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Diction, Syntax, Tone, Mood

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Veronica Rodriguez

on 14 October 2013

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Transcript of Diction, Syntax, Tone, Mood

The general atmosphere of a piece of writing and the overall feeling the reader gets from the piece. A mood might be romantic, mysterious, dark, and lighthearted- it could be almost anything! The writer creates the mood not only by establishing characters and plot, but by describing the setting.
Setting is the physical surroundings in a story or article- where and when it takes place and what kinds of things are in the background. In fact, the setting often reflects the mood without even realizing it.
Example: It was cold, rainy, and dark, like always. She sat by herself in an unlit room, counting the raindrops on the window.
The mood is gloomy. The narrator does not have to say that the mood was gloomy. The overall feeling of gloominess is expressed when we read the passage.
Even though they are often very similar, a story’s mood can be very different from the tone. It is possible for a story to have a very serious tone, and a silly or comical mood.
Example: “Maria was ready for what she was sure would be the greatest night of her life. Tears leapt to her eyes as she thought of the lonely nights she’d spent praying that this moment would finally arrive. With quivering hands, she lifted her pet rabbit, Buster, out of its cage. It twitched its nose inquisitively, but otherwise kept still. It was finally happening- Maria was going to fulfill her dream. She was going to the prom with a bunny on her head. The narrator uses a very somber tone but the mood is very silly and absurd.

The associated or secondary meaning of a word or expression in addition to its explicit or primary meaning: A possible connotation of “home” is “a place of warmth, comfort, and affection.”
b.the suggesting of additional meanings by a word or expression, apart from its literal meaning; the act of connoting.


The study of the rules for the formation of grammatical sentences in a language.
b.the study of the patterns of formation of sentences and phrases from words.
c.the rules or patterns so studied: English syntax.
d.a presentation of these: a syntax of English.
e.an instance of these: the syntax of a sentence.

Diction- choice of words, their arrangement, and the force, accuracy, and distinction with which they are used: The speaker was distinguished for his excellent diction.
Diction, Syntax, Tone, Mood
Tone is something that helps convey the emotion you should feel when you read or hear a passage.
The tone reflects how the narrator or author feels about his topic.
It means the same as talking about the tone of someone’s voice.
A person can sound angry, frustrated, or exhausted, or happy, exited… there are tons of tones.
An author conveys these emotions through his words and writing style.
You can usually sense a piece’s tone by examining the narrator’s vocabulary and syntax, the way we put sentences together.
Example: My eyes were red with rage, and I couldn’t keep my feelings in any longer. I slammed my fists down on the table and demanded he give me my money back- or else.
You can tell from the example that the tone of this piece is angry. Words like “rage,” “slammed,” and “demanded” tell you how the narrator is feeling.
Example 1:

I mumbled sarcastically, rolling my eyes at him.
Example 2:
I shrieked, and ran to give him a great, big hug!
These are examples of two different tones.
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