Answered By: James Whitmer
Last Updated: May 28, 2020     Views: 8

Irony occurs when an author uses speech, actions, or events to emphasize the opposite of what actually happened or was said. In general, irony takes the following forms in literature:

  • Verbal: When a character says the opposite of what they truly mean, such as saying, "This weather is wonderful!" when there are torrential rains and heavy winds outside.
    • Sarcasm: Be careful not to confuse sarcasm with verbal irony, for sarcasm is a specific type of verbal irony that is used to insult or hurt someone.
  • Dramatic: When the audience knows something a character does not, such as when they know the prince plots betrayal but the king has no idea.
  • Situational: When the outcome of a situation is the opposite of what would be expected, such as a character's trying to prevent a problem actually causing it to happen instead.

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