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Resources of language syntax



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  • *
  • * Makes the writing more interesting and lively. Way to remember: Active= actually doing something *
  • * The agent performing the action may appear in a "by the..." phrase or may be omitted. Makes the writing flat/boring. Better used with scientific writing. All passive sentences have to be verbs, but not all sentences with to be verbs are passive. Way to remember: Passive= not taking actual action; letting someone or something else act on you *
  • * Anaphora is repetition but repetition isn't always anaphora. Also used for emphasis and to create rhythm. Way to remember: Repetition has root 'repeat'
  • * Used to emphasize the repeated word or words as well as create a rhythm. Way to remember: A in anaphora repeats, and it starts with A, the first letter of the alphabet.
  • * Used to emphasize the repeated word or words as well as create a rhythm. Way to remember: E in epistrophe repeats and it ends with E, which begins the word end.
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  • * A conjunction is a part of speech is a part of speech that connects two words, sentences is a part of speech that connects two words, sentences, phrases is a part of speech that connects two words, sentences, phrases or clauses together. For, And, Nor, But, Or, Yet, So Quickens the pace of the Way to remember: Prefix A means without, so without conjunctions
  • * For special emphasis – to highlight quantity or mass of detail, or to create a flowing, continuous sentence pattern; has the tendency to intentionally slow the reader down. Way to remember: Poly means many, so many conjunctions
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  • * A loose sentence (also called a cumulative sentence) is a type of sentence in which the main idea ( independent clause ) is elaborated by the successive addition of modifying clauses or phrases.


  • 1. Resources of Language: Syntax Felix Garcia and Ruben Toirac
  • 2. Active Voice• In a sentence using active voice, the subject of the sentence performs the action expressed by the verb.• Ex. –The child kicked the ball. –Sally mailed the letter. –They have conducted the experiments.
  • 3. Passive Voice• In a sentence using passive voice, the subject is being acted upon by the verb.• Ex. –The ball was kicked by the child. –The class was taught by the professor. –Her purse was stolen.
  • 4. Repetition• The duplication, either exact or approximate, of a word, phrase, clause, sentence, or grammatical pattern.• Ex. – Im nobody! Who are you? Are you nobody too? Then theres a pair of us- dont tell! Theyd banish us you know. – "Words, words, words." (Hamlet)
  • 5. Anaphora• Repetition of the same word or group of words at the beginning of successive clauses• Ex. – We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills…” Churchill – And needy nothing trimmd in jollity, And purest faith unhappily forsworn, And gilded honour shamefully misplacd, And maiden virtue rudely strumpeted,
  • 6. Epistrophe• Ending a series of lines, phrases, clauses, or sentences with the same word or words.• Ex. – What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny compared to what lies within us." — Emerson – Hourly joys be still upon you! Juno sings her blessings on you. [. . .] Scarcity and want shall shun you, Ceres blessing so is on you. — Shakespeare, The Tempest (4.1.108-109; 116-17)
  • 7. Inversion• Figure of speech in which a languages usual word order is inverted• Ex. o Sure I am of this, that you have only to endure to conquer. (Winston Churchill o Gracious she was. By gracious I mean full of graces o In Xanadu did Kubla Khan A stately pleasure dome decree
  • 8. Anastrophe• A rhetorical term for the inversion of the normal order of the parts of a sentence.• Ex. – "Told you, I did. Reckless is he. Now matters are worse." – After great pain a formal feeling comes – The nerves sit ceremonious like tombs. Emily Dickinson
  • 9. Chiasmus• Grammatical structure in which the first clause or phrase is reversed in the second, sometimes repeating the same words.• Ex. – “And so, my fellow Americans, ask not what your country can do for you: ask what you can do for your country.” John F. Kennedy – Its not the men in my life its the life in my men. – By day the frolic, and the dance by night
  • 10. Asyndeton• Deliberate omission of conjunctions between a series of related clauses• Ex. – I came, I saw, I conquered. – "He was a bag of bones, a floppy doll, a broken stick, a maniac." (Jack Kerouac, On the Road, 1957)
  • 11. Polysyndeton• Deliberate use of many conjunctions; opposite of asyndeton• Ex. –The meal was huge – my mother fixed okra and green beans and ham and apple pie and salad and all manner of fine country food – but no matter how I tried, I could not consume it to her satisfaction. –“And each dark tree that ever grew, Is curtained out from Heaven’s wide blue;Nor sun, nor moon, nor wind, nor rain, Can pierce its interwoven bowers…”
  • 12. Meter •Basic rhythmicstructure of a verse orlines in verse •Described with feet(monometer, dimeter,trimeter, etc.)
  • 13. Enjambment •The continuation of the sense andtherefore the grammatical constructionbeyond the end of a line of verse or theend of a couplet •Ex. –i carry your heart with me (i carry it in my heart) i am never without it (anywhere i go you go, my dear; and whatever is done by only me is your doing, my darling –I am not prone to weeping, as our sex Commonly are; the want of which vain dew Perchance shall dry your pities; but I have That honourable grief lodged here which burns Worse than tears drown.
  • 14. Caesura •A rhythmic break or pausein the flow of sound which iscommonly introduced inabout the middle of a line ofverse •Ex. –"Sing, o goddess, the rage || of Achilles, the son of Peleus." –Know then thyself II, presume not God to scan; • The proper study ofMankind II is Man. •Placd on this isthmus of a middle state, A being darkly wise, and rudely great:
  • 15. Listing• Writing a series of words or phrases together, one after the other and in a sentence, as if it were a list• Ex. – Apples, pears, and bananas – POLONIUS The best actors in the world, either for tragedy, comedy, history, pastoral, pastoral-comical, historical-pastoral, tragical- historical, tragical- comical-historical-pastoral, scene individable, or poem unlimited
  • 16. Loose Sentence• A type of sentence in which the main idea (independent clause) comes first, followed by dependent grammatical units such as phrases and clauses• Ex. –I found a large hall, obviously a former garage, dimly lit, and packed with cots. –The wildcat looked briefly at the two humans, seemed to sneer with a raised lip, and stalked off back into the woods.