Creative writing Poetry


A litote is a figure of speech that involves the use of understatement to express an idea by denying its opposite. It is a rhetorical understatement that uses negation to convey an affirmative meaning.

For example, instead of saying “she’s beautiful,” a litote could say “she’s not unattractive.” Similarly, instead of saying, “he’s very intelligent,” a litote could say “he’s not stupid.” The idea is to downplay the extent of a quality or characteristic, while still conveying that it exists.

Litotes are often used to express modesty or humility, but they can also be used for irony or to make a point more subtly. They are a common feature of the English language and are often used in everyday conversation, literature, and other forms of writing.



By Benjamin L. Stewart

I´m an EFL teacher educator and foreign language coordinator at the Universidad Autónoma de Aguascalientes in Mexico.

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