Invective


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Invective

 

a harsh denunciation or satirical mockery of a real individual or group of individuals, usually accompanied by some displacement in the reality of the portrayal. Invective is characterized by a two-dimensional quality of structure and meaning, which often emphasizes personal accusations for the purpose of public denigration.

The literary forms of invective are varied and include epigrams (by Martial) and polemical articles and speeches (Cicero’s Philippics). Invective was employed by Aristophanes in the comedies Knights and Clouds, by Catullus in his lyrics, by Erasmus in Praise of Folly, and by Diderot in Rameau’s Nephew. The term “invective” is rarely used.

References in classic literature ?
During the entire battle both sides hurled taunts and insults at one another--the human beings naturally excelling the brutes in the coarseness and vileness of their vilification and invective.
So they stood there facing one another, making all sorts of hideous noises the while they hurled jungle invective back and forth.
I felt no particular distress until I suddenly started upward at ever-increasing velocity; then my lungs seemed about to burst, and I must have lost consciousness, for I remember nothing more until I opened my eyes after listening to a torrent of invective against Germany and Germans.
The attention of those near by had now been attracted by the altercation, and the sneering laughs that followed this torrent of invective easily indicated the trend of the sympathies of the majority of the audience.
A moment later the attention of each was called to Plesser by a volley of invective.
Greene in his 'History of England' has well spoken of 'the characteristics of his oratory--its passionate ardor, its poetic fancy, its amazing prodigality of resources; the dazzling succession in which irony, pathos, invective, tenderness, the most brilliant word pictures, the coolest argument, followed each other.
They were wholly deaf to my arguments, or failed to perceive their force, and fell into a strain of invective that was irresistible.
His predecessor used to hang out his washing on the tombstones to dry, but then he was a person entirely lost to all sense of decency, and had finally to be removed, preaching a farewell sermon of a most vituperative description, and hurling invective at the Man of Wrath, who sat up in his box drinking in every word and enjoying himself thoroughly.
I checked the half-uttered invective, and scornfully turned away, regretting that I had given him so much amusement.
With a final scream of jungle invective and an apelike grimace at his departing foe, Tarzan continued along his way.
Mrs Deborah approved all these sentiments, and the dialogue concluded with a general and bitter invective against beauty, and with many compassionate considerations for all honest plain girls who are deluded by the wicked arts of deceitful men.
He rained upon it curses from God and High Heaven, and withered it with a heat of invective that savoured of a mediaeval excommunication of the Catholic Church.