Twelfth Night Questions and Answers
by William Shakespeare

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What are some literary devices in Twelfth Night Act 3?

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A literary device is any technique used by a writer to produce an effect. As such, it's a fairly broad umbrella term; particular structures, such as the iambic pentameter Shakespeare uses across his body of work, are types of literary device. Shakespeare's plays are written in a combination of free verse, rhyming verse, and prose. When a character speaks in verse, it generally denotes that they are upper class; certainly, when a scene shifts between prose and verse, it draws attention to the lines.

An example of this from Act 3 of Twelfth Night comes in the middle of Scene I, where Viola observes to herself:

"This fellow is wise enough to play the fool..."

This section is highlighted in that Shakespeare diverges into verse with a defined rhythm, and Viola's conclusion uses the device of rhyme to show finality and emphasis:

"For folly that he wisely shows is fit;
But wise men, folly-fall'n, quite taint their wit."

We know, then, that this comment from Viola is of significance in...

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