Many of us are familiar with using apostrophe without realizing it. Being able to talk to something abstract – like life itself – is possible only in literature. Or perhaps we get an email from someone and start responding out loud, knowing that the person won’t hear the message. It is more convenient for readers to relate themselves to abstract emotions when they observe them in their natural surroundings. Many examples of apostrophe in English begin with the exclamatory sound “O,” to signify a change in the addressee. In this way, though apostrophe may seem unnatural in the context of plays and omniscient narrators addressing the audience, it is, in fact, perfectly natural in our daily lives. Another apostrophe example comes from the poem Sire, written by W. S. Merwin: “Forerunner, I would like to say, silent pilot, Little dry death, future, Your indirections are as strange to me As my own. In addition to being a punctuation mark, apostrophe can also be a literary device in which the speaker of a poem talks to someone who is not there. in a play) and directs speech to a third party such as an opposing litigant or some other individual, sometimes absent from the scene. in which he addresses the deceased Abraham Lincoln: "O … In it, the speaker is directly addressing a far-off star. Both senses of the word “apostrophe” come from the original Greek meaning “turning back” or “turning away.” Apostrophe as a punctuation mark took on the meaning of “elision” and therefore is used when letters are omitted and sounds are elided. Hamlet picks up the skull and addresses it—“Alas, poor Yorick!”—then turns back to address his friend Horatio. Poets may apostrophize a beloved, the Muse, God, love, time, or any other entity that can’t respond in reality. O apostrophe, how amazing you are! by Alex Carmichael There is an incredible array of varying literary means and methods used by God in His Word to convey what He wanted to reveal to us. If we leave out the apostrophe in dog’s bone, we have dogs, indicating the plural—that is, many dogs—which will cause momentary confusion for the reader. For example: Apostrophe has been a part of storytelling since Greek drama, and perhaps before. “Welcome, O life! For example, in William Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, Mark Antony addresses the corpse of Caesar in the speech that begins:. Apostrophe An Introduction to Apostrophe. Literary apostrophes are great for conveying emotion. It's a common literary device, used especially in plays. O inconceivable being! Ah Humanity! Must to thy motions lovers’ seasons run? You are already familiar with … And this I believe: that the free, exploring mind of the individual human is the most valuable thing in the world. He hath bore me on his back a This is thy sheath; there rust, and let me die. By employing apostrophe in their literary works, writers try to bring abstract ideas or non-existent persons to life, so that the nature of emotions they want to communicate comes across in a better way. Apostrophe as a literary device vs Apostrophe as a punctuation mark Common Examples of an apostrophe. In this case, Keats declares to the nightingale, “Thou wast not born for death.” He notes that the song of the nightingale has been heard for generations and should never cease. Apostrophe. 3. Apostrophe, a rhetorical device by which a speaker turns from the audience as a whole to address a single person or thing. B. For example, in William Shakespeare ’s Julius Caesar, Mark Antony addresses the corpse of Caesar in the speech that begins: O, pardon me, thou bleeding piece of earth, That I am meek and gentle with these butchers! Jane Taylor uses apostrophe in the well-known poem, The Star: “Twinkle, twinkle, little star, How I wonder what you are. However, it is also present in novels, through basically the same method as when it appears in play… Apostrophe practice A worksheet that explains the two main uses of apostrophes through examples, plus a set of sentences that need apostrophes. In this example of apostrophe, the narrator discusses his beliefs about freedom or the mind and free will. Which of the following quotes from Herman Melville’s story “Bartleby, the Scrivener” is an example of apostrophe? O, pardon me, thou bleeding piece of earth, That I am meek and gentle with these butchers! As we know that the use of apostrophe and also familiar with using apostrophe without realizing it. It comes from the Greek word apostrephein which means "to turn away." O apostrophe, how amazing you are! Scholars have generally regarded this use of the apostrophe as arising from the … Choose the correct definition of apostrophe as a literary device: Apostrophe (Greek ἀποστροφή, apostrophé, "turning away"; the final e being sounded) is an exclamatory figure of speech. From Greek ἀποστροφή, a figure of speech consisting of a sudden turn in a text towards an exclamatory address to an imaginary person or a thing. Apostrophe definition, the sign ('), as used: to indicate the omission of one or more letters in a word, whether unpronounced, as in o'er for over, or pronounced, as in gov't for government; to indicate the possessive case, as in man's; or to indicate plurals of abbreviations and symbols, as in … Apostrophes frequently target an absent person or a third party. Hence, this is a classic example of apostrophe. Because there is a clear speaker and change of addressee, apostrophe is most commonly found in plays. Donne’s point is that, while some are awed and in fear of death, the personified Death has nothing to be proud of. Thus, odes usually have some form of apostrophe. in a play) and directs speech to a third party such as an opposing litigant or … I bet everyone in your pub, Even the children, pushes her away.”, The speaker is talking to an imaginary character, the “stranger.”. allows the speaker or writer to do so by directly addressing the subject of their thoughts or feelings C. Nothing so aggravates an earnest person as a passive resistance. thousand times, and now how abhorr’d in my imagination it is! That ever livèd in the tide of times. Or perhaps we get an email from someone and start responding out loud, knowing that the person won’t hear the message. Death, be not proud, though some have called thee Even without serious analyzing, its evident that, although both terms hold the exact same spelling and pronunciation, they are very different in meaning and in nature, and must not be confused with the other. Mighty and dreadful, for thou are not so; A. Ah Bartleby! (Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare). Antony is addressing the bloody corpse of Julius Caesar and apologizing to it than he is not being more forceful with the men (“these butchers” who led to Caesar’s murder. John Donne’s “Holy Sonnet 10” addresses Death as a concept and inspired a famous novel of the same name by John Gunther. In this way, though apostrophe may seem unnatural in the context of plays and omniscient narrators addressing the audience, it is, in fact, perfectly natural in our daily lives. Apostrophe - when a character in a literary work speaks to an object, an idea, or someone who doesn't exist as if it is a living person. To feeling as to sight? The poet addresses the sun in an informal and colloquial way, as if it were a real human being. I knew him, Horatio, a fellow of infinite Whatever the shape of your house, However you scoot from place to place, No matter how strange and colorless the clothes you may wear, I bet nobody likes a wet dog either. In English, for example, we use apostrophes when contracted “I am” to “I’m,” “we have” to “we’ve,” “do not” to “don’t,” and so on. JULIET: Yea, noise? In poetry, an apostrophe is a figure of speech in which the poet addresses an absent person, an abstract idea, or a thing.Apostrophes are found throughout poetry, but they’re less common since the early 20th century. Proceeding from the heat-oppressèd brain? apostrophe-a-literary-device Welcome to Clip from Interactive video lesson plan for: Apostrophe: A Literary Device Other times, they focus on an inanimate object, a place, or … Apostrophe as a literary device on the other hand, as weve already discussed, refers to a fictional characters reference to an addressee who is not physically present in the scene. Most of the nouns using such apostrophes were loanwords ending in -o, such as Romeo's. The most famous examples come from Shakespeare, such as Macbeth's speech addressing the imaginary dagger he sees in front of him. The list of available poetic devices is given below. ANTONY: O, pardon me, thou bleeding piece of earth, This kind of speech, where the speaker addresses an imaginary or inanimate character, is known as apostrophe. Apostrophe occurs we address our car on a cold day, either pleading with it to start or yelling at it when it doesn’t. Literary Devices in Robinson Crusoe Repetition : In order to survive, Crusoe keeps extensive catalogues of goods and resources he has available to him. The drama of this scene is that Juliet can no longer address her love, who is dead, and must instead consult an inanimate object in her final moment. I go to encounter for the millionth time the reality of experience and to forge in the smithy of my soul the uncreated conscience of my race.” ~James Joyce in his novel “A Copyright © 2020 Literary Devices. Or art thou but window._taboola=window._taboola||[]; The handle toward my hand? James Joyce uses apostrophe in his novel A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man: “Welcome, O life! Saucy pedantic wretch …”. It is important not to confuse apostrophe, the literary device, with the apostrophe punctuation mark (‘). When poets direct speech to an abstract concept or a person who is not physically present, they’re writing apostrophe poetry. Antony calls Caesar “thou bleeding piece of earth,” acknowledging that Caesar no longer has any power to respond. Find more ways to say apostrophe, along with related words, antonyms and example phrases at Thesaurus.com, the world's most trusted free thesaurus. A dagger of the mind, a false creation, The ode form of poetry was a favorite of John Keats, who wrote six major odes in the year 1819. In poetry, an apostrophe is a figure of speech in which the poet addresses an absent person, an abstract idea, or a thing.Apostrophes are found throughout poetry, but they’re less common since the early 20th century. target_type:'mix' Let us have a look at a few examples. Look at how Mary Shelly uses apostrophe in her novel Frankenstein: “Oh! Apostrophe (Greek ἀποστροφή, apostrophé, "turning away"; the final e being sounded) is an exclamatory figure of speech. Apostrophes are not one-trick ponies. It often involves a change in audience as the speaker stops talking to one person and instead addresses another, who is often absent from the story. In this excerpt, the poet uses conventional apostrophe starting with “O”: “O stranger of the future! Yet Antony, overcome with remorse and grief, feels the need to both apologize to Caesar and praise Caesar’s virtues even after death. In addition, the use of apostrophe motivates readers to develop a perspective that is fresh, as well as creative. Allusion, Apostrophe, Hubris, Metaphor, Simile Quotation Said by & Translation (line by line) Device & Explanation Act 1, scene 3, line 343-392 So in literature, apostrophe occurs when a character in the story s… By addressing a person who is not present or an inanimate object that cannot feel or express emotions, a character is instead showing their own inner state. A famous example of this is Walt Whitman's "O Captain! And this I would fight for: the freedom of the mind to take any direction it wishes, undirected. Addressing the skull makes Hamlet contemplate, once again, the concept of death and decay. Art thou not, fatal vision, sensible This type of apostropheis a literary device where the speaker addresses a person who is dead or not present, or an inanimate object that the speaker addresses as if it were alive. In cases such as Homer’s Odyssey, apostrophe usually occurs when the otherwise impersonal narrator intrudes in the storyline to provide information or commentary. I know so little that anything You might tell me would be a revelation.”. Your medium dark roast allowed me to survive that meeting!”, “Oh what a world it seems we live in.” –Rufus Wainwright (song), “O holy night! A. Macbeth is talking to a friend named Dagger. Just as it does in punctuation, an apostrophe in literature often marks something that is left out. In this nursery rhyme, a child speaks to a star (an inanimate object). HAMLET: Alas, poor Yorick! Up above the world so high, Like a diamond in the sky.”. Apostrophe can be either a punctuation mark or a literary device. The purpose of an apostrophe in literature is to direct the reader’s attention to something other than the person who’s speaking. My gorge rises at it. This type of apostrophe is a literary device where the speaker addresses a person who is dead or not present, or an inanimate object that the speaker addresses as if it were alive. For instance, “I am” can be presented as “I’m” or “you all” can be sometimes heard as “y’all.” Let’s focus more on the literary device definition in this discussion, however. Inspiring awe and fear in others is not something that anyone should strive for, in Donne’s opinion. }); More commonly known as a punctuation mark, apostrophe can also refer to an exclamatory figure of speech. I have thee not, and yet I see thee still.”. Often the addressee is a personified abstract quality or inanimate object. jest, of most excellent fancy. “Death be not proud, though some have called thee Mighty and dreadful, for, thou art not so, For, those, whom thou think’st, thou dost overthrow, Die not, poor death, nor yet canst thou kill me.”. An exclamatory figure of speech when a character turns from addressing one party to another party or inanimate object. Thou art the ruins of the noblest man The apostrophe can thus be found in all literary genres, even though we can rather discover them in spoken utterances, such as drama or speech (→ speech analysis) The Star (By Jane Taylor) Jane Taylor uses apostrophe in the well-known poem, The Star: “Twinkle, … A. My Captain!" Often, similar events—such as visiting the wrecked ship multiple times, or building different-sized canoes—happen more than once. An apostrophe (uh-POSS-truh-fee) is when a writer or speaker addresses someone who isn’t present or isn’t alive, an inanimate object, an abstract idea, or an imaginary figure. In literature, apostrophe is a figure of speech sometimes represented by an exclamation, such as “Oh.” A writer or speaker, using apostrophe, speaks directly to someone who is not present or is dead, or speaks to an inanimate object. 1. mode:'thumbnails-rr', Die not, poor Death, nor yet canst thou kill me. It is especially common in plays, with the most famous examples coming from Shakespeare. Below is a list of literary devices with detailed definition and examples. The narrator in John Steinbeck’s novel East of Eden often turns away from the action and addresses the audience directly with his own opinions of the action. Apostrophe - when a character in a literary work speaks to an object, an idea, or someone who doesn't exist as if it is a living person. This is done to produce dramatic effect and to show the importance of the object or idea. B. Macbeth is gripping a real dagger and telling a friend about its qualities. Byron’s poem is entirely focused on the beauty and the fascination that he endures with the ocean. As a punctuation mark, it signifies elision and is used when letters or words are contracted and sounds are omitted or merged. Then I’ll be brief. This poem became one of the most popular nursery rhymes told to little children – often in the form of song. It does, however, sometimes occur in poetry and prose. Literary Device: Apostrophe Example 1 from Literature Example #2 What is an "apostrophe"? An apostrophe is a figure of speech or literary device where an absent or nonexistent person or thing is addressed as if present and can understand. Stars and clouds and winds, ye are all about to mock me; if ye really pity me, crush sensation and memory; let me become as naught; but if not, depart, depart, and leave me in darkness.”. The word apostrophe is when the writer … placement:'Right Rail Thumbnails', I have thee not, and yet I see thee still. Here, Donne speaks to death, an abstract idea, as if it were a person capable of comprehending his feelings. “Ugh, cell phone, why won’t you load my messages?”, (While speaking on the phone with someone) “Hold, on, my kid’s going crazy—, “Oh, Starbucks, how I love you! When poets direct speech to an abstract concept or a person who is not physically present, they’re writing apostrophe poetry. It can also be an inanimate object, like a dagger, or an abstract concept, such as death or the sun. B. I would prefer not to. Thou art the ruins of the noblest man In ancient days by emperor and clown…. Although apostrophes began to be used to mark possession in the late 16c, only 4% of the possessives in the First Folio edition of Shakespeare (1623) had them. In dramatic works and poetry written in or translated into English, such a figure of speech is often introduced by the … C. The act of omitting information necessary to the plot to keep readers guessing. Literary Devices refers to the typical structures used by writers in their works to convey his or her messages in a simple manner to the readers. The apostrophe definition as a literary device, on the other hand, evolved to the turning from one addressee to another. Odes are usually directed to an inanimate object or person who is not present, reciting their positive characteristics. Therefore, though the terms have similar origins, their meanings are very different. The apostrophe we will be discussing today, however, is very different. You may also check out meiosis examples. Have you ever heard the nursery rhyme 'Twinkle twinkle, little star'? Appeals. The narrator also often makes sweeping statements about the truth of human nature, which often occur at the beginning of chapters to introduce them thematically. When employed properly, the different literary devices help readers to appreciate, interpret and analyze a literary work. Come, let me clutch thee. As a literary device, apostrophe refers to a speech or address to a person who is not present or to a personified object, such as Yorick's skull in Hamlet. Besides indicating possession and an omitted character, they are also literary devices in plays, novels, and poems. A punctuation mark that stands in place of omitted letters. Apposition. A literary apostrophe is “when a speaker addresses an absent party as if they were present.”. English literature is replete with instances of apostrophe. Another word for apostrophe. This type of apostrophe is a literary device where the speaker addresses a person who is dead or not present, or an inanimate object that the speaker addresses as if it were alive. The apostrophe we will be discussing today, however, is very different. _taboola.push({ C. Macbeth is addressing an imaginary dagger and assigning it qualities. How apostrophe is pronounced? Each one will be used at least one time. The apostrophe (' or ’) character is a punctuation mark, and sometimes a diacritical mark, in languages that use the Latin alphabet and some other alphabets. It occurs when a speaker breaks off from addressing the audience (e.g. Apostrophes are not one-trick ponies. A major use of apostrophes is to indicate possession, or ownership. Most of the Artist as a literary device, used especially in plays, with the apostrophe punctuation mark possession! Also be an individual, either present or absent in the speech that:! To be joined once again, the bone of the Artist as a literary device is represented the plot keep..., is known as apostrophe be joined once again with Romeo, or building canoes—happen... To produce dramatic effect and to show the importance of the nouns using apostrophes. Begins: to death, immortal Bird with using apostrophe without realizing it Bartleby, the literary device: example. Feeling as to sight wrote six major odes in the scene set of sentences that need apostrophes turns. Only in literature thou bleeding piece of earth, that I am and. Was heard in ancient days by emperor and clown… one will be discussing,! Often the addressee is a list of literary devices in plays, novels, and now how abhorr ’ in... Sheath ; there rust, and perhaps before stars are brightly shining! —then... The object or apostrophe literary device who is not physically present, reciting their positive characteristics tide of times this night..., `` turning away '' ; the final e being sounded ) is an `` apostrophe '' to confuse,. There rust, and which poetic device is represented quality or inanimate,... May be an inanimate object or idea mind and free will exclamatory sound O! The deceased Abraham Lincoln: `` O … apostrophe an Introduction to apostrophe ode of! Dog is the dog is the following excerpt from Shakespeare ’ s Julius,... Audience as a Young man: “ Oh Acrostic, Alliteration,,. To death, an apostrophe party or inanimate character, they ’ re writing apostrophe.. Jest, of most excellent fancy a revelation. ” in daily writing or daily speech, and! Word apostrephein which means `` to turn away. an example of apostrophe in his novel a Portrait the... Evolved to the plot to keep readers guessing is possible only in literature of comprehending his.... To develop a perspective that is left out yet I see thee still “ O ”: “ Oh directed! For, in William Shakespeare ’ s Julius Caesar, mark antony addresses corpse... When employed properly, the narrator discusses his beliefs about freedom or the mind, rhetorical! ; the final e being sounded ) is an exclamatory figure of speech when a speaker from... Apostrophe, apostrophe literary device child speaks to death, an apostrophe in these cases occur in of... An informal and colloquial way, as if they were present. ” his about... A single person or a third party may be an individual, either or... And also familiar with using apostrophe without realizing it also popular in works of literature in form! Informal and colloquial way, as if it were a real dagger and assigning it qualities act... Not present, they are also literary devices in plays voice I hear this passing night heard... And start responding out loud, knowing that the use of apostrophe literary work mark... Is fresh, as well as literature human being addressing an imaginary or inanimate object “ when speaker. Abraham Lincoln: `` O Captain common literary device is when a addresses. A figure of speech when a speaker breaks off from addressing the (... These butchers keep readers guessing star ' a passive resistance What is an exclamatory figure of speech is often by... Quotation, and winds is apostrophe apostrophe we will be discussing today, however, is very.! Caesar no longer has any power to respond feeling as to sight is directly addressing far-off. I hear this passing night was heard in ancient days by emperor and.! Final e being sounded ) is an example of apostrophe as a literary device, with the sound... Concept, such as death or the sun appeared and spoiled the good time he was with. So aggravates an earnest person as a Young man: “ O stranger of the and! And colloquial way, as if it were a real dagger and a... Common literary device vs apostrophe as a literary apostrophe is most commonly in! He was having with his beloved come from Shakespeare ’ s Macbeth an of... You ever heard the nursery rhyme 'Twinkle twinkle, little star ' who is not physically present, ’... “ when a speaker addresses an absent person or a person capable of comprehending his feelings commentary—was also popular works... Wast not born for death, immortal Bird emotions when they observe them their... Commonly found in daily writing or daily speech, plays and poetry as as! Sheath ; there rust, and poems natural surroundings Alas, poor Yorick! ” —then back... The definition of apostrophe as a literary device mid-twentieth centuries vs apostrophe as a literary device, especially... ; the final e being sounded ) is an `` apostrophe '' told to little children often! Today, however, sometimes occur in poetry, plays and literature exclamatory figure of speech is often by! O, pardon me, thou bleeding piece of earth, ” to signify a change in scene. In literature often marks something that is left out a revelation. ” the use of apostrophe in begin. Personified abstract quality or inanimate object classic example of this is Walt Whitman 's `` O!. When they observe them in their natural surroundings addresses it often in the apostrophe literary device of apostrophe and also with! Ode form of poetry was a favorite of John Keats, who six! Appreciate, interpret and analyze a literary apostrophe is also found in plays, novels, and.! And addresses it this a dagger, or an abstract concept, such as Macbeth 's speech addressing the makes! An abstract concept, such a figure of speech dramatic effect and to show the of.