Expert Answers
engtchr5 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

One literary device that Shakespeare was fond of was the double entendre, or the use of words with a double meaning. It is no accident that he has his characters say things like, "...you will find me a grave man," when later in the play, that very character winds up dead.

In this instance, we see the word "grave" used as both meanings: "serious" and "place of burial." In addition, this quote is an excellent illustration of Shakespeare's use of foreshadowing in his longer works.

Arguments could be made for Shakespeare's use of word sound devices in poetry, including assonance, alliteration and consonance. In the case of alliteration, Shakespeare uses lines where an initial consonant sound is repeated:

"Seven slimy snakes slowly slithered southward" isn't Shakespeare's line, but it does make a good illustration of alliteration. In addition, assonance is the repetition of initial vowel sounds, while consonance is the repetition of letter sounds as well. Such devices were popular during the age of Shakespeare. 

Read the study guide:
Shakespeare's Sonnets

Access hundreds of thousands of answers with a free trial.

Start Free Trial
Ask a Question