Isocolon Examples


Isocolon is the term used to refer to the use of similar, or parallel, grammatical structures in phrases or sentences. The structures can be similar due to length or rhythm. Essentially, when a writer or speaker has repeated a grammatical structure, it is called isocolon. The writer or speaker can repeat the structure one time, or multiple times.

Examples of Isocolon:

From Julius Caesar:

Friends, Romans, Countrymen, lend me your ears.

Also from Julius Caesar:

I came, I saw, I conquered.

From "The Tyger" by William Blake:

What the hammer? what the chain?

In what furnace was thy brain?

What the anvil? what dread grasp

Dare its deadly terrors clasp?

From A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens (all of these structures are parallel and repeat the "it was" sentence structure):

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope,it was the winter of despair.

From a speech by Winston Churchill:

Come then: let us to the task, to the battle, to the toil--each to our part, each to our station. Fill the armies, rule the air, pour out the munitions, strangle the U-boats, sweep the mines, plow the land, build the ships, guard the streets, succor the wounded, uplift the downcast, and honor the brave.

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