rhetorical Device Quiz #5 Practice

“I ran all the way to the main gate, and then I waited a second till I got my breath. I have no wind, if you want to know the truth. I’m quite a heavy smoker, for one thing—that is, I used to be. They made me cut it out. Another thing, I grew six and a half inches last year. That’s also how I practically got t.b. and came out here for all these goddam checkups and stuff.

I’m pretty healthy though.”

Ambiguity The words “they” and “here” used by the speaker are ambiguous. But the readers are allowed to presume from the context that “they” might be the professionals helping out Holden and “here” might be a rehabilitation center.

“Reader, suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself.” – Mark Twain

“Don Quixote” written by Miguel de Cervantes is a parody of romances written in his days.

“Quixote” and his overweight sidekick “Sancho” delude themselves to think that they are knights of the medieval romances. They believe that they are entrusted with the obligation to save the world. Therefore, the adventure starts as an imitation of the real romances but of course, in a hilarious manner. We laugh at how Quixote was bestowed knighthood in his battle with the giants [windmills]. We enjoy how the knight helps the Christian king against the army of a Moorish monarch [herd of sheep]. These and the rest of the incidents of the novel are written in the style of Spanish romances of the 16th century to mock the idealism of knights in the contemporary romances.

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“A soiled baby, with a neglected nose, cannot be conscientiously regarded as a thing of beauty.”
(Mark Twain)

“What’s in a name? That which we call a rose
By any other word would smell as sweet.
So Romeo would, were he not Romeo called,”
Analogy Juliet is indirectly saying that just like a rose that will always smell sweet by whichever name it is called; she will like Romeo even if he changes his name.

“I have to have this operation. It isn’t very serious. I have this tiny little tumor on the brain.”- Holden Caulfield

A good life depends on a liver.
Ambiguity Liver may be an organ or simply a living person.

Kick the bucket
Figurative Language

“Scary Movie”
Parody (spoof on horror movies)

[Telemachos] saw Athene and went straight to the forecourt, the heart within him scandalized that a guest should still be standing at the doors. He stood beside her and took her by the right hand, and relieved her of the bronze spear, and spoke to her and addressed her in winged words: ‘Welcome, stranger. You shall be entertained as a guest among us. Afterward, when you have tasted dinner, you shall tell us what your need is.’ […] [A]nd he led her and seated her in a chair, with a cloth to sit on, the chair splendid and elaborate. For her feet there was a footstool. For himself, he drew a painted bench next her, apart from the others, the suitors, for fear the guest, made uneasy by the uproar, might lose his appetite there among overbearing people […]. (1.118-124, 130-134)
Xenia Telemachus knows how to treat a guest right: he welcomes her graciously, gives her a chair away from the suitors, and even brings her a stool for her feet. No wonder Athene decides to help him. (We have to say, knowing that your guest might at any point be a god is pretty good motivation to treat people well.)

“Beauty is but a vain and doubtful good;
A shining gloss that vadeth suddenly;
A flower that dies when first it gins to bud;
A brittle glass that’s broken presently:
A doubtful good, a gloss, a glass, a flower,
Lost, vaded, broken, dead within an hour.”
Climax The phrase “dead within an hour” is placed at the very end as it marks the climax of the fate of beauty which he introduces as “a vain and doubtful good”.

Thou ‘art slave to fate, chance, kings, and desperate men,
And dost with poison, war, and sickness dwell,
And poppy ‘or charms can make us sleep as well
And better than thy stroke; why swell’st thou then?
Rhetoric The rhetorical question “why swell’st thou then?” serves to play down the horrific nature of death. He devalues death by calling it a “slave”, and that it keeps the despicable company of “poison, war, sickness” and seeks their support.

I’m so hungry I could eat a horse.
Figurative Language

I feel like a fish out of water.
Analogy This implies that you are not comfortable in your surroundings.

“Thrift, thrift, Horatio! The funeral bak’d meats did coldly furnish forth the marriage tables.”
(Hamlet Act 1 Scene 2, by Shakespeare)
Sarcasm The most disturbing issue to Hamlet in the play is his mother’s marriage to his uncle. While talking to Horatio in a sarcastic manner, Hamlet sums up the ridiculous affairs using this statement.

“Out of its vivid disorder comes order; from its rank smell rises the good aroma of courage and daring; out of its preliminary shabbiness comes the final splendor. And buried in the familiar boasts of its advance agents lies the modesty of most of its people.”

Referring to the United States White House as the president’s “playground” would be a tactic of rhetoric used by a person in opposition to the president to persuade citizens that the president is incapable or incompetent and uses his power inappropriately.

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