The Miller Analogies Test or MAT tests your knowledge through analogies. In order to do well on MAT literature analogies, you need to master the basics of literary terminology, among other things.

  • Act: Major part of a play

  • Allegory: Work in which things represent or stand for other things

  • Alliteration: Repeated sounds in consecutive words

  • Allusion: Reference to something

  • Anachronism: Error in time sequence

  • Antagonist: Character who opposes the work’s hero

  • Antihero: Main character who lacks heroism

  • Apostrophe: Direct reference to something that is absent

  • Assonance: Repetition of vowel sounds

  • Ballad: Poem that tells a tale and is usually meant to be sung

  • Bildungsroman: Autobiographical novel

  • Canto: Division of a long poem

  • Cliché: An overused, formerly meaningful element in a work

  • Climax: Point of highest drama in a work

  • Couplet: Two consecutive lines of verse that rhyme with each other

  • Denouement: Final part of a work

  • Doggerel: Bad poetry

  • Elegy: Poem expressing sadness

  • Epic: Long heroic poem

  • Epiphany: A work or section of a work presenting a moment of revelation

  • Essay: Short work expressing the author’s opinion

  • Fable: Short story containing a moral lesson

  • Foot: Unit of verse

  • Foreshadowing: When the author hints at future plot developments

  • Genre: Type of literature

  • Haiku: Japanese three-line poem

  • Hyperbole: Exaggeration

  • Idiom: A saying that has a figurative meaning

  • Imagery: When the author uses descriptive words to enhance his meaning

  • Irony: Something that means the opposite of its literal meaning

  • Kitsch: Work of poor quality or reputation

  • Lampoon: Satirical portrayal

  • Limerick: Five-line humorous poem

  • Metaphor: Description of something done by comparing it to something else

  • Meter: A poem’s rhythm

  • Motif: Repeated theme in a work

  • Onomatopoeia: Word that sounds like what it means

  • Oxymoron: Term that contradicts itself

  • Parable: Story with a moral lesson

  • Paradox: Illogical statements used to create insight

  • Parody: Work that mocks another work

  • Pathos: Something used to get sympathy

  • Personification: Giving human attributes to things that are not human

  • Plot: Events of a literary work

  • Prose: Nonpoetic language

  • Pun: A humorous use of words to suggest alternate meanings

  • Rhetoric: An art that writers use to be more persuasive

  • Rhetorical Question: A question that makes a point; no reply is expected

  • Sarcasm: An ironic statement usually used in a negative way

  • Satire: Work that makes fun of something

  • Scene: Part of a play happening in a certain location

  • Simile: Description accomplished by comparing one thing to another

  • Sonnet: Fourteen-line poem

  • Stanza: Part of a poem consisting of a group of lines

  • Symbol: A representation of an idea

  • Theme: The core subject that an author is writing about

  • Thesis: The primary argument in an essay

  • Tone: The author’s attitude towards the subject matter

  • Verse: Poetry, or a part of a poem

About This Article

This article is from the book:

About the book authors:

Vince Kotchian is a full-time standardized test tutor specializing in the MAT, SSAT, ISEE, ACT, GRE, and GMAT. He teaches a GRE prep course at the University of California, San Diego, and has an extensive understanding of analogies and the MAT.

Edwin Kotchian is a MAT tutor and freelance writer who has contributed to a variety of test-prep material.

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