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Home » Shakespeare's Works » Elements » Figures of Speech » Figures of Speech by Name » Gradatio


Gradatio is an extended form of anadiplosis. Each clause or phrase ends with a word that starts the next clause or phrase in ascending order, leading to a climax. “My conscience hath a thousand several tongues, / And every tongue brings in a several tale, / And every tale condemns me for a villain.” Richard III, 5.3.189.

Gradatio is an example of:

O my dear Orlando, how it grieves me

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Rosalind, as Ganymede
O my dear Orlando, how it grieves me
to see thee wear thy heart in a scarf.
It is my arm.
Rosalind, as Ganymede
I thought thy heart had been
wounded with the claws of a lion.
Wounded it is,
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Act 5
Scene 2
Line 20

Source Type:

Spoken by:

Figures of Speech:

Give me another horse!

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Give me another horse! Bind up my wounds!
Have mercy, Jesu!—Soft, I did but dream.
O coward conscience, how dost thou afflict me!Apostrophe & Alliteration
The lights burn blue; it is now dead midnight.
Cold fearful drops stand on my trembling flesh.Transferred Epithet
What do I fear? Myself? There’s none else by.
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