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Anaphora Examples

Anaphora is a technique of beginning several lines with the same word or words. This creates a parallelism and a rhythm, which can intensify the meaning of the piece.
In linguistics, an anaphora is also a technique of using a word, such as a pronoun, to refer to or replace another word in a sentence.

Anaphora in Poems

Examples (with anaphora underlined):
Tired with all these, for restful death I cry,
As to behold desert a beggar born,
And needy nothing trimm’d in jollity,
And purest faith unhappily forsworn,
And gilded honour shamefully misplac’d,
And maiden virtue rudely strumpeted,
And right perfection wrongfully disgrac’d,
And strength by limping sway disabled
And art made tongue-tied by authority,
And folly–doctor-like–controlling skill,
And simple truth miscall’d simplicity,
And captive good attending captain ill – Sonnet No. 66 by William Shakespeare
I remember a piece of old wood with termites running around all over it the termite men found under our front porch.
I remember when one year in Tulsa by some freak of nature we were invaded by millions of grasshoppers for about three or four days.
I remember, downtown, whole sidewalk areas of solid grasshoppers.
I remember a shoe store with a big brown x-ray machine that showed up the bones in your feet bright green. – I Remember by Joe Brainard
From the memories of the bird that chanted to me,
From your memories sad brother, from the fitful risings and fallings I heard,
From under that yellow half-moon late-risen and swollen as if with tears,
From those beginning notes of yearning and love there in the mist,
From the thousand responses of my heart never to cease,
From the myriad thence-arous’d words,
From the word stronger and more delicious than any,
From such as now they start the scene revisiting,
– Out of the Cradle Endlessly Rocking by Walt Whitman
angelheaded hipsters burning for the ancient heavenly connection to the starry dynamo in the machinery of night,
who poverty and tatters and hollow-eyed and high sat up smoking in the supernatural darkness of cold-water flats floating across the tops of cities contemplating jazz,
who bared their brains to Heaven under the El and saw Mohammedan angels staggering on tenement roofs illuminated,
who passed through universities with radiant cool eyes hallucinating Arkan- sas and Blake-light tragedy among the scholars of war,
who were expelled from the academies for crazy & publishing obscene odes on the windows of the skull – Howl by Allen Ginsberg
After the torchlight red on sweaty faces
After the frosty silence in the gardens
After the agony in stony places
The shouting and the crying
Prison and palace and reverberation
Of thunder of spring over distant mountains
He who was living is now dead
We who were living are now dying
With a little patience – The Waste Land by T. S. Eliot

Examples of Anaphora In Sentences

Examples where one word refers to another (with anaphora underlined and substituted word or phrase shown in parentheses):

  • She dropped the glass and it broke into pieces. (the glass)
  • The party was over and that upset everybody. (The party was over)
  • The child wanted a pony but her parents didn’t buy one for her. (pony)
  • If my son moves to Florida, I will do that as well. (move to Florida)
  • The teacher was disappointed and so were his students. (disappointed)
  • Fred asked Ginger to pass him the potatoes. (Fred)
  • I know it and she does, too. (knows it)
  • Sue needed the glue and asked me to finish with it. (glue)
  • The dog really wanted the bone but Sam threw it away. (bone)

An anaphora is a type of rhetorial device. Now that you understand anaphora, check out some more Examples of Rhetorical Devices.


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