Stylistic devices: Synecdoche


What is a synecdoche?

Synecdoche is a figure of speech in which a part of something is used to represent the whole or the whole of something is used to represent part of it. It is considered to be a special kind of metonymy.

Types and examples of synecdoche

  • Part of something is used to refer to the whole thing –
    A hundred head of cattle (using the part head to refer to the whole animal)
  • The whole of a thing is used to represent part of it –
    The world treated him badly
     (using the world to refer to a part of the world)
  • A specific class of thing is used to refer to a larger, more general class –
    A bug (used to refer to any kind of insect or arachnid, even if it is not a true bug)
  • A general class of thing is used to refer to a smaller, more specific class –
    The good book (referring to the Bible or the Qur’an)
  • A material is used to refer to an object composed of that material –
    Glasses 
    or steel ( referring to spectacles or sword)
  • A container is used to refer to its contents –
    A barrel (referring to a barrel of oil)

Source: Wikipedia

36 Figures of Speech Types Simile Metaphor Etc With Examples
36 Figures of Speech Types Simile Metaphor Etc With Examples

List of Figures of Speech in the English Language – Literary Devices

Accumulation Climax Metalepsis
Adjunction Dysphemism Metaphor
Adnomination Ellipsis Metonymy
Alliteration Euphemism Simile
Allusion Epigram Synecdoche
Anaphora Epiphora (or epistrophe) Tautology
Antanaclasis Hyperbole Understatement
Anticlimax Hypophora Zeugma and syllepsis
Antiphrasis Irony
Antithesis Litotes
Apostrophe Oxymoron
Assonance Personification
Cataphora Puns
Chiasmus Merism

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