This passage describes the different types of irony.

Lexile Level: 1120L

Categories: Classics & Literature

Although we may talk about different types of irony, all of them involve something unexpected. When we speak of verbal irony, we refer to the difference between what someone says and what he or she means. For example, we may use verbal irony when, on a hot, sunny day, we remark that we wish summer weather would arrive; or we may use verbal irony to tell our teacher how much we enjoy extra homework. Dramatic irony occurs when we understand something that a fictional character does not understand. We may urge a character in a horror film not to go in the basement since we know what will happen, while the character does not know. Situational irony occurs when things do not happen as we expect they will. For example, someone may spend hours preparing for a test only to find out that it has been cancelled. In each case, there is a gap between what we think is appropriate and what is said or done.

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