Difference between Symbolism and Imagery in Literature

Symbolism and imagery both are literary devices. These are used to convey an author’s message, idea, feelings or thoughts. Symbolism is used to convey a specific meaning, which is different from the original meaning. On other hand imagery is used to create vivid pictures in the mind of the readers with the help of sensory words. These literary devices are used by most authors so as to embellish and enhance the theme of the literary works. Let us understand the symbolism and imagery in detail.


In the English literature, symbolism is a technique that is used when something is not to be taken literary. In simple words, symbolism is the use of a real object to stand for an idea, concept or situation. With the help of symbolism, a writer enhances the meaning of his or her literary work and captures the attention of the readers. Most writers or authors create images with the help of symbolism. A symbolism can refer to a person, word, event, action, object and situation that carry a deeper meaning in context.

For example:

•    White color is a symbol of purity and innocence.
•    Red color is symbol of anger or passion.
•    Light is a symbol of knowledge.
•    Rose is a symbol of romance.
•    Life is a roller coaster – Here roller coaster symbolizes the ups and downs of life.

Imagery refers to any kind of description that relates to a person’s five senses. In simple words, imagery is a descriptive language, which appeals to the physical senses (sight, sound, touch, taste and smell) of the reader. With the help of imagery, the writer or author draw picture in the mind of the readers. It is a technique of creating vivid mental images for the reader by using strong sensory words. The writer uses imagery to help readers to understand the imaginary world by using their five senses.

For example:

•    The word spread like leaves in a storm.
•    He felt like the flowers were waving him a hello.
•    One bite of the sour lemon caused my lips to pucker.
•    Glittering white, the blanket of snow covered everything in sight.
•    The sweet smell of freshly baked apple filled the air.

Discuss the Different Kinds of Adverbial Clause

Adverb clauses are a group of words which act as an adverb. Since these clauses are dependent, hence they would need a subordinating conjunction to get connected to other clauses. According to the objective of the clause these subordinating conjunctions can be aligned. Adverbs mostly define who, where, when, how an action was performed. They can modify the adverbs, adjectives, verbs. Some examples of adverbial clauses are discussed below:

•    You need to complete your homework whether you are interested or not.
•    Unless you complete your tasks fast, you won’t be able to meet the deadline.

Having understood what an adverbial clause is, let’s move to see the different kinds of adverbial clauses:

Adverbial Clause of Time: These clauses modify the time of action in main clause by providing the info when it occurred. The subordinating conjunctions for these types of clauses are whenever, while, before, anytime, etc. For example, She ate the sandwich while I was in the kitchen.

Adverbial Clause of Place: Main clause verb is modified to provide the information where the action has taken place. The subordinating conjunctions used here are wherever, as far as, where, etc. For example, Seeing the snake, he ran as far as he could.

Adverbial Clause of Manner: Main clause verb is modified to provide the information regarding how the action was performed. Subordinating Conjunctions used in this case are as though as, as if. For example,  The athlete is limping as if he is injured.

Adverbial Clause of Reason/Cause: Main clause verb is modified to tell why the action was performed. Subordinating clauses used here are as, because, that, for. For example, I came here because my car ran out of fuel.

Adverbial Clause of Condition: Main clause verb is modified to express the situation under which the action was performed. Subordinating clauses used here are whether, if, supposing that, unless, etc. For example, Unless you do the homework, you cannot play.

Adverbial Clause of Purpose: Main clause verb is modified to tell the objective of why the action was performed. Subordinating clauses used here are in order that, so that, etc. For example, I gave my notes in order that he can cover up for the missed classes.

Adverbial Clause of Result/Consequence: Main clause verb is modified to tell the consequence of an action performed. Subordinating clause used here is that. For example, He was so hungry that he ate all the sandwiches.

Adverbial Clause of Concession/Contrast: Main clause is modified to provide the contrasting information. Subordinating Clauses used here in spite of the fact, so, although, the fact that. For example, Although I am an average student, I have never copied in the exam.

Adverbial Clause of Degree: Main clause is modified to provide the degree of the information. Subordinating clauses used here are according to, according to how, etc. For example, You will get the results according to how you prepare for the exam.

Adverbial Clause of Means: Main clause is modified to give the distinguishing character. Subordinating conjunctions used here are by whatever means, by the fact that, etc. For example, You can recognize Tom by the fact that his tone of speech is harsh.

Adverbial Clause of Comparison: Main clause is modified to compare two objects. Subordinating conjunctions used here are small, fast, slow, hard, etc. For example, The train runs as fast as a rocket.

How to Write an Analytical Essay on a Poem

Analytical essays refers to the art of writing, where the focus is not only to summarize a story or poem rather it involves a more detailed explanation of why the poem was written, what metaphors were used in the poem and how effective it was . In other words, these essays basically connect the small dots and provide a bigger picture. An analytical essay mostly consists of three sections which include:

  1. Introduction: This section should focus on placing the hook and emphasizing the thesis statement and leave with a hint to the reader how you are going to prove your thesis.
  2. Body: This section should be used creatively to make user relate your thesis statement with concrete examples. 
  3. Conclusion: This section should be used to reiterate your thesis since you have already provided concrete examples in the body section.

Writing an analytical essay on a poem also follows the same steps with some more variations that are discussed below:

•    Select a theme on which you want to write the essay like nature, love, etc. The introduction paragraph should state why and what of the essay.  This establishes the hook for the reader to continue reading.

•    Start building the thesis of the essay. The thesis can channelize the various thoughts flowing in your mind and can build a case which you can substantiate with.

•    In the body section for each of the paragraph the first sentence should contain the topic which gives a heads up to the reader of what you are going to discuss. Using examples from the poem gives weightage to your statement. Use transitional phrases to move from one paragraph to other so that the reader is in sync and remains connected between the paragraphs.

•    Finally conclusion should contain the summary in a brief. The thesis should also be restated along with a final thought which strikes a chord with the audience and keeps them thinking even though they have completed reading long back.

Comedy in Literature and its Examples

Comedy refers to a literary genre where the speaker conveys the message to the audience in a lighter note or a sarcastic note which brings smiles to the audience and is quite amusing. The main objective of comedy is to gain victory over unpleasant situations by creating comic effects and the end result is spreading happiness. Comedies used in English literature are of multiple types depending on the source of humor, context of dialogue delivery and the way it is expressed. Below are some of the most commonly used comedy types:

Romantic Comedy: These comedies involve themes of love and mostly have a happy ending. Very commonly you can see these comedies in Shakespeare’s plays. The centrifugal point of these comedies is love affair which involves a beautiful heroine and a prince charming. Of course the path of love is not a bed of roses, but ultimately they overcome all the challenges to have a happy union at the end. One of the best examples of this type of comedy is Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”.

• Comedy of Humors: This type of comedy was introduced by Ben Johnson way back towards the end of 16th century. The word humor in Latin means liquid. This forms the basis of this type of comedy where it is believed that a human has four different types of liquids including phelgm, yellow bile, black bile and blood. It is believed that in a human body if all the liquids are properly balanced than they remain healthy. One of the best examples of this type of comedy is the play penned by Ben Johnson “Every Man in His Humor and Every Man out of His Humor”.

Comedy of Manners: This kind of comedy was introduced during the middle of the 17th Century. They basically depict the upscale and stylish society, its focus on elegance, fashion and rank. In other words, this type of comedy represents the relations between man and woman living in a sophisticated world. Mostly consists of wits of dialogues, good manners and violations of social traditions exhibited by ladies and gentleman. An example of this type of comedy can be found in the works of Congreve and Wycherley.

Sentimental Comedy: These are a mixture of both sentiments and tragedy. This type of comedy evolved during the 18th century as a result of reactions by the middle class against indecency and obscenity. These dramas involve scenes of extreme emotions. One example can be Sir Richard’s Steele’s play “The Conscious Lovers”.

Tragic Comedy: This genre contains both humor and tragic elements. Both the elements blend in such a way that they overall lighten the mood of the play. These comedies are mostly serious comedies which have a pleasant ending. The best example here can be Shakespeare’s play “All is well that ends well.”

English Grammar