An allegory is as a literary device a metaphor used to convey a larger message about real-world problems or events in a personality, location or incident. Allegory has been commonly used throughout the history of all types of art (in the context of the exercise and use of allegorical artworks and works) mainly because it is easy for its spectators, readers and listeners to explain or communicate complicated thoughts and concepts in terms which are comprehensible or impressive.

Writers and speaker typically use allegories as the literary instrument or as the rhetorical means which, through symbolic figures, actions, images or events, transmit (semi-)hidden and complex meanings which create together a moral, spiritual or political meaning that the authors wish to convey. Many allegories use abstract ideas as personifications.

Allegory allegory literary device metaphor convey larger message real problems events personality location incident Allegory commonly history types art context exercise allegorical artworks works easy spectators readers listeners explain communicate complicated thoughts concepts terms comprehensible impressive Writers speaker typically allegories literary instrument rhetorical symbolic figures actions images events transmit semi hidden complex meanings create moral spiritual political meaning authors convey Many allegories abstract ideas personifications literary device allegory metaphor character place event deliver broader message real issues occurrences Allegory sense practice allegorical devices works occurred history forms art illustrate convey complex ideas concepts ways comprehensible striking viewers readers listeners Writers speakers typically allegories literary devices rhetorical devices convey semi hidden complex meanings symbolic figures actions imagery events create moral spiritual political meaning author wishes convey Many allegories personifications abstract concepts EtymologySalvator Rosa Allegory Fortune representing Fortuna goddess luck horn plentyFirst attested English 1382 word allegory Latin allegoria latinisation Greek ἀλληγορία allegoría veiled language figurative turn ἄλλος allos ἀγορεύω agoreuo harangue speak assembly originates ἀγορά agora assembly TypesNorthrop Frye discussed termed continuum allegory spectrum ranges termed naive allegory The Faerie Queene private allegories modern paradox literature perspective characters naive allegory fully dimensional aspect individual personalities events befall embodies moral quality abstraction allegory selected details flesh Classical allegoryThe origins Allegory traced Homer quasi allegorical personifications Terror Deimos Fear Phobos The title allegorist awarded earliest allegorical interpretations Homer This approach leads answers Theagenes Rhegium Porphyry calls allegorist Porph Quaest Hom Schrad Pherecydes Syros presumed active 6th century Pherecydes earlier presumed writer prose The debate complex demands observe distinction conflated Greek verb allēgoreīn speak allegorically interpret allegorically case interpreting allegorically Theagenes appears earliest Presumably response proto philosophical moral critiques Homer Xenophanes Diels Kranz Theagenes proposed symbolic interpretations Gods Iliad stood physical elements Hephestus represents Fire instance Diels Kranz Some scholars argue Pherecydes cosmogonic writings anticipated Theagenes allegorical work illustrated early placement Time Chronos genealogy gods thought reinterpretation titan Kronos traditional genealogies classical literature allegories Cave Plato Republic Book VII story stomach members speech Menenius Agrippa Livy Among examples allegory Plato Allegory Cave forms larger work The Republic allegory Plato describes group people lived chained cave lives facing blank wall 514a The people watch shadows projected wall passing ascribe forms shadows language identify 514c 515a According allegory shadows close prisoners viewing reality finds sees actual objects produced shadows people cave discovery vehemently resist efforts free 516e 518a This allegory basic level philosopher finding greater knowledge cave human understanding seeks share duty foolishness ignore educated Late Antiquity Martianus Capella organized century upper class male needed allegory wedding Mercury Philologia liberal arts young man needed guests Biblical allegoryOther early allegories Hebrew Bible extended metaphor Psalm Vine impressive spread growth representing Israel conquest peopling Promised Land Also allegorical Ezekiel capture vine mighty Eagle represents Israel exile Babylon Allegorical interpretation Bible common early Christian practice continues For discovered IVth Commentary Gospels Fortunatianus Aquileia comment English translator The principal characteristic Fortunatianus exegesis figurative approach relying set concepts key terms order create allegorical decoding text pXIX Medieval allegoryBritish School 17th century Portrait Lady Called Elizabeth Lady Tanfield Sometimes meaning allegory lost art historians suspect artwork allegory kind Main article Allegory Middle AgesAllegory ability freeze temporality story infusing spiritual context Mediaeval thinking accepted allegory reality underlying rhetorical fictional The allegory true facts surface appearances Thus Papal Bull Unam Sanctam 1302 presents themes unity Christendom pope head allegorical details metaphors adduced facts based demonstration vocabulary logic Therefore Church body head heads monster Greeks committed care Peter successors confess sheep Christ This text demonstrates frequent allegory religious texts Mediaeval Period tradition Bible late 15th century enigmatic Hypnerotomachia elaborate woodcut illustrations influence themed pageants masques contemporary allegorical representation humanist dialectic conveyed The denial medieval allegory 12th century works Hugh Victor Edward Topsell Historie Foure footed Beastes London 1607 1653 replacement study nature methods categorisation mathematics figures naturalist John Ray astronomer Galileo thought mark early modern science Modern allegorySince meaningful stories applicable larger issues allegories read stories author recognised This allegoresis reading story allegory Examples allegory popular culture intended include works Bertolt Brecht works science fiction fantasy The Chronicles Narnia Lewis Kingdom Far Clear The Complete Swan Lake Trilogy Mark Helprin The story apple falling Isaac Newton head famous allegory simplified idea gravity depicting simple supposedly discovered scientific revelation condensing theory short tale Poetry fictionDetail Laurent Hyre Allegory Arithmetic 1650It note allegoresis discovery allegory work resonant work modern fiction allegorical intended viewed According Henry Littlefield 1964 article Frank Baum The Wonderful Wizard understood plot driven fantasy narrative extended fable talking animals broadly sketched characters intended discuss politics time Yet George MacDonald emphasised 1893 fairy tale allegory Tolkien The Lord Rings work mistakenly perceived allegorical author stated cordially dislike allegory manifestations grew wary detect presence prefer history true feigned varied applicability thought experience readers confuse applicability allegory resides freedom reader purposed domination author Tolkien resented suggestion book One Ring overwhelming power possessing intended allegory nuclear weapons intention book ended Ring destroyed arms race powers Ring Then Tolkien outline alternative plot Lord The Rings written allegory intended book dystopia While Tolkien works treated allegorical themes reinterpreted postmodern sensibilities suggests conscious writings This reinforces idea forced allegoresis allegory matter interpretation original artistic intention Like allegorical stories allegorical poetry meanings literal meaning symbolic meaning Some unique specimens allegory works Edmund Spenser The Faerie Queene The knights poem stand virtues William Shakespeare The Tempest fight good evil deserted islandJohn Bunyan The Pilgrim Progress The journey protagonists Christian Evangelist symbolises ascension soul earth Heaven Nathaniel Hawthorne Young Goodman Brown The Devil Staff symbolises defiance God The characters names Goodman Faith ironically serve paradox conclusion story Nathaniel Hawthorne The Scarlet Letter The scarlet letter symbolises The characters developed interiority allegorical represent ways Symbolism prominent George Orwell Animal Farm The pigs stand political figures Russian Revolution László Krasznahorkai The Melancholy Resistance film Werckmeister Harmonies circus occupying dysfunctional government Edgar Allan Poe The Masque Red Death The story read allegory humans inability escape death Arthur Miller The Crucible The Salem witch trials thought allegory McCarthyism blacklisting Communists United States America ArtSome elaborate successful specimens allegory works arranged approximate chronological order Ambrogio Lorenzetti Allegoria del Buono Cattivo Governo loro Effetti Città Campagna 1338 1339 Sandro Botticelli Primavera 1482 Albrecht Dürer Melencolia 1514 Bronzino Venus Cupid Folly Time 1545 The English School Allegory Queen Elizabeth 1610 Artemisia Gentileschi Allegory Inclination 1620 Allegory Peace Arts English Crown 1638 Self Portrait Allegory Painting 1638 The Feast Herod Beheading John Baptist Bartholomeus Strobel allegory Europe time Thirty Years War portraits leading political military figures Jan Vermeer Allegory Painting 1666 Jean Léon Gérôme Truth Coming Out Her Well 1896 Marcel Duchamp The Bride Stripped Bare Her Bachelors Even 1912 1923 Graydon Parrish The Cycle Terror Tragedy 2006 Many statues Lady Justice Such visual representations raised question allegories history art pertaining occupations reserved men female sex Damien Hirst Verity 2012 Allegory ZodiacPage

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