\ ˈtrōp How to pronounce trope (audio) \

Definition of trope

1a : a word or expression used in a figurative sense : figure of speech
b : a common or overused theme or device : cliché the usual horror movie tropes
2 : a phrase or verse added as an embellishment or interpolation to the sung parts of the Mass in the Middle Ages

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Examples of trope in a Sentence

a screenplay that reads like a catalog of mystery-thriller tropes

Recent Examples on the Web

The show aims to turn romantic comedy tropes on their heads, reminding viewers at every turn that Joe's relationship with Guinevere Beck is anything but healthy. Claire Dodson, Teen Vogue, "Penn Badgley Reminds Fans His "You" Character Joe Goldberg Is the Worst," 9 Jan. 2019 This false equivalence between Nazis and Israel is a trope on the left, where anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism elide. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "Education and Anti-Semitism," 28 Nov. 2018 In the past people have sent her images of herself photoshopped to resemble a gorilla, which is a trope frequently used to degrade people of color. Mikelle Street, Billboard, "Shangela, Shea Couleé & Aja Discuss Racism in the 'Drag Race' Fandom," 5 Apr. 2018 Time travel is a tricky proposition — science fiction has endlessly explored the possibilities and consequences of changing the past or future, and Tom Sweterlitsch’s book is a complicated take on the trope. Andrew Liptak, The Verge, "Our favorite science fiction and fantasy books of 2018," 21 Dec. 2018 Stanley focuses on propaganda and rhetoric, so his book is largely about the tropes and narratives that drive fascist politics. Sean Illing, Vox, "A Yale philosopher on fascism, truth, and Donald Trump.," 15 Dec. 2018 Like a map legend denoting various topographical symbols, this image seems to touch on all the major themes for the Madrid-based 24-year-old: cinematic references and outlandish self-styling; gender tropes and self-discovery in the digital age. Laura Regensdorf, Vogue, "Meet the Madrid Artist Whose Cinematic Beauty Looks Are Straight out of an Almodovar Movie," 23 Aug. 2018 In the hands of creators like Brock Akil, DuVernay, and McCraney, OWN is shattering old tropes and stereotypes about black identity. Jason Parham, WIRED, "How Oprah’s Network Finally Found Its Voice," 19 June 2018 But the real romance here was with the clothes—and with myriad winter (fashion) tropes. Laird Borrelli-persson, Vogue, "Once Upon a Time a Snowflake Fell for a Polar Bear—At a Moncler Gamme Rouge Show," 28 Dec. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'trope.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of trope

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for trope

Latin tropus, from Greek tropos turn, way, manner, style, trope, from trepein to turn

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Statistics for trope

Last Updated

24 Feb 2019

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Time Traveler for trope

The first known use of trope was before the 12th century

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English Language Learners Definition of trope

technical : a word, phrase, or image used in a new and different way in order to create an artistic effect

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