The first scene of the play is full of literary devices. Shakespeare, for instance, has Marcellus use a metaphor
, likening Horatio
's ears and mind to a closed up fortress and he to someone trying to assault the fortress with his words when he says:
assail your ears,
That are so fortified against our story . . .
In other words, Horatio has closed his mind and refuses to believe the guards' story of a ghost haunting the castle ramparts.
As Marcellus tells the story of the ghost
's appearance, he uses alliteration
, which is when the same consonant at the beginning of a word is used more than once in close proximity. Instead of simply saying it was one o'clock in the morning, he says
The bell then beating one
The repeated "b" sounds heighten the drama.
Then Horatio says, as the ghost leaves at daybreak,
Th' extravagant and erring spirit hies
He uses the literary device of assonance, which is when two words placed close together begin with the same vowel.
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