Publication details [#12243]

Yao, Dayong. 2016. The rhetoric of "simulating shape" in classical poetry. Contemporary Rhetoric 2 : 77–85. 9 pp.
Publication type
Article in journal
Publication language


The paper focuses on a special rhetorical phenomenon in Chinese classical poetry--describing the intangible thoughts or emotions as tangible substance. It is suggested that it should be treated as an independent rhetorical device by the name of “simulating shape”. The difference between simulating shape and other common rhetorical devices like metaphor, personification, transferred epithet, zeugma, and synesthesia is presented . Then the formation of the newly proposed rhetorical device is examined from the syntactic perspective and classified into VO, VOC, SV, coordination and subordination. Besides in classical poetry, simulating shape is also used from time to time in modern Chinese, offering novel and original rhetorical effects. Therefore, the paper calls for further academic attention on simulating shape.